Hewlett-Packard Officejet 7210

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Hewlett-Packard Officejet 7210

Pros

  • Brilliant printing overall, PictBridge compatible

Cons

  • No colour LCD for image preview

Bottom Line

With fast performance and built-in Ethernet, the HP Officejet 7210 all-in-one is a top inkjet MFP for office. And it produces superb-looking photos to boot.

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The HP Officejet 7210 all-in-one crams in everything you could want from a home or small-office MFP.

Besides providing printing and scanning functions, the Officejet 7210 offers standalone faxing and a 50-sheet automatic document feeder (ADF) that makes multipage copying easier. The 7210 can fax in colour, and it has a 130-page memory for incoming faxes, in case the paper runs out while you're not there. To print photos, you can either attach a PictBridge-compatible digital camera to the 7210's direct-print port, or slide your camera's memory card into one of four flash memory slots, capable of reading all the major formats. Using the unit's Ethernet port, you can share the 7210 over a network.

The sets of buttons on the unit's control panel, which surround a backlit two-line LCD, are arranged sensibly by task (fax, copy, photo, scan and print). A numeric keypad lets you dial fax numbers, and there are five programmable speed-dial buttons. The 7210 doesn't have a colour LCD for previewing images, but you can print an index page of your photos, mark the images you want to print, and then scan that page to initiate the print job.

The included HP Image Zone software is among the most thorough in the business, but installing all 780MB of it can be a slow process. The well-organised printer driver provides shortcuts to major printing tasks, such as printing documents or photos, while the scanner driver supplies both basic and advanced menus. It also comes with the IRIS OCR program for turning scanned documents into editable text.

The paper cassette can hold 150 sheets. You can purchase a 250-sheet drawer; and for double-sided printing, an optional duplexer is available.

Two cartridges supply up to six inks for printing. In the box, you get a tri-colour (cyan, magenta, yellow) cartridge, and a pigment-based black ink cartridge (designed for better text quality). The black cartridge can be taken out and swapped with a photo-colour cartridge, but doing this often would be tedious. A slot under the cover is designed to accommodate partially used cartridges.

We liked the 7210's print quality and performance. True to its office designation, it printed very attractive text. Large fonts were dark and solid, and all but the finest italics came out sharp and well formed. Our prints of colour graphics on plain paper showed good detail and contrast.

With the photo cartridge in place, the 7210 printed glossy photographs with bright colours, smooth colour transitions and sharp detail. The edges of closely spaced boldface letters bled together, however, and our line art print showed some smudges and beading in narrow parallel lines. Despite those problems, the quality of the 7210's prints still exceeded the print quality of the most other MFPs we have tested.

The 7210 was fairly speedy, printing text at 6.8 pages per minute and colour graphics at 2.2ppm (both speeds were better than average). It printed photos fast, taking only 65 seconds to spit out a 4" x 5" photo on glossy paper.

In our scanner quality tests, the 7210 earned especially high marks on monochrome documents. It previewed and scanned our 4" x 5" photo at 100dpi in just under 18 seconds, roughly four seconds faster than average. Copy quality was very good, too, and the 7210's photocopy speed of 4ppm was significantly faster than average.

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