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Brother MFC-9970CDW

*Est. $600
March 2014
by ConsumerSearch
Brother MFC-9970CDW

  • Excellent text quality
  • Clear and well-structured system menu
  • 5-inch color touch screen
  • Below average graphic quality
  • Paper tray has low capacity
  • Some toner issues

Bottom line

The Brother MFC-9970CDW multifunction printer is designed for a small- to medium-size office environment. While the high quality of text printing earns good feedback, reviewers are less impressed with graphics and photo performance.

Ease of use

Set up is a snap. The Brother MFC-9970CDW printer ships with a CD with detailed instructions for setup, walking you though the process "with sufficient hand-holding" according to Melissa Riofrio at PC World. Another reviewer reports that the hardest part of the setup was moving the printer, a full 46 pounds, into place. The 5-inch color touch screen is supplemented by several buttons -- a numeric keypad as well as a Cancel button -- that don't conflict with the ease of use of the touch screen's large icons.

User reviews reveal mixed satisfaction. The most common complaints regard the toner system. Toner consumption seems high, many say. Some add that the printer requires the toner cartridges to be replaced prematurely, though others note that there are ways to circumvent this.


Fast, but below average photo quality. Reviewers report that the Brother MFC-9970CDW is definitely one of the fastest color laser multifunction printers they've tested. The text quality of the MFC-9970CDW printer is on par with that of other color laser multifunction printers. M. David Stone at states that text output from this printer is "good enough for anything short of highly quality desktop publishing applications." However, the quality of the graphics output is slightly below average, and the photo quality is just middling. The colors printed are bright but tend to be darker than the original colors, and color copies look a little fuzzier than the original. However, Simon Williams from reports that the color rendition of photos is more natural than usually seen from color laser printers. Despite all this, the output quality of the Brother MFC-9970CDW color laser MFP is judged to be more than sufficient for business office needs.


Everything a busy office needs. The features available on the Brother MFC-9970CDW highlight its use as a multifunction printer for an office environment. Its 5-inch color touch screen gives access to the print, scan, copy and fax options, alongside a 20-button numerical pad for entering fax numbers. Users find the touch screen to be sufficiently sensitive for easy use. This printer has an auto-duplex feature (automatic two-sided printing), but a downside is that the paper tray only holds 250 sheets, definitely not enough for a busy office. However, you can purchase a second paper tray, also holding 250 sheets. The scanner has a 50-sheet automatic document feeder and a very useful duplex scanning function that reads both sides of a document at once.

Where To Buy
Brother MFC-9970CDW Color Laser All-in-One with Wireless Networking and Duplex

 (284 reviews)
Buy new: $699.99 $529.00   82 Used from $365.99

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Our Sources


Receiving a rating of excellent, the Brother MFC-9970CDW multifunction printer produces output fast, but the quality is below par for graphics and photos, M. David Stone says. Ease of use and a wide menu of features make the MFC-9970CDW a good choice for a small- to medium-size office.

Review: Brother MFC-9970CDW, M. David Stone, Feb. 1, 2011

2. PC World

Melissa Riofrio is enthusiastic about the Brother MFC-9970CDW, saying it "tackles the full laundry list of small-office and workgroup print/copy/scan/fax needs." She finds the setup easy though the output quality is "pedestrian."

Review: Brother MFC-9970CDW Review: Bells, Whistles, and Cheap Toner, Too, Melissa Riofrio, July 21, 2011


The Brother MFC-9970CDW is a multifunction printer "with all the trimmings," whose feature selection, print quality and print costs are "up to the mark," says Simon Williams. He also likes the touch screen and 20-button quick-dial fax pad. Williams notes, however, that at 250 sheets the page tray capacity is low for a busy office.

Review: Brother MFC-9970CDW Review, Simon Williams, Feb. 6, 2011


The more than 270 user reviews of the Brother MFC-9970CDW printer at are mixed. Users like this printer's speed, but there are many reports of toner problems, especially a "low toner" message when not all of the toner has been used.

Review: Brother MFC-9970CDW Color Laser All-in-One with Wireless Networking and Duplex, Contributors to, As of March 2014

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