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Fifth Gear presenter reviews HP printers

HP has been named the top performer in a tough new set of ‘real-world’ printer tests performed by Fifth Gear presenter Vicki Butler-Henderson. The results will indicate to Bank-Holiday-weekend buyers which printers give them the best value for money - in the tests the HP model produced twice as many prints per cartridge as the worst performing printer.

Extreme testing outside the lab

The challenge measured the reliability, durability and quality as well as value for money of the printers when tested in a real-life environment.

Instead of being switched on and tasked to print continuously until the ink runs dry – as they would be in a lab-test - Vicki printed a combination of everyday documents such as web pages, slides and photos. At the end of each test round, the printer was turned off and on again to mirror home-use patterns i.e. being switched off at the end of the day and then switched back on the next.

The results were clear. HP gives you up to twice as many prints when tested under these ‘real world’ conditions. The HP model was able to print more than twice as many pages as the worst performing printer whilst even the best performing competitor could only manage 85 percent of the HP total.

When printing ink-intensive photos, HP was able to produce twice as many as two of the competitive products, with the closest competitor only producing 60 percent of HP’s total.

Said Vicki “Having recently bought a printer, I was keen to test printers in a typical home environment. When testing cars, we test them how they'd be used every day, but that didn't seem the case in the consumer technology world. I found it difficult to find this kind of information when I tried to do some research before buying my printer.”

“Like cars, HP thoroughly tests its printers in the real world just as we do in the labs. Our ink efficient systems mean that we waste virtually no ink during real life printing.” explains Celina Hands, Photosmart Market Manager, HP.

”Customers need to know how a product will perform when they get it home and start printing their own documents, recognising that its not just the cost of the printer and the ink that is important, but how the printers use that ink.”

Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website building and web hosting when DHTML and frames were en vogue and started writing about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium. Following an eight-year stint at where he discovered the joys of global tech-fests, Désiré now heads up TechRadar Pro. Previously he was a freelance technology journalist at Incisive Media, Breakthrough Publishing and Vnunet, and Business Magazine. He also launched and hosted the first Tech Radio Show on Radio Plus.