We test all of our products ourselves and use them as they are intended to be used in reality.
When we test printers, we carry out both performance tests and long-term tests in everyday conditions. For example, we print out photographs and text on different types of paper. We test how long it takes to print out 10 or 20 pages of text respectively, and how long it takes to print out colour photographs of different sizes. In addition to this, we measure the sound level, how long the installation takes and see how easy it is to connect to the printer from different devices.
We use the printer continuously in everyday conditions to print out and scan documents and photos. This gives us a good idea of the reliability, ink consumption and cartridge costs.
Some of the most important factors in the test are:
Quality: How good is the quality of the print out?
Performance: How fast is the printer at printing different types of documents and images? How much ink does it use?
Functions: What connection options does the printer offer? For example, can you print things out from your mobile phone? Is there a user-friendly app?
Other important factors include build quality, noise level, reliability and size of the printer. We compare our assessment to the printer’s price, and the final score represents the product’s value for money.
A quiet, user-friendly, modern printer for a broad target group
Printer type: Photo printer (inkjet) Print speed*1: Text: 6 pages/min; Photo: 0.5 pages/min Noise level: Text: approx. 28.2 dB Photo: approx. 27.9 dB Width: 454 mm Height: 159 mm Depth: 410 mm Weight: 6.7 kg Connections: 1 USB 2.0-client, 1 Wi-Fi 802.11b/g/n, dual band Wi-Fi 2.4/5 GHz, BLE, SD card slot Pictbridge Duplex*3: Yes OS: Windows, Mac OS X, Apple AirPrint, Google Cloud Print, HP Smart Input tray: 125 sheets Display: Yes
The HP Envy Photo 7134 All-in-One is our best in test because it’s well built, easy to use and very quiet.
Installation is almost instantaneous. You connect the power cable and make sure the printer is connected to your home network and that’s it. But we do recommend that you also download the HP Smart app. Most people now take pictures with their mobile phones, and many also upload them to social media. So being able to then print out the photos with just two clicks in an app is really convenient.
You can access both your social media accounts and camera reel through your phone. Unfortunately, you can only have one account per social media platform, so for example if you have several Instagram accounts you have to choose the one you use most.
You can also use the app to scan with. You pop the paper into the scanner and choose Scanner in the app – it’s as simple as that. The fact that this printer and app are so user-friendly is obviously one of the biggest advantages with the Envy Photo 7134. But there are still a few things that could be improved.
The ink consumption is good compared with other printers in this size class with this type of ink system, but we’d have liked HP to develop larger containers with refills, for the sake of both the environment and their customers. We also have liked to be able to check the ink cartridge levels in more detail in the app. As it stands, you can only see stacks. It would have been more informative if you could tap on them and get a percentage figure.
There’s nothing wrong with the image quality. The Envy Photo 7134 prints both black and white and colour photos with great accuracy in details and reproduction given its price class. With the right paper, you get pretty reasonable colour photo printouts even if they’re a little dark. It does a very good job given the price.
You can quickly print out both black and white documents and colour photos. But unfortunately you can’t see the printout process from the app, so you can’t see if it’s currently printing. Nor can you place the document in a queue, as no such system is included. It could also have been a bit quicker at printing out text documents.
The build quality is high. Even if the printer doesn’t weigh much, all of the moving parts are stable and it fits together nicely.
The HP Envy Photo 7134 All-in-One gets top marks because of its reasonable price, high user-friendliness, modern app and phenomenal reliability. There are certainly printers which are better from the ink consumption point of view – for example printers with refillable ink tanks. But these cost significantly more than this compact and multifaceted printer.
The Envy Photo 7134 All-in-One is ideal for anyone who wants a versatile printer that’s quiet, compact and easy to use.
Compact high quality printer with economical refills
Printer type: Photo printer (inkjet) Print speed*1: Text: X pages/min; Photo: 0.33 pages/min Noise level: Text: approx. 45 dB Photo: approx. 49 dB Width: 425 mm Height: 359 mm Depth: 161 mm Weight: 8 kg Connections: WiFi, USB, Ethernet, memory card, Wi-Fi Direct, USB host, Pictbridge Duplex*3: Yes OS: Windows, Mac OS X, Apple AirPrint, Google Cloud Print, Epson Connect Input tray: 100 sheets Display: Yes
The Epson Ecotank ET-7700 is a compact printer with great photo printing and ink that goes much further than its competitors. This is a solution where you top up the ink in a container yourself by opening a small cover and inverting a bottle over the hole. It’s a simple process and makes no mess. The major gains with this are that the container holds a lot of ink and also that you can always see on the outside of the printer how much ink is left. This is a solution that we hope will become standard in the future. You don’t need to top it up as often, and the ink is cheaper. Installing the printer isn’t very complicated either, but it takes a while. It takes 5-10 minutes for the ink to be distributed through the printer after you’ve topped up the containers. You also have to set the image quality at the start, which means you have to print out several different pieces of paper. In all, the installation and configuration takes around 40-50 minutes. You also have to install drivers on the computer. And you have to do the sometimes fiddly process of configuring the image quality at the end too – because this printer provides truly phenomenal print quality.
The Epson ET-7700 delivers photographs with very good detail reproduction and nice bright colours. It prints relatively quickly, but not so fast that it stands out among premium printers. One disadvantage of the printer is the construction. For example, it’s difficult to get at the paper tray with the output tray open. Paper tray 2 tends to slide in so far that it’s hard to get hold of it at all. Given the price, we’d have preferred an output tray that folded out and in electronically so you didn’t have to grovel around inside the printer if you folded it in by mistake. The display on the printer is good, but the wording is terrible. Words are abbreviated and sentences don’t always go together. In fact it’s so bad that it's sometimes difficult to understand what it means. But the printer does get plus points for it being so easy to print from your mobile phone. Because many people today use their mobile as a camera, it’s important for a printer in this price class to work well with mobile phones – and this one does. The process is convenient and quick from both Android phones and iPhones. Overall the ET-7700 is a very good printer. If you take time to configure it properly and learn all of the functions, you’ll get lots of benefits from it. Such as ink that lasts much longer, great photos and fast printing.
Good all-round printer with high photo quality
Printer type: Photo printer (inkjet) Print speed*1: Text: 7.75 pages/min; Photo: 0.58 pages/min Noise level: Text: approx. 58 dB Photo: approx. 59 dB Width: 349 mm Height: 142 mm Depth: 340 mm Weight: 6.6 kg Connections: USB, WiFi, Apple AirPrint, Google Cloud Print, Epson Connect (iPrint, Email Print, Remote Print Driver, Scan-to-Cloud, Facebook print) Duplex*3: Yes OS: Windows, Mac OS X, IOS, Android Input tray: 100 sheets Display: Yes Ink cartridges from 10 p from: InkClub.se
The Epson Expression Photo XP-6005 is a compact inkjet printer that fits in well on your desk. Because it’s white and quite small, it doesn’t overwhelm the space around it. It also has a display on the front that can be folded out. The screen makes it easy to change settings, but also makes the printer feel more modern. However, we’d have preferred it to be a touchscreen instead of being controlled by buttons. The installation process is rather complicated because you have to print out a set of pictures and analyse them. Most people can do this, but it’s quite time-consuming. But once the printer’s installed, it works very well. It quickly connects to both mobile phones and computers. Printing doesn’t take very long to start, and the print time is short with a normal noise level.
In terms of price, the XP-6005 is a budget photo printer, but despite this it produces extremely good quality prints. The colours are bright and there’s plenty of detail in the photos. If the original image and the printer paper are high enough quality, this printer can do a professional job of printing photos. The ink tends to run out quite quickly, however, which is a shame on an otherwise very competent photo printer. Overall this is a good buy for someone seeking an all-round printer. It’s good at most things, but rather expensive to run. So it’s best for anyone who primarily wants to print out simple text documents and scan things but also sometimes wants to print out high quality photos.
Phenomenal print quality and user-friendly touchscreen
Printer type: Photo printer (inkjet) Print speed*1: Text: 12 pages/min; A4 photo: 0.5 pages/min Noise level: Text: approx. 50 dB Photo: approx. 45 dB Width: 372 mm Height: 315 mm Depth: 139 mm Weight: 6.2 kg Connections: USB, WiFi OS: Windows, Mac OS X Input tray: 100 sheets Display: Yes Miscellaneous: App-controlled, scanner
The Canon PIXMA TS6050 is a relatively compact and user-friendly printer that produces high print quality. The printer delivers excellent image quality. Sadly the installation process wasn’t entirely straightforward. Partly due to a rather poor manual, and partly because of the default settings. Because the printer’s paper tray isn’t set for A4 by default. Instead you have to press in blue plastic parts to increase the size. This isn’t clear from the manual, and you also have to press quite hard to adjust them, which meant we were scared of breaking them. The printer build quality feels rather flimsy in general. Another disadvantage is that it can’t cope with particularly long distances or obstacles between itself and the router. But provided it has good communication, it’s easy to get started with printing. It took us about 45 minutes to get the printer set up and installed, but after that it was trouble-free with the exception of a couple of paper jams in the lower tray.
The PIXMA TS6050 has a touchscreen. This is sufficiently large to see all the necessary information in the same space. It’s easy to set up the wireless connection and also to make other changes to the settings. There are also a couple of physical buttons, such as a Home button if you want to go back quickly. The PIXMA TS6050 has several paper trays. The rear one is primarily for photo quality paper and the lower one for normal paper – this could have been more clearly marked on the printer. On the other hand, you can actually print out anything on paper from the upper tray. The results are nicely detailed and the colours natural. The image quality is this printer’s biggest selling point. The blacks are excellent. It’s not impressively quick at printing, but it’s not unreasonably slow either. But the quality makes it worth the wait. It’s very easy to change cartridges. But the cartridges are quite expensive.
Fast, high quality photo printer
Printer type: Photo printer (inkjet) Print speed*1: Text: 8 pages/min; Photo: 0.6 pages/min Noise level: Text: approx. 59.8 dB (quiet mode: 47.6 dB)Photos: approx. 59.3 dB (quiet mode: 59.2 dB) Width: 349 mm Height: 142 mm Depth: 340 mm Weight: 6.7 kg Connections: USB, WiFi, memory card, Pictbridge Duplex*3: Yes OS: Windows, Mac OS X, IOS, Android Input tray: 100 sheets Display: Yes Ink cartridges from 10 p from: InkClub.se
The Epson Expression Photo XP-8505 is a user-friendly and compact printer that delivers excellent print quality provided you configure it correctly. Photos come out with very bright and natural colours and deep blacks. Printouts also dry immediately. However, the installation process is demanding both in terms of time and competence. You first need to do automatic configuration, which takes about 8 minutes. After this you do a series of test printouts where you have to make manual assessments of the results and enter this on the touchscreen. The process isn’t particularly user-friendly, which means a major risk of faults leading to poor photo print quality later on. But at least all of this can be done conveniently via the printer’s touchscreen. Installing the software on your computer is a slow process too, and it takes 40 minutes including configuring the printer before we can start using it. But it’s worth the effort. Once installed, the XP-8505 behaves perfectly, without a single paper jam. Not even when we aren’t particularly careful about placing the paper and paper holders. And this is just as well, because the manual is both disorganised and insufficient. The only problem occurs when the printer picks up normal A4 paper together with photographic paper while printing a photo.
The XP-8505 has a quiet mode where the printout takes longer to produce to keep down the noise level. On average this doubles the printout time while it reduces the noise level by a few dB. However, the noise level only falls when printing text documents – we measure no difference for photographs. In any case the printer is very quick, so if you want to use this quieter mode it shouldn’t be a problem unless you’re printing out a lot of pages The XP-8505 has an easy to navigate touchscreen. You can also easily print out from your mobile via your wireless network, provided both devices are connected. The printer reacts each time you pull out the paper holder. Once you’ve pushed it back in again, you have to choose on the screen which type of paper you’ve inserted so it prints with the correct settings. The XP-8505 is robust and reacts immediately, both when we adjust the software and when we change things on the printer itself. Jostling it even slightly leads to it automatically retracting the output paper holder. The build quality is also good, using light but not plasticky materials. This is a really good photo printer if you’re prepared to pay for quality. If you want to print photographs at home, this is a very good choice.
Space saving & fast at text
Printer type: Photo printer (Inkjet) Print speed *1: Text: 7 pages/min; Photo: 0.25 pages/min Width: 375 mm Height: 179 mm Depth: 347 mm Weight: 4 kg Connections: USB, WiFi, Wi-Fi Direct Pictbridge Duplex*3: Yes OS: Windows, Mac OS X, Epson Connect (iPrint, Email Print, Remote Print Driver), Apple AirPrint, Google Cloud Print Input tray: 100 sheets Display: Yes
The Epson Ecotank ET-2720 takes up relatively little space on the desk – the design is slim and the construction well thought out. The top is nicely patterned.
The display is easy to read but perhaps a bit too minimal to provide a really good user experience. The keypad feels soft and ‘bubbly’, which makes the printer feel a bit cheap even though it’s actually quite expensive. The interface is also a bit untidy.
But if you’re the sort of person who prints a lot, you probably don’t care about this kind of feature. What matters most is ink consumption and print quality. In those respects, the Ecotank ET-2720 performs really well, being incredibly ink-efficient. It can print up to 4,500 pages per bottle (65 ml), which is impressive to say the least.
What’s a little different about the Ecotank ET-2720 is that you pour in ink instead of inserting cartridges. The device is well designed, it’s easy to add the ink without spilling it. And it closes up again securely. If there’s any ink left in the bottle, you can seal it and then top up with the rest once the printer has consumed some ink.
Installation was relatively simple. We unpacked, installed and connected the printer to Wi-Fi in about 30 minutes. When this same test was done with a Macbook Pro, it took a little extra time because we had to download drivers via the website. Unfortunately, the drivers for the ET2720 are in CD format instead of on USB stick, and many computers today don’t have CD drives. But it was no big deal to find the drivers on Epson's website.
When you print text, the printer is fast and clearly lives up to its price. Photographs of the highest quality, however, take a good while to print out. If you reduce the quality, they print faster, but then of course your images aren’t as good. And on the fastest mode, images become striped. Furthermore, when printing photos, the printer emits a low-pitched monotonous sound that can be rather annoying.
High-quality photo prints are generally pretty good. All colours are natural, but when it comes to lighter colours that give lustre to your photos, it has a harder time doing well and the end result is a bit unsaturated. Sharpness, on the other hand, is first rate, as is the handling of blacks.
This printer is perfect for a larger family, or for the student who prints a lot and often – and so doesn’t want to waste money on ink cartridges. And maybe even for self-employed people who print documents on paper a lot. In other words, ideal for anyone who wants a printer that’s ink efficient and does its job.
Easy-to-use laser printer that delivers professional quality text printouts
Printer type: Laser printer Print speed*1: Text: 27 pages/min; Photo: 27 pages/min Print cost*2: Black & white: 600 x 600 dpi, Colour: 600 x 600 dpi Width: 416 mm Height: 472 mm Depth: 400 mm Weight: 23.2 kg Connections: Wi-Fi(n), USB host, NFC, USB 2.0, Gigabit LAN Duplex*3: Yes OS: Windows, MacOS X Input tray: 150 + 50 sheets Display: Touchscreen (colour) Scan resolution (HxW): 1200 x 1200 dpi Ink cartridges from 10 p from: InkClub.se
For smaller companies needing cheap, quick and clear text printouts, the catchily (!) named “HP Color Laserjet Pro M477fdw Pro” is an excellent buy. The printer is very easy to use, both when you’re installing it and on an everyday basis, with an excellent and user-friendly colour screen. You get professional quality text printouts, and even images look surprisingly good on glossy photo paper. You need to remember that the printer is both large and heavy, with a noisy fan even in standby mode, so it’s best kept in a separate printer room. You can adjust the fan from 15 minutes to 1 minute, but if you do this the printer takes longer to start from standby. The scanner is fast, but seems to give red dots on skintone areas. Overall, however, we’re impressed by this colour laser printer that feels modern and gives excellent and quick results both in black-and-white and colour.
Quiet and fast printer that produces high quality images with fantastic blacks
Printer type: Photo printer (inkjet) Print speed*1: Text: 3.8 pages/min; Photo: A4: 0.4 pages/min; A3+: 0.2 pages/min Print cost*2: Text: 5 p/page, Photos: 32 p/page Noise level: Text: approx. 46 dB Photo: approx. 44 dB Width: 689 mm Height: 15 mm Depth: 385 mm Weight: 19.7 kg Connections: Ethernet, USB, Wi-Fi, Airprint, Pictbridge Duplex*3: No OS: Windows, MacOS X Input tray: 150 sheets Display: No Ink cartridges from 10 p from: InkClub.se
Canon’s completely new PIXMA Pro 100 is an A3 printer for professional home use. Despite the fact that this is the cheapest model in Canon’s PIXMA Pro series, the performance is very impressive. The Pro 100 produces startlingly good printouts with enormous detail. Colour reproduction is excellent, with bright colours and rich shades. The printer uses three monochrome ink cartridges, and this really pays dividends. Both black-and-white and colour printouts have phenomenal blacks and the dark areas look particularly good. And as if that weren’t enough, the Pro 100 is also quiet, fast and has both Wi-Fi and Ethernet connections. Print costs are surprisingly low and if you do large volumes of printing, you’ll save a lot over time. However, Canon’s photographic and art paper is quite expensive, but the printer supports several other third-party papers.
Very fast laser printer producing attractive text printouts
Printer type: Workgroup printer Print speed*1: Text: 38 pages/min; Photo: 1.5 pages/min Print cost*2: Black & white: 4800 x 600 dpi, Colour: 11 p/page Width: 381 mm Height: 357 mm Depth: 216 mm Weight: 8.58 kg Connections: USB 2.0, Gigabit LAN Duplex*3: Yes OS: Windows, MacOS X Input tray: 150 + 900 sheets Display: Touchscreen (colour) Scan resolution (HxW): 4800 x 600 dpi Ink cartridges from 10 p from: InkClub.se
The HP LaserJet Pro m402dn gives us a mixed impression, which is mostly positive. Its primary strength is that the printer does an excellent job of printing text. It’s incredibly quick both to start and print out high quality double sided documents. It comes with a full toner, which provides about 3100 pages. The printer is also compact and fits on even small desks. On the negative side, it has an old-fashioned installation process with software to install. There's no Wi-Fi connection and the small two row display feels more 1990s than 2020s. This doesn’t particularly matter as the printer's only intended for printing out black-and-white text and you can change all the settings on your computer, but it’s not entirely intuitive. If you prioritise good value for money and fast, attractive text printing over ease of use, this printer is a good choice.
Easy-to-use photo printer with good text and colour printing
Printer type: Colour inkjet Print speed*1: Text: 22 pages/min; Photo: 21 pages/min Print cost*2: Black & white: 3.5 p/page, Colour: 600 x 600 dpi Width: 454 mm Height: 193 mm Depth: 410 mm Weight: 7.67 kg Connections: Wi-Fi(n), NFC, USB 2.0, LAN Duplex*3: Yes OS: Windows, MacOS X Input tray: 125 + 20 sheets Display: Touchscreen (colour) Scan resolution (HxW): 1200 x 1200 dpi Ink cartridges from 10 p from: InkClub.se
The HP ENVY 7640 is a popular inkjet printer with a compact format and clear touchscreen. The installation process is a model of simplicity, and we’re up and running just minutes after having unpacked the printer. The quality of text printouts is good and the colours are excellent when you print images on photographic paper. There are a few obvious shortcomings with this printer, however, the primary one being that it only holds two ink cartridges – black and three colour. This means that you have to change the entire colour cartridge if one colour runs out. Other issues are a slow scanner and that the paper feed is sluggish – you have to press the paper in firmly or lift it a little for the printer to understand that it has paper available. HP produces other, better printers in a slightly higher price class.
Printer with high print quality and low cost for printing in black-and-white
Printer type: Colour laser printer Print speed*1: Black & white: 16 pages/min, Colour: 4 pages/min Print cost*2: Black & white: 4 p/page, Colour: 19 p/page Width: 400 mm Height: 398 mm Depth: 223 mm Weight: 12.3 kg Connections: USB Duplex*3: No OS: Windows, Mac, Linux Input tray: 150 sheets Laser toner from 10 p from: InkClub.se
The LBP7018C is an energy efficient, compact and aggressively priced colour laser printer with high reliability. The print speed is good for both black and white and colour, and the i-Sensys technology gives nice clear blacks in text and excellent colour printouts, particularly for a laser printer. However, the low print cost for black and white contrasts with the relatively high – for a laser printer – print cost for colour. We’d also have liked to see a cancel button and a more detailed ink consumption overview. If you're looking for a reliable colour laser printer with high print quality, this is perhaps the best choice on the market at the moment.
*The LBP7018C and LBP7010C identical with the exception of the colour, with the former being black and the latter white.
In our updated printer test, the Epson Ecotank ET-7700 is our best in test. It’s good value for money if you print a lot, because the ink lasts much longer than its competitors. We also recommend the Epson Expression Premium XP-6005, which is a compact inkjet printer with phenomenal print quality. Most printers are wireless these days, which makes things easier regardless of whether you’re printing from desktop or laptop computers. One interesting trend is the semi-professional A3 photo printers, which have fallen significantly in price to the point that they’re now within reach of normal consumers. Here both Epson and Canon are impressive with almost unbelievably high print quality.
We tested both laser and inkjet printers. These two different techniques have different advantages and disadvantages. We also tested multifunction printers, also known as all-in-one printers, which act as scanner, photocopier and printer.
This test shows that there have been significant improvements when it comes to both speed and print quality in recent years. If you have a five year old multifunction printer, you’ll be pleasantly surprised if you replace it with one of the ones in this test. Most of these printers are available for between £100 and £300 online and work with both Windows and Apple OS X. If you use Linux you may need to download drivers.
1 We have measured the print speed ourselves as the theoretical print speeds stated by manufacturers are often significantly higher than the speeds our testers observed.
2 We have calculated the print cost by taking the number of test pages the ink lasts and dividing it by the current market price for the printer’s ink cartridges/toner. The print costs stated by manufacturers are often significantly lower than the actual print costs our testers calculated.
3 Duplex means the printer can automatically produce double sided printouts. It does this by first printing out one side of the paper, then automatically feeding the same paper back in and printing on the other side.
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