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Brother MFC-J1010DW Printer Review

Tested using Methodology v1.2
Reviewed Aug 30, 2022 at 10:56 am
Brother MFC-J1010DW Picture
7.7
Family
6.9
Small/Home Office
7.6
Student
7.8
Black & White
7.6
Photo
Type All in One
Technology Inkjet
Wireless Yes
Color Yes
SuperTank
No

The Brother MFC-J1010DW is a budget all-in-one inkjet printer designed for home use. It has multiple connectivity options like Wi-Fi and USB, and it supports Apple AirPrint and Mopria Print Service. It uses four ink cartridges with color dye ink and black pigment ink. The scanner has an automatic document feeder to scan long, multi-page documents but doesn't support duplex scanning. There's an upgraded variant called the Brother MFC-J1170DW, which has a touch-sensitive display, NFC support, and faster-advertised color printing speed.

Our Verdict

7.7 Family

The Brother MFC-J1010DW is good for family use. It has multiple connectivity options, making it easily accessible to everyone in the household. It prints quickly, produces high-quality black and color documents, and its cost per print is relatively low due to the cheap cost of its ink cartridges. Its color accuracy is okay for photo printing, but it struggles with bright, saturated colors and darker shades like greens and yellows. It has a high-resolution scanner that's well-suited for digitizing photos, and you can quickly process multi-page documents thanks to its automatic document feeder.

Pros
  • Wide connectivity options include USB, Wi-Fi, and Ethernet.
  • Produces fine details in photos.
  • Feels well-built.
  • Low cost per print for black-only printing.
Cons
  • Low black and color page yield.
  • No duplex scanning.
  • Color printing can get expensive over time.
6.9 Small/Home Office

The Brother MFC-J1010DW is decent for office use. It feels sturdily built and has plenty of connectivity options, including Wi-Fi and USB. It produces high-quality black and color documents and prints quickly. However, its scanner doesn't support duplex scanning, and its ink cartridges don't last very long, which can be bothersome in an office as you'll have to replace them almost on a daily or weekly basis.

Pros
  • Wide connectivity options include USB, Wi-Fi, and Ethernet.
  • Feels well-built.
  • Low cost per print for black-only printing.
Cons
  • Low black and color page yield.
  • No duplex scanning.
  • Color printing can get expensive over time.
7.6 Student

The Brother MFC-J1010DW is good for student use. It has many connectivity options, including Wi-Fi and USB, and it's compatible with Brother mobile app, allowing you to print directly from your smartphone. It also produces high-quality documents and prints quickly. You have to replace the ink cartridges often because they don't last very long, but the cartridges are relatively cheap, which helps keep your maintenance cost low. Color printing can still get expensive if you print a lot.

Pros
  • Wide connectivity options include USB, Wi-Fi, and Ethernet.
  • Feels well-built.
  • Low cost per print for black-only printing.
Cons
  • Low black and color page yield.
  • No duplex scanning.
  • Color printing can get expensive over time.
7.8 Black & White

The Brother MFC-J1010DW is good for black and white printing. It produces high-quality black and white documents and prints decently fast at up to 16 pages per minute; however, its ink cartridge doesn't yield many pages, meaning you'll have to replace it regularly. The black ink cartridge is fairly cheap, which helps keep your maintenance cost low. It has a high-resolution scanner with an automatic feeder but doesn't support duplex scanning, so it isn't ideal for scanning double-sided sheets.

Pros
  • Feels well-built.
  • Low cost per print for black-only printing.
Cons
  • Low black and color page yield.
  • No duplex scanning.
7.6 Photo

The Brother MFC-J1010DW is good for photo printing. It produces very detailed photos with reasonably accurate colors; however, it struggles with bright, saturated shades and dark greens and yellows. It can print on glossy paper up to 8" x 11" and supports borderless printing. The cost per print for photo printing is decent as the ink cartridges are relatively cheap, but it can still get expensive if you print a lot.

Pros
  • Produces fine details in photos.
  • Feels well-built.
Cons
  • Color printing can get expensive over time.
  • 7.7 Family
  • 6.9 Small/Home Office
  • 7.6 Student
  • 7.8 Black & White
  • 7.6 Photo
  1. Updated Sep 06, 2022: Clarified text in the expected maintenance box that the printheads can clog if left unused for an extended period.
  2. Updated Aug 30, 2022: Review published.
  3. Updated Aug 25, 2022: Early access published.

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Black MFC-J1010DW
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Black MFC-J1170DW
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Black MFC-J1012DW
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Gray MFC-J1010DW
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Test Results

perceptual testing image
Design
8.0
Design
Build Quality

The Brother MFC-J1010DW's build quality is great. Though entirely plastic, the printer feels sturdy, with a solid damper to hold the printer open. The design has some downsides, as you can only access paper jams via the back panel, and the power cord isn't removable, making it impossible to replace if it gets damaged. The USB port is inside the printer, which means the cable's length is slightly shorter on the outside. Lastly, you can't separate the input and output trays as they're a single piece.

Design
Dimensions
Height 6.7" (17.0 cm)
Width 15.9" (40.3 cm)
Depth 13.7" (34.7 cm)
Height When In Use
7.5" (19.0 cm)
Width When In Use
16.9" (42.9 cm)
Depth When In Use
18.8" (47.7 cm)
Weight
16.7 lbs (7.6 kg)
6.0
Design
Expected Maintenance
Ink Related Maintenance
Expected
Drum Unit
No Drum Unit

The Brother MFC-J1010DW requires a fair amount of maintenance. Like most inkjet printers, the printheads can clog if you don't use the printer for an extended period. However, there are built-in functions to help resolve the issue, like printhead cleaning and alignment. The ink cartridges yield very few prints, so you'll have to replace them regularly. The printer doesn't need to be on to change the cartridges. The input tray holds 150 sheets of paper, which is on the lower side but fine for home use. Unfortunately, you can only access paper jams via the panel on the back of the printer. You can see the user guide here.

7.0
Design
Display Screen
Display Screen Yes
Display Screen Size
1.8" (4.5 cm)
Touchscreen No

The Brother MFC-J1010DW has a decent display. The screen is on the smaller side, but it doesn't impact the ease of use as it isn't touch-sensitive. It has good vertical viewing angles, meaning you can see the screen well from slightly above or below, but it's a little tougher from the sides. The Brother MFC-J1170DW variant has a different front panel with a larger 2.7" touch-sensitive screen and fewer physical buttons.

5.0
Design
Cartridge
Photo Cartridge
No
Number Of Color Cartridges
3
Black Cartridge Model
LC401 BK
Tested Black Page Yield
12 prints
Estimated Black Page Yield
228 prints
Color Cartridge Model
LC401 C/M/Y
Tested Color Page Yield
6 prints
Estimated Color Page Yield
137 prints
Third Party Cartridge
Not Found At Time Of The Review
Ink Type
Dye And Pigment
High Yield Cartridge
Yes

This printer uses color dye ink and black pigment ink. Unfortunately, these cartridges don't last very long, meaning you'll have to replace them often. The printer stops printing as soon as it detects that there isn't enough ink to produce a good-quality print so that you don't end up with a faded or lower-quality print, though this also means that you'll be discarding cartridges that still have some ink left.

7.4
Design
Scanner Features
Scanner
ADF + Flatbed
ADF Capacity
20 pages
Scan Speed
8 PPM
Duplex Scanning
No
Max Flatbed Scan Size
8.5" x 11"
Max ADF Scan Size
8.5" x 14"
Flatbed Hinge Adjustability
0.62" (16 mm)
Fax
Yes
Copy
Yes
OCR Included
Built-in

This printer has decent scanner features. The lid has a foam backing to help smooth out uneven sheets, and its hinges can extend slightly to accommodate thicker items like textbooks. Although there's an automatic feeder, it doesn't support duplex scanning, so you'll have to flip the pages manually when scanning double-sided sheets. To use optical character recognition, a feature that lets you create a searchable PDF, you can either select 'OCR' as the file destination from the printer's menu or save the file as a PDF and enable the 'Searchable PDF' option in Brother's iPrint&Scan software application.

9.0
Design
Scan Quality
Max Scan Resolution
1,200 DPI
Max Scan Color Depth
24Bit

The scan quality is outstanding. The text looks crisp, and you can easily see the fine details. The scanner seems to boost the contrast slightly and makes colors look more saturated.

Design
In The Box

  • Quick Setup Guide
  • Telephone cord
  • LC401 starter ink cartridges:
    • 1x Black
    • 1x Cyan
    • 1x Magenta
    • 1x Yellow

Design
Battery
Advertised Battery Life
N/A
Tested Charging Time
N/A
Document
9.0
Document
Black & White Documents
Color Ink Needed For Black & White
Yes

It prints black and white documents well. There are some vertical lines when printing in the Standard Quality mode, but they aren't present when printing in the High Quality mode. It only struggles to simulate the color yellow, as seen in the title at the top of the second page.

9.0
Document
Color Documents

It prints color documents well. Although the colors look slightly washed out, the text is sharp, and all the fine details are present.

7.5
Document
Cost-Per-Print
Black Cartridge Price
13.99 US$
Color Cartridge Price
26.97 US$
Black-Only Printing Cost
0.061 US$/print
Color Printing Cost
0.197 US$/print
Photo Printing Cost
0.482 US$/print
Ink Subscription
Optional

The cost per print for black-only printing is low, but color printing can get expensive over time if you print a lot. Brother has an ink subscription service called Brother Refresh, which might help you save money.

7.7
Document
Printing Speed
Black Only Text Document
16 PPM
Color Document
6 PPM
Photo Printing Time
65.5 s
Single Page Out Time (Black Only)
8.9 s
Duplex Printing
Automatic
Input Tray Capacity
150 pages

The Brother MFC-J1010DW prints black documents decently fast, but it's slow at printing color documents. It's reasonably quick at printing photos but still a little behind most inkjet printers. The output tray holds 50 sheets, so you'll have to keep an eye on it during large print jobs as it can overflow.

The Brother MFC-J1170DW variant prints color documents faster because its color printheads have more nozzles (210 x3 vs. the MFC-J1010DW and MFC-1012DW's 70 x3). The MFC-1170DW has an advertised color document printing speed of 16.5 PPM, while the MFC-J1010DW and MFC-1012DW have an advertised speed of 9.5 PPM.

Document
Document Printing Sizes
Letter (8.5" x 11") Yes
Legal (8.5" x 14") Yes
Tabloid (11" x 17") No
A6 (105mm x 148mm) Yes
A5 (148mm x 210mm) Yes
A4 (210mm x 297mm) Yes
Max Paper Weight
220 g/m²
Photo
6.0
Photo
Color Gamut

The Brother MFC-J1010DW has a mediocre color gamut. It has trouble printing bright, saturated colors, as you can barely see the zigzag line in the chart. It also struggles with some dark colors, like blues, greens, and yellows.

6.7
Photo
Color Accuracy
Average Color dE
6.70

The color accuracy is okay. Colors like green and orange are only slightly off, but the rest are noticeably inaccurate.

9.0
Photo
Small Details
Max Print Resolution (DPI)
1200 x 6000

The Brother MFC-J1010DW is outstanding at printing small details, as you can easily see the Tokyo Tower's general structure and even the individual metal bars at the top.

9.5
Photo
Photo Printing Sizes
Glossy Paper (4" x 6") Yes
Glossy Paper (5" x 7") Yes
Glossy Paper (8" x 10") Yes
Glossy Paper (8.5" x 11") Yes
Glossy Paper (13" x 19") No
Borderless Printing
Yes
Mobile App And Connectivity
7.0
Mobile App And Connectivity
Connectivity
Ethernet
No
USB Input To Computer
Yes
Bluetooth
No
Wi-Fi via Router
Yes
Wi-Fi Direct
Yes
External Storage Support
No
Apple AirPrint
Yes
Mopria Print Service
Yes

You can find the USB input by lifting the flatbed scanner. As mentioned in the build section, the cable routing shortens the cable slightly.

9.5
Mobile App And Connectivity
Mobile App
Mobile App Yes
App Name Brother Mobile Connect
iOS Yes
Android Yes
Photo (JPEG, PNG)
Android and iOS
PDF
Android and iOS
Microsoft Office Files
Android and iOS
Text Files (TXT)
Android and iOS
Webpages (HTML)
No

Brother's Mobile Connect app lets you print, scan, and copy directly from your smartphone. You can also use it to perform maintenance tasks like printhead cleaning, manage your ink subscription, order supplies, and access the printer's support page.

Mobile App And Connectivity
OS Compatibility
Windows Fully
macOS Fully
Chrome OS Fully

Differences Between Sizes And Variants

We tested the Brother MFC-J1010DW. In Canada, there's a Brother MFC-J1012DW variant with identical features and specifications. There's another variant called the Brother MFC-J1170DW with an upgraded front panel with a touchscreen, NFC support, and faster color printing speed.

If you come across a different variant not listed above, or you have a similar Brother MFC-J1010DW that doesn't correspond to our review, let us know, and we'll update it.

You can see our unit's label here.

Compared To Other Printers

The Brother MFC-J1010DW is among the best printers we've tested in its price range. It stands out for its low cost per print, as well as for its fast printing and scanning speeds.

For other options, see our recommendations for the best home printers, the best all-in-one printers, and the best office printers.

Brother MFC-J1205W

The Brother MFC-J1010DW and the Brother MFC-J1205DW are both all-in-one inkjet printers with similar features. If you print a lot, the MFC-J1205DW is a better choice as its ink cartridges yield significantly more prints, which will help you save money in the long run. However, the MFC-J1010DW produces better quality color documents and prints black documents faster.

HP DeskJet 4155e

The Brother MFC-J1010DW is much better than the HP DeskJet 4155e for most uses. The Brother's build feels much sturdier, and it has a larger color display with more buttons to help you navigate the settings menu. It also produces better quality documents and photos, scans and prints faster, and its ink cartridges last longer, which will help you save money.

Canon PIXMA TS6420a

The Brother MFC-J1010DW and the Canon PIXMA TS6420a are both budget all-in-one inkjet printers. The Brother has a few more features, like an automatic document feeder, and its ink cartridges yield more prints, meaning you won't have to replace them as often. It also prints faster and feels sturdier. On the other hand, the Canon produces better-looking photos because it can print a wider range of colors.

Epson Expression Home XP-4100

The Brother MFC-J1010DW is better than the Epson Expression Home XP-4100 for most uses. The Brother feels more sturdily built and has more features, like an automatic document feeder. It also prints faster and yields more pages per set of cartridges. The Epson can produce a wider range of colors, but its color accuracy is significantly worse.

Discussions