HP Photosmart Pro B9180
Review Date : Tue, 2 May 2006
Author : WDC Team
HP's new pigment-based A3+ printer.....
|Pros:||Build; 200 years life of prints (claimed); replaceable print heads; separate ink cartridges|
|Cons:||The large physical size (w 25.3in, h 8in, d 15.7in); maximum media length of 19ins|
This printer is built like a tank and will suit a professional studio photographer as well as the serious hobbyist and fine art photographer. The HP B9180 uses four replaceable printheads, each print head handles two colours and can be easily replaced at any time. Boasting eight colours, two of the inks are Photo black and Matte black, these are switched automatically depending on the media type selected. The eight ink cartridges, which each hold 28ml of ink, are stored in a compartment at the front of the printer and remain in the same position at all times. Paper is front loaded via a heavy duty paper tray, this accommodates media sizes from 10 x 15 cm to A3 and envelopes. As with most HP printers the media passes through a U-bend feed system. There is also a straight paper path which is located directly above the paper input tray, this supports media with a thickness of up to 11.5 mil. Prints are delivered onto an extendable output tray.
Though the printer we have here is a beta version and still needs the Windows drivers to be tweaked, the quality of printing so far is outstanding, especially on a Mac. We're sure the final retail version will give other manufacturers something to worry about.