Looking for a printer that’s fast and reliable, but doesn’t cost a fortune when it comes time to replace the ink cartridge? Check out the Brother MFC-J470DW. It’s perfect for those looking to get a bargain while still allowing for cloud connectivity and compatibility with Google Chrome Print and Apple AirPrint.
The only real downfall of this all-in-one printer is that you get what you pay for -- it looks and feels as cheap as the price tag.
Design and Features
At 16.1 inches wide by 14.7 inches deep by 7.1 inches tall, the MFC-J470DW doesn’t measure up to be the smallest printer on the market, but is smaller than Brother models of the past. Take advantage of the money-saving duplexer that will flip your paper over automatically to print on both sides of the sheet.
The auto-document feeder (ADF) tray located on top of the printer holds 20 sheets of paper for faxing via the dedicated phone line or batch scanning. You can also do a “PC Fax” if you want to get it done digitally -- saving on paper -- which essentially scans the document and faxes it using the Internet connection.
The control panel is reminiscent of Brother’s previous designs, and the buttons to navigate through the menu, select mode, and enter a phone number for a fax are made of that squishy rubber that many find awkward to use. There is a 1.8-inch color LCD display to the left of the control panel that displays the ink levels, tells where the paper is jammed if this should happen to you, and assist in setting up the printer.
You won’t find a memory card reader or PictBridge-compatible USB port, so you won’t be able to import pictures directly from your digital camera or flash storage drive directly to the printer. However, you can print your pictures from your computer, as evidenced by the adjustable paper tray.
You can scan documents up to letter-sized, and send them via email, save them to your hard drive or the included free Scansoft PaperPort document-viewing software, or to a Microsoft Office project or document.
You can take advantage of Wi-Fi and connect it to your network -- simple instructions are included to assist you in this task. You can also set your scanner to send items automatically over to your mobile device, a long as it has the Brother iPrint&Scan app (Android, Amazon Fire, iOS, Windows Phone 7 or 8, and BlackBerry compatible).
You can also use Brother’s cloud printing software in order to print items from your tablet or smartphone via web services like Flickr, Dropbox, Facebook, and a host of others. It is also Apple AirPrint and Google Chrome Cloud Print compatible.
Replacing the ink cartridges is a breeze -- there are 4 (cyan, magenta, yellow, and black). It’s as easy as opening the door to the right of the paper tray. They are much less than other cartridges -- compare the Brother XL cartridge (2.4 cents per page color, 4.1 cents per page black) to Epson’s XP-420 (3.5 cents for color, 5 cents for black).
For a less-than-$100 printer, it performs amazingly well. Not only is it fast, the quality is above average. If you don’t mind the awkward buttons, this printer will fit the bill nicely.