- Duplex print
- Touchscreen control
- Comprehensive software bundle
- Fuzzy black text
- Striping in colour copies
- Flimsy paper tray
- Review Price: £150.00
- Prints and copies direct to CD/DVD/Blu-ray
- Patterned lid with fold-down ADF tray
- Wireless connection with WPS setup
- Front panel SD, MemoryStick and PictBridge
- Plain and photo paper trays
Brother has been taking a look at some of it competition before designing the DCP-J925DW. The high-gloss black top is decorated with attractive light grey swirls, in a similar fashion to some of HP’s recent all-in-ones, while the feed tray for the 15-sheet ADF folds down to complete the subtle curve of the top cover in an Epsonesque way.
What is still firmly a Brother innovation is the wide-aspect LCD touch-screen, which is used for all controls except start, stop, power and home. The display feels more responsive than on previous models and the look and structure of the menu tree has been improved.
Under the front lip of the control panel are twin sockets for SD and MemoryStick, with the other card types now often left out of new designs. There’s a PictBridge socket, though, which is good to see. Given the low cost of fitting this, we’re surprised several manufacturers have dropped this lingua franca of camera connections.
The main paper tray can take 100 sheets and has a 20-sheet photo tray built in on top, so you can load both media at once. The photo tray is still not powered, though, so you have to remove the whole cartridge and slide the photo tray forward by hand to print photos. It now has a small blue indicator at the front, to show which paper is selected.
The main new feature of the DCP-J925DW is its CD/DVD tray, which slots in just above the paper tray when you pull a grey support mechanism down and out. The tray takes standard 120mm discs, though not the 80mm nor credit-card sized ones. You can print on coated discs using the supplied NewSoft CD labeller or by copying an image from the flatbed or a file on a memory card.
Ink cartridges plug in at the right of the paper tray, behind a hatch, and are available in two capacities, though even the higher capacity is only 600 pages.
Brother provides copies of Nuance PaperPort and FaceFilter, as well as its own MFL-Pro Suite, so the printer is well provisioned with support software. Drivers for Windows and OS X are included. Linux support isn’t mentioned, but may be available through the Brother website.
Print speeds from Brother all-in-ones have usually been above average and this machine continues the trend. Our five-page text document gave 7.1ppm, but this increased to 9.2ppm on the 20-page test. This is close to Brother’s 12ppm claim, though 35ppm for draft print is wishful – we saw 11.1ppm.
The machine supports duplex print and, because of the piezo printheads and Brother’s choice of ink, the machine has to wait very little time between printing first and second sides. Our 20-side document printed as 10 duplex pages gave 4.1 sides per minute.
Colour print speeds were slower, but 5.5ppm is still a good result in this class. A single page colour copy took 28s and a five page black text copy took 1:16, both reasonable. Finally, 15 x 10cm photos took between 1:03 and 1:53, depending on print quality and file source.
The main problem with the DCP-J925DW, as with previous Brother inkjets, is its plain paper print quality. Largely down to the ink formulation, there’s noticeably more run of ink into the paper fibres, giving text a fuzzy appearance.
Colour graphic print is fair, though some dither patterns are visible, but colour copies are banded and pale, a meagre reflection of their originals. Photo prints on Brother paper are good, with natural colours and plenty of detail.
For some odd reason, the price for Brother’s LC-1240BK cartridge, which offers 600 pages, is close to twice the price of the colour cartridges, which also offer 600 pages, each. Even using the best prices we could find, running costs come out at 3.7p for a black page and 9.6p for colour, both including 0.7p for paper. The colour cost is on a par with the printer’s main rivals, but the black cost is on the high side.
The improvements Brother has included in the DCP-J925DW are all welcome. Duplex print and CD/DVD/BD direct print are worthwhile additions, particularly in the SOHO market at which this machine’s aimed. Sadly, it still lacks the print quality virtually all its rivals can offer.
Score in detail
Print Speed 8
Print Quality 6
|Card slot||SD, Memory Stick, PictBridge|
|Connection Type||Ethernet, USB|
|Extra Features||Duplex print, CD/DVD direct print|
|Number of Catridges||4|
|Sheet Capacity||100 sheets + 20 sheet photo tray|
|Print Resolution (Dots per inch)||1200 x 6000dpi|
|Rated Black Speed (Images per minute)||12ipm|
|Rated Colour Speed (Images per minute)||10ipm|
|Max Paper Weight||220g/sm|
|Print Without PC||Yes|
|Scan Resolution (Dots per inch)||2400 x 2400dpi|
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