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HP Officejet 6210

If you need a low-cost all-in-one printer for your modest office, the HP OfficeJet 6210 all-in-one might catch your eye. This machine includes a 33.6Kbps fax modem and a 20-page ADF (automatic document feeder) to serve a small business running Windows 98 and up or Mac OS 10.1.5 and up. It also photocopies, prints photos, and makes scans at resolutions up to 1,200x2,400 dots per inch (dpi).

Upside: You can find this machine for around $200, reasonable for its feature set. Few inkjet all-in-ones provide an ADF to copy a stack of pages at a time. We like this device's straightforward control panel and sturdy plastic shell. Unlike other all-in-ones that fax only through a computer, the 6210 gives you a fax jack and can store 100 speed-dial numbers or save 100 pages in its memory. Owners of PictBridge cameras can plug a camera into the front of the printer and create borderless photos, transparencies, or iron-on transfers without using a computer.

Downside: Unlike the HP OfficeJet 7410 all-in-one, the HP 6210 lacks a color LCD to display your photos. You can add the 6210 to a network, but you'll have to buy an external HP print server for a couple hundred dollars. And the 6210 has no photo memory-card slots. The 100-sheet main paper tray and space for 50 pages of output is skimpy, though not unusually so. Though we can't speak about this model in particular, we're wary of the software package that unwraps with HP's recent all-in-ones; the same software has eaten up copious installation time and hard drive space in CNET Labs.

Outlook: The HP OfficeJet 6210 all-in-one joins the legions of photo-friendly inkjet multifunctions. Yet this model stands apart from others because it includes full faxing and an ADF to serve an office. Photo enthusiasts might prefer an LCD to display and edit images. To comparison-shop for machines with similar features, peek at the good Dell 962 photo all-in-one, as well. If an ADF ranks high on your features checklist and you need network readiness out of the box, take a look at the cheaper Brother MFC-420cn or the pricier HP OfficeJet 7410.