HP has big ideas for its PageWide print heads, the core of the Officejet Pro X series of single and multi-function printers. We may well see them in wide-format printers in the future, but for now the removal of the need to move the printhead to and fro across the paper, line by line, gives the Officejet Pro X476dw remarkably high-speed, full-colour print.
This is a substantial machine in black and slate grey, with an unusual design, where the large 1,200dpi flatbed scanner with its 50-sheet, duplex Automatic Document Feeder (ADF) is supported on a column from the left-hand end of the printer section. A fold-down flap in this column reveals the four ink cartridges, which slide and click into place very easily from the front.
At the top of the column is a 109mm touchscreen, which is reasonably sensitive to touch and swipe, though it’s no iPhone. Set into the left-hand side of the touchscreen support is a USB socket and you can upload from and download to a USB drive through this.
The main paper tray at the bottom of the front panel takes a healthy 500 sheets and there’s a fold-down, 50-sheet, multi-purpose tray in the left-hand panel of the machine. You can also fit an optional second, 500-sheet tray underneath.
The HP Officejet Pro X476dw has USB, 10/100 Ethernet and wireless connections and with its wireless link set up – a simple matter with WPS setup – is accessible from a variety of Android and iOS devices, as well as Windows.
Although the setup cartridges provided with the printer are good for 3,000 black pages and 2,500 colour ones, the high-yield versions can provide 9,200 and 6,600 pages, respectable page numbers for most office lasers and better than virtually all office inkjets.
HP rates the Officejet Pro X476dw at 36ppm in both black and colour. This is in what it refers to as Professional quality and the claimed speed rises to 55ppm in General Office mode. While Professional quality is very close to laser quality, with dense black text and smooth 600dpi edges, General Office mode, which is substantially faster, is much better than a draft mode.
Text is a bit less dense, but for most purposes, it will be easily good enough, as HP says, for general office use. We measured speeds of 15ppm in Professional mode and 18.8ppm in General Office mode on our 5-page test, increasing to 24ppm on the 20-page test and 32.7ppm on the 80-page document, close to spec.
Our duplex print test gave 9.2 sides per minute and a 10-side duplex copy took 1 minute 31 seconds. A single-sided copy took 19s and a 5-page copy from the ADF finished in 45s.
The printer produces quality colour images on plain paper, with vivid graphic fills and natural photo images, it can also print on HP Advanced photo paper. 15 x 10cm images took between 26s and 47s, though the machine can’t manage borderless prints, even on this smaller size.
Working on a purchase and consumables model, using the high-yield cartridges, gives a black page cost of 1.5p and a colour one of 4.6p, both including 0.7p for paper. For comparison, the £455 Dell C2665dnf colour laser multifunction returns page costs of 2.9p for black and 13.8p for colour. That’s nearly double the black print cost and almost three times the colour.
You can also lease this machine on contract through dealers like Landscape, DTP and XMA and pay on a per page basis, without initial purchase.
There are definite advantages of this machine over both alternative business inkjets and office lasers. It’s PageWidth print head means it can print faster than, for example, the Dell C2665dnf colour laser, which managed 14.2ppm and 21.4ppm on the 5 and 20-page documents. Compared with an Epson WorkForce Pro WF-5620dwf, it’s also a lot faster, though the Epson machine is £100 cheaper and has similar running costs.
HP’s Officejet Pro X476dw is a solid piece of office equipment, capable of print, scan, copy, fax and photos, at excellent speed and good quality. Running costs are low and the device is well capable of handling all the typical office tasks that are likely to be asked of it.