1. 26

What printer do you use for your Linux/BSD/Haiku/Whatever boxen? Bonus points if it’s wireless.

EDIT: The consensus seems to be Brother, so we’re getting a Brother. Thanks everyone.

  1.  

  2. 13

    I have https://www.brother-usa.com/products/hl3170cdw, which seems to work quite nicely with generic printer drivers on my NixOS system, and has specific drivers for the other Linux systems I’ve used in the past (e.g. Arch).

    When researching this very question a couple of years ago, I found that Brother seems to make reasonably-priced and Linux-compatible printers, and so far I haven’t been disappointed on either front!

    1. 9

      I’ll second the Brother recommendation. I purchased an HL-L2370DW a little over a year ago ($80 at Best Buy on Black Friday). After configuring it onto my wi-fi network, all the machines in my house detected it and offered it in their print dialog boxes right away without any further configuration. This includes one running Xubuntu 18.04. The CUPS drivers included with the distro were all I needed. “Laser”, automatic duplex, and wireless. It’s been working nicely ever since.

      1. 3

        I have an HL4150-CDN. It’s not very recent (2012) but still works without any issue. When it was new, there were some issues with Brother’s dialect of Postscript (BR-Script), leaving you with either a slow open source driver or a fast proprietary one. But it now works without any issue with the driver shipped by CUPS. Newer models are now driver-less and understand PDF, so this shouldn’t be an issue anymore.

        1. 2

          Adding my vote for Brother. I’ve had one for years and it’s been solid. Plus they have drivers for the major OSes including Linux.

        2. 6

          An old HP LaserJet 2200dn with double paper trays, I have a few of these around as well as a 2100n. These are fairly sturdy, fast enough, have a power-saving mode (i.e. the fuser turns off after printing) and take 5000-page toner cartridges. As long as you keep Thor away (…I had two of them blow up by lightning strikes, repaired them, they still work…) they’ll keep on printing if you feed them paper and a new cartridge every now and then.

          1. 1

            I owned an HP 2605dn color laser printer because those devices were thrown away some years ago. HP forgot to install a filter that caused the lens of the magenta toner to get covered with dust after some months. The fix was very easy, and after attaching a piece of a dust cleaner bag on top of the air inlet the printer worked fine for years. At least until I used a refill toner, after that it died because the cheap toner leaked. My recommendation, do not buy the cheapest refill toner you can get.

          2. 4

            I’ve had problem-free service from my Brother MFC-9330CDW for a few years now, including using the scanner, outputting into GIMP. It’s wireless. I share it on the local network via CUPS. (I’m using it with Linux)

            1. 4

              I have a very cheap Samsung ProXpress M3825ND monochrome duplex laserprinter. It has ethernet, no wifi. I really like the duplex functionality - I won’t buy a printer that can’t do duplex in the future. Does Postscript and works out of the box with CUPS on Debian GNU/Linux.

              1. 4

                I love the HP Laserjet 4x00 (4000, 4100, 4200) series. They’re reliable workhorses and have CUPS support right out of the box. Plus theres an ethernet card adapter (most laserjets Ive seen come with them preinstalled) for being able to print directly to it. Usually you can pick them up on Craigslist for south of $50

                1. 3

                  another rec for a brother laser printer. It’s the first printer I’ve owned that I haven’t wanted to drop in a well. It’s wifi enabled, black and white, works with no setup on my linux machine.

                  1. 2

                    I bought a Lexmark C500N laser printer about ten years ago because it was only £200.

                    It works on Linux, *BSD, and Mac OS X but it was a complete pain to set up on all operating systems (works with CUPS - but needs different ppd files for Linux, *BSD, and OS X), and in theory it prints in colour as well - but I’ve only manage to get that to work on Mac OS X, and currently it’s colour prints are streaky…

                    … and the pick up roller is currently problematic - but I’ve not managed to work out where to get a replacement…it does a great black and white print, but I would not recommend :~(

                    1. 2

                      Brother HL-5250DN, it’s at least fourteen years old. I want to replace it with a multi-function (the Brother MFC-L5900DW or newer) but it’s been so reliable other than consumables that I haven’t. I stopped recommending HP after the quality drained out after the LJ5 and LJ6-Series. No one I have recommended a Brother laser has reported back to me anything but appliance like reliability.

                      1. 2

                        I recently grabbed an Epson ET-2760 after one too many “life is now complicated because I have to wait for the library to open to print this thing before I can leave on this trip” incidents. I think I had to download a PPD somewhere, but setup was relatively simple (we have it working with Debian stable, Ubuntu LTS, and a Windows 10 machine).

                        Observations:

                        • Print quality is middling at best; improved somewhat after multiple rounds of print head alignment and a cleaning cycle, but still pretty grim. It’s basically fine for my needs (concert & festival tickets, work / tax stuff, letters), but I wouldn’t recommend this thing to anyone who needed passable color reproduction, photos/art, etc.
                        • The front panel controls seem to have been designed by people who had, at some point in their lives, been given a description of a menu system or a GUI, but I wouldn’t swear that anyone who had actually used one was involved. I particularly enjoy the prominent placement of two buttons with apparently arbitrary symbols (one is a triangle inside a circle, the other is a diamond with a vertical bar in it) which are used at various points in the interface; there may be consistent meanings for these, but if so I haven’t yet figured them out.
                        • The ink reservoir tanks instead of a print cartridge seem kind of brilliant and just about worth the rest of the device’s considerable foibles.
                        1. 1

                          ipp, ethernet port and postscript support in the printer itself.

                          Also, don’t even consider anything but laser, until you have a laser.

                          1. 1

                            I have been using the same Brother laser printer for nearly a decade with FreeBSD and Linux. It’s networked via ethernet, but I’d argue that printing over wireless still isn’t great.

                            1. 1

                              Hijacking… anyone know of a multifuction device that can do feed scanning as well?

                              1. 1

                                Before this thread, I had never heard of anyone having good experiences with Brother printers, so I got a HP printer since they’re generally well supported. What I failed to do was look up wether “generally well supported” included the specific model I got – it didn’t. I got one of the few HP models that aren’t well supported yet. Remember to also look up the specific model, not just trust the brand!

                                (I should say that my HP printer still speaks CUPS and PostScript so it’s not like I cannot use it at all. However, in order to do advanced settings like paper thickness I have to print from e.g. macOS.)

                                1. 1

                                  Samsung M2022W Black&White laser. Never really got the wifi all figured out, so connected to a Ubuntu machine via USB.

                                  1. 1

                                    Not all of the Brother printers have drivers packaged in $DISTRO. However, you can download drivers from Brother’s website.