If you're willing to gamble on an all-in-one at double the price of its lesser-endowed peers, your bet is safe with the HP OfficeJet 7410 All-in-One. You'll shell out less dough for a smaller network-ready all-in-one such as the Brother MFC-420cn, but you'll reap fewer returns in functionality and fun than with the HP OfficeJet 7410. Like many low-cost all-in-ones, this pricier device will print, copy, and scan from digital-media cards and PictBridge slots and will send faxes through your PC's software. But the 7410 also prints on both sides of a page, makes legal-size scans and copies, connects to a wired or wireless network, and accepts a stack of pages to copy through its automatic document feeder (ADF). You can even add a Bluetooth adapter for $49.99. Oh, and its input trays fit 400 pages, so you don't have to keep adding paper. If the HP OfficeJet 7410 had individual color and black ink cartridges like the does, and if it had a removable scanner lid like the for bulky items, we'd be tempted to rate it a 10. As it is, the HP 7410 is hard to beat, especially if network printing and scanning are mandatory and you have a passion for sharing photos with friends, family, or business associates. The HP OfficeJet 7410 All-in-One is a broad-shouldered, no-nonsense, two-tone gray all-in-one. Before you lug it home or to the office, make sure to spare room for this 22-inch-wide, 18-inch-deep, 14-inch-tall, 31-pound deluxe device. Blame the 7410's extra width on the legal-size (8.5-by-14-inch) flatbed scanner and copy bed, which any lawyer will appreciate. Atop the lid is a 50-sheet-capacity ADF with a built-in envelope guide for up to 20 envelopes. The 7410's lid opens easily, but the hinges won't open wide or detach, so forget about scanning books or bulky items.
Because it can perform so many feats, the HP OfficeJet 7410's control panel appears awash in silver buttons, but they're well-organized, so you won't drown figuring them out. A pale-silver rectangle frames the central 12-key alphanumeric keypad and the 2-by-1.5-inch color LCD, alongside an OK button ringed by four arrow buttons for navigating the menus. Functions are split by task, with Scan and Fax keys on the left and Copy, Photo, and Print on the right. In each category, you can use one-touch function buttons with the LCD. For example, pressing the Scan To button calls up a nine-item list of destinations such as Scan To E-mail or Scan To Photoshop. Once you've made your pick, just choose the number of your selection and press OK. Other helpful buttons include Collate, Auto Answer (for faxes), Two-Sided (for copies, faxes, and prints), and Proof Sheet (for photos).
If you lift the control-panel ledge from below, the top opens backward to expose two ink-cartridge holders: one for tricolor printing and another for black text, grayscale photo, or color photos. Unfortunately, each time you alternate between text and photo printing, you'll also have to swap cartridges. This can be a pain, especially if you're using a networked HP OfficeJet 7410 from afar. You'll also wind up paying more to replace photo ink than if this machine kept separate cartridges for each color. At least the print driver on your computer will show you how much ink is left in each cartridge.
Two input trays, one holding 150 sheets and another for 250 pages, reside at the bottom of the 7410, just above a 50-sheet capacity tray for receiving faxes, copies, and prints. (If you don't want a 250-sheet paper tray or Wi-Fi, knock $100 off the price and step down to the HP OfficeJet 7310.) To the right of the paper trays rest built-in slots for digital-media cards and a PictBridge port for connecting a digital camera. At the back of the HP OfficeJet 7410 are the automatic duplexer and ports for Ethernet, USB 2.0, and two phone jacks. Alongside them is the power cable.The HP OfficeJet 7410 All-in-One doesn't take its title lightly. We've praised the versatile , but at less than half the price of the HP 7410, it also offers a fraction of the features. This HP can perform as a standalone copier and photo printer with a roomy 96MB of RAM for storing documents and images. Direct digital-photo printing at up to 4,800x1,200dpi comes courtesy of a PictBridge port for connecting to newer-model digital cameras, and of slots for Compact Flash, Memory Stick, MultiMediaCard, Secure Digital, SmartMedia, and xD-Picture digital-media cards. The legal-size scanner flatbed scans in grayscale and color at up to 2,800x4,800dpi, compared to the 1,200x2,400dpi scans of most other all-in-ones.
As if that weren't enough, the HP 7410 works with Macintosh and Windows computers and ships ready to join an Ethernet or 802.11b/g wireless network. Two more benefits: the 7410 has a built-in duplexer for double-sided printing and an automatic document feeder (ADF) for multiple-page faxing, copying, and printing. You can also fax in color without PC software by using the 7410's well-powered 33.6Kbps modem. If you're itching to print photos straight from your camera phone or PDA, you can spring for a $49.99 Bluetooth adapter.
The HP OfficeJet 7410 All-in-One accepts a variety of paper types up to legal size, including cards, envelopes (up to 20 at once), transparencies, and photo paper. Once you get over the disappointment of not having individual cartridges for each ink color, nor for black and photo inks, you'll be pleased to know that ink costs, while still pricier per ounce than fine champagne, are less lavish than for other inkjet printers.
Color cartridges run $24.99 for 7ml or $34.99 for double the capacity. HP predicts that you'll get 450 printed sheets out of the 14ml cartridge, for an affordable color cost per page of 8 cents. The black cartridge costs $19.99 for 11ml or $10 more for 21ml, with an estimated page yield of 800. That brings the cost per grayscale page to 4 cents, which is decent for an inkjet. If you use the 13ml photo cartridge for $24.99, HP estimates you will get 135 pictures at 4x6-inch size, averaging 19 cents per image.
HP includes its ImageZone and InstantShare software for Windows or Mac users. ImageZone helps you organize, enhance, and print photos. With the 7410 hooked up by USB cable to your PC, you can use InstantShare to send scanned photos or images from your camera card to someone in the printer's network or over the Internet to a friend's e-mail address, an online photo album, or a Web photo-development service. If your 7410 is networked with an Internet connection, any friend or relative who also uses HP InstantShare can send you photos or scans, and you can program your machine to automatically print photos from certain senders. As a bonus, you can download the HP remote printer driver and send print jobs to your 7410 from any Windows PC with drivers installed, whether your laptop is in a cafe or on a desktop in a copy shop.
For all that, the HP OfficeJet 7410 is easy to set up with a recent operating system. PC users need Windows 98 or later; Mac users will need OS 9.1 or later, OS X 10.1.5, OS X 10.2.3 or later, or OS X 10.3.x. The 7410 does not support MS-DOS, Windows 3.1, 95, or NT 4.0, or Mac OS 9.0 and earlier. It also neglects Mac OS X 10.2, 10.2.1, and 10.2.2.
Software and drivers take about 10 minutes to load, though installation could eat up more than half an hour on older PCs. A glossy, 16-page guide provides color-coded instructions for USB, Ethernet, and wireless setup. The guide also provides PC and Mac installation guidelines, and HP supplies a CD-ROM of software for each platform. HP adds a 239-page printed user's guide, a 60-page Wireless and Wired Network Guide, and a pamphlet on using the duplexer and the 250-sheet plain-paper tray.Quality
Overall, the HP OfficeJet 7410 All-in-One performed well and quietly in CNET Labs' tests. The text prints in our samples looked excellent. Printed at the maximum resolution of 1,200x1,200dpi on coated inkjet paper, the text in our test document came out dark, smooth, and easily legible, even at tiny 3.5-point font sizes and smaller.
Color graphics were less impressive but still good. Also printed on coated inkjet paper at 1,200x1,200 dpi, the test prints showed copious detail but looked undersaturated and suffered from color banding in the gradients.