The HP Officejet Enterprise Color X555dn offers an interesting alternative to a laser printer. Companies looking for fast printers have traditionally had no choice, but HP’s A4 inkjet aims to change that, with print speeds of 70 ppm and running costs that exceed lasers.
Costing only 449 GBP, the X555dn is considerably more affordable than similarly specified laser printers. It is even more compact, with a footprint of 533 x 399 mm and a 23 kg chassis that fits comfortably on a desk. Energy consumption is another major point: X555dn is much more energy efficient than a laser. With an online power meter, the highest power consumption I recorded during printing was only 62W.
He doesn’t even lack the ability. The X555dn comes with a single 500-sheet input tray and a 300-sheet top output tray. There is a 50-page folding multifunctional tray on the side, and the capacity can be increased with an optional lower 500-sheet tray that costs 144 GBP.
HP Officejet Enterprise Color X555dn review: new technology
The X555dn achieves laser-like print speeds using HP PageWide technology. Instead of using a traditional inkjet cart that moves on the page, it has a full-width print head with over 42,000 nozzles.
The ink is supplied by four thick ink cartridges located behind a vertical panel at the front. The printer comes with half-empty starter cartridges, but standard color and black cartridges last 10,000 pages and 6,600 pages, respectively, and offer ultra-low operating costs of just 0.84p for monochrome and 4.2p for color.
Another consumable is an ink collection unit. At 25 GBP, HP doesn’t mention an expected page life, but we suspect it will take some time before it expires – after printing 300 pages during testing, the web interface life count hasn’t been reduced by one percentage point.
It’s easy to get started. The HP setup utility registers the printer with the HP Connected service and, once activated, prints a unique code that you enter before assigning an email address to the printer. Remote workers can send documents by e-mail directly to the printer; Access commands on the HP Connected interface let you decide whether color or mono output is allowed for remote users.
The HP ePrint driver can also be registered to HP Connected, allowing remote users to print to the X555dn natively from any application. Google Cloud Print and Apple AirPrint are also supported and both worked flawlessly during our tests.
However, it is disappointing that the X555dn does not support out-of-the-box wireless technology. The HP JetDirect 2700w 802.11n Adapter costs GBP 37 and connects to the USB 2 port on the print server card.
HP Officejet Enterprise Color X555dn Review: Performance
We found that the print speed depends entirely on the driver settings and the document type. In our tests, we reached the set maximum speed of 70 ppm, only for text documents printed at the general office setting of 300 dpi. With this option selected, our 70-page Word document reached the output box in 58 seconds. In the same configuration, our 24-page DTP document, with its large graphics and color photos, slowed to 48 ppm.
Setting the professional driver increases the resolution to 600 x 600 dpi, but this made the X555dn print the Word document at 40 ppm and the DTP document at 30 ppm. The time to the first page never exceeded 12 seconds in any of the tests, but I noticed that the printer slowed down when it found color pages.
Print quality is inconsistent. The text printed at 300 dpi looked grainy, but by selecting the 1200 x 600 dpi display setting you adjusted it close to the laser. The monochrome photos were also visibly clearer at the highest quality settings and I saw good levels of detail in the darkest areas. Our test chart prints showed smooth transitions through complex color fading, and the color and part diagrams looked bold and strong. However, the photos were disappointing – our test images appeared blurry with little contrast.
You also need to choose your paper carefully. Full-page color graphics and photo prints on the HP Everyday Paper package came out with wavy edges. Not surprisingly, premium paper has produced far superior results, but this will dramatically increase operating costs.
Although not without its oddities, this larger inkjet printer outperforms lasers at similar prices in terms of speed and operating costs. Color quality is declining, but as a high-speed workhorse for office use, the HP Officejet Enterprise Color X555dn is a capable and affordable alternative to a laser.
|600 x 600 dpi|
|533 x 399 x 470 mm (width)|
|Windows 8 and 8.1|