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Where would the world be without the humble printer!? We have a range of companies offering us printers which care for all users, ranging from home users to corporate users, one of those companies is Hewlett Packard, and I regard them highly, and probably at the top of printer manufacturers. I?m no nerd, not a geek, but my day to day job includes using and installing a lot of printers, so have come across most of the small business printers out there at some time made by Hewlett Packard! I have been using the new HP 3420 desktop printer for over a month now as my old Epson broke down and I had to get a replacement for my desk at work on the cheap, and cheap this was coming in at £59 on Amazon. I warn you now, this isn?t going to be the most exciting review you will ever read, though it might just come in useful! The HP Deskjet 3420 is quite a neat little printer which is pretty compact considering it has a paper tray at the bottom to sit alongside the HP tradition of flat paper trays. Unpacking and installing the printer is a breeze. It is literally one piece of kit, no add on?s and a couple of cartridges. One thing I will say as a word of warning is that this printer is only USB as far as I?m aware, at least the one I have is. Inside the box you will also find a power cable (no printer lead, you need to either have one or buy this separately!, misers these printer companies aint they!) and a quick start guide to get you going. Installing the printer is easy, if you have Windows XP, just connect it to the computer and the mains and XP will do the rest, if not, just stick the CD in the drive and let the computer do it?s stuff. Once that?s all done and you have installed the cartridges, your ready to go. Printout isn?t the best print quality ever, but it is very acceptable considering the price and the printer doesn?t go overboard trying to tell you how good it can print out photos. This printer isn?t a photo printer, i
t will do them, to a standard, but it?s not for this kind of use, this printer falls into the homework / home / small office usage category and it does what it is built for with ease. This isn?t the quietest printer you will hear either, though the clunking noise this printer does make are louder than those of an Epson, at least the HP doesn?t make a mountain out of a molehill and go overboard and prolong the clunking sounds, a la Epson printers! If your used to a Deskjet 930 or the likes and you think this printer is going to be even quieter because it?s newer on the market that the 930 then your going to be annoyed! The one and only major gripe I have with this printer is the size of the cartridges. The black is just 10ml and is not built to do major print jobs. It won?t last you long at all, maybe 200 letters if your lucky and they don?t come cheap either, the black being around £15 ? £20 in the shops and I couldn?t tell you how much the colour one would be, though it?s probably around the same price. One thing that lets the HP company down is their highly price consumables and HP are known for it! The printer software will do most things for you. It will tell you when you should consider having another cartridge to hand, it will tell you you need to align the cartridges etc etc and it will walk you through the tasks for maintaining your printer and it?s cartridges. It?s a good little piece of software which is a bit like the Epson software, without the annoying pop up toolbox every time you print something! For a printer that costs around £59, you can?t really go wrong, especially with the HP name. This printer is excellent quality for what it says it?s for, small usage. I?ve had it for just over a month and got through 2 cartridges in the office, I do use my printer quite a bit and this was probably the wrong printer to go for, I just had a tight budget handed to me so didn?t have much choice! Nothing has gone wrong with it s
o far, only a cartridge jam that was rectified by turning the printer off and then on again. If your looking to use your printer quite a bit, or wanting a printer for the office, go for something like the 840 or the 930 which will be more what your looking for. If your wanting a printer for the home that will be used maybe once a week or less then this is the one to go for. An excellent little printer that does what it does and doesn?t try to do more and mess things up.
I bought the HP Deskjet 3420 a couple of months ago now, and it has been a very good printer, Especially on photo paper, which produces very near photo quality pictures. it is also very good for draft copies because it is very fast on 'FastDraft'. The resoloution is 2400 x 1200 on photo paper and is great value for only £60 ( now it's only £50! ). The cartridges are quite small but last quite a while ( the photo prints take up a lo of ink ) and for HP the cartridges are quite cheap only around £13 for black and colour. This is surprising as for this printer hp is the only supplier of ink cartriges, pc world and whsmith brand do not supply them as they do for other hp cartriges. At the back of the printer there is a cover which comes off which is very handy when paper gets jammed in the printer, as it was difficult to get out on prevous deskjet printers from HP. REsponds very quick due to USB connection. Simple design, only one button and easy troubleshooter and easy install process. One disadvantage is that somtimes envelopes get scraped by the ink cartridges if they are too thick, but if you get flat thin envolopes this doesnt tend to happen. Overall a very good buy for only £60!