Choosing a Laser Printer for Linux

I am going to be purchasing a new laser printer in the next month or so. I am currently using an HP Laserjet 8150n; nice machine, but it’s acting very tempermental lately.

I’m looking for a B/W machine, and I only need to handle letter/a4 size paper (the 8150 goes up to 11x17 - I don’t need or want that). Other than those restrictions I’m open to almost anything.

Oh, I almost forgot. It also needs to work with Linux…

Any recommendations? I’m doing some research myself but I’m very unfamiliar with printers in general so it’s slow going - that fact that most manufactures don’t exactly tout their Linux compatibility doesn’t help all that much.

Thanks.

If it’s a networked printer there’s a good chance that it supports a printer language that can be generated easily on Linux, like Postscript. I’m not in the market for one yet, but I’ve been eying the Brother models, they’re really inexpensive. Have you looked at linuxprinting.org?

On 03/16/2010 04:26 PM, ken yap wrote:
>
> If it’s a networked printer there’s a good chance that it supports a
> printer language that can be generated easily on Linux, like Postscript.
> I’m not in the market for one yet, but I’ve been eying the Brother
> models, they’re really inexpensive. Have you looked at
> linuxprinting.org?

Any of the HP printers with JetDirect network cards will work. Mine is an old
HP2200dn that works great. I find that both PCL and Postscript drivers work, but
PCL is a lot faster as the internal CPU is not that capable.

My current printer is a networked enabled model (Jetdirect). It acually works well, except that the printer runs rather warm, even when in “power-save”, so I don’t like to leave it running. But on startup, it often picks up a different IP address (from the DHCP router), messing up my configuration. I haven’t been able to find a way to assign the printer a static IP.

I’ll check out the linuxprinting site again. Last time I looked it didn’t seem very up to date, am I wrong?

Currently I’m looking at the Dell 2330d Laser printer. It’s inexpensive, has good reviews (something like 4.6 out of 5), and list “RHEL” and “Unix” as supported platforms (that’s always nice…). THe older model (2230d) is also a nice machine (same specs, a bit lower ppm and capacity).

On 03/16/2010 06:26 PM, zak89 wrote:
>
> My current printer is a networked enabled model (Jetdirect). It acually
> works well, except that the printer runs rather warm, even when in
> “power-save”, so I don’t like to leave it running. But on startup, it
> often picks up a different IP address (from the DHCP router), messing up
> my configuration. I haven’t been able to find a way to assign the
> printer a static IP.
>
> I’ll check out the linuxprinting site again. Last time I looked it
> didn’t seem very up to date, am I wrong?

There is a web page built into the JetDirect that you can use to set a static
address.

Also some routers allow you to assign a static address to a DHCP client.

Currently I’m looking at the Dell 2330d Laser printer. It’s inexpensive, has good reviews (something like 4.6 out of 5), and list “RHEL” and “Unix” as supported platforms (that’s always nice…). THe older model (2230d) is also a nice machine (same specs, a bit lower ppm and capacity).

AFAIK Dell doesn’t make any printers so it would be a rebranded model, maybe Lexmark (who are quite ok for laser printers, I have one), so you can check the compatibility of the original.

If you do not need network printer the Brother HL2140 is a good go. It’s cheap, fast, inexpensive (can be had for 50 Dollar on sales) and works like a charm with Linux. :wink:

I highly suggest you look into using HP printers. Further, I would buy a networked printer which does not depend on being shared by some computer on your network unless you have a single computer at home.

I use a HP Laserjet P1505n (B&W only) and a HP Photosmart C5180 inkjet with Ethernet. The Linux HP driver setup file and printer service is called “hplip” in Yast/Software Management and seems to be installed by default. You must run the setup program “/usr/bin/hp-setup” and just answer the questions per printer installed. You get a icon in the icon tray were you can select many options per printer and check their status.

It just works SUPER and the only way to go in my opinion!

Thank You,

I’ve used the hplip driver with my two HP printers (the aforementioned 8150n and a wifi Deskjet). It does work well, but a month ago it started spewing error messages, filling my root partition to 100% (/var/log/messages, iirc). I couldn’t track down the problem and removed it at that time; haven’t used it since (using the guten-whatever driver currently).

I was not aware of a JetDirect page, but it makes sense; I’ll have to look into that (I think my router does let me configure static ip, but I haven’t figured out how yet).

But it is nice to have options. The Brother HL 2140 is certainly very affordable, but rather low-capacity and a bit slow (22ppm; most of the others I’m considering are at least 30ppm); I do like the brand rep of HP (if I can get JetDirect to work for me).

@ken_yap You’re right about the Dell model. It’s built (and sold) by Lexmark as the E260. However, the Lexmark is more expensive (?) and is an ugly beige/off-white instead of the slick black Dell (no big deal really). Reviews on both are good.

I’ll be doing more research. This will likely be the last laser printer I’ll buy for quite a while so it needs to last.

Zak89, these error messages you were getting, did it indicate the problem was with the HP driver? Did you just uninstall the HP driver and delete the error log and all was fine or did you reload?

Thank You,

Just wanted to add a comment about the Brother HL-2140. I’ve had mine for the last year or so and it works great in Linux, Windows & even with a friend’s Mac. The print speed isn’t the fastest in the world, but that also depends on how much printing you plan to do.

One reason I chose the Brother over a couple of other printers I was looking at was the cost of toner cartridges. They can be really expensive for some printers, and it’s a recurring expense. Over all I’m pretty happy with the HL-2140.

Hope this helps . . . :slight_smile:

I uninstalled the driver before deleting the log (I had tried deleting it first, but it would be back (and past the GB mark) in seconds. I tried killing the driver but it kept restarting until I deleted it. I never bothered to reinstall and figure it out.

Hmm, that is a thought; I wasn’t thinking about toner cost… Thanks for bringing that to my attention!

My dealine for purchase is the tenth of next month. So I’ll keep looking into this. My current options are the aforemention Brother model (on the “very affordable” mark), and Dell (Lexmak) 2330d (fast, good capacity), and perhaps a HP Jetdirect model (I like the JetDirect capabilities).

Of course, I haven’t started looking into specific HP models. So that’s a broad option!

I ended up purchasing the Lexmark E260 (The same unit as the aforementioned Dell) - it was on sale at a local office store and was to good a deal to pass up. Works great with Linux - the cute penguin logo on the box was reassuring (it also ships with Lionux drivers). I have it setup on my home server and all y Linux/Windows/OS X machines use it via Samba.

A little Google’ing tells me that everything I said here is already common knowledge, but hey, it was new to me! :wink:

Grand to hear you are OK with this printer. I would add that I have used OKI black and White laser (actually LED) printers B series now superceded by C series for last 7 years on Linux. I use max toner size machines (overall this gives least toner cost).