If you’ve been looking for a color printer but can’t afford the cost of a laser printer, look no future, this machine could just be the answer to your prayers. The HP Officejet Pro 8500 wireless all in one printer can print, scan, fax, copy in record time and does it all with high quality results and a price tag you can live with. But wait there’s more, it has autoduplexing, 802.11 b/g, a 3.45 inch touch screen, 50 sheet automatic document feeder, and a legal-size scanner. You can get one of these for about $399.00, that may seem high to some but when you compare that price to a color laser and the supplies cost this baby is a winner.
Designs and Features
The dimensions of this printer come in at a rather bulky 19.45 wide and 18.86 deep by 13.03 high. Could fit on a large desk but is better suited on it’s own small table. Most of the bulk comes from the built-in features including the autoduplexer, 50 sheet automatic document feeder and the legal size scanner bay.
The center console is neatly organized with a 3.45 inch color LCD touch screen display right in the middle. Some of the other competitors might have larger screens but bigger isn’t always better. HP gives us a highly functional, easy to use heads up display. The home screen shows all of the most commonly used option menus including Copy, Fax, Scan, and Photo preferences, a quick setup menu, and a graphical gauge that shows you almost precisely how much ink you have left in your ink tanks.
The rest of the front panel has a full telephone keypad for typing in fax numbers, a collection of quick access fax and copy buttons, a “Digital Filing Networking Folder” button that lets you scan and manage your images over a network, and a general “E-mail” button for one-touch scan delivery. And at the bottom of the front panel it has an external card reader that supports PectBridge USB, Memory Stick, SD, and Compact Flash. You can hook up the printer to your computer in three ways, over a network with the built-in Ethernet port, direct connection through a USB 2.0 cord and through 802.11 b/g networking. HP has made the setting up of the wireless network for you printer easy by guiding you through the setup with step by step on screen instructions.
The large 250 sheet input drawer is fixed into the machine, but the top comes off for when it comes time to refill more paper. You can also extend the tray outward to accommodate A4 and legal size paper with a convenient arm to corral loose prints. If you think you need even more paper capacity, HP sells an optional 250 sheet input tray for $80 that fits directly underneath the printer. The top of the printer houses the 50 sheet automatic document feeder for scanning and/or copying and a small auto-duplexer installs in the rear for double sided printing. This printer is really aimed at the business market so the duty cycle is 15,000 pages a month which should be more than enough for a small to medium size business.
In addition to the normal drivers, the 8500 ships with HP’s Photosmart Essential and Solution Center software. The former helps your import, organize, edit, and share your digital photos, and the latter helps you fax and scan documents as well as order additional supplies to use with your printer. The scanner comes with on-board OCR (Optical Character Recognition software that allows the scanner to interpret graphics into editable text. The HP Solution Center software has a “convert to text” option as well as an embedded “save as editable text” feature that automatically converts as it scans.
Now comes the really cool part, the ink tanks this machine takes is the HP #940Xl series ink tanks. The regular price for the name brand HP ink is $38.99 for the black and $27.99 for each of the colors. That comes to about 1.6 cents per page for a full page of black only ink. To save even more money you can buy the re-manufactured Eco-Friendly brand at Ink & Toner Solutions. The black XL goes for $24.99 and $19.99 for each of the colors. Printing speed comes in at a blazing 13.5 pages per minute which is double the speed of the Epson Artisan 800. For a busy office that can’t wait around for a document to print they will undoubtedly appreciate the performance & speed of this 8500. Quality of photos, colors and documents are excellent.
HP includes a one year warranty with the option to upgrade to the Total One Package which offers an additional two years of HP accidental damage protection and access to the pick up and return program. In addition to that, coverage is extended for qualifying peripherals during the same time period. The standard warranty includes 24 hour toll free technical support. All in all, this is a very impressive ink jet printer for a small to medium size office, it won’t disappoint. Our customers that have bought this machine have had nothing but praise for it, we have not had one complaint about it from anyone. Our re-manufactured Eco-friendly inks have performed flawlessly in all of our customers printers so far. This may be a machine you want to check out if your in the market for a quality high speed ink jet printer for your office.