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paulj
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 27, 2012 8:37 am    Post subject: Samsung CLP365W - Not Recommended Reply with quote

My HP Laserjet 2550L packed up, so I went looking for a new printer. I liked the look of the Samsung CLP 365W - it is compact, colour, Ethernet connected, and apparently linux compatible. Be warned! It does use proprietary drivers requiring the installation of the Samsung Unified Driver package, which in itself requires some very old dependencies, which it drops into your system. The print quality is unacceptable for pictures. I spent a good part of yesterday investigating other options around the web (foomatic etc), but still couldn't get an acceptable level of quality.

The offending printer is now sat in a box ready to be returned and replaced with a Brother HL-4150CDN - a native postscript printer. Admittedly is costs significantly more, but I suspect the increased cost is justified in the long run.

I'll post my experiences about the Brother in case anyone else is looking at printers at the moment.
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chithanh
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 27, 2012 9:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

There is a free/open source driver for Samsung color printers, foo2qpdl. On Gentoo this is part of the foo2zjs package. Print quality is reported to be not so great either, though. The CLP-415N or CLP-670N would have given you Postscript.

I had the predecessor model of the Brother (4050CDN) and I was not impressed by it.
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paulj
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 27, 2012 2:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the comments chithanh.

I have installed the Brother printer, without any issues. For the record, the ppd file for the HL-4050 printer works on its own, but the ppd file available for the 4150 needs a bit more work to get it functioning:

This is what I did:
  • Download the rpm hl4150cdnlpr-1.1.1-5.i386.rpm and convert it to a tar.gz file (rpm2targz). I uncompressed this file, and installed it in the directory tree as required (it sets up a Brother directory under /usr/local), and copies one file to /usr/bin.
  • Downloaded the source version of cupswrapper: hl4150cdncupswrapper-src-1.1.1-5.tar.gz
  • Make the hl4150cdncupswrapper-src-1.1.1-5/cupswrapper/cupswrapperhl4150cdn executable, and owned by root
  • After checking the script, I ran it with the -i option (for install) as root. This copied the ppd file to the correct location, and created a file called brlpdwrapperhl4150cdn in /usr/lib64/cups/filter.
  • Soft link this file in /usr/libexec/cups/filter:
    Code:
    ln -s /usr/lib64/cups/filter/brlpdwrapperhl4150cdn /usr/libexec/cups/filter/brlpdwrapperhl4150cdn

I should really write an ebuild to do the job, as this would allow proper integration with portage!

Quality of the output seems to be good, so based on first impressions, I am pleased. What did you dislike about HL-4050? The Samsung printers you mentioned are not available from the store I bought the original Samsung printer from. They didn't quibble when I took the Samsung printer back, which I guess they might have done. In my defence, the printer did state it was Linux compatible - if they released the source code and allowed users to compile for themselves, it would probably have been a different experience.
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chithanh
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 27, 2012 4:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

One issue is that print quality deteriorated after some time, introducing mostly black spots at random places on the printout.

Other is that you cannot override the firmware "out of toner" check. So you need to replace toner cartridges that may be not empty. The 4050CDN uses some kind of light beam to determine toner status. Descriptions of workarounds like sticking a piece of paper in front of the photo sensor are abundant on the Internet.
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paulj
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 27, 2012 8:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The out of toner check on the HP Laserjet was the biggest issue I had with that printer. It would be printing fine, and then just stop. It seemed to work on just count, and was apparently not possible to defeat. It was one of the reasons I was leaning away from HP printers, along with supplying the printer initially with nearly no toner, so having bought the printer, an outlay of nearly £200 for toner cartridges was then required a couple of months later!

One thing I would commend Brother on - they have made the source code available for the drivers etc. under the GPL. I will see how I get on with the quality as time passes.
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gienah
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 13, 2013 11:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Brother HL-4150CDN works as a postscript network printer in simple tests just using the Windows 7 .PPD file.

I'm not sure why Brother supply Linux drivers for it, they seem unnecessary since just using the Windows .PPD file with CUPS seems to work. Note that the .PPD files supplied with the Linux drivers are different to the Windows .PPD files.

I placed an ebuild to install the Windows .PPD files for Brother HL-4140CN, HL-4150CDN and HL-4570CDW colour laser printers here in case anyone is interested in testing them:

http://dev.gentoo.org/~gienah/test/

Its fetch and mirror restricted due to the Brother license agreement on the Windows drivers.
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paulj
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 16, 2013 8:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

gienah wrote:

I placed an ebuild to install the Windows .PPD files for Brother HL-4140CN, HL-4150CDN and HL-4570CDW colour laser printers here in case anyone is interested in testing them:

http://dev.gentoo.org/~gienah/test/

Its fetch and mirror restricted due to the Brother license agreement on the Windows drivers.


I'll try and give it a go at the weekend.
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paulj
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 16, 2013 1:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

paulj wrote:
gienah wrote:

I placed an ebuild to install the Windows .PPD files for Brother HL-4140CN, HL-4150CDN and HL-4570CDW colour laser printers here in case anyone is interested in testing them:

http://dev.gentoo.org/~gienah/test/

Its fetch and mirror restricted due to the Brother license agreement on the Windows drivers.


I'll try and give it a go at the weekend.


I didn't say which weekend! :wink:

I have given your ebuild a go, and it works flawlessly. I now need to go and clean out the cruft I installed outside portage. The other benefit with your ebuild is that duplex printing can be selected/deselected properly in the print dialog, which didn't previously work correctly.

Thanks!
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