HP Officejet Pro 6230 review

HP’s Officejet Pro 6230 is a no-frills inkjet printer, aimed at small offices and the home. You can buy cheaper, but it’s still a bargain with support for wired and wireless networking, making it easy to share among everyone on a network. There’s also automatic duplex (double-sided) printing – good for saving paper with minimal effort. It’s built for moderate use, with a recommended monthly load of up to 800 pages; roughly 40 per working day. The only obvious omissions are a screen, and a USB host port which would enable direct printing on the device.

 

A range of shortcuts covers everyday print jobs

This isn’t the smallest of inkjets and looks a little clunky with a grey plastic finish and jutting prow. We could also hear a constant, variable high-pitched noise from the integrated mains adapter unless we unplugged our review sample.

The large top panel looks like it could house a scanner bed, but open it up and you get easy access to the paper path for clearing any jams. This is also how you reach the four ink cartridges. As you’d expect, you can fit high capacity replacements good for 1,000 black pages or 825 of each colour. Using these, running costs are 5.4p for a page of mixed text and graphics, of which the black component is 1.6p. That’s not the best, but it’s very competitive for a cheap printer.

 

We’re not sure why HP makes you dig in the Advanced settings to select the maximum resolution

We’re not overly keen on paper trays which can’t be removed from a printer, and it’s a shame that the captive one here is rated at 225 pages – not quite a half-ream. That said, it’s easy to load and appears sturdy. It’s protected from dust under a wide and strong output tray, although we’re not sure why HP has fitted the end of this with a damped flip-up stop – surely a pointlessly expensive touch. Above it, a simple panel of buttons and indicators covers mobile printing, alongside more conventional functions such as cancelling a job.

 

HP has a dedicated Android app, and a print service to enable in-app printing

This is a quick printer for the money, delivering 25 pages of black text at 17.6 pages per minute (ppm) and 24 pages of colour graphics at a slightly less impressive 4.4ppm. It was less competitive when duplexing, needing three and three-quarter minutes to print 10 sides on five sheets of A4 – the results were noticeably fainter than with one-sided prints. Otherwise, print quality was very good, with sharp black text and vice-free colour graphics. While draft printing was no quicker than standard quality, the results, though more faint, would be adequate for formal letters if ink saving was paramount.

While it’s not exactly exciting, there’s little to criticise about the Officejet Pro 6230. Cheap to buy and inexpensive to run, it’s a good choice if you need to print reasonable volumes of office documents or letters on a low budget. If this printer doesn’t suit your needs then check out our Best Printers 2015 and buying guide.

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