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Kodak ESP 3250 - Kodak ESP 3250

By Simon Williams

Reviewed:

Summary

Our Score:

8

User Score:

Kodak claims pretty silly speeds for all in its all-in-ones, particularly if you print in normal rather than draft mode. Its top speed is said to be 30ppm for black pages and 29ppm for colour, but our five-page text print took 1:06, a speed of 4.54ppm and the equivalent, five-page text and graphics document took 1:42, or 2.94ppm. The 20-page black text print produced the fastest print of the lot, at 5.11ppm. These speeds aren't bad for a machine costing under £100, so it's a shame Kodak has to over-egg the facts with these unrealistic claims.

A 15 x 10cm print from a PC took 1:08 and from an SD card, it took 58 seconds. These are good speeds for photo prints and the resulting images are also well up to scratch. There's plenty of detail in the pictures and colours are natural, if a little dark in areas of shadow. One of the images showed some slight banding, but generally speaking they were better than adequate.

The same goes for graphics on plain paper, though there were signs of under-inking in some areas of solid colour, so the paper fibres showed through, to produce a slight speckling. A colour copy from the 1,200ppi flat-bed was reasonable, though yellow and orange shades appeared a little muddy. Black text is reasonably clean, though we noticed a couple of places where there was print displacement from one pass to the next.

Kodak claims to save you an average of £75 a year on ink, in comparison with its main rivals. This average takes into account differences in usage and doesn't require you to be printing reams of work every day. Our calculations also show cost improvements. Using the cheapest prices we could find for the two cartridges the ESP 3250 gives costs of 2.65p for an ISO black page and 5.46p for colour, both including VAT and 0.7p for paper.

We compared this with the Canon PIXMA MP540, the Epson Stylus SX415 and the HP OfficeJet 6500.

The relative page costs range from over twice as much as the Kodak ESP 3250, to around 15 percent less. Even though the HP OfficeJet Pro 6500 comes out cheaper to run, it's also considerably more expensive to buy, so Kodak is justified in claiming its machines run more cheaply than much of its competition.

Verdict

It's more of the same, really, with the ESP 3250. There are good and bad elements to this machine, as with the other Kodak ESPs. Print quality is fair, without being spectacular, print speeds are average, though with unrealistic claims and running costs really are cheaper than from similarly-priced alternatives. The colour LCD monitor is worth the extra £10 over the cost of the ESP 3, because of the extra convenience when selecting photos to print.

Rhubarb

December 15, 2009, 8:53 pm

Kodak currently has an F rating with BBB because of unanswered complaints about this printer. There are numerous web entries complaining about jams and print quality. HP has even launched a site criticizing the Kodak claims of economy and quality. This review does not appear to be very truthful.

slypuss

January 27, 2010, 4:00 am

I agree with the last comment ... bought this printer, terrible photo quality, yellow ink never seemed to come through, had to clean heads after EVERY photo just to get it right, then of course ink would run out .. took it back and complained. Was given a replacement but got constant slipping or jamming of paper .. took 2 hours to print one page document for uni, and that was still only semi straight, by this time i was on my third ink cartridge and almost out of paper. gggot my money back next day and went back to my old printer, ink id dearer but tbh i wasted so much time, paper and ink just trying to get this to work it was ridiculous

Alex 26

April 6, 2010, 8:01 pm

When I try to print anything the printer disconnects and does not reconnect until I have cancelled the print job. This is the latest in a long line of problems going back over a month.

Zorb

June 29, 2010, 8:43 pm

Wow, these last reviews seem a bit over the top. I can't say my machine is 100% stellar, but it is a good all around unit. Photo quality is better than you would expect for an inexpensive unit, ink usage seems about right for the side of the cartridge. Have run almost 50 A4 photos in full page, as well as about the same number of 150x100mm and have used two cartridges. This is very good, especially for the price.





Certain background colors do produce banding, but Kodak has had about 5 firmware updates since I got this thing and they have all improved printing behavior. For example, I had an issue with it going offline after an automatic cleaning cycle following a large number of prints. This is now fixed. I had a little bit of a magenta de-emphasis resulting in a green bias in some prints, now this is vastly improved as of the second to the last update.





My point is, you are partially getting what you pay for. It costs little to buy, costs almost nothing to operate, does a lot of things well. Don't ask for perfection for $89 US.

Stu 3

August 17, 2010, 2:28 pm

I just brought this printer at the weekend and for the money I cant see where you can go wrong. The photo print quality is fantastic for the money, this is a £70 printer with cheap ink and Kodak paper is not that expensive. Yes it is not fast, and I have had none of the paper issues in the previous comments. I would recommend this printer as a cheap home photo printer a good quality of print as long as you stick with Kodak ink and Kodak paper.

Ageing Hippy

November 20, 2010, 2:15 am

We have had this printer for about a year and have very low useage; we use a different printer for photos. We have been very surprised by the number of cartriges we have gone through, especially since it was advertised as being cheap to run. The coloured ink has run out at present but it will not print a black copy until it has been replaced. The cartridge also has to be replaced when only one colour has run out. I have tried refilling the cartridge with compatible inks which is fairly straight forward but it still thinks the cartridge is empty because of the chip and still won't work. I am now considering buying a different printer as it is far more expensive to run than we anticipated, and more costly to run than our previous printer.

smudge310

November 20, 2010, 2:36 pm

My wife runs 2 businesses as well as being Secretary of the local community radio station so as you can image we go through a lot of ink. So when we were looking for a new printer the low cost of the kodak ink cartridges was very attractive.





What a con! I dont think I can add more to what has already been written about this printer. We have been using PC's (now MAC's) for the past 20 years so we have used a few printers and to be honest this is the worst one. We will be now going back to HP, at least their printers work!





Although the ink is cheap, they are so small (especially the black!) that you are forever changing them, then we are always getting ERROR CODE 3820 "Print Head Failure" after a few months!!





It also decides when it wants to print, not you. You send something and nothing happens, then about 5-10 mins later the print springs to life....no reason!!





and finally the print quality is rubbish, one of the poorest I've seen. We needed to print off some flyers for a radio presentation and the main part of out logo is red. On the screen it look very vibrant (pillar box red) but when printed, on good quality paper, it was faded. It look like a draft print! CRAP!





AVOID, DONT BUY. GET A HP INSTEAD. IT MAY COST MORE INITIALLY BUT IT WILL BE WORTH IT!

Elvina

January 25, 2011, 5:21 pm

Our Brother printer which had served us well got damaged and as we had the Kodak ESP3250 on The Gadget Show where it got excellent reviews we thought we would give it a go. Less than 5 months later we are now waiting for the delivery of our third, yes 3rd, one. Our original stopped printing anything on the paper, first they replaced the print head, then software update and then a new printer and still we have the same problem. The 3rd one is now on its way but I dont hold out much hope!





Another problem is that these are meant to be excellent with ink consumption. They are TERRIBLE. Apparently every time you turn them on they use ink before they even print anything and I have heard comments that its anywhere between 1 and 3%!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! We have printed no more than 50 A4 pages with the blank ink and yet it has supposedly run out even though its an XL cartridge and we havent printed anything in 2 weeks. When we checked ink levels 2 weeks ago we have nearly 50% black ink and since then havent printed anything but have turned it on and off a lot due to trying to get it to work and amazingly without a single letter being printed the ink has gone!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Kodak have advised us to leave it on all the time!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! So much for reducing energy consumption not to mention low ink usage.


Yet another problem is that you dont know that the ink is getting low till it runs out. You get no warning message, just a message to say its run out and then it wont print another page till you get replacement ink. Kodak say that they are "trying to remedy this".





All in all I would NOT recommend this printer to anyone. If you are considering one dont bother. ..

old409

May 18, 2011, 10:38 pm

I bought two ESP3250 printer. One has been replaced once, the other has been replaced twice and the replacement doesn't work.

They constantly show paper jam and there's no jam and there is no jam. The ink is cheap but both my printers are very hard on ink usage, the worst ink users I've ever had.

I don't see how anything that doesn't work any better than these Kodak printers could get such a good rating. The two ESP 3250 printers I bought are junk, nothing but problems since I took them out of the box. My old Lexmark printers were no problem at all and they didn't use half the ink these Kodaks use. I could cry every time I think I switched them out for this Kodak junk.

I'll be getting rid of both my Kodak printers and going back to cheap Lexmarks.

GinaMolyneux

September 10, 2011, 1:37 pm

What a load of rubbish, very poor quality prints, ink doesn't last 5 minutes. machine shows ink needs replacing even after installing a new cartridge, I returned 2 machines to Kodak each time supposedly being sent a new replacement only to find they were reconditioned. One of these was also faulty. I would never buy kodak again.

Seabiscuit

November 16, 2011, 11:48 pm

This is an expensive item, therfore SLOW printing and command problems shouldn't arise. The real sneaky extra cost is that it won't work without both a black and white AND colour cartridge. Unless kodak are selling cartridges that are actually empty , this one persists in displaying 'colour cartridge needs replacing' even though I've put two different full ones in- and in the meantime it refuses to do anything. DO NOT BUY . I have to replace it . Lesson learnt , get separate b+w and colour printers, and a separate scanner. The all-in-one makers are bluffing - and ripping us off...

cat24

February 22, 2012, 8:28 pm

We brought this pinter last year and since the moment we got it it has never worked properly. at first it wouldnt print documents and then it decided it would now it wont print blacks even though i have changed the ink and cleaned the printer head etc.im very disapointed in kodak as when i rang them up for help they were experiancing technical difficalties and the same with the live chat! i will personally never buy a kodak printer again and advise you to do the same.

Mizzou55

March 13, 2013, 2:44 am

This printer lasted about 6 months. We put in new cartidges and it wouldn't print with the error that the 'colour cartridge needs replacing'. Poor thing never recovered. Useless. We've had Epson, Kodak and HP - none were very good, but this was the worst. I would pay good money for a simple dependable printer that doesn't guzzle ink.

colin hassell

March 18, 2013, 4:06 pm

I have had a kodak 3250 for at least 2 years and apart from the odd paper jam it has been no trouble. I have always used kodak cartridges that are cheap (even from PC World) and have had no trouble with head cleaning etc. I think some of the other problems listed are because people used compatible cartridges and had software problems caused by not installing software correctly. I need to get another printer that is wireless and would be happy to get a Kodak again

freeman

July 10, 2013, 4:23 pm

bought 2 of these. both had a lot of problems. As soon as warranty runs out, printheads will no longer work.

Miranda Kuney

August 10, 2013, 4:39 pm

I love Kodak! this printer has given me a few problems, but I have resolved them on my own. Not easy but fixable. I think Kodak's Customer service is Bull-S*^#. Today I call customer service because my printer will not print from my computer. but will print directly from my computer or scan. The rep tells takes control of my computer and removes my software. then tells me I have to pay for him to put it back on. WOW!! really... Ok so I google my software, seeing i no longer have my software CD and download it myself. My printer is fine. For all of you who have problems with your printer. all you have to do is remove the software from your pc and reinstall. it will fix any problems you have. even bad printer heads. Another que: Never!! update your software, thats gives it problems and wont respond correctly. so once again after you update you have to remove the software and reinstall!!

jongrman

August 16, 2013, 9:03 pm

In a nutshell don't buy a Kodak worst printer I have ever bought. Wastes a tremendous amount of ink. Even though I never print in colour I got through 2 blacks for every colour cartridge and by the way unless you give it a fresh colour it refuses to work at all. Also trashes the print heads at an alarming rate approx. 1 every 3 to 4 new black cartridges. Check ebay out people are selling these by the shed load its actually cheaper to buy a used one if u need a new print head. Kodak just admit its rubbish and take it off the shops shelves before you do you brand further damage

FreeManWalking

September 2, 2013, 3:13 pm

This printer is a Piece of crap... WASTE OF MONEY. I have had my printer for 2 years and printed less than a 100 pages of black on white text and have had to replace both black and color cartridges 3 times. This last go round before replacing the cartridges it was printing partial lines of black text, and said I needed to replace the color cartridge, I replace it and it wouldn't print black text at all. I replace the black cartridge and it still didn't print. The cartridges may be cheaper but that is because they do not last as long either.
The Ink doesn't last as long as it did in the HP I replace with this piece of crap kodak.
I have an EPSON all in one at the office, (Which also includes fax) and it has never missed a beat. I have had it almost as long as this POC kodak and have only replace the cartridges once and I print a lot more at work than I do at home.

judyr

October 26, 2013, 12:08 pm

I agree this is a bad printer all round. It is not cheap to buy; replacement cartridges are not cheap either. It is slow and unreliable. I have been conned.

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