Printer for Linux

Can anyone recommend a good printer that runs on Linux? It should be a 4 cartridge system and good at printing photos!
It doesn’t have to be a “Mercedes”…just for personal use at home.
Thank you!

I swear by my Brother MFC (MFC-9335CDW : laser)… I think it was about $600 AUD in 2016… a lot cheaper than my first Brother printer (laser) I bought in 1993 (which was $999 AUD!) - that was a great printer too (until my wife decided to print on non photocoper-friendly overhead transparencies).

Since Ubuntu 17.04 and later - my system just finds it - i.e. I don’t even have to do anything - it finds it on the network, knows which driver to install and installs it - and I don’t have to lift a finger, and it knows that I’m in Australia and we use proper paper (A4)… even duplexing works!

Consumables are reasonably priced too…

I don’t use the other features from Linux - i.e. don’t have analogue phone line so no fax, and when I scan stuff I just scan to my FTP server or to a USB drive directly from the MFC…

Once bought a Samsung colour laser printer - the toner carts were only about 1/4 full, and a new set of toner cartridges cost TWICE what the printer cost! Also had a HP colour printer, it was okay, but HP NEVER ever did write 64 bit drivers for Windows 7, you could install the 64 bit drivers for Windows XP 64 bit edition, but it was flaky (would often fill the page with black toner) - so after that went back to Brother…

I also have to support CUPS printing at customer sites and the easiest to install are Brother laser printers and MFCs… recently had to install a Brother MFC on Oracle Linux 5 and was pleasantly surprised to find that brother STILL supported that platform and had an RPM file for me to download then upload to the server…

So : in a Nutshell : I’d always recommend Brother…


Thank you! I have brother at the moment (mfc-j4410dw) and I was always happy with it. However it’s now quite old and it’s no longer able to load photo paper… I guess I will stick with Brother and see if I can find a new one that also supports Linux.

I second the Brothers: MFC 9340CDW is my main unit. I also have a HP 4050N that is great. The older HP’s are but the newer ones… uh… crap I think.

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I can recommend the Epson WF-7xxx series of printers. They work well with all my Linux distros, do wide-format printing and scanning. Even without drivers, they can scan to SD cards or USB drives and print from these memory devices.

Like any ink-jet printer, the jets can clog, especially with the cheap generic ink I use. After I figured out how to clean the jets with 91% alcohol, the printer has worked for many years without problems.

I’ve use an HP Envy 4520 for several years. It has a system for sealing the ink cartridges between jobs so they don’t dry out. I’ve thrown a couple of Epsons and Canons in the trash, but I have no experience with Brother. The HP Envy line is also pretty inexpensive, especially with the Instant Ink feature ( but that might be a US only feature).

I have a Canon all-in-one printer, and I can not really recommend it. It prints fine and there was no problem with the Linux driver but in the future, I would rather buy a printer with four different cartridges and not two. The red runs out always faster than the blue, but the main issue is the serviceability:

Once, my son dropped a toy inside, and it completely jammed the printer. Opening and closing the printer was a nightmare. The flex cables are so short that they lose contact the moment, you only open the device slightly. We needed four hands, several tools and about two hours to close that bloody thing again.

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I am going to be really controversial with my reply…
Cannon make great cameras
Brother make really good door stops !

If you want a printer that works straight out of the box with any Linux system then the only answer is

Epson !

Had interesting conversations with tech support on cannon and brother trying to get the drivers and both offered a good price reduction on a new printer…

Think like most things you pay 50 euros for a printer, then 60 euros for the ink and if you don’t buy the real versions it tells you

I don’t work for any printer company, and don’t sell them.just personal experience…

Sorry to disagree with fellow Linux users, no offence meant.

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I think this is another example for the reason why personal anecdotes usually say little about the actual value of an electronic product.


I disagree think personal experience is a good guide

We all check the stars of a product before buying, trip advisor, decathalon, Amazon, last min, etc they all go by client recommendation for products, holidays,

Also it’s impartial… unlike some computer magazines or web sites where you have no idea if the tested gets commission from the recommendation or advertising revenue

Don’t think a site exists where they are on long term test unlike a car guide (glass) where users vote after the fact.

But it’s like versions of Linux we all prefer one version over another

Then why do so many people disagree through their experiences?

Indeed. That’s why recommendations on sites like Amazon are absolutely useless. I have seen good reviews for shitty products and I have seen 1 star reviews for excellent devices.

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When you say “home” use, to what do you refer? documents/photos/graphic art, etc.
Most printer mfg’s these day support linux in one form or another.
You would most likely need to decide what you need it for and then look over the various features available on the different brands.
My suggestion is to go to a computer store and try them out.
I admit, looking for a car is much easier as all you need do is look through the for sale sections for the cars that are NOT listed, and those are the one you should consider first.
Does anybody know if there has been any survey’s taken regarding the printers used to see which one is most listed?

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On that basis we should remove the heart, thumbs up, and such like on this site …

Then only allow links to independent testing sites

Ban consumer testing sites where people have been allowed to road test or use products

Go for who sells most as that would indicate Windows is better than Linux…

Then only answer technical questions not opinion based

I realised when I posted my view it would be wrong !

I do tend to agree with the majority of posters: Depending on the type of product, I do look at professional and customer reviews. Of course, they always have to taken cum grano salis.
With customer reviews, I tend to look rather at written statements than at stars or so.
With a grade system, the number of reviews is also important.

I agree. Such “measurements” do not measure anything, because you never know why someone “likes” anything. What if someone puts a like on a post or video, just because it is really bad?

I do not know any really “independent testing sites”. Everyone is dependent on something.

Why ban? It’s enough to accept them as useless and not consider them, as they are in 99% of cases absolutely useless.

That is a stupid idea.

When setting up an OS, it will always be opinion based to a certain degree, because you can achieve the same results through different ways. It always depends on which way suits you best. For such extremely diverse cases, it is impossible to hold the one “truth”.

Reading your whole sarcastic post, I wonder if this is sarcastic, too? If it is meant to be sarcastic, then I assume you mean, that you are not actually wrong but are only considered wrong by someone else.

If that is the case, why do you not trust my customer review and my personal experience about your posts?

In your logic, I have to be correct, because I made a review about your posts and deem them almost entirely incorrect.

I do that too, but the second sentence should be the most important one. Do NEVER take any review “as-is”.
There are so many issues with any review (no matter if it is professional or from customers).
I will explain one of the most glaring issues:

People test stuff for a week or a month and think that is enough to test the product.

Exhibit A:

Logitech G930 Gaming Headset

In ALL reviews I have ever read, it was deemed fine, good for the price, good for gamers, good, good, good!
So it must be good, right?


I got the headset and a couple of months later (sure, everyone reviewed after a week of “testing”, not after a month… praise the genius reviewers!) I discovered the connecting and disconnecting issue with this headset.
I started to search for it and found TONS of post regarding this issue. Roughly 50% (guessing here) of all users had this issue. But it always appeared after a longer time of usage, not in a timeframe suited for wannabe “reviews”.

Long story short:
When I experienced a disconnect while I was talking to friends the 9999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999th time, I literally threw this headset against a wall and part of the head support broke. Then I put it in the dirty electronics area and urgently ordered a better headset.
That happened about 5 years ago.

About half a year ago, someone broke their headset and I offered them this one for free. They fixed the broken head support by gluing it with special plastic glue. They started using it. Guess what, about 5 years later this issue still is not fixed! It still disconnects all. the. time.

Hey, at least all the reviews were positive and everyone liked that headset, because the testing went fine for a week! :wink:


This is not the only example! There are tons of examples like this out there… I.e. wannabe reviews are shit.

If you want to truly review something, you need to review it for a year or you need to age it artificially. You need to expose it to extreme wear and tear, that simulates at least a year of usage. THEN you have done a real test and can create a review.
Any review that is not based on that is basically utterly useless or too often even harmful, as you can see in this case.
Everyone liked this headset in reviews and that’s why I got it. Now I paid for this, in several ways, but I learned from my mistake!

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I am using a Cannon Pixma G2411 printer with Ubuntu 20.04. No problems! The nice thing about this printer is that it has ink tanks which you fill with ink. Much cheaper than buying ink cartridges. The ink lasts a long time. I previously had an HP 4 in 1 printer which worked out of the box but the cartridges were very expensive. After market re-filled cartridges didn’t always work. That’s my 2 cents worth!

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Funny how Canon changed to Cannon

20 something years ago (probably more - probably 30) - almost EVERY laser printer out on the market used a “Canon” engine… I think they chose that over paying prohibitive license to Adobe (and Apple?) for “postscript”…

Mr Canon is probably still living comfortably off those royalties… but I don’t think it hurt Adobe dividends particularly either…

I’ve had a few ink printers - I LOATHE them passionately… I loathed them even more vehemently when I was still doing desktop support…

Ever since having a Brother laser printer in 1993 - I’ve sworn by laser printers…

The main thing I hate (and especially hated when I was a desktop support “drone”) about ink printers, is they have more moving parts than laser printers - more moving parts mean less MTBF (mean time between failures [sic])… pretty simple…

Duplex printing adds another layer of complexity - i.e. source of failure and paper jams - but in most cases (e.g. with Brother printers) I can just not duplex print…

And who am I kidding - I barely ever print anything anyway - I’m 100% in failure [sic : meant “favour”] of the paper-less office (Hell : I can remember pundits expounding the virtues of the paperless office in the mid 1980’s!)…

Oh - anyone remember “GDI” printers? i.e. EVERYTHING was built into the Windows driver… what an atrocious solution that was!

Rant over :smiley:

Not quite : centronics parallel interface was better than USB :smiley:


Well, in the last one/two decades offices have become pretty much paperless for real, but I still remember the days when people printed their emails and hole-punched them in order to file them properly in folders and cabinets¹.

However, only about five years ago my company had a business relationship with a major US-American investment bank (the evil one, which shouldn’t be named) which insisted on sending account statements on paper, meaning that every couple of days we received several boxes, about 5 kg each, with paper-waste via air mail and some poor intern had to shred it all before we eventually managed to convince them to stop that nonsense…

¹For the German speaking: Erinnert sich noch jemand an den Begriff “Email-Ausdrucker”?