HP, rather hopefully, claims speeds of 16ppm and 9ppm for black and colour print from the Officejet 6100. In our tests, it managed 9.4ppm on our five-page black text document and 12.6ppm on the 20-page long-text test. Our five-page black text and colour graphics pages gave 4.6ppm.
These speeds are impressive for a sub-£100 inkjet printer, among the best we've seen, measured against rivals in the same price bracket. If you need more speed in short text documents, the printer's draft mode gave 10.7ppm printing five pages, while still producing text which was very readable and more than suitable for everyday internal use.
Normal mode text print is clear and sharp, with little sign of artefacts such as ink spread or blurred edges. Colour graphics are bright and dense, though with some slight blotchiness in areas of solid colour. Black text over colour manages to remain sharp, though with a touch of haloing.
Our test photo print came through bright and with some colours a little over accentuated. Shadow detail was also lost to black in places.
The XL cartridges, which are likely to be the choice of most customers, give 1,000 pages of black print and 825 pages of each colour. At the best prices we could find, this gives page costs of 2.8p for black print and 6.2p for colour. These are good costs, particularly the colour rate, which beats machines like the Canon PIXMA MX515, though it’s still higher than the headline figure on some Kodak machines, such as the Kodak ESP 3.2. The individual cartridges used in the Officejet, though, may make a difference to overall ink usage.
The HP Officejet 6100 is a printer aimed at a specific niche in the marketplace. It offers fast inkjet print in both black and colour, at low-cost. The figure for colour print is particularly impressive, but both are good. It's also well capable of working in an office which primarily uses mobile devices. That said, there's little else to justify its price. You can get a complete all-in-one with similar running costs for around the same price.