Brother PJ-673 review
Brother’s PJ-673 is designed for remote workers that need an A4 printer they can slip in a bag. It’s well built, and is the first PocketJet to include a wireless access point (WAP) for printing from iOS devices.
Its top resolution is 300dpi and, since it’s a thermal printer, there are no running costs other than paper. Brother offers 100-sheet packs of cut-sheet A4 thermal paper for around £12, while a six-pack box of 100-sheet paper rolls is around £41.
We used the AC power option, but the printer also accepts NiMH or lithium-ion batteries. Brother claims the NiMH option can print up to 70 pages, while the lithium-ion battery is good for 300 pages.
After loading the drivers and PJ-673 Utility on a Windows 7 PC, we used the software to choose the default mode of operation. This is also used to modify printer settings and set the WAP’s IP address and SSID.
The printer operates in either USB or wireless mode. In USB mode, our speed tests using a paper roll delivered 5.3ppm for a basic six-page Word text document, and 3.4ppm for one that included some large graphics. Text quality is fine for invoices, receipts and the like, but graphics and photos were grainy. We also found the paper roll kept wandering across the feed slot and constantly needed straightening.
For wireless operations, the printer only operates in ad hoc mode, with optional WEP encryption.
Connecting to the printer with our iPad was easy. There’s no support for AirPrint, however, which means you can’t print directly from your apps. You have to use Brother’s free PJ-673 Print app, which supports PDFs, images and PRN files; these files must be shared with it via iTunes or another app. We were able to share PDFs with it from the Fujitsu Scan-to-Mobile app on our iPad. Pocket Print from KuO also works with the PJ-673, but releasing its watermark costs around £20. PrintCentral offers a cheaper alternative at £4.99.
The PJ-673 is a handy little A4 thermal printer that’s well built and eminently portable. It’s pricey, though, and the lack of AirPrint support limits its usefulness for iOS devices.
|Resolution printer final||300 x 300dpi|
Power and noise
|Dimensions||255 x 55 x 40mm (WDH)|