HP, also known as Hewlett-Packard, is a home electronics brand that focuses on computer-related products, including printers. They make a diverse range of printers like inkjet or laser, color or monochrome, and all-in-one or printer-only. While their selection can be overwhelming, they're separated into several different lineups to better fit your needs.
Each lineup has different pros and cons that align more closely with their specific usages, and they come at several price points, so you can better easily find a printer that works for you.
The best HP printer for small or home offices that we've tested is the HP Color LaserJet Pro MFP M479fdw. This is an all-in-one color laser printer with an outstandingly solid-feeling build that lets you easily access and replace the toner and a superb touchscreen that makes it easy to navigate through tasks. Its black and color page yields are fantastic, and the overall cost-per-print is impressively low. It also prints amazingly quick and produces excellently accurate colors. Its scanning features are fantastic, with a flatbed scanner with a good scan resolution, high color depth to capture extra nuances in colors, and hinges that raise to accommodate thicker items. There's also an automatic document feeder with duplex scanning. There's an outstanding variety of connectivity options, including an Ethernet port, Wi-Fi, Apple AirPrint, and Mopria Print Service, as well as a USB port for printing directly from USB flash drives, and the printer can also fax.
Unfortunately, being a laser printer, it produces photos with poor quality that lack sharpness and have a lot of banding and pixelation. Also, replacement color cartridges are very expensive, which could make costs build up over time. While the HP Smart mobile app can't print files other than photos and PDFs, you can still use it to print and copy, scan, and run maintenance tasks, among others. It also doesn't support Bluetooth printing. All in all, however, this is a superb office printer and one of the best laser printers we've tested.
The best HP printer for photos is the HP ENVY Photo 7855. This all-in-one inkjet model has excellent color accuracy and photo printing quality. Colors look vibrant, and there's only a small amount of banding in greens and blues. Also, it has a decently low cost-per-print for photos and color prints. The scanner is fully equipped with a high-resolution flatbed and an automatic document feeder to process multi-page documents, so it should satisfy most of your household needs. The printer offers an incredible range of wired and wireless connectivity options, including Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, Ethernet, and USB. It also supports Apple AirPrint, Mopria Print Service, and printing off a USB thumb drive or SD card. It's also compatible with the decent HP Smart mobile app, from where you can print, scan, copy, check ink levels, and manage your ink subscription.
Unfortunately, its poor page yield means you'll need to replace the cartridges often, and since there's only one color cartridge, you'll need to replace it even if just one color runs out. The printer also takes a disappointingly long time to print the first page, meaning you'll have to wait longer. On the bright side, however, you can get high-yield cartridges that should last longer, though we haven't tested them. All in all, this is a very good choice if you'd like to print your own photos in amazing quality at home.
While the OfficeJet Pro line is designed for offices, the HP OfficeJet Pro 9015e is the best HP printer for family use that we've tested. It's the replacement model of the discontinued HP OfficeJet Pro 9015, which is nearly identical, but it doesn't come with a six-month subscription to HP Instant Ink. It feels well-built and sturdy, and it provides easy access to paper jams and ink cartridges. It offers both wired and wireless connectivity options, and you can even print from your mobile device thanks to its support for Apple AirPrint and Mopria Print Service. It covers all of your scanning needs with its flatbed scanner for thick books and its automatic document feeder to process large, double-sided documents. Its excellently high page yield means you shouldn't need to replace the ink cartridges often, making it very cost-effective over time. Its color accuracy should be good enough for projects or printing photos, but it may not be good enough for tasks that require exact color reproduction.
Unfortunately, its photo printing quality is only decent, and it isn't as good as its predecessor's. Images look grainy, and details are lost in dark areas. Also, like most HP printers, there's no Bluetooth printing support. While it's compatible with the HP Smart companion app, you can't print off Microsoft Office, text, or webpage files from your mobile device. That said, this is still a great family option, and it's among the best HP printers we've tested.
HP tends to make a diverse assortment of printers, each of which is designed for different uses. Their photo printing lineup ENVY, for example, is comparable to Canon's PIXMA lineup, while their LaserJet Pro and LaserJet Enterprise lineups are more similar to Brother's current offering of office printers. As a whole, HPs printers have few similar characteristics between lineups, but most tend to lack Bluetooth support. However, thanks to their variety, their printers come in many different price ranges, so you can find something at a price point that suits your budget.
HP offers several different printer lineups to suit your specific needs. They use the following names:
Jun 25, 2021: Replaced the HP OfficeJet Pro 9025e with the HP Color LaserJet Pro MFP M479fdw as 'Best Small/Home Office'. Verified that picks were still available.
Apr 27, 2021: Replaced the discontinued HP OfficeJet Pro 9025 with the HP OfficeJet Pro 9025e and the discontinued HP OfficeJet Pro 9015 with the HP OfficeJet Pro 9015e now that the replacement models are available at more retailers.
Feb 26, 2021: Verified product availability, and updated text for clarity.
HP is a well-known brand that offers many different kinds of printers at varying price points to better suit your needs. As such, their build quality and performances shift around depending on the lineup you're looking at. There's even a noticeable difference in their cartridge performances, with their Smart Tank and LaserJet Pros having the highest yields; this is expected in supertank and laser printers. That said, HP's printers can suit most budgets and printing needs while still offering a fairly well-rounded performance.