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My daughter has to print many things of during her school days and tends to go through a fair amount of ink, and to be honest, she has gone through a printer or two.
Anyway, a few weeks back her usual printer broke down, due to over work together with a little clumsiness, forcing her to throw her usual panicky strop as she was in the middle of printing some very important things out for her school homework which had to be in the next day.
In her mad panic, she asked if she could use my printer, which had been out of ink for quite some time so I had been using hers to print out what I needed, (but don't tell her).
So, with a slight feeling of inner guilt, and a smile of what may have looked like false compassion, I headed off out to get some ink for my printer so she could get her work finished. But, as I walked into the 'printer ink' shop I noticed a rather neat looking printer sat on the shelf, with a small enough price tag to warrant me thinking of buying it to replace my daughters broken one, which I did then buy.
When I got it home I set about making my daughter happy as I gave her the new printer, (knowing how little I'd paid for it), and offered to connect it up to her PC so she could carry on printing her work out. (It was then I remembered that in my haste of trying to please my daughter I'd once again forgotten to get ink for my own printer).
In the box...
* The Ink jet printer itself
* Power lead, which is approx. 500mm long
* mains power box, which is approx. 1850mm long
* Printer to PC lead, which is approx. 2100mm long
* Two ink cartridges, one black, one colour
* Instruction booklet
* CD ROM
Now for the boring bits...
** To run this Printer successfully on your PC you will need...
* Windows XP, Vista and 7, (although I had major troubles installing it on a laptop running Windows 7 pro).
* Vista... 800MHz CPU, 512MB RAM, 850MB HD space, IE, CD/DVD drive and USB port
* XP.... Intel 233 Mhz CPU, 128MB RAM, 600MB HD space, IE 6, CD/DVD drive and USB port
* MAC OS v10.3 and above with Power PC G3,G4,G5 or Intel core, 256MB RAM, 500MB HD space, CD/DVD drive and USB port.
* 80 sheet fold away paper tray
* Up to 4800 x 1200 dpi colour when using photo paper and 600 dpi black and white.
** Documents printing speeds.
* A4 text up to 20 pages per minute (PPM)
* A4 mixed text and graphics 16 PPM
* 100mm x 150mm colour photo in around 30 seconds
* A4 full colour in less than 2 minutes
* weighs as little as 2.2kg
NOTE: for friends of the Earth people...
Apparently over 25% of the casing is made from recycled plastic.
** MY OPINION...
This desk top printer is one of the cheaper printers on the market, in fact, some places are giving this type away free if you buy a PC from them, and to be perfectly honest, I now know why they give this things away...
They may be cheap, in the high cost of the printer world, but sadly it certainly shows why these things are so cheap and the old saying 'you get what you pay for' springs to mind when think of this.
The printers body work itself is not massive, being approx. 425mm long by 180mm deep, 170mm high... although when it is fully opened and in use it, with the paper tray fully extended it is actually 430mm deep.
It is made of a thin(ish) black plastic which does seem to make it feel a little on the fragile side, but once it's in place on a desk it shouldn't have to be moved too many times really, although it does like to move on its own.
The on/off button is on the front left of the unit, almost hidden with the black body work, just below the energy star logo, with the only other marking on the unit being the HP logo itself, which is etched on the Ink cartridge covering.
The paper tray flops out, uncovering the ink housing, which is actually protected behind another little 'door'. And to hold the paper more steady there is an extra extension arm which the sheets of paper sit on.
Just inside, where the paper gets dragged in, there is the usual 'paper width guide' marker, which is adjustable.
Connecting it all up is a breeze, there's no danger of wiring it up incorrectly as there are only two wires and one way to slot them into position. The Printer to PC lead has different size ends, one being for a standard USB port, the other being smaller and slotting into the printer itself. The main power lead has a lovely purple colouring on the printer end and clicks into position so easily.
Installing it is simple too, just follow the easy to understand instruction and, as long as you have either the CD or an Internet connection, you'll have the required drivers installed in no time.
The instruction booklet may look quite thick, giving you the impression that there may be a lot to take in, but there's actually only three pages in English, the rest being in several different languages, so it's not that daunting.
Anyway, as I mentioned earlier, I had a task and a half installing it to run on my daughters laptop with it running windows 7 pro. It seemed fine at first, printing out as it should do, but, for some reason, with in a few hours the driver went for a walk somewhere, (where they went I don't know?). Even after I re-installed the entire software package and relocated the drivers, which took some time may I add, it would simply not run again on that particular laptop, which was a bit annoying really as I had bought this for her in the first place.
As for the printing quality, this does depend a lot on the quality of the paper but under normal printing circumstances this printer can print some nice quality pictures, to begin with. But then, after a few picture prints later, and a lot of rattling around the desk surface, the images began to look like I needed to be going to spec-savers to invest in some glasses to sort my fuzzy vision out.
Initially I thought that it was due to the fact that the printer was jumping around the table when it is printing maybe the reason why the pictures were coming out 'fuzzy' and 'blurry', but even when I held onto printer as it did it's job the end results were just the same.
I even tried using different Ink cartridges, sticking to original HP from my daughters old, and broken, printer, as they were the same types, but this made no difference to the outcome either. The pictures still looked like they were taken under ten feet of canal water, even though the original images on the laptop were perfectly clear.
This jumping around the table fiasco may be because the printer is a lightweight modal, so you can expect then a little 'movement', due to the printer mechanism moving from side to side. But this movement was sporadic, it was like the ink cartridges were trying to punch their way out of the housing in a bid for freedom, causing the printer to 'jump' around the table, getting to heights that even an airline pilot would have felt nauseous at. (Luckily the wires held firm so I could bring the printer back to Earth)
This was not good at all, especially if there was a cup of coffee within a three metre radius as the printer seemed to make a beeline for that for some reason?
As for the price, I paid a very low £10.00 for this printer, which I thought was one heck of a bargain when I bought it. But after a few printing experiences and some replacement inks cartridges later, I seem to have spent more time and money on it than I wanted to.
The printer usually sells for around £30.00 which you may think is cheap but even £30.00 would be a bit much for this HP Horrid Product.
I was even that dissatisfied that I took it back to the shop and got a full refund, sadly the chap behind the counter remembered the actual price I had bought it for and gave me a funny look, as if to say, 'well what do expect for a tenner mate', but he gave me my money back anyway.
In all, not one of HP's better printers at all and one that I would steer well clear of even if it was the only printer...(...long pause...)... in left in the world, (...still got my Jeremy Clarkson - Top gear head on...).
I would rather take pen to paper and draw the picture out myself than waste my time using this printer ever again.
I have to add, (for legal reasons apparently), I have owned a few HP printers in my time and most, if not all, have been very good workhorses, giving me many years of trusted friendship and brilliant results, even if the replacement inks cost more that the printers themselves. But this cheap and nasty one is not one I would buy again, although this hasn't dented my respect for HP printers in general as I got what I paid for at the end of the day.
All-in-one printers are great but they don't half take up some space seemingly getting bigger all the time as they pack in new features. On the other hand, single function inkjet printers have got cheaper and more compact as technology has progressed. With limited space in our computer room we made the decision to ditch our behemoth all-in-one for the space saving HP Deskjet 1660. At thirty quid how could we go wrong?
Well relatively early on if truth be told. The D1660 certainly looks the part and the lack of the ridiculous amounts of packaging you usually associated with modern gadgetry boded well as I took it out the box. However, setting up isn't as easy as it should be. The printer comes with an installation CD which clogs up your computer with all manner of superfluous and resource hogging maintenance software which HP insists you must install prior to plugging the printer in by their rather short USB cable. This would be all well and good if this software actually did anything. However, after a few paper jams and refusals to print you soon come to realise that it does nothing but slow your computer down and actually exacerbates the problems you are having by freezing your whole system! After installing the printer to four different computers/laptops I soon realised the D1660 works far better if you just install the basic drivers from the HP website:
Uninstalling the supplied software meant that the printer actually has a fighting chance of working although even then do not expect a stress free printing experience. For some reason this printer seems to have a mind of its own. You can load the fold down paper tray very easily with the maximum eighty sheets of paper but you soon find out this isn't advisable as when you switch the power button on it might decide to feed every single piece through the machine for no reason other than its own psychotic amusement. Seriously this thing could be controlled by Skynet!
Further problems are encountered when you actually try and print something. Often the printer simply ignores your commands seemingly forgetting the fact there is a print job waiting for it. Turning it off and on sometimes reminds it that it has a job to do but if you are really unlucky the printer might lose it completely deciding to print the document ad infinitum until you cancel the print job. When the printer does decide to work properly it prints very quickly and the 20 page per minute boast for black ink isn't an exaggeration. However, the ink cartridges are a tiny 4ml capacity so don't expect to get much life out of them despite the alleged 200 page boast you will be lucky to get half of that. The only way round this is by the more expensive but far longer lasting XL cartridges that last three times as long but will become more economical over time due to refilling.
To be fair to HP replacing the cartridges is very easy as the plastic front comes down so you can just clip the new cartridges into place. However, if you do refill prepare yourself for the hugely annoying pop ups from HP chastising you as they can no longer tell you when your ink is running out. Trust me this is not a bad thing! Weirdly the official cartridges rather than just running down and printed faded pages just stop the printer from working altogether as soon as you are running low in ink. This is incredibly frustrating when the kids homework is due and you think the printer is on the fritz again only to find out the ink has ran out without you being given any indication.
This is undoubtedly the worst printer I have ever owned. The thing is demented, unreliable and just doesn't work as intended. Just avoid it like the plague, I implore you.
This seems like excellent value when you consider the price - around thirty pounds - and the well-known brand (my HP laptop, for instance is excellent). However, it´s very irritating at times, and seems to decide when it wants to print, and overall it hasn´t been a great buy.
You can set it up very quickly and easily, which is a plus, although once you come to try and print, the problems start. Often, although the printer´s on and all the cables are plugged in and working, nothing seems to happen. There´s no indication of what´s the problem, no error messages, nothing. It just sits there not responding. You can turn it off and on and reset the computer, but it´ll work of its own accord, which is a huge problem when you´re relying on it to print in a hurry. Many frustrating moments have been caused by this printer.
On the positive side, when it finally prints, the quality is good - it works quickly and doesn´t smudge or get jammed. However, when you can´t rely on it to produce when you need it to, it´s as good as worthless.
Overall, then, I think this is a problem to avoid - although the price is tempting, there are so many good printers out there that are much more reliable and cost-efficient. If you´re lucky enough to have it working regularly, this might be a good buy, but you´re taking a risk. Not recommended.
Very basic inkjet printer that will print at up to 20ppm (in black and white). Relatively dependable for everyday use with no frills. HP's standard software and power cable included (the former revealing it's rubbish cartridge consumption) and easy to install. USB cable must be purchased separately.
Black moulded plastic with standard in/outlet tray and HP logos. Single on/off button. Relatively small footprint of 44 x 20cm.
1. It's cheap (c.£30)
2. It's cheap.
3. It's cheap.
4. It's also not too much of a hassle to set up.
1. Its Eco credentials: this Printer is Energy Star rated: a US government label intended to indicate products with reduced energy costs that don't satisfy features or performance. The US government isn't renowned for being particularly Eco friendly, and this is confirmed with the 'Energy Star' rating, which has zero meaning in terms of absolute reduction of energy consumption.
2. 25% of the printer is made of recycled plastic, however since you're likely to (at best) end up recycling it (or at worst chucking it), this probably isn't much of a bonus.....
3. While the ink cartridges to go with this model aren't the most expensive of the HP ones (B&W can be purchased for £10ish, whilst for other models they often come in at c.£20) the fact that they seem to need replacing every 100 or so pages makes printing quite an expensive little habit!
4. It tends to jam, or munch about four pages at once (conveniently staggering the rate at which it takes them up, meaning you get a quarter of a page printed on each sheet. Great. Especially since that page has just cost you 10p in ink.
5. It crashes occasionally and refuses to print for no conceivable reason. Though switching it on and off half a dozen times seems to confuse it into working again.
Now then, I must write a review to let all you inkjetters out there what a nightmare this printer is. It has nearly destroyed my relationship, my bedroom and my fingers and I've only had the damn thing a month!
Ok, so I'm exaggerating again but it is pretty shocking. Saying that, it does 'print' once in a while and the quality isn't too bad so I can't knock it completely.
Let us start at the beginning....
The price - Very good for a HP printer, only cost me about £30 and I was pretty chuffed walking home with a 600dpi printer under my arm for that cash. It's boxed quite simply but packed well and should survive any journey even with a van driver who's had a bad week. It comes with instructions, an installation CD, some half loaded fairly useless printer cartridges and a power plug. Do yourself a favour and go and buy a long USB cable from a pound shop as the one I had bundled in with it was about 6 inches long??!?!!! The printer itself is cheaply made but sturdy enough with strong black plastic. Looks quite nice too! It's not too big so won't take up much on your office desk...
Installation - It started well, all plugged in, disk in, drivers installed done....but NO, not done. About 20 minutes later and after reading loads of useless information, I began to uninstall all the software I didn't need to print. It looked like the Icon ogre had sneezed on my desktop! Again, do yourself a favour - don't bother with the CD just download the drivers and only the drivers.
Ok so finally, a chance to print something. After aligning the cartridges 47 times and loading her up with paper I opened my favourite 5000 word essay and hit print. Nothing. Not even a squeak. Two reset's later and some hair lost it finally printed. The first too sheets of paper jammed of course and had to be tugged at to be removed.
The print quality in colour and black is actually pretty good - I can't really fault it at all - It's just that 1) The cartridges need replacing after about 100 pages (according to the software) and they're pretty expensive. 2) I have to re-boot my computer for each printing session (still don't know why - could be my computer) and 3) It chews up paper like next door's dog!
Don't buy it - I love HP stuff but not this - Spend another £30 and save your hair.