It's like Christmas around here in printer-land! Epson (here and here) and Canon recently announced a huge bunch of printers and HP is joining in with its announcement Tuesday of 15 printers. I'm telling you: Hailstorm of Printers. Ready to hear about them? Get a snack...the list's long.
On the home consumer side are a bunch of Photosmarts--standalone snapshot printers and all-in-ones--as well a Deskjet printer.
Photosmart A526 Compact Photo Printer: This portable little 4x6 snapshot printer features memory card slots, a 2.4-inch color display, and one-touch red-eye removal. The fold-up paper tray and handle make it a compact, easy-to-carry device. Available in September for $100.
Photosmart A626 Compact Photo Printer: The next step up in the snapshot printer line lets you print 4x6 and 5x7 photos. The LCD is a viewing-friendly 4.8 inches, and better yet, it's touch-sensitive. Using the included stylus, you can enhance photos, add messages or graphics and frames, and remove red-eye. You can also set up the pictures to stream as a slideshow. A handle and optional battery pack (approximately 75 prints per charge) make it easy to tote around. Available in September for $180.
Photosmart A826 Home Photo Center: This 4x6 and 5x7 printer brings the photo kiosk experience into your home. The 7-inch touchscreen lets you edit and enhance your photos with graphics and borders using the included stylus. One nice feature on this model is that the paper is stored within the printer, so you don't have to worry about it getting dusty if it's been sitting around for a while. Available in September for $250.
Photosmart C4385 All-in-One: HP estimates this printer/scanner/copier prints up to 30 pages per minute in black and 23 pages per minute in color (draft mode). It features memory cards, a 1.5-inch color display, and best of all, built-in Wi-Fi connectivity. Available in September for $140.
Photosmart C6280 All-in-One: This printer/scanner/copier also offers built-in networking, but not wireless. It prints black at up to 34 pages per minute and color at up to 33 pages per minute. The onboard memory card slots, 2.4-inch color LCD, and dedicated 4x6 photo paper tray allow you to print photos without touching your PC. Available in September for $200.
Photosmart C7280 All-in-One: Unlike the previous two models, this one features built-in fax capability. The automatic document feeder, auto duplexer, and wireless connectivity make it a good fit for home users who want to consolidate home printing with a bit of work functionality. It also offers a 2.4-inch LCD, memory card slots, a dedicated 4x6 photo paper tray, and six-color printing with individual ink cartridges. Available in September for $300.
Photosmart C8180 All-in-One: This model lacks fax, but does include a built-in CD/DVD burner--you can save to or print from disc. Additionally, the burner is LightScribe-enabled, so you can etch professional-quality designs into the label side of discs. It also features wireless connectivity, a 3.5-inch touchscreen, and built-in Bluetooth for printing wirelessly from smart phones. Available in September for $400.
Photosmart D5360 printer: For those who don't need a scanner or copier, the D5360 offers just printing (and an auto duplexer): 32 pages per minute in black and 24 pages per minute in color (draft mode). A 1.5-inch LCD, memory card slots, and a photo paper tray allow for PC-free photo printing. It can also print directly on specially coated CDs and DVDs, for sticker-free labeling. Available in September for $100.
Deskjet 6988 series: This printer-only series offers print speeds of up to 36 pages per minute in black and 27 pages per minute in color. Though it lacks memory card slots, you can print from PictBridge cameras using the front-mounted USB port. It comes network-ready with both wired and wireless connectivity. The 6988dt also offers an auto duplexer as well as a second paper tray for increased input capacity. The Deskjet 6988 costs $130 while the Deskjet 6988dt costs $180. Both will be available in September.
The second set of printers are geared toward small to medium-size businesses, but HP's generally low prices mean that busy home users and home office users will appreciate them, too.
LaserJet M2727 MFP series: This is a series of mono laser multifunctions geared toward small offices or workgroups of about five people. They ship with a 450MHz processor and 64MB of RAM (upgradeable to 320MB). HP's instant-on technology means less wait for that first print out or copy. Optional features include an auto duplexer, electronic stapler, and copy collation. Available in November for $600 to $700, depending on features.
Officejet Pro K8600 series: This color printer can handle wide format prints (13x19 inches) and according to HP, produce laser-quality prints--good for small companies that want to produce marketing materials in-house. Networking and an auto duplexer are available as add-ons. Available in January for $300 to $400.
Officejet H470 Mobile Printer series: This model replaces the Deskjet 460c, which we reviewed recently. Print speeds are up to 23 pages per minute in black and 16 pages per minute in color. If you want to print wirelessly, Bluetooth and Wi-Fi adapters are available as options. You can also print from PDAs, cameras, and memory cards. Available in January fro $250 to $350.
LaserJet P1005/P1006: This is a tiny and basic laser printer designed for use on an individual PC via USB connection. The monochrome printer produces prints at 15 pages per minute on the P1005 and 17 pages per minute on the P1006. The P1005 comes with 2MB of RAM and the P1006 comes with 8MB of RAM; both have a 266MHz processor. The P1006 also offers a manual feed slot. Both will be available in the U.S. in December: $150 for the P1005 and $180 for the P1006.
LaserJet P1505 series: This home and small business printer produces black prints at up to 24 pages per minute. Optional Ethernet connectivity can support up to five users. Available in December for $200 to $250.
We should be getting most, if not all, of these printers in for review as they become available. Check back for full reviews. And watch out for falling printers!