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The HP PSC 1350xi All-In-One PrinterScannerCopier: A Review

The HP PSC 1350xi All-In-One is a superb photo printer, containing slots which accommodate digital memory cards running on CompactFlash, Memory Stick, MultiMediaCard, Secure Digital, SmartMedia, and xD-Picture Card formats. Photos are printed with up to 2400 x 1200-dpi (on HP premium photo paper). The scanner portion of the HP PSC reproduces documents with excellent 36-bit color and 600 x 2400-dpi optical resolution. As a copier, the HP PSC works quickly and efficiently, turning out black-and-white documents at a rate of 17 pages per minute, and color documents at a rate of 12 pages per minute. Best of all, you get all this for the low price of around $150 (used 1350xi printers are priced at $65-$100).

Having digital pictures to print all the time, plus physical pictures to upload into my various blog and web sites, I rely extensively on the Hewlett-Packard Printer/Scanner/Copier (PSC) 1350xi All-In-One, and this item is certainly something I would not want to live without. The printer comes with software that is easy to install (when it works), involving the insertion of a CD into your computer console. Software for both PCs and Macs is provided. Alternatively, the printer has the capability of working solo, without need of a computer: by inserting a memory card into one of its ports, you can select photos from the printer’s proof sheet, and then print out the ones you want. Printer cartridges are easily installed by just swinging open a small flap at the front of the printer, then snapping in the black and tri-color ink cartridges.

For all its functions, the printer is very compact, and does not take up much room on a desktop. Buttons are located at the left side of the top panel printer “box”, are easily reached, and have blatantly obvious function labels beside them. This certainly beats some printers, which provide hardly a clue about which button performs what function. The scanner lid lies on top of the unit, and is also easily accessible. The one feature I wish this printer did have is faxing support; the slightly more expensive HP PSC 1610xi does. However, for a printer that I received as a Christmas gift, I certainly cannot complain about its many other capabilities.

One recurring problem that I seem to have with the printer is that, even when I start up its software on my computer, and set the command to print from my digital camera memory card, the printer does not immediately register the command and begin printing. In such cases, I have found it helpful to re-insert the memory card, which seems to “wake up” the printer. The printer is also not too happy when it runs out of paper, and after alerting you of the problem, will need to be re-set to print the remaining documents or photos.

Printer ink cartridges are not cheap. A standard HP 56 Blank ink cartridge will cost from $25-$30, and the HP 57 tri-color ink cartridge will cost even more, from $35-$47. Therefore, when printing out many photos, you may easily end up dropping $75-$100. However, for most print jobs of a dozen or so photos, it will take anywhere from 2-3 months to use up the cartridges. On the plus side, many stores and online dealers offer bulk pricing on these cartridges. Also, the HP printer itself does a good job of maintaining the cartridges once they’re snapped into place. Other printers that I’ve owned let air in, leading to drying out of the cartridge ink over time.

In conclusion, I give the following pros and cons of the HP PSC 1350xi All-In-One:

Pros:
Small, compact, and sleek body
Easy installation and use
Printer itself is inexpensive
Photo/scan/copy quality and resolution are good to excellent

Cons:
No fax support
Has some printing quirks
Cartridges are expensive