Review: HP Envy 110
- — 13 October, 2012 22:00
|Name||Inkjet multifunction printer: HP Envy 110|
|At a glance:||Stylish look,Good quality black-and-whtie printing,Photographs often tinted or marked|
|Summary:||Style just isn't enough.|
HP’s Envy 110 printer is named after the company’s line of stylish-yet-high-performance laptops, which we’ve reviewed and, generally speaking, very much liked.
The Envy 110 attempts to carry on the Envy brand’s legacy in its style. The inkjet printer is relatively lightweight and thin – for a home printer, anyway – and looks pretty slick. It comes in black with silver, or the more retro white with beige trim. The device we got in was the latter, and it looked like something right out of the late 80s/early 90s. In a good way.
The Envy 110 allows you to print wirelessly, and it’s fairly easy to set up. The printer comes with a DVD containing the appropriate software, and that software feeds your network information to the printer, so you never even have to enter an SSID and password. It’s also not as slow as most wireless printers – a five-page document took 46 seconds over USB, and 55 seconds over Wi-Fi. That’s not much of a difference.
However, its stylish look and ease of use don’t make the Envy 110 any less of a blight on the good Envy name. Unfortunately, photo prints from the Envy 110 were just awful. Every page was marked with lines, and every photo had a green tint to it that shouldn’t have been there. The green was particularly evident in pictures with a lot of black in them, as the black appeared instead as a dark, forest green. If you ever print photos at home, for any reason at all, we’d recommend buying another printer – in fact, all of the printers in our March issue’s multi-function printer roundup performed better with photography than this one. When we used HP’s fanciest photo paper – which costs around $6 more than generic photo paper for 25 sheets – the green tint was less obvious, but the lines were still present on all prints.
The printer’s touchscreen was not its best feature, either. It would often be laggy, or not respond to touch at all, but at other times even the lightest touch would open an app. Trying to scroll up or down a list would inevitably result in us selecting an option on the list instead of just, you know, scrolling.
Thankfully, performance when printing purely black-and-white documents is very good. Text was sharp and crisp, and lettering was nice and black. The ink dried quickly, too, which is important if you’re printing multi-page documents, as the second page you print can often smudge the first.
The printer also performed fine when printing line art – it’s just photography that it seems to have an issue with, and other colour images, like cartoons, are acceptable. The colour is still off – there’s that green tint again, and some colours appear washed out – but it’s going to be fine for printing up a Spider-Man poster for your kid or some really garish clipart.
The Envy 110 is a ‘smart’ device – it has a range of apps and also features HP’s ePrint technology. When we first tested one of HP’s ePrint printers early last year, it could take half an hour to two hours – yes, two hours – to print an attachment sent via email. Fortunately speeds have improved here, although it can still take several minutes after sending the email for the document to start printing. Apps, on the other hand, are still clunky and not very useful, although you can use the Facebook apps to print photos directly from the social media website.
It’s also an All-in-One so it can scan and copy – it did both speedily, and in relatively high quality.
The Envy 110 may be stylish, but it’s hard to recommend. There are better printers on the market for $150 that can print much cleaner photos. While style is nice, it ain’t everything.