The $159.99 Brother MFC-J4335DW is an all-in-one printer that's easy to find room for in even a small home office. Unlike many compact AIOs that share that description, it has some standout features, most notably a total cost of ownership—purchase price plus running cost—that's impressively low. In addition, it's fast, it supports duplex printing, and it even faxes. That makes the MFC-J4335DW our new Editors' Choice among light-duty inkjet AIOs.
The MFC-J4335DW prints, scans, copies, works as a standalone fax machine, and lets you send faxes from your computer using either Brother's faxing app or a driver that will let you fax from almost any Windows program.
Its paper handling for printing is suitable for most micro-office, home-office, and personal use. The 150-sheet drawer is supplemented by a bypass tray, which lets you feed in single sheets of letterhead or other special-purpose paper. Like most printers today, the MFC-J4335DW also offers automatic duplexing (double-sided printing). Brother gives a recommended duty cycle of 250 to 2,000 pages per month. Unless you're comfortable refilling the paper tray every few days, however, 150 pages per week, or roughly 600 pages per month, is a more realistic maximum. If you print much more than that, you'll probably want a printer with greater capacity.Our Experts Have Tested 53 Products in the Printers Category in the Past YearSince 1982, PCMag has tested and rated thousands of products to help you make better buying decisions. (See how we test.)
Paper handling for scanning, copying, and faxing is a bit limited, but typical for the price. Along with most of the competition at this price and above, the MFC-J4335DW has an advantage over the majority of less expensive AIOs: an automatic document feeder (ADF) in addition to its letter-size flatbed. The ADF can handle 20 pages at up to legal size. Note that it's limited to single-sided scanning, however, and if you manually flip the stack over to scan the second side, the scanning software won't automatically interfile the pages in the right order. Although this won't be an issue in most cases, it could be a deal-breaker if you need to scan or copy two-sided documents.4.0Excellent $396.99See Itat Dell TechnologiesRead Our Canon Pixma G7020 MegaTank All-in-One Review 4.0Excellent $429.51See Itat AmazonRead Our Epson Expression Premium XP-7100 Small-in-One Printer Review 4.5Outstanding $849.99See Itat Dell TechnologiesRead Our Epson EcoTank Pro ET-5850 Review4.0Excellent $899.00See Itat AmazonRead Our HP Color LaserJet Enterprise MFP M480f Review 4.0Excellent $550.00See Itat AmazonRead Our Canon Color imageClass MF746Cdw Review 4.0Excellent $399.99See Itat AmazonRead Our HP Neverstop Laser MFP 1202w Review 4.0Excellent $409.98See Itat AmazonRead Our Canon imageClass MF269dw Review 4.5Outstanding $379.99See Itat Office Depot® & OfficeMax®Read Our Brother MFC-J6945DW INKvestment Tank Color Inkjet All-In-One Printer Review 4.5Outstanding $1,375.70 See Itat AmazonRead Our Epson EcoTank Pro ET-16650 Review
Brother makes downloadable apps for working with Android and iOS mobile devices. I used the Android app for my tests; Brother says the two are functionally identical. In addition to letting you print from and scan to your phone or tablet, the apps also have a Copy option, which steps you through scanning to your mobile device and then printing from it, as well as options to perform maintenance functions on the printer and order ink or paper. Except for ordering, which launches your device's browser to take you to Brother's website, all the choices require connecting to the same network the printer is on, or connecting directly to the printer by Wi-Fi Direct.
The MFC-J4335DW weighs 17.6 pounds and measures 8.1 by 18.1 by 13.2 inches (HWD). The compact size makes it perfect for your desk, where you can easily reach the front-panel buttons for scanning, copying, and faxing. The 1.8-inch LCD on the control panel is not a touch screen and is small enough to that some longer messages require you to scroll, but it serves its purpose.
The AIO gives you the choice of connecting to a single computer by USB or Wi-Fi Direct, or connecting through a network using Wi-Fi. For performance and quality tests, I connected by USB. Note, however, that to take advantage of the web-connected features to print from and scan to Google Drive, Dropbox, Box, One Drive, and other online services, you have to use a Wi-Fi connection to an internet-connected network. According to Brother, the printer also supports Alexa, but the Brother representative I spoke to was not able to give me any details about Alexa support, including how to set it up.
Setup was straightforward and took only a few minutes, mostly for downloading files from Brother's website. A nice extra is the option to install the document management program PaperPort.
Brother rates the MFC-J4335DW at 19ppm for printing in color and 20ppm for black and white, which are both higher ratings than for most inkjet AIOs in its price class. In our tests on our standard testbed, its performance was good, though not outstanding. For monochrome text using our 12-page Word file, I timed it at 14.7ppm (49 seconds). On our business applications suite, which includes color output, it came in at 10.5ppm (2 minutes 23 seconds). For 4-by-6 photos, it averaged 48 seconds per photo, using Brother's Premium Plus Glossy Photo Paper.
Somewhat surprisingly, this makes the MFC-J4335DW a touch slower for monochrome printing than the less-expensive Brother MFC-J1205W ($99.99), which managed 15.7ppm (46 seconds) on our Word file. However, the MFC-J1205W was slower for color, at 8.4ppm (2:58). The $99 Epson XP-4100 Small-in-One came in at 9.6 ppm (1:15) for monochrome and 5.4ppm (4:36) for color. The Epson WorkForce Pro WF-3820 ($149.99) was a touch faster than the MFC-J4335DW across the board, at 18.9ppm (38 seconds) for the Word file and 12.6ppm (1:58) for the business applications suite. How much these differences matter to you really depends on the volume of printing you do. In most cases, they're small enough to be irrelevant if you're only printing a few pages at a time.
Output quality is more than acceptable for most home or business use. Text was a touch less crisp than you might want if you need the output to convey a sense of being fully professional, but most standard fonts were well enough formed to be easily readable at sizes as small 5 points. Viewing with a loupe revealed slightly ragged edges at all sizes, however, and loops showed gaps at 5 points. One heavily stylized font with thick strokes was nearly unreadable at 10 points and showed little to no space between characters at 12 points.
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Graphics fared better, emerging from the printer with even fills and eye-catching color. The printer also did a good job of retaining thin lines, though a one-pixel-wide line on a black background was only barely visible. I also saw some exceedingly subtle banding in fills, but it was far less obvious than the banding most inkjet printers show using default settings. Photos on the recommended paper were solidly mid-level consumer quality, about what you'd get from having photos printed at Walmart or CVS.
On our smudging tests, the black text smudged easily. Color graphics on plain paper and photos on photo paper both resisted smudging.
As mentioned earlier, the MFC-J4335DW offers a low running cost, but it's important not to focus on running cost alone when making a buying decision. What you need to compare is the total cost of ownership, meaning the running cost plus the initial price. That said, the MFC-J4335DW costs little enough that you almost don't have to do the math to know its 0.9 cents per black page and 4.7 cents per color page will save money compared with most printers with a lower price tag.
The Epson XP-4100, for example, costs $50 less, but the cost per page is 8 cents for a standard monochrome black page and 18 cents using color. Even if you print nothing but black text pages, the 7.1-cent per-page savings for the MFC-J4335DW means you need to print only 705 pages over the life of the printer to make up for the $50 difference. Print color pages, and you'll hit the break-even point sooner. Every penny saved after that is extra money for your bank account.
The MFC-J4335DW offers exceptional speed and capability for the total cost of ownership. If your scanning needs are minimal enough that you don't need an ADF, and you also don't print much, the Brother MFC-J1205W offers a low enough cost per page that you might want to consider it for its lower initial price, or you might consider the Epson XP-4100 for its focus on photos and photo quality. Alternatively, if you must have at least manual duplexing for scanning, consider the Epson WF-3820. But the Brother MFC-J4335DW hits the Goldilocks' zone for enough features to make it our Editors' Choice for light duty inkjet AIO for personal to micro office use.4.0Editors' ChoiceSee It$359.99 at AmazonMSRP $159.99View More
The Brother MFC-J4335DW prints, scans, copies, and faxes; offers paper handling suitable for a micro office, a home office, or personal use; and stands out for its speed and low cost per page.
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