Brother HL-4150CDN full review

The 21kg Brother is no lightweight but, compared to some of the models in this group, it’s relatively slimline. Its design is functional, with a two-line LCD screen and a user-friendly control panel. Documents can be printed directly from a USB memory stick, and confidential files are processed only after you enter a PIN.

The Brother offers some useful controls over consumables, with configuration options for ignoring blank pages and restricting the use of colour or ability to make multiple prints.

A chunky 250-sheet tray is the main paper source, while a second multipurpose tray pushes the total input capacity to 300 sheets. An additional 500-sheet tray is available as an optional extra. It sounds like a lot of paper, but some of the printers here offer significantly more. A low memory allocation of 128MB and a 40,000-page monthly duty cycle suggests that Brother doesn’t intend this model to be used by those with heavy printing needs.

An Ethernet port lets you hook up the Brother to a wired network, but no wireless access is offered. It has PCL6 and PostScript drivers – the latter through Brother’s own BR-Script 3 – and works with Windows and Mac out of the box (Linux drivers are available online).

The Brother is a moderately fast printer, and in our tests churned out text-only pages at 19.3ppm. This speed dropped to just 10.9ppm in duplex mode, but the quality is very good. The letters aren’t too thick, but they are well-formed. More importantly, the Brother was able to create crisp letters even at the smallest font sizes.

Colour graphics were produced at a reasonable 12.5ppm. We found the colour palette a little too strong, with most shades tending towards the darker end of the spectrum. Despite its low memory, however, it printed our PDF in just 13 seconds.

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