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HP PSC 1600 review: HP PSC 1600

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For its affordable price, no one should expect the HP PSC 1610 all-in-one to be a speed demon, and it's not. On text, the HP 1610 printed a below-average 4.79 pages per minute (ppm), quite behind the Dell 962's nimble 7.46ppm. The 1610 printed out an 8x10 photo at the rate of 0.29ppm, or one every 3.45 minutes, faster than the Dell 962, but by no means quick. The HP 1610's scanning speed was lethargic, ditto for its copying pace.

Quality
The HP PSC 1610 all-in-one turned in a decent performance in CNET Labs' tests. With inkjet paper, the HP 1610 created good-quality, dark black bold text that was easy to read, though less than crisp around the edges up close--typical for an inkjet. Color graphics on inkjet paper were good, with smooth gradients, well-detailed graphical elements, and pale but otherwise accurate colors.

Printed on HP's glossy photo paper, the 1610 re-created our test photo well, though skin tones were slightly cool due to an overdose of cyan. An overall pale and fuzzy appearance detracted from its score. Upon close inspection, a faint area of horizontal banding could be seen at the very bottom of the 8x10-inch photo. None of the suggestions on HP's Web site remedied this for us, but you can avoid this potential glitch by printing photos with a 0.75-inch border. Scans were only fair; both color and black-and-white test files suffered from paleness, a dearth of crisp details, and incompletely rendered gradients.

CNET Labs' all-in-one speed tests
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
Copy  
Color scan  
Grayscale scan  
Photo  
Text  
Dell 962
1.42 
6.09 
6.55 
0.19 
7.46 
HP Photosmart 2710
3.27 
4.63 
4.79 
0.26 
7 
Canon Pixma MP780
3.39 
7.04 
7.04 
0.57 
5.96 
HP PSC 1610 all-in-one
1.15 
3.12 
3.11 
0.29 
4.79 
Brother MFC-420CN
2.27 
3.1 
2.95 
0.15 
3.19 


CNET Labs' all-in-one quality tests
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
Color scan  
Grayscale scan  
Photo  
Graphics  
Text  
HP Photosmart 2710
Fair 
Fair 
Excellent 
Good 
Excellent 
Canon Pixma MP780
Good 
Good 
Good 
Excellent 
Fair 
HP PSC 1610 all-in-one
Fair 
Fair 
Good 
Good 
Good 
Brother MFC-420CN
Fair 
Fair 
Good 
Good 
Good 
Dell 962
Fair 
Fair 
Good 
Fair 
Good 

Click here to learn more about how CNET Labs tests printers.

The HP PSC 1610 all-in-one comes with an industry-standard, one-year warranty, with toll-free, bilingual, 24/7 telephone support. You also get a five-color, printed quick-setup guide; a thorough, 130-page user guide; and an HP ImageZone help guide on CD-ROM. The help guide includes a detailed troubleshooting section that covers all of the HP 1610's main functions.

If that's not enough, there's a vast array of help at HP's Web site, including troubleshooting tips, answers to FAQs, setup and installation procedures, product information, and opportunities to chat online with a technician or to e-mail tech support.

HP also has a free HP inkjet cartridge recycling program.

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