There are many pros and cons to the era of working from home. More time to spend with a significant other means more time to get annoyed by a significant other; no commuting means a raft of unheard true crime podcasts (although that does also mean fewer adverts for various subscription programmes); no office means that the office must come to you.
Part of this boundary shifting is the office printer. It would be uncivil to expect you to lug a 6ft-tall office leviathan into your living room just to make a few copies of a report, so an investment in a home printer is a sound decision.
However, home printers vary in their efficiency, both in terms of general performance and ink usage. It’s tough to find a printer with the right balance, but HP’s officejet range has been a consistent presence in this area for a long time. The 9020 wireless all-in-one from HP claims to offer an impressive array of features that wouldn’t look out of place in the office. Does its performance – and size – transfer to the home?
How we tested
We tested the 9020 on print speed and quality, ease of set up, tech specs, ink usage and general look and feel. We always test our products with one main question in mind – will we still approve of the product in a year’s time, or will we be on the lookout for a replacement?
HP officejet pro all-in-one 9020
Printer type: Inkjet, cartridge
Printing speed: 24 pages/min monochrome, 20 pages/minute colour
Input/output capacity: 500/100
Dimensions and weight: 437mm x 396.3mm x 318.3mm, 11.66kg
Connectivity: USB, ethernet, wifi direct printing, HP Smart app, Apple AirPrint, Chrome OS, Mopria
The 9020 is pushing what we’d describe as a “home printer” to its very limits. It’s a bit of a monster when compared to other printers we’ve recently tested, but there are valid reasons for this. One of the biggest pay-offs for the 9020’s size is the presence of two 250-sheet input trays, fitting a ream of printer paper without breaking a sweat.
Alongside the tree-trunk holding paper, trays is a 35-page automatic page loader for hands-free copying, and the ability to scan both sides of the page at once for rapid-fire reproduction. The 9020 might be hefty, but for anyone who works from home regularly, or even for a small business, it provides a wide range of features that you don’t get from exclusively home-focussed printers.
The 6.86cm colour touchscreen provides a clear and straightforward way of organising tasks, but HP’s sophisticated app is the winner when it comes to using the 9020. After an initial fiddle with registration, it’s an intuitive app, helping you quickly access the files you want from Google Drive, Dropbox, the cloud or email, and scanned pages can go the other way.
The 9020 covers pretty much every base when it comes to an all-in-one printer. Connecting to the printer via wifi is simple, with the HP Smart app finding and automatically connecting your device to the 9020. The smartphone app is especially impressive, with a simple layout and huge range of options, including the ability to print photos directly from your camera roll. The 9020 doesn’t perform particularly well when it comes to photography however, with a lack of focus the main stumbling block. For black and white documents, the 9020 performs solidly, producing clear prints that look flawless to the naked eye.
Copy/scan capacity is another impressive element to the 9020, with some of the quickest copy speeds we’ve tested and the aforementioned possibility of sending scanned documents from the printer to a mobile device.
HP’s instant ink subscription is an easy way of letting someone else keep track of your ink levels. The app monitors how many pages you’ve printed and once it notices that you’re coming towards the end of your cartridges’ life cycles, the brand sends out replacements. Monthly costs for instant ink vary wildly based on how many pages you plan on printing, from a 15-page subscription to a mammoth 1,500 page order.
The cheapest per-page subscription (unsurprisingly, the most expensive monthly, at £44.99) comes out at approximately 3p per sheet: if you were to look after ink levels yourself, single/bundle cartridges can turn out slightly cheaper in the long run.
Buy now £213.90, Cartridgepeople.com
The verdict: HP officejet pro all-in-one 9020
It might be a bulky machine, but all the features within the 9020 more than make up for the real estate it’ll take up in your home office. It’s a quick performer, producing a good rate of pages, and copy/scan capabilities are very impressive for the price. It’s not the cheapest printer to run by any stretch, with more eco-conscious printers (such as the Epson ecotank ET-2710) printing pages at less than a tenth of the price. However, the instant ink subscription is a good way of ensuring you’re never caught out of juice, and the 9020 is still a strong option for home printing, covering all expected bases and more. For a multi-person household or small business, it’s a sensible choice.
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