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on 26 July 2011
BRIEF REVIEW

Recommended.

Works a treat. Simple to install. Reliable (so far) and beats having a computer tied to a printer.

Downsides: large desktop foot print. Slow-ish to start. Print quality OK.

LONGER REVIEW

I did a stupid thing once I'd bought this printer. I read the reviews about it AFTER I'd paid for it!

I know, I know. That's not the way you're supposed to do it...

You're supposed to check out the reviews for a product and then use your red laser scanner on your smartphone to find the best price, ask all your friends on Facebook, send out a tweet, spend hours and hours online checking out all of the review sites and trawling around the forums to find out what people really think.

Only THEN are you supposed to buy the right product at the right price!

But I fell for a special deal and bought this machine on a whim.

And I'm glad I did.

Despite some of the negative reviews I (have now) read, the printer was very easy to set up and install. I had it working and 'speaking' with two laptops, one ipad and 2 smartphones in our home within about an hour of it being unwrapped.

The print quality is great. Not as detailed or as fine as say an high-end laser printer but it serves our general needs well. The ability to scan, photocopy and fax (who needs a fax these days?!) is also very welcome.

But it's the wonder of wifi-enabled printing that really does it for me. It's fantastic to be anywhere in the house and being able to send a photo, map or document to the printer anytime you want. And all without having to fiddle with memory cards or cables. Bliss!

Indeed, there's something strangely satisfying to hear the printer starting up within seconds of you zapping a file to the device.

So, I confidently recommend this printer to you.

However...

The only issues I have with it (and they're minor) is that it does seem to take a long time to start. And that it takes up a huge amount of space on my desk. The latter reason being, I feel, because of the way the paper tray juts out some distance from the main body of the machine.

Other than these niggles, I think it's a great machine.

It will probably break down on me now ;)
22 comments|19 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 4 June 2011
We bought one of these when the paper handling on our trusty duplex colour laser grew too erratic. We had an urgent print run and were won over by the HP's inexpensive page cost.

The long and the short is that the printer is adequate, however its much vaunted wifi connection is a disaster area. You can actually print from the computers (not dependably), but the most frequent thing we ever see is "unable to establish two-way communication with the printer". I have that pat 'cos I've seen it so often. I doubt I'll ever persuade the brute to send a fax from a computer.

The web browser can find it and talk to it, the router knows it's there, even my ruddy mobile phone detects it but HP's software can't. You can input it's location manually. "it's at 192.168.0.25, mate". "Ah, yes, that printer, the HP Officejet 8500 A910. Nah, still can't see it". Hmmmmm...

Anyway, we sent it back to HP, who took weeks to decide what to do, and in the interim we bought another manufacturer's duplex colour laser for the print run, still unresolved. Comparisons are odious, as they say, especially comparing the HP's network communication with almost anything else except the toaster. No, the replacement printer can't talk back to HP's software either. The laser is in daily use, and the HP is available to whichever machine it's talking to today.

All in all, having spent about a working week twiddling with it, I could only recommend this machine to computer enthusiasts who just love guddling with the settings on a network which every machine on earth can access except this stupid printer. Everyone else - if it doesn't work right out the box don't hang on to it too long like we did, hoping you'll be able to fix it. Send it back immediately.

Writing about a week after the above, I'd like to add that HP's technical staff have been exemplary, and that they offered me a refund. Although HP's software seems unable to communicate well using our network, you might note that we chose to keep the printer because the ipads can print to it and it is serving as a duplex photocopier.
44 comments|14 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 5 April 2011
I've lived with this machine a month now and it's been far from a pleasant experience.

The good first: a fast print speed, good quality output and beautiful looks (at least until it gets a fingerprint on it).

But it's biggest issue is the paper handling. The first time I loaded paper into it it grabbed a number of sheets and paper jammed. I had a play with the paper tray and noticed that I had pushed the paper too far in because there was only a slight notch stopping the paper.

So, now I'm careful not to push the paper past the notch, but now it has great problems grabbing a sheet of paper. It turns out you need to force the paper past this 'notch' to get it to grab the paper, but push it marginally too far and will will go back to grabbing several sheets and jamming. Aargh!

Also:
Do a large print job and the output paper will become a horrible mess and not stack up neatly.
It takes about three minutes to switch on from cold. So my old habit of switch on, print, switch off is no longer an effective strategy. You either need to remember to switch it on several minutes before you need it, or leave t switched on all day, which rather defeats it's claims of eco-friendliness.
The scanner software is very unfriendly and doesn't support descreening, so i can't dump my stand alone Epson scanner yet.

My overall verdict is that this is a big improvement on our previous HP all in one but still has some major design defects.
22 comments|6 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 18 January 2011
I set this up at the weekend and it's been great. To be honest, setting it up was a bit of a bore as it took an age to calibrate, align and clean (30ish minutes) and the software supplied to get it up and running with my Macs has been the easiest so far. Print quality is good, speed is much quicker than I have been used to (it's always easy to say it could be quicker) and wifi seems more reliable than my last HP wifi printer.

I've read reviews that the all-black style is a little industrial but personally I find it very modern yet unobtrusive in my office.

Worth a serious look if your in the market for a new printer.
22 comments|29 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 16 June 2011
I chose this device because I wanted to be able to scan items with a document feeder and we have a lot of forms etc. where we like to keep copy for our records.

In both these respects the printer is perfect. I use the printer connected via a wired network. One of the features it has is to be able to set up to 10 network folder locations as a destination for a scan. This is really very cool. You can map the scans to go to a folder on a PC or on a network storage device. The usefulness of this is you can have a folder for your gas bills, one for electric etc. so at the point you are scanning you can select exactly where you want to store the scan. You can also name the file at the printer at the time of scanning. This, coupled with the document feeder means keeping my key documents on the PC is now really easy. In a small office you could have these folders for different PC users.

Copying documents is also very easy. The document feeder on this model can only do single sided scanning/copying so bear that in mind. The print output can be double sided if you want it to be.

The control panel is simple to use and the interface is very responsive.

What's not so great is the noise level and the noise quality. Compared to the four year old canon printer I have, this thing whirs and clicks much more. Printing, document feeding and scanning are all very noisy and harsh.

Printing is passable but will not stand up to quality photo printing. Pictures are OK but lack the wow you get from a dedicated printer in the same price range. This is not a complaint. I didn't expect to get all this function and great prints. I mention it so others will no what they can expect. The scan quality is similarly OK but not up to scratch for archiving your photo collection if you value quality.

So, to sum up... Scan interface with folders is great, it's easy to use, quality of scan and prints is average but acceptable for most uses but it's very noisy.
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on 10 April 2011
A fantastic all in one printer from HP. However beware. The fax requires an analogue telephone line. HP were keen to tell me that the product does not work through a digital line. WRONG WRONG WRONG!!! Come on HP everywhere is now digital. So does this mean that this product is not fit for purpose in the UK. If you speak to HP the answer is Yes however by purchasing a 2 pin RJ11 cable everything is suddenly OK. HP tells you not to use any other cable than that supplied!!!
As for the other features of this printer, I can't find a single fault. It looks good, printing speed very fast , photo quality prints excellent. One minus point is that the printer takes a while to check itself from time to time other than that all is good.
33 comments|23 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 18 April 2011
I couldn't resist this with the current cashback and 3 yr warranty offer, after my old HP printer was smudging all over the place.

So far, not too bad - ePrint has worked flawlessly, so has airprint from my iPad2, and regular printing from my laptop over the wireless LAN. Prints are crisp, and print out reasonably quickly. The apps are little gimmicky, and on a fairly small screen it's hard to determine what the preview looks like for some of the colouring pages (but they got me out of a spot with the 4 year old who was bored this afternoon)!

Downsides for me..

Attemtped to use google cloud printing, which sent the printer into a frenzy of horrible flashing lights, and then promptly rebooted itself. I'm not going near that again in a hurry (I am wary about having to turn off the email address filter to get google and HP even talkng to each other).

Printed out a couple of colouring pages for my daughter, and it decides to then need to clean the printhead... Very odd - so I'm resrving judgement on what the ink usage will be like for me.

I don't intend to use it as a fax, so haven't tried this feature.

Overall, I've been impressed for it's first week of use. Assuming the ink usage is OK, it's definitely worth considering.
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on 16 July 2012
I've worked in IT for over 15 years and I've always liked HP, Excellent multi-function devices and great hard working lasers.

However this printer is VERY hard work problems are
1). When printer runs out of ink it stops printing and asks you to feed it more ink, doing so doesn't resolve the problem - Printer has to be rebooted
2). When the printer is 'power saving' it's PSU emmits a high pitched noise
3). When the printer returns from power saving (when you send it a print job) it normally fails to turn on correctly, Reboot
4). When you reboot the printer it tells you off for doing so
5). When you power the printer up it takes >2 minutes before its ready to do anything
6). Most of the 'features' work, but offer very little functionality.

It's a shame because all the problems are soft ware and user interface, the hardware is there and when it works it's a great printer, but it spends most of it's time rebooting which means it's actually a much better paper weight.

Real shame HP

Oh and if you have one, it won't print from your Ipad either.
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on 13 February 2011
This printer has (in theory) great features.
I first had trouble with the fax settings. HP support first blamed my Virgin Media phone line, then my Belkin wireless router, then my Siemens phone. Before they started blaming my Apple MacBook I called them too, just in case. So that was in all 1 hour wasted. The fax seems to need a phone-line without ansaphone in my case. -

But it got much worse:
for one day it all worked very well, and I could give it 4 stars - if that would have lasted.
2 days later, when I wanted to print, and had not changed any settings, not uploaded any new software - basically had not touched anything, it stopped printing, alleging that the printer was off-line.

I spent 3 hours with HP tech support on the phone, without result (we uninstalled the software, and then tried to re-install) they said they would call back the next day, which they did not do. I spend an other hour the next day, first with an other technician, then with a senior, and then they left me 15min hanging to arrange a pick-up and replacement of the printer. Needless to say, I do not want a replacement and not hp again.
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on 24 November 2010
I was hoping for such a lot from this printer, but have been disappointed in a number of areas.

Firstly, setting up the fax brought up a number of errors regarding cable faults which I was unable to track down, but the fax function seems to work OK in spite of the complaints.

Secondly, there is only one way to feed paper in, via the paper tray. If you want to print envelopes or labels, for example, you have to remove the paper tray cover, remove the existing paper, and then put in the envelope or label sheet. Considering it's an Officejet, a bypass feed would have been helpful.

Thirdly, it's stopped pulling paper through completely in the last few days, less than a month since I bought it. I have contacted the vendor and will report back on progress.

**LATER**

It now tells me there's a paper jam, which there visibly isn't. A phone call to HP Support is met with "The serial number is registered to someone else. You have to supply us with evidence of purchase". That done and 24 hours later, I speak to a service engineer who asks me to switch it off and switch it on again. He eventually agrees that it's broken, and orders a replacement which should be with me in about 5 days.

More later...
22 comments|24 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse

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