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HP Smart Tank 530 review: smart, hassle-free printer

Price: 16 949 rupees

Specifications: A4 Color Inkjet All-in-One Printer, Print, Scan, Copy, 2.2 inch Touchscreen, Automatic Document Feeder, USB, WiFi, Bluetooth, WiDi, 100 Sheet Input Tray, Tray 30-sheet output

In the box: Printer, power cable, USB cable, 135ml black (3 bottles), 70ml cyan, magenta, yellow each, printheads, documentation

I’ve always believed that a printer should be hassle-free – easy to set up and control, no mess of wires or cartridge drying tension, and more – without compromising on functionality or performance. The HP Smart Tank 530 adapts to everything.

Designed for home offices and small to medium businesses, it has a smaller footprint compared to professional office printers while having an Automatic Document Feeder (AFD), ink tank system (not cartridges) and fast prints.

Printer setup took less than five minutes. This included inserting printheads (which look like cartridges), pouring ink into the reservoirs, connecting to the wireless network, and printing / scanning for head alignment. As the printer supports dual band WiFi for faster and more reliable connections, I connected it to the 5Ghz network. For everything from setup to accessing Wi-Fi password, selecting copy / scan, video demos – the compact touchscreen came in handy. Along with home and return keys, all of the controls made the printer easy to use. In addition, the printer automatically detects the page size and prompts on the touch screen.

Once set up, I was able to print documents just by connecting my iPhone to the same Wi-Fi network. And it printed the first print in under 20 seconds. The experience is seamless if you are working on an Apple ecosystem. If not connected to a router, the printer also supports WiDi technology, where it creates its own wireless network. The WiDi password is accessible from the touchscreen and I was able to quickly connect my Windows laptop to the printer for print orders. But this Smart Tank is not just a printer. With the automatic document feeder on top, I was able to use photocopies and scan multiple pages with ease. I didn’t have to change the page manually. For photocopying documents, it can handle 99 copies at one time. However, to scan documents I had to use the HP Smart app, which also required me to create an account with HP. But forcing customers to create an account using an email id and cell phone number to scan documents for a hardware purchase is not acceptable. It’s the only thing I don’t like about this printer. Once I created my account with HP, I was able to scan the document with ease. That said, the HP Smart app is nifty, offering features like camera scan, copy, print documents, print photos, create photo books, help, and l ‘assistance, etc. Speaking of photos, it also does an awesome job with photo prints. It took over a minute to print a postcard-sized photo, but the ink dried quickly and the print wasn’t dark or looked artificial.

This smart tank printer has individual ink tanks for cyan, magenta, yellow and black. Unlike cartridge printers where the cartridge needs to be replaced even though the ink levels are low, here I can refill the color where the printer is almost depleted. Most importantly, the printer comes with three bottles of black ink that are 135ml (spill-free) and 70ml each for colors. According to HP, the printer is good enough to print 6,000 pages with the included inks, which means you can print around 500 pages per month for a year.

Whether scanning, printing documents and photos, or making copies, the HP Smart Tank 530 lives up to its name.

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