The HP Photosmart 375, the upgrade to the HP Photosmart 325, has a sleek, portable design, card slots for direct printing, a 2.5-inch color LCD, PictBridge support, and an optional battery pack for on-the-go printing. This 4,800x1,200dpi inkjet also churns out 4x6-inch full-color or grayscale borderless prints in just more than a minute. Based on those facts alone, the Photosmart 375 has a clear edge over the current champ in this category, the , which has a black-and-white LCD, slow output times, and no optional battery. While its output isn't perfect, the HP Photosmart 375 still gets our nod as one of the better snapshot printers on the market.
Editor's note: We have changed the rating in this review to reflect recent changes in our rating scale. Click here to find out more.Battery power, a generous 2.5-inch LCD that swivels 45 degrees for easy viewing, and simple operation make the HP Photosmart 375 a perfect take-along printer. You can leave your AC adapter and computer at home and set up the printer anywhere. Just press the power button, and the front access panel and the rear paper tray automatically open. The large 2.5-inch color LCD pops up so that you can manually tilt it to a comfortable viewing angle. Drop as many as 20 sheets of paper into the rear tray, insert CompactFlash, SmartMedia, Sony Memory Stick, Secure Digital/MultiMediaCard, or xD-Picture storage media or connect the printer directly to a PictBridge-compatible digital camera, and you're ready to print. You can view images at full size or as nine-per-screen thumbnails on the LCD; you then use a four-way control pad to navigate to and select the photos you want. You can print selected images on individual 4x6-inch pages or as thumbnail index sheets. Alternately, you can print two or four shots per 4x6-inch sheet. Using your camera's DPOF (Digital Print Order Format), you can also preselect images.
This boombox-size, solidly built, 2.6-pound printer measures just 8.7 by 4.6 by 4.5 inches when zipped up, with an additional 1.0 inch in back and 4.0 inches in front when the paper trays are pulled out. The straight-through paper path efficiently ushers your prints from the easy-to-load input tray to the front output tray. You'll find it easy to master the controls. The control pad lets you browse individual pictures and make your selections. A zoom rocker magnifies or reduces the image so that you can check details, crop the picture, or switch to a thumbnail view. The adjacent Layout button cycles through the basic printing options, and a trio of Delete, Print, and Cancel keys take care of other simple functions.In the HP Photosmart 375's standalone mode, you can choose to print selected photos, a range of photos, or an index. You can also make minor edits: removing red-eye, adjusting brightness, rotating your shot, adding a frame around your image, and applying sepia, antique, and black-and-white effects. Sharpening, a fill-flash-like digital-flash effect, and a passport-photo mode are also available. Special effects are applied during printing and don't affect your original image.
From within the menu system, you'll find options for displaying your images as a slide show, modifying print-quality settings, and handling maintenance tasks such as cleaning or aligning the print cartridge. The Photosmart 375 can handle JPEG and TIFF image files and several movie formats including AVI, QuickTime, and MPEG-1. If you want to make prints of individual video frames, there's also a video print-enhancement mode.
This HP uses a single tricolor ink cartridge, which can be replaced with a grayscale cartridge for printing black-and-white images. You can choose from a large number of 4x6-inch paper options, ranging from an economical everyday semigloss paper ($9.99 for 100 sheets) to standard, premium, and premium-plus stocks ($29.99 for high-gloss and $24.99 for soft-gloss surfaces). You can also use HP's older papers--the ones with a tear-off tab--or the newer papers for printing edge to edge.
The Photosmart 375 is just as easy to use when connected to a computer via USB cable. The included HP Director software can help you transfer images to your computer from the printer's memory slots or open images in the HP Image Zone editor. Alternately, using the printer driver, you can print directly from any application. The driver lacks the special-effects settings available in the printer itself but adds saturation, brightness, and color-balancing sliders for quick corrections.