HP Photosmart B8550 Inkjet Photo Printer
|Printer Output Type||Color|
|Printing Media Type||Banner paper|
|Connections||USB Cable | Memory Card | USB Drive|
About this item
- Make sure this fits by entering your model number.
- Inkjet printer produces lab-quality photos as large as 13 x 19-inches
- 125-sheet tray holds paper from 4 x 6-inches to 13 x 19-inches; includes specialized tray for three common photo sizes
- Up to 32 pages per minute for black-and-white draft-quality letters; 95 seconds for 13 x 19-inch color photos
- Five-ink system lets you replace only the colors you need; 2.4-inch color LCD lets you review, select, and enhance photos without your computer
- One-year limited hardware warranty; one-year of technical phone support
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Need one printer for everything from photo enlargements to 12 x 12" scrapbook pages to documents? Choose the HP Photosmart B8550. It lets you print excellent-quality photos in a wide range of sizes all the way up to 13 x 19" plus documents. Color management features Print photos with enhanced detail / Dual-drop-volume technology for photos with smooth, even color and fine detail. Memory card compatible Compact Flash, Memory Stick, Memory Stick Duo, Secure Digital/MultiMediaCard, Secure Digital High Capacity Card, xD-PictureCard 2 USB (front (1 High Speed device port,) and back ( High Speed host port)) Display 2.4-in LCD (color graphics) - 15 buttons (On; Previous;Photosmart Express; OK; Red Eye Removal; Setup; Help; Zoom +; Zoom -; Left arrow, Right arrow, Up arrow, down arrow; Cancel). 4 LEDs (On LED; Memory Card Slot LED; Red Eye Removal LED; Attention LED) Duplex print options Manual (driver support provided) 125-sheet input tray, 20-sheet (automated 4 x 6-in) photo tray, 50-sheet output tray Unit dimensions 22.83 x 15.31 x 7.13 in (487 x 277 x 677 mm), Maximum - 22.83 x 24.81 x 7.13 in; Product weight 16.7 lb (7.6 kg ) Includes HP 564 Black Ink Cartridge (~250 pages), HP 564 Photo Black Ink Cartridge (~120 4 x 6-in photos), HP 564 Cyan Ink Cartridge (~300 pages), HP 564 Magenta Ink Cartridge (~300 pages), HP 564 Yellow Ink Cartridge (~300 pages), power cord, Software CD HP Warranty One-year limited hardware warranty backed by HP Customer Care For Windows and Macintosh (10.5 or later)
Amazon.com Product Description The HP Photosmart B8550 Inkjet Photo Printer makes it easy to produce lab-quality photos as large as 13 x 19-inches at home. Enjoy the versatility of printing from your computer, from a supported memory card, or directly from your PictBridge enabled camera. And because this Photosmart printer also produces laser-quality text, you can rely on it for all your printing needs.
Print Directly From Cameras and Memory Cards
Printing photos and enlargements at home is convenient and cost-effective. The HP Photosmart B8550 Inkjet Photo Printer offers several printing options. With a 2.4-inch color LCD display, you can review, select, and enhance photos without the use of your computer. It features 15 convenient buttons that let you zoom-in to check out details before you print and perform quick editing tasks. With special HP technology, red eye reduction is as easy as pushing a single button, and the printer's four LED indicators let you know if anything needs your attention before you start printing.
Dedicated slots let you print directly from a variety of common memory cards, including Compact Flash, Memory Stick, Memory Stick Duo, Secure Digital/MultiMediaCards, and xD-Picture Cards. You can also print right from any PictBridge enabled camera or computer using one of the printer's high-speed USB connections. This printer also supports wireless operation with the use of HP Blue tooth adapters (not included).
Print Almost Anything, Fast
The 125-sheet main tray holds paper from 4 x 6-inches to 13 x 19-inches, including envelopes, standard letter paper, and legal-sized paper. A specialized tray makes it easy to load paper in three common photo sizes--3.5 x 5-inches, 4 x 6-inches, and 5 x 7-inches. Additionally, borderless printing is supported for prints up to 13 x 44-inches.
Document printing is fast, at up to 32 pages per minute for black-and-white draft-quality letters and 31 pages per minute for color draft-quality letters. Unlike with some multi-use printers, photo printing is quick, too. A 13 x 19-inch color photo may be finished printing in as little as 95 seconds.
Innovative Technology for Quality and Reliability
Four HP 564 dye-ink cartridges in cyan, magenta, yellow, and photo black provide vivid color images and high-quality black-and-white photos. For laser-quality black text on paper, a fifth cartridge contains black pigment ink. Combined with Advanced Photo Paper, these Vivera inks offer instant-dry, smudge-resistant photos. Plus, with the five-ink system, you only have to replace the cartridges you need, saving you money.
There's plenty of innovative technology behind HP's photo printers. Unique Auto Sense technology uses optical sensors to optimize settings based on what type of paper you are using. And when printing begins, dual-drop volume technology means the specialized print head delivers extremely small drops, allowing detailed images to contain smooth transitions.
When you select the "best" print quality option for color or black and white, this Photosmart printer prints up to 1200 x 1200 dpi. For photographs, it can render images with up to 9600 x 2400-optimized dpi color (when printing from a computer on selected HP photo papers and with 1200-input dpi).
This HP Photosmart printer is backed by a one-year limited hardware warranty and one-year of technical phone support.
What's in the Box
HP Photosmart B8550, Printhead Assembly, HP 564 Black Ink Cartridge, HP 564 Photo Black Ink Cartridge, HP 564 Cyan Ink Cartridge, HP 564 Magenta Ink Cartridge, HP 564 Yellow Ink Cartridge, power cord, Software CD, Photo media sample pack, Start Here Poster, User Guide, and Creative Projects Guide.
Guaranteed to be working upon shipping
Visible screen diagonal
3" / 7 cm
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What a pain! HP wants you to buy all their products so they have set this up to "read" their paper and their ink only. So no matter that I prefer other types of paper, if I try to use it, I often get messages that there is no paper in the printer, the wrong kind of paper is in the printer, or it jams. And the ink - well, if you don't buy their ink cartridges, the ink won't register as being refilled. Even when I have used their paper and ink, the print quality is not as I would like it. The colors often come out not very well blended so the reds look garish and the blues are not as blue as they should be. In addition, it's not that easy to override the standard page settings if you want to print something that's not a "normal" size. I have been very disappointed with this, but as others have said, if you put ink in it, the policy of the sellers is that you can't return it. I have yet to be able to print a 13x19 print. I have to keep fooling around with the ink cartridges as they don't hold very much ink even if you get the XL size. And a lot of ink is wasted each time you try to print to get the print quality right. It's not very user friendly if you want to do anything that does not fall into the parameters of what HP wants you to do with their printers. I have spent more time trying to tweak this stupid printer than i have actually printing anything on it. I use my Epson instead because the quality is better and the software for it allows me to very easily create my own custom sizes. So if I could give this no stars I would. It has been a huge waste of money since I haven't been able to use it for what I bought it for - to print 13x19 prints. Some of the negative reviews allude to all of these things, but unfortunately, when I bought my printer, there were mostly positive reviews. I would not have gotten this printer if I had known.
Since initially writing this review, I have been able to print 13x19 and the quality is pretty good - as long as I don't use HP products. I have figured out how to override the HP parameters, but I would not change my original rating. This is not an easy to figure out printer and it still jams paper quite frequently causing me to waste a lot of paper. That happens whether I use HP paper or not. I find I don't do as much creatively with this printer as I had hoped because it's such a pain to use. Possibly looking into something else, but money is tight and it ticks me off to have already paid for this and have it not work very well.
* Print quality. I was completely amazed by the print quality of this printer, as everyone else has said. Once I'd printed out my first 4x6, I paraded it around the house, showing people and making sure I wasn't imagining how clear and sharp it was.
* LCD screen. I didn't expect I'd care about the LCD screen, but it really does make printer maintenance and such very idiot-proof. And hey, eye-catching bright colors are nice too.
* Separate trays for photo paper and regular paper. It's nice not to have to constantly change paper sizes.
* The printer prints parallel to the edges of the paper! This hasn't always been my experience with HP.
* The printer even looks nice. How often do you say that about a printer? I love the glossy finish.
The only quibbles I've had so far are tiny, such as:
* If I let the printer manage colors, sometimes there's been a bit of a light band at the bottom of various pictures. Letting Photoshop manage colors took care of that.
* Occasionally there are tiny tiny spots of white on the otherwise flawless prints. No idea what causes this.
* The printer really is big, but I knew that up front, and if the printer has to be this big to make pictures this beautiful and to handle 13x19 pages, then for gosh sakes let it be big.
* The printer makes a lot of noise doing various mysterious printer things after you print a page. I don't know what it's doing, but it does it a lot, and loudly.
* The included ink ran out quickly, with only light use. Buy the XL size cartridges.
* The printer didn't come with a cable to hook it to the computer, and it uses the less-common square USB plug. Luckily I rummaged around and found a spare.
* The HP sofware isn't great. It's better than any other HP software I've ever seen, but it's still clunky and buggy. I get an error message every time I shut down because of some sidebar gadget (even though I don't actually have it open on the sidebar).
* The usual HP lies about how your ink cartridges are almost empty, and you should be ready to replace them any second! You can print and print long after these messages pop up (again and again). Just keep clicking OK and print until your pictures start looking bad.
* And finally, the cropping problem (described in a couple of previous reviews).
But, overall, moving from a Deskjet 1000C to THIS? It's like freaking night and day. I may seem to have a long list of problems, but they're really minor. In fact, I take it all back. The printer prints AMAZINGLY, and I don't know about you, but this is really what I look for in a printer.
And now for the cropping problem. I've just spent hours sorting this out, and finally I've come up with a workaround. It's not elegant, but at least there is one. (My workaround is for 4x6 images printed from Photoshop [CS4]; you'll have to adapt my method to whichever program you're using.)
For best results, do the following.
1. Stretch your image's longest dimension to 102%.
Yes, it's true, the printer doesn't print at the same proportions you see on your screen. It squashes your image's height just a bit. I know it's the printer, and not my screen, because I drew a perfect square in Photoshop and zoomed in on it and measured it with a ruler, and on the screen it was perfectly square. I printed it on photo paper and then measured the printed square, and the square was now a rectangle.
2. Increase your canvas size.
Your short side should be 105% of the original size, and the tall side should be 104%. This is to make a thin border around your picture and compensate for the cropping the printer does.
3. Preview your picture.
Definitely preview it before you print it (there's a setting in your printer properties), this'll save you paper. When the preview comes up, what you're looking for is a white border of a more-or-less consistent width around the edges of your image.
4. Print it.
You should find that your picture is practically identical to what's on your screen. It still crops the image ever so slightly, but you do want SOME cropping, because without cropping you'd have a white border, and we're going for borderless here. But on my prints, you have to look really close to see that the image has been cropped. MUCH better than the out-of-the-box results.
5. Don't save your image!
You're only making these changes for as long as it takes to print. You don't want your beautiful image to be slightly stretched with a permanent border.
There you have it. I wasted half my pack of HP 4x6 photo paper to find all this out. But I wasn't content with the suggestion of transferring my picture file to a memory card and plugging that into the printer...too much hassle for me (although I'm sure it works just as well). I know my method isn't exactly streamlined, but if you do a lot of 4x6 printing I think you'll appreciate it. And if you're using a program with Actions or Macros you can automate this whole process.
By the way, anyone want to buy a few dozen pictures of my 10-month-old daughter?
PS. I've noticed the Amazon price is $280. When I bought it in July or so, it was around $190. I wonder why there's been such a big price jump? At Amazon, anyway. (shrug)
1.) print with proper presets -- there are no options to create my own presets. Instead it picks up on my previous printers presets.
2.) cannot "force" it to print black and white. I've tried every single way to do this. That is ridiculous. Every single Epson or Canon inkjet I've had in the past has a simple "print b&w" command built in. Not here. I have b&w documents and new black cartridge installed and it decides to print my document with GREEN ink. Why? No clue.
3.) Ink usage. Granted we all have to deal with this but the HP has been the worst. I've hardly printed any photos in the last six months, only documents with the occasional highlighting and it has consumed every ink cart - even the photo black - ironic given the lack of photos. I don't get it.
In short, if you have a PC and print a few docs a week, maybe it's ok. If you are a designer/illustrator/photographer, forget it. There are plenty of excellent Epsons and Canons out there. Don't waste your time with this POS.