HP Officejet 4620 e-All-in-One review

Pros

  • Prints, scans and faxes
  • Cloud printing functionality
  • Built-in Wi-Fi
  • Automatic document feeder

Cons

  • No Ethernet connection
  • No duplexer

If you need an inexpensive personal printer in any size office, make sure the HP Officejet 4620 e-All-in-One is somewhere on your must see list. One of the few sub-£100 printers that leans more towards office needs than home printing requirements, with features like faxing and an automatic document feeder (ADF), it offers all the key features you need for light duty office use at a surprisingly low price.

The 4620's price and office-centric design put it in head-to-head competition with the Brother MFC-J430w. Each printer offers some advantages over the other-the MFC-J430w delivers faster print speed, for example, while only the 4260 can print from the cloud. But either one can serve nicely as a personal printer in any size office or in the dual role of home and home office printer.

Like the MFC-J430w, the 4620 can print from, scan to, and fax from a PC as well as work as a standalone copier and fax machine. Its ADF offers a slightly higher capacity, at 35-sheets, and-as with the Brother printer's ADF- it complements the A4-size flatbed, to let you scan multipage documents and legal size paper. Neither printer offers memory card slots, support for PictBridge cameras, or other photo-centric features.

Another similarity is that the 4620 doesn't offer wired network support, but does sport Wi-Fi, so you can share it in a micro office or at home in the dual role of home and home office printer. However, the limited paper handling-with an 80 sheet tray, no duplexing, and no upgrade options-makes it a poor choice for sharing in an office.

The Wi-Fi also opens the door to the features HP implies by calling the printer an e-All-in-One, including HP ePrint (for printing from the cloud), Apple AirPrint (for printing from iOS devices), and the HP ePrint Home & Biz print app (for printing from both Android and iOS devices). However, none of these features will work unless the printer itself is connected to a network by Wi-Fi. If you plan to connect via USB to a computer that's on a network, you can't use them whether you have a Wi-Fi network setup or not.

Setup, Speed and Quality

Setting up the 4620 is standard fare. For my tests, I installed it on a Windows Vista system using a USB connection. On our business applications suite (using QualityLogic's hardware and software for timing), it scored reasonably well for speed, at an effective 3.4-pages per minute (ppm). That makes the 4620 significantly slower than the MFC-J430w at 4.3ppm. Note too that much like the 4620's speed for business applications, its photo speed was also reasonably fast, but short of impressive, averaging one minute three seconds for a 4 x 6in photo.

The printer's output quality is pretty average for an inkjet. Text quality is arguably a touch below par, but best described as being at the bottom of the tight range where the vast majority of inkjet printers fall. Unless you have an unusual need for small fonts, you should find it suitable for most business needs. Likewise, Graphics output should be more than adequate for business users.

Photos quality is also average, although slightly better for colour prints than monochrome. More precisely, black and white photos in my tests showed a slight tint and a lack of deep, dark blacks. Colour photos, however, were at least as good as professionally processed prints. If colour is all you print, the issues for black and white are irrelevant.

If you're looking for an inexpensive, office-centric personal printer, the HP Officejet 4620 e-All-in-One will certainly do the job. I'd like it better if it also had an Ethernet connector, so you wouldn't be forced to have Wi-Fi on your network. But if you already have Wi-Fi enabled or don't mind setting it up, that's not an issue. If you don't need all the network features, you should also consider the Brother MFC-J430w with its faster speed. But whether you want those features or not, the HP Officejet 4620 e-All-in-One is a capable choice and well worth considering.