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Model Information

Brother's answer to the challenge of the HP III

[Brother HL-8V printer]

Model Data
Model Number HL-8V
Introduction Date March 1991
Original MSRP $2,495
Replaces Model HL-8e


Brother International positions its products to be compatible with HP, but with a little more value for about the same price. The HL-8V is Brother's answer to the challenge posed by the LaserJet III, which was a dramatic leap in technology over earlier LaserJets. Amazingly, Brother engineers were able to clone all of the features of the LaserJet III, add in their extra features, and it bring to market within a year after the LaserJet III was introduced.

The HL-8V has the added feature of 64 shading patterns as compared to the eight patterns offered by the LaserJet III. These shading patterns can be used to produce some attractive effects, but few drivers exist that take advantage of this capability. Brother has also maintained compatibility with its earlier products by including Diablo 630, Brother Twinwriter, IBM Proprinter XL, and Epson FX-850 emulations.


The HL-8V has 12 scalable typefaces from 3 different families. The LaserJet III has only eight scalable type faces from two families. The font cartridge slots are compatible with the HP III, so any of HP's scalable PCL 5 cartridges should work in the HL-8V.

Bitmapped Fonts

The HL-8V has eight different versions of Brougham, which is a fixed-point font similar to Courier. Brougham differs from Courier in that its strokes are of variable thickness like those of a serif typeface. It comes in two sizes: 10 point (12 pitch) and 12 point (10 pitch). All four of the normal variations of Regular, Bold, Italic, and Bold Italic are resident and they can be rotated from portrait to landscape. Letter Gothic 16.66 pitch (8.5 point) is also available in the same variations. Counting them using HP's convention, the HL-8V has a total 32 bitmapped fonts.


The Brother HL-8V has been discontinued, but The Printer Works can build them from parts at special request. Refurbished printers are in like-new condition and come with a Six-Month Warranty. For a price quote, select the printer's part number in the ordering information table.

Controller Notes

Model Information | Supplies and Accessories | Ordering Information | Text Only

[Brother HL-8V Controller]

Controller Specifications
Part Number B482378-2
Designer/Mfg. Brother
Design Similar to Brother HL-8
Std. Emulations PCL 5, 630, IBM PP, Epson 850
Opt. Emulations None
Emulation Brand Brother PCL 5 Clone
CPU & Clock Rate 68000 @ 12.50 MHz
Bitmap Resolution (max) 300 X 300
RET Yes, HRC (High Res. Control)
Base RAM 1 Megabyte
Max RAM 5 Megabytes
Font Cartridges 2 Slots, Std. Full Size
Control Panel Type Full Function with 16 Char. LCD
Standard Interfaces RS-232, Centronics Parallel
Optional Interfaces None

The only serious problem with the HL-8V controller is that there is no easy path to PostScript. If you want PostScript capability, you'll have to replace the controller board. Brother offers its HL-PS controller as an upgrade kit.

Supplies and Accessories

Model Information | Controller Notes | Ordering Information | Text Only
You can check prices or order these items from the ordering information table below.


The Brother HL-8V uses the same toner cartridges as all other SX-based printers.


The scalable PCL 5 font cartridges made by Hewlett-Packard for the HP LaserJet family can be used by the Brother HL-8V. When you want to increase your printer font collection, see our catalog page on Font Cartridges from Hewlett-Packard.


The Brother HL-8V printer uses the same shaped paper trays and high-capacity feeders as all other SX-based printers. All versions are physically interchangeable, but there are slight color differences. (See also Diagram 300.)


The controller board can be upgraded with the same memory boards as are used with earlier models. A new memory card, expandable to 4 MB, has been added. Font cartridges manufactured by Brother are rather obscure products, rarely seen at computer stores. Brother printers are compatible with most HP font products, which are listed HP sections of this catalog.

The Brother HL-8V uses unique memory boards. Long-term availablity is questionable. Several third-party suppliers made clones, and some old stock may still be available. Please check with our sales department for current information.

Ordering Information

Model Information | Controller Notes | Supplies and Accessories | Text Only
For price and ordering information or to place the item in your shopping cart,
select a Part Number in the table.
Part NumberDescription
RHL-8V Printer, Brother HL-8V, Refurbished
B482378-3 Controller, Brother HL-8V
594325001 Manual, User's Guide, Brother HL-8V

Model Information | Controller Notes | Supplies and Accessories | Text Only

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