My Espon all-in-one printer is about time to retire. The printer is running out of ink and the replacement cartridge is ridiculously expensive, probably cost more than what the printer is worth. The scanner is also dying, the scanner head making squeaking noise and is struggling to move across the page. It is time to buy a new printer.
I come across the HP All-in-One Officejet J4580 on sales in Staples. This $59 machine has color inkjet printer, fax machine and scanner with a 20 sheets document feeder. I know the ink cartridge will cost me a fortune in the long run, but since I have another laser printer, I won’t print from this inkjet printer very often. What really attracts me is the document feeder. I hate constantly changing pages when scanning documents. I think the scanner and feeder alone already justify its price tag.
The installation is pretty straight forward, just like any other HP printer. Withing 15 minutes, my new printer is up and running. The print quality is acceptable, can’t really compare it with the color laser printer at work. The scanning software, HP document manager, comes with the printer is very easy to use. I can scan many pages of document and save them into a PDF file just like I expected. I can even run the built-in OCR program to make the PDF file search-able or output the page content into a text file. The scan speed is not very fast but it does get the job done.
With the new printer, I can finally get rid of my old fax machine. No one use fax nowadays, I am only keeping the old fax machine and wasting space just in case I need to send or receive a fax. This printer can save the received fax to my computer instead of printer the pages. It saves paper and ink if I don’t need a hard copy of the fax. I don’t have a phone line around my computer, so I could not test the fax function until I move into my new house.
My only complain is the paper tray design. The printer does not have a output tray, the printed pages just fall on top of the blank paper. The printed page falls off from the tray if I didn’t extend tray, but the paper tray in full extension is a bit too long for my desk. With its $59 price tag, I am very happy with what I got. If the ink cartridge last longer, the scanner scan faster, this printer would be perfect. I guess I can’t ask too much for a low-end printer.