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I purchased this printer because I wanted an inexpensive printer to do light printing while engaged in a six month project and temporarily living 3000 miles from home. I was pleasantly surprised by how quiet this printer prints, and although only rated at 6 pages per minute (for black or color), it churns out page after page at the rated speed. It also doesn't vibrate when printing - I have mine on a flimsy serving tray that was pressed into service as a printer stand and it's perfectly stable when the printer is working.
Installation and set-up were simple - connect the USB cable and place the CD ROM that comes with the printer in your drive and it practically self-installs. You will have to go through a calibration step in which a page of horizontal and vertical lines are printed and you select the lines that are the most perfect. This assures that the printer accurately produces documents that look the same on paper as they do on your screen. I was pleased by the vivid colors in the final test page that is printed after the installation completes. For the price this printer is capable of quality that is amazing.
I also like the software that comes with it because it gives you control over output quality (I use mine in fast draft mode to conserve ink) and allows you to select the type of paper you're using so that you get optimum results. This printer will work well with plain paper, which is a nice feature for anyone who is cost conscious. When you're printing you can see how much ink is remaining in your cartridges, which is also a nice touch for such an inexpensive printer.

There are a few things facts that you need to know about this printer: (1) it has a single interface (USB), unlike many printers that come with both parallel and USB. Also note that you'll have to purchase your USB cable because the printer does not ship with one (most USB printers don't, so this does not detract from the value). However, I was a bit disappointed to discover that it ships with a single color cartridge, although it is configured for separate color and black cartridges. Also, you need to know that a set of color and black cartridges will cost as much as the printer itself.
If you want an entry-level printer or have light printing requirements this is a bargain and well worth the price.
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on December 11, 2002
I can't believe this printer is so quiet and works so good for fifty bucks. As the other reviewer mentioned about the USB cable and black cartridge not being in the box, that is an annoyance that HP should address, but other than that, if you need a low cost printer for student and/or home use, you will not be disappointed. Pretty decent printing even for color pictures. I have previously owned other hp's and epson's that I paid hundreds more for, and this was a pleasant surprise.
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on January 8, 2003
After owning a black & white inkjet by HP for years, I bought an Epson color printer... Big mistake. In addition to being noisy, the software kept track of the ink levels and you couldn't change it until the software told you you were out of ink. I'd have to trick it by unplugging it when the ink cartridges were in the small space available for changing. So after a few years of suffering with the Epson, I swore that I'd go back to HP.
I also use a HP laserjet at work and it's performed reliably for quite a few years, and is still going strong.
So I was comparing HP printers. The higher the price, the faster the printer & some have special photo features, but I didn't need that, I just needed a solid printer for my occasional printing needs.
I had one printer jam since I started recieved this printer, but the back panel comes off for easy removal of any stuck paper. It has an envelope guide, but you have to remove the paper to use it... no big deal.
This printer is about the size of a roll of paper towels when it's folded up, and the paper goes pretty far back into it, so with paper it's it only adds around 6 inches to it. It's quiet, which is very nice. And unlike the epson, the ink levels shown on the screen are "estimates only" and any time you open the top, the ink cartridges pop into view. Yay!
Draft mode prints very good looking, very readable black and decent looking color. My girlfriend didn't even know it was in draft mode when I showed her a page, though she did comment on the colors not being as nice as they could be.
I have no reason to switch it off of draft mode, unless I'm printing documents I want to give to someone or something I want to archive. I just wish I could switch to "black only draft mode." It would've been nice to conserve the color ink when printing web pages that I only needed to keep around for a few days, but at $17 and $21 for ink cartridges (bw & color), ink isn't expensive.
The software that comes with the printer aligns the printer so it knows where the edge of the paper is, and makes sure that when it switches from color to black & white the lines are straight. Basically it prints a bunch of lines and you tell it which ones are straight or close to the edge of the page without going over it. This may be difficult to do if you have bad vision, but the middle settings are the ones that worked for me, and the middle settings will probably work for 99% of the printers out there.
Overall, I'm very happy with this purchase, and I'm glad I didn't spend the extra money on features I don't need. I hope to own this printer for many years to come.
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on May 5, 2003
This printer has great quality & speed for print outs. However, after 5 months, the printer head assembly (the part that holds the ink cartridges) broke & would not move any more. There is only a 90 day warranty for a reason. On a positive note, the ink carts are cheap. On the down side, they are cheap because their capacity is smaller than the average cart.
I replaced it with the HP DJ 3820...rated very highly & seems to be built to last.
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on January 25, 2003
I took a fifty dollar bill out to Wal Mart the other day to buy a cheap printer and decided to buy the HP 3320. Frankly, I didnt expect much ( you get what you pay for...right??) Anyway, the Printer preformed VERY WELL. The paper feed ALWAYS worked, the quality of the photos I printed were excellent and combined with the easy set-up made my 50 bucks go a long way!
I read some of the other reviews on this printer......Had to laugh........Come on people........Complaints on windows 95 drivers???? Windows what????? hehe. No, the ink only comes with
one cartridge, and no extra cables........but it is well worth the FIFTY bucks.
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on June 10, 2003
Having used HP Printers for many years, I assumed the quality of their past products would speak for itself. WRONG. I had the same problem another reviewer mentioned, "the printer head assembly (the part that holds the ink cartridges) broke & would not move any more." This occured 5 DAYS after the warranty expired. And in the three short months I used it, I also purchased at *least* three times as many ink cartridges as I've ever had to purchase for any other printer in a similar time frame. A very bad buy on my part, so I'm waiting for my Lexmark Printer/copier/scanner to arrive, while I use my daughter's THREE YEAR OLD Lexmark that still works great.
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on March 24, 2003
I got $75 for my birthday to buy a printer. Since I spent a good portion of it to buy a video game, I thought I'd buy a cheap HP printer at [the store]. I found out that this printer is really good.
I rarely get paper jams and I can load piles of sheets into the feeder without a real problem. It is a real step up from the Lexmark 1100 ... I owened previously.
The only real downside is that it's a little slow in the pages per minute. Otherwise, It's made a happy college student.
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on February 1, 2003
This printer is great for me... I only paid [a very reasonable] and the Ink cartridges are cheaper than some. If you are a frequent printer then you may want something more heavy-duty, but this little guy is a good deal for the occasional printing job.
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on June 9, 2003
After a six months of relatively light use (printing a paper every now and then), the ink cartridge doesn't move anymore. It's better to go ahead and buy a more expensive printer instead of having to replace the cheap ones every few months or so.
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on April 2, 2003
I have long been a fan of HP printers. When I needed a cheap printer for a student, the HP 3320 seemed like a good buy. As it turned out, this is the worst HP printer I have ever experienced.
The paper path is extremely fragile. Paper jams occur constantly. We were never able to get more than 3 pages printed between jams. HP was at least smart enough the make the back of the printer easy to remove, perhaps knowing it would be removed all the time.
Worse yet, after the jam is cleared, the printer's power supply must be disconnected to let the software driver release the jam status. For students, burdened with resaerch papers, this is unworkable.
Ink usage is extremely high. If you use this printer, keep a large stock of spare cartridges ready to go. We went through a black cartridge in just a week with very few pages to show for it. Also, the printer does not come with a black ink cartridge. Black type using the color inks has unacceptable quality.
The packaging does not include a USB cable. Purchasing the black ink cartridge and a cable raises the base price of the printer well beyond what it's really worth.
We returned this printer after a week of trying to get it to work.
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