HP Photosmart 8450
Review Date: March 14th 2005
The HP Photosmart 8450 is an 8 colour inkjet printer that has a maximum resolution of 1200 x 1200 dpi when used with compatible HP paper. This can be changed to an optimized resolution of 4800x1200 dpi when using HP Premium Plus Photo Paper. Prints from the HP Photosmart 8450 have a life-span of 75 years or more on HP's Premium Plus Photo Paper. HP paper uses a swellable coating which encapsulates the dyes when dry, giving it an archival quality greater than other dye-based inkjet printers. The HP Photosmart 8450 uses the following cartridges with HP's Vivera inks:
- HP 95 tri-color inkjet print cartridge (7 ml) or the HP 97 tri-color inkjet print cartridge (14 ml)
- the HP 94 black inkjet print cartridge (11 ml) or the HP 96 black inkjet print cartridge (21 ml)
- the HP 99 Photo Inkjet Print Cartridge (13 ml) or the HP 100 Gray Photo Inkjet Print Cartridge (15 ml)
If you want to print black and white photos, simply change the standard colour cartridge for the supplied HP 100 Gray Photo Inkjet Print Cartridge. HP inkjet cartridges contain the ink and the printhead, which means that every time you change a cartridge you also get a new printhead (avoiding the potential problem of blocked nozzles). You can make prints from 6x4 inches up to Letter / A4 size. The HP Photosmart 8450 has a separate "Photo" paper tray for 6x4 inch paper and a Letter / A4 paper tray.
The HP Photosmart 8450 allows you to print directly from your camera's memory card (CompactFlash, SmartMedia, Memory Stick, Secure Digital/MultiMediaCard, and xD-Picture Card formats are supported). There are four memory card slots on the front of the printer - only one can be used at a time. The memory card slots also act like a card reader when the printer is connected to a computer - you can insert your card and copy data from it onto your computer. Alternatively you can use a USB cable to connect a PictBridge-enabled camera directly to the printer. If you have used DPOF (Digital Print Order Format) on your camera to select which images you want to print, the HP Photosmart 8450 will recognise this when you insert the memory card or connect the camera directly and automatically print the images. Using the optional HP Bluetooth Wireless Adapter, you can make prints from any Bluetooth compatible device, such as a PDA or cameraphone.
There is a tilting 2.5 inch colour LCD screen on the HP Photosmart 8450 which allows you to view, edit and select images for printing. Surrounding the LCD screen on either side are a number of external controls that allow you to change the printer's settings. As mentioned above, there is a single USB 1.0 port on the front of the printer that allows you to connect it to a Pictbridge-enabled digital camera for direct printing. There is a USB port on the rear of the printer which allows the HP Photosmart 8450 to connect to a computer. Also on the rear is the power cord connection and an Ethernet connection so that you can connect the printer to a network. The HP Photosmart 8450 weighs 17.6 lbs and its dimensions are 21.1" W x 15.8" D x 7.6" H.
The HP Photosmart 8450 that I reviewed was supplied with a User Guide, Quick Install Poster, HP 97 Tri-color Inkjet Print Cartridge, HP 99 Photo Inkjet Print Cartridge, HP 100 Gray Photo Inkjet Print Cartridge, power supply, power cord and a CD ROM with HP Image Zone Software for Microsoft Windows and Macintosh. It would be good if some photo paper and a USB cable were included as standard.