This printer is tiny, and has a slightly awkward design. Its rear paper input tray opens up in a very narrow fashion to allow you to insert up to 20 sheets of paper. The spring that holds the paper in place also makes it a little hard to load an individual sheet of paper, as some force is required to get it into the tray.
- Large LCD, high speed, good print quality
- Expensive, awkward design
While this inkjet printer did produce adequate results, the cost of the unit plus the high running costs make it a very expensive proposition.
Price$ 399.00 (AUD)
The front of the unit is a little more endearing, as once the power button is pressed the paper output tray drops to reveal PictBridge and memory card slots for direct printing.
Direct printing is aided by the 2.5" LCD screen that sits atop the unit, and which allows you to browse photos on memory cards to select which ones you want to print. Browsing memory cards was very efficient, as there was virtually no noticeable access time between shots. Likewise, printing from our SD card was very quick, with prints completing in only 1 minute and 39 seconds. PictBridge prints emerged slightly slower at 1 minute and 45 seconds, while prints from the PC came out in only 1 minute and 33 seconds. If you leave too many prints in the output tray though, they may eventually end up on the floor as the next prints in the queue come out.
This printer has a tri-colour cartridge that does not have a dedicated black tank. Blacks are blended from the cyan, magenta and yellow inks. This print cartridge is easily replaced from the front of the unit and the printer driver allows you to locate replacement cartridges quickly by allowing you to click through HP's Web site. Apart from the regular tri-colour cartridge, there is an option for a grey colour cartridge. Other options for this printer include a Bluetooth module, for printing from wireless devices.
The prints from this unit were more than acceptable to our eyes and, even though it does not have a dedicated black ink tank, we found it handled black colouring in the majority of our photos very well. It also produced vibrant colour tones and displayed difficult colour gradations reasonably well. In saying that, its colour blending was still not as good as many of Epson's photo printers, and some images appeared as though they were printed a little too sharply.
A tri-colour cartridge for this printer will cost you about $43, while a 20-sheet pack of Colourfast Photo Paper will cost you a further $16. The tri-colour cartridge is stated as having a yield of around 260 prints, based on 15% coverage on a sheet of letter-sized paper. Our usage indicates that 20 photos would consume up to a fifth of this cartridge, which means you should be able to get about 100 photos out of it. If you were to purchase 100 sheets of paper along with one cartridge, then your cost per photo would end up being close to $1.07, which is comparatively very expensive. Unfortunately, HP does not supply a bundled ink and paper pack for this printer.
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