Our tests are independently conducted and reflect the test editor's honest and objective opinions. Selection of products and test results are in no way influenced by manufacturers, retailers or other internal or external parties.
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.
Multifunctional printer for the home office
Printer type: Photo printer (inkjet) Print speed*1: Text: 5.2 pages/min; Photos: 1 page/min Width: 400 mm Height: 150 mm Depth: 360 mm Weight: 11 kg Connections: USB, WiFi, Wi-Fi Direct, smartphone Pictbridge 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-8550 is a really heavyweight printer. As regards weight, at just over 11 kg, it is one of the heaviest printers we have tested. But once in situ, that weight isn’t particularly important. In terms of size, the Ecotank is more or less the same as other standard printers.
So what is it that makes it weigh so much? Maybe it's because the printer comes with basically everything you could possibly need for a home office: it has modern functions such as voice control, app support and a razor-sharp touchscreen with very good response, and also allows printing from SD card or USB.
The display and the app make it very user-friendly as you can print things without having to use your computer. This is fast and convenient, because the printer is connected wirelessly and responds immediately when you start printing.
However, even though it’s user-friendly, it still has some problems. Installation, for instance, is both unnecessarily time-consuming and complex. For example, if you have an iPhone, you must use a computer for the installation. Furthermore, there are several steps that we don’t understand, which are badly explained in the manual and also feel unnecessary. For example, we were advised to remove some parts that weren’t even present on our printer. It took us almost an hour to install everything.
Another tricky thing, at least until you learn how to do it, is loading A4 paper. The compartment is hidden under a hatch that drops down when the printer opens, and it took us a good while to puzzle out where to look.
Refilling the ink, on the other hand, is easy and there are large containers with a smart solution to prevent spilling. You don’t buy cartridges for this printer, instead it comes with the Ecotank, which means you buy refill bottles and add the contents to each compartment. Very convenient and really good value for money.
The printouts are fast and good, although not the best in class. So, overall, this printer is fine in most respects, but without ever really standing out.
The richness of colour on photo prints is very good. The colours are full-bodied, and you also get a very nice black. The only thing we noticed was that the grey was a bit brownish in some places, which gave a strange sort of undertone. But overall you do get a really nice result. You can also print up to 2300 photos on a single refill of ink, which is pretty impressive.
The Epson Ecotank ET-8550 is a modern and ink-efficient printer offering low maintenance costs. Particularly if you also want to print in A3.
Best printer for small offices
Product: Colour LED Printer Width: 410 mm Height: 414 mm Depth: 475 mm Weight: 23.2 kg Connections: USB 2.0, LAN, WiFi Direct, AirPrint, Cortado Cloud Print, Google Cloud Print 2.0, iPrint&Scan, Brother Print Service Plugin, Mopria Duplex*3: Yes (but not duplex copying) OS: Windows, MacOS X Input tray: 250 sheets Display: Touchscreen (colour) Scan resolution (HxV): Up to 1,200 x 2,400 dpi (from flat bed); Up to 19,200 x 19,200 dpi (interpolated)
The Brother DCP-L3550CDW is an LED printer, which is an excellent alternative to laser. It is still toner-based, but uses LED diodes instead of laser, making it very compact.
It also has a handy colour display measuring just over 9 inches, as well as a keypad. This makes it easy to adjust settings, scan, copy, etc. without having to take out your computer or mobile phone.
The printer is also connected to the network, which allows you to print out from any device you’re using.
This is a speedy printer in relation to its price. Brother promises a print speed of 18 copies per minute, but in our test we managed to print 20 pages in under a minute. But it does take some time to warm up. When you press ‘print out’, it seems to need a while to prepare. Not several minutes, but enough seconds to make you wonder what’s going on. But once it starts printing, it’s very fast, spitting out the paper at great speed.
It also has no problems printing in colour, which makes it even greater value for money. However, this is not the printer you’d pick to print out your family photos, as there are considerably better options. But for including graphics and images in e.g. training material, this is excellent.
The Brother DCP-L3550CDW is best at quickly printing many copies at once. As there’s a certain amount of warm-up time, it’s not as time-saving when you’re just printing three or four pages. If, on the other hand, you need to print out manuals, research reports, training material for employees/children’s groups or similar, it will save you a lot of time.
Quick-install compact printer for general use
What: Inkjet printer Dimensions: 432 mm, 361 mm, 131 mm Weight: 5.22 kg Measured speed: Text: 5 pages/min; Photos: 0.5 pages/min; Noise level: Text: 60 dB, Photos: 55 dB
The HP Envy 6020e is a compact printer. It’s very low and generally looks very minimalist, even if the width is about the same as with other printers in the same class.
The low height in particular makes it excellent for the home office or in a student room where it can easily be hidden away on a shelf.
Unlike many competing printers, this model lacks a screen. This means you need to get out your computer or phone to configure it or if you need to resolve an error message. On the other hand, most people rarely use the display once the printer is installed, other than to make sure printing is in progress.
As long as you have a wireless connection at home and the printer works, it all goes along more or less fine. But a screen would have been welcome to quickly see and understand error messages such as paper jams and the like. Instead, the Envy 6020e communicates via an LED that lights up with different colours depending on the problem.
Another minor drawback is that the printer doesn’t have a USB port.
For such a cheap printer, you get surprisingly good quality in terms of your print outs. The richness of detail and sharpness are very good, and colours are authentic. It may not be the best printer to buy if you’re going to print family photos on an ongoing basis as there are models with better functions on the market. But as a general printer for the home, where everyone in the family only prints things every now and then, it’s definitely good enough.
It takes about 2.5 minutes to print a good quality A4 photograph, which is on par with many other printers in the same price class. Text prints are reasonably fast but not overly so.
The installation of this printer is extremely straightforward. You essentially just need to remove the stickers and download the app, and then it takes about 15 minutes to set all the settings and get it up and running on your devices. This is significantly faster than some competitors, and all without affecting print quality.
The HP Envy 6020e is suitable for anyone who only prints things once in a while and who needs an affordable and compact printer.
HP Envy 6020e All in One Colour Printer with 6 months of Instant Ink included with HP+, White, New
HP Envy 6020e All in One Colour Printer with 3 months of Instant Ink included with HP+, White
HP Envy 6020e All in One Colour Printer with 3 months of Instant Ink included with HP+, White, New
Printer type: Photo printer (Inkjet) Print speed*1: Text: 10 pages/min; Photo: 2.12 pages/min; Noise level: Text: approx. 51.7 dB Photo: approx. 61 dB Width: 349 mm Height: 142 mm Depth: 340 mm Weight: 6.6 kg Connections: USB, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth OS: Windows, Mac OS X, iOS, Android Input tray: 100 sheets Display: Yes
With an average print rate of 10 pages per minute, the Canon Pixma TS 8350 comes in as one of the fastest inkjet printers we've tested. But that's not the only thing that stands out with this printer.
The TS8350 is also really user-friendly. It's incredibly easy to get it up and running. The installation is done via a link to Canon's website. The installation menu on the website is clear – so much so that Canon make the printer installation feel both easy and fast.
The Pixma TS 8350 is an inkjet printer, so it uses ink cartridges. Refilling the ink is easy and uses Canon's standard procedure. However, you need to be a bit careful when you remove the ink bottle after you’ve topped it up, because there may be some ink left that can drip on the floor.
With its black and silver details, the TS 8350 is certainly an elegant machine. It has a 10.8 inch touchscreen which is easy enough to navigate. However, the screen also feels plasticky, and because you can rotate it upwards it feels unstable when you press on it in that position.
The fact that the TS 8350 prints about 10 pages of text per minute is incredibly impressive, especially when compared to the competition. But where the TS 8350 really shines is its photo prints on photo paper. The colours are full-bodied, deep and authentic, by which we mean, for example, that red is really red and blue is truly blue. In other words, it gives you photographs that match the original.
Printing a full A4 photo at the highest quality, on photo paper, we clocked the time at 2.12 minutes. With normal paper, it takes 1.23 minutes. This is pretty fast but not hugely so.
One disadvantage, however, is that it makes a fair bit of noise so you’d do best to put it in a room where that doesn’t matter. Another disadvantage is that it consumes ink fairly quickly and that the cartridges are relatively expensive.
The Canon Pixma TS 8350 is a printer for anyone who sometimes wants to be able to print top quality photos at home, or who wants to quickly print large amounts of text. It’s ideal both at home and in the home office.
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.
A good printer for your home office
Product: Inkjet Printer Dimensions: 435 (W) x 343 (D) x 180(H) mm Weight: 8.8 kg
The Brother MFC-J4340DW is a fast-printing inkjet printer with several user-friendly features.
Above all, we found it good when wanting to print a lot at once. It reacts quickly, regardless of the print source, and prints quickly and relatively quietly.
But photo prints didn't impress us. The colours looked bad, even when we chose the highest quality print – regardless of paper type. There was not 100% colour reproduction. We tried recalibrating the printer twice without any noticeable difference.
Installation is quick and easy. There are not many steps, and the printer's design is clear and self-evident. The menus are generally quite easy to navigate, but we did choose some solutions that were not entirely clear on how to navigate further.
One of the negative aspects of the software is that it emits a continuous beep when a new update is available. It would have been enough for it to beep once or twice, but instead it beeps until you have chosen whether or not you want to install the update. It’s a bit annoying if you’re busy with other things, and therefore don't have time to deal with the hassle at the time.
In terms of price, the MFC-J4340DW is both fast and well-built. You also get many features in one. For example, it is very convenient to be able to scan several documents in a row, and then get all the pages in a single PDF instead of one PDF per page, as is often the case with many competitors in the same price class.
You can also choose which location to save them in. If, for example, you have a Google Drive account, you can fill in the details once, and then you will receive a code that you can use to send content there quickly.
Brother MFC-J4340DW is ideal if you primarily need a printer to print out a lot of text, scan, and copy. If you e.g. have a home office or a small business.
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 Duplex3:** 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.
Fast text printer
Printer type: Multi-media printer (Inkjet) Print speed*1: Text: 9 pages/min; Photo: 2.35 pages/min; Noise level: Text: approx. 56.6 dB Photo: approx. 64 dB Width: 403 mm Height: 195 mm Depth: 369 mm Weight: 8.1 kg Connections: USB, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth OS: Windows, Mac OS X, iOS, Android Input tray: 350 sheets Display: Analogue screen
Canon's G6050 multimedia printer is largely a classic model that does most things, whether you want to scan, copy or print. The G6050 is also an impressively economical printer which allows you to print up to 18,000 pages if you only use the three large black containers, or about 7,700 pages if you do a print run using the second set of colour-based containers.
In terms of design, the G6050 is quite simple. It’s not particularly innovative, and the quality does leave a bit to be desired. For example, the display is a rather small black and white affair, which isn’t even illuminated. Furthermore, the contrast is limited. You have to use a torch or mobile phone to see the display if you’re in a dim room.
The printer is also quite heavy and rather large.
However, the buttons around the display are simple and functional, and they don’t feel flimsy, which many printers' buttons have a tendency to do.
When it comes to printing, this machine does a reasonable job. It’s relatively loud, but if you don’t mind that, this is a printer that scans well and prints text very quickly. In fact, the G6050 is actually one of the fastest printers in our test, producing around 9 pages per minute.
It is also ink-efficient, which makes it a suitable printer for the home office or for students who print a lot of text and who also need to scan in projects or homework.
If you’re looking for a photo printer, however, you may want a little more. We’d have liked to see a darker black, and in places where the contrast is richest it becomes rather washed out, the colours become misty and the photograph loses its depth. You do get reasonable photos, but compared to something like the Pixma TS8350, the G6050 doesn’t impress.
If you want a fast printer, for text printing, the Canon G6050 is a great printer.
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.