The Snapper can grab a portion of the screen, highlighted under its magnifying lens, so you can print it out. Quite why you would want to print a small section of your screen out in monochrome on a thermal printer is unclear, but the facility’s there if you need it.
Printing with the MPrint MW-140BT is not quick, particularly if you’re printing graphics rather than text. Although the claimed page speed of 15 seconds per page sounds good, and we certainly managed to get a page from the printer in 18 seconds, you have to remember this is only 1/16 of on A4 page.
The printer is quite clever at reducing a standard A4 page to its A7 paper size, though if this is a text page, it’s not that easy to read. The printer has a fixed resolution of 300dpi and 12 point text reduces to something below five point, which is hard to represent with this many dots to the inch. It’s much better at reproducing a typical PDA screen, where it’s almost printing size for size.
Being a thermal printer, the Brother device is quiet, below the 40dBA cut-off of our sound meter, and the sound is a non-intrusive clicking which is unlikely to disturb people, even in sound-sensitive surroundings, such as libraries.
The only consumable in the MPrint MW-140BT is paper and we found a pack of 50 sheets for £2.24, giving a cost per page of 4.49p. This is OK, but again you have to remember these sheets are very small and you’re actually paying the equivalent of about 20p per A4 page. You always have to pay more for unusual paper sizes, though.
The paper is thin, probably around 60gsm, though Brother doesn’t state its weight, but is quite dense and is coated on just one side. Unfortunately we didn’t have opportunity to examine the label stock.
The MPrint is well engineered and working near faultlessly, you still wonder how much of a niche there is for this printer. Printing in monochrome on coated paper is more appropriate for a checkout till than a computer printer, even when you’re on the move. Add in a street price of over £200 and you’ve got to have a pretty special need for the MPrint MW-140BT.
Ultimately, this is a device that you either need or you don’t. If you’re not reading this review and thinking how much easier it will make your working day, then you probably don’t neet it. If you can see an instant use for the MPrint MW-140BT, then even the steep asking price of £231 probably won’t put you off.
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