Looking for a printer that has excellent print quality for documents & photos, easy to operate and has above average scanning and copying speeds? The HP Photosmart 7520 just might be the best multifunction printer to look at. This printer is a good choice for the home user or the small business owner.
As we all now know a multifunction printer (MFP) or “All-in-one-printer” is one of the cornerstones of a home office and is a good choice for the home user due to the fact that they are workhorses. They print documents and photos, they copy, scan and even fax. Other features this printer has is it supports wireless printing from mobile devices, has a relatively small footprint, an Auto document Feeder (ADF) and supports duplex printing. Not bad for under $200!
In my opinion all of the MFP printers take way too long to set up. You would think that with all of the technology out there the printer manufactures would make this process as close to plug & play as they could, who knows maybe someday that will happen. Instead of going into a long explanation of the setup routine, check out this video that HP has produced to give you a hands on look from un-boxing the printer to the actual setup: http://bit.ly/1tqY3P8 This is something every manufacturer should have available to its customers. Like the old saying goes, a picture is worth a thousand words.
HP does a great job of walking you through installing the ink cartridges. Not only are they color coded, each has a shape on the label that matches a shape on a slot inside the machine to show which one goes where. They even include a short animated tutorial on the touchscreen located on the front of the printer that will guide you through the process, now that’s thoughtful.
Setting up the wireless is simple and straight forward. Here’s a short tutorial showing how easy it is: http://bit.ly/1wUlikk This printer will also work with your iPad or Apple product. Setting up the Wi-Fi to use with your Android device is far more complicated. It requires connecting the printer to Google Cloud print as well as downloading the individual printer app.
The printer uses the HP 564 series of ink jet cartridges. They come in the standard yield and the XL version. I would recommend always opting for the XL, you get more bang for your buck and will not have to run to store as often to replace the cartridges. The 7520 takes five ink jet cartridges, there is a large black, cyan, magenta, yellow and the photo black. What’s nice about this type of system is that you only replace the cartridge that is empty. The other type of system has one cartridge that holds the three colors, cyan, magenta and yellow. The colors are held in three separate chambers, when one of the colors empties the printer can no longer produce color prints. In this case you throw out the cartridge and buy another one, very wasteful.
Ease of Use
The paper tray is one of the easiest to load on the market, you just slide the paper into the 8X10 path instead of having to lift covers or pull out trays like on other printers. It holds 125 sheets of paper, not great compared to other printers but again for the home users or small business owner this should be sufficient. It also comes with a secondary paper tray for holding 20 sheets of 4X6 sheets of photo paper. The automatic document feeder (ADF) holds 25 sheets of paper for the scanner. The Photosmart can print and scan in duplex (both sides of the paper), but duplex scanning requires two passes. HP places the SD card slot as well as the USB port right up front on the printer unlike some other manufactures that places them in the back of the printer.
To make remote printing easy, the HP Photosmart 7520 features ePrint technology which assigns the printer an email address that you can personalize. This means you can send print jobs from any connected device, as long as the printer is turned on. So for example if my brother wanted to share a document with me, he could email it right to my printer. This also allows me to send something to the printer from an out-of-town business trip.
Printing speeds are average at 9.5 pages per minute (PPM) for monochrome pages of text and text with graphics. Text quality is crisp and dark across the board.
Faxing, Scanning & Copying
If you do a lot of document scanning, you’ll appreciate having a printer with an automatic document Feeder (ADF) which the 7520 has. You can scan your document directly into your PC so you can save it and send it directly as an email attachment. The 7520 lets you initiate a scan directly from the printer and choose where you want to send it to right from the touchscreen. Other printers requires that you start the process from your PC, go back to the printer to get things going then back to your PC to end the process.
The unit printed superb reproductions with marginally perceptible loss in color with the text being near perfect. The built in fax capability delivers both black and white and color copies. Speed is a bit slow at about 5 seconds on average but unless you receive a lot of faxes this should not be a deal breaker.
The HP 7520 is not the smallest MFP around but it’s not the biggest either, it will fit nicely on the corner of a standard office desk if you have nowhere else to put it. Overall dimensions come in at 8.68” high X 17.87” wide and 17.91” deep. Weight is 23.44 lbs so this is not a printer you want to move around a lot.
So all in all this is a very good MFP with all of the bells & whistles a home user or small business could want and for under $200 you can’t go wrong. If you have one these printers or decide to buy one we would love your feed back.