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HP Tango X Printer Review

Tested using Methodology v1.0
Reviewed Jan 24, 2022 at 10:48 am
HP Tango X Picture
5.7
Family
4.0
Small/Home Office
5.8
Student
5.2
Black & White
6.9
Photo
Type Printer Only
Technology Inkjet
Wireless Yes
Color Yes
SuperTank
No

The HP Tango X Printer is a wireless-only, compact model with a linen cover to keep out dust and hide the printer when not in use. While it's marketed as an all-in-one, it doesn't have a scanner, and the only way to scan or copy documents is by using your phone's camera through the HP Smart app. Unfortunately, it has a low page yield, so you'll need to replace the cartridges often if you print a lot. It also takes a lot of time to start printing your documents, especially if they're long, and it can't automatically print double-sided, which is annoying if you tend to print these often. That said, it might still be worth considering if you're looking for a compact, sleek printer for occasional weekly prints.

Our Verdict

5.7 Family

The HP Tango X printer is disappointing for family use. It doesn't print many pages before its cartridges run out of ink, meaning you'll be spending a lot of money to replace them often if you print a lot. Also, since it's a printer-only unit, it doesn't have a flatbed or a sheetfed scanner. On the bright side, while its color accuracy is disappointing, its printed photos look good. Plus, you can use the mobile app to watch ink levels and paper levels.

Pros
  • Comes with a nice linen cover.
  • Feels well-built.
Cons
  • Can't automatically print double-sided.
  • Disappointing color accuracy.
  • Low page yield and high cost-per-print.
  • Prints documents slowly.
4.0 Small/Home Office

The HP Tango X printer is bad for small or home offices. Its cartridges run out quickly, especially if you print multi-page documents frequently. Running costs are high since you need to buy replacements often. Also, it's very slow at printing documents, even if you're just printing one page, and it doesn't automatically print double-sided. It doesn't have a scanner, but you can use the app to "scan" from your smartphone.

Pros
  • Comes with a nice linen cover.
  • Feels well-built.
Cons
  • Can't automatically print double-sided.
  • Low page yield and high cost-per-print.
  • Prints documents slowly.
5.8 Student

The HP Tango X printer is inadequate for students. Since it doesn't print many pages before its cartridges run out, you'll need to buy replacements often; this isn't ideal if you print lots of large reports. Also, it can't automatically print double-sided, and it's slow at printing, even if you're just printing one page. Moreover, it lacks a scanner, which is important for some students.

Pros
  • Comes with a nice linen cover.
  • Feels well-built.
Cons
  • Can't automatically print double-sided.
  • Low page yield and high cost-per-print.
  • Prints documents slowly.
5.2 Black & White

The HP Tango X printer is inadequate for high-volume black and white printing, but it isn't designed for this use. It doesn't yield many pages before its black cartridge runs out, so you'll spend a lot of time and money replacing it. Also, it prints documents very slowly, which isn't great if you have long reports or essays to print, and it can't automatically print on both sides of a sheet.

Pros
  • Comes with a nice linen cover.
  • Feels well-built.
Cons
  • Can't automatically print double-sided.
  • Low page yield and high cost-per-print.
  • Prints documents slowly.
6.9 Photo

The HP Tango X printer is okay for photo printing. It prints good-looking photos, and while some colors don't look identical to their originals, it's likely fine for casual use. The width slider in its input feeder supports many common photo sizes. Unfortunately, it doesn't print many pages before its cartridges run out, meaning you'll have to replace them often; this can get expensive, especially if you print many photos.

Pros
  • Good printing speed.
  • Comes with a nice linen cover.
Cons
  • Disappointing color accuracy.
  • Low page yield and high cost-per-print.
  • 5.7 Family
  • 4.0 Small/Home Office
  • 5.8 Student
  • 5.2 Black & White
  • 6.9 Photo
  1. Updated Jan 24, 2022: Review published.
  2. Updated Jan 19, 2022: Early access published.

Test Results

perceptual testing image
Design
8.0
Design
Build Quality

The HP Tango X printer feels well-built and sturdy. There's a lid dampening hinge that keeps the cartridge bay open, letting you use two hands to replace the cartridges or remove a paper jam. It comes with a thick linen cover to hide your printer when you aren't using it. The printer isn't magnetically attached to the cover; instead, it simply sits in the middle of raised grooves. When you close the cover, the printer goes to sleep. The HP Smart app lets you know that the cover is closed and doesn't let you print. This way, you won't damage any printed documents or your printer by trying to print when you forgot you put up the cover.

Unfortunately, the HP Tango X doesn't have an output tray to catch printed paper, so your document sheets can easily slip off the table. Likewise, there's no input tray—just a top feeder that holds a very limited number of pages.

Design
Dimensions
Height 3.4" (8.7 cm)
Width 15.3" (38.9 cm)
Depth 8.4" (21.4 cm)
Height When In Use
10.2" (26.0 cm)
Width When In Use
15.3" (38.9 cm)
Depth When In Use
24.6" (62.5 cm)
Weight
7.4 lbs (3.4 kg)

The HP Tango X printer is compact, so it won't take up much space on your desk. The measurements in our review include the cover. If you want to use it without the cover, you can see the dimensions below:

Height: 3.2" (8.1 cm)
Width: 14.8" (37.6 cm)
Depth: 8.0" (20.3 cm)
Height when in use : 10.1" (25.7 cm)
Width when in use: 14.8" (37.6 cm)
Depth when in use: 11.3" (28.6 cm)
Weight: 5.7 lbs (2.6 kg)

5.5
Design
Expected Maintenance
Ink Related Maintenance
Expected
Drum Unit
No Drum Unit

The HP Tango X printer requires typical inkjet maintenance. While we didn't experience any clogging on our unit, there are built-in tasks for printhead cleaning and printhead alignment in case it happens. To access the cartridges, you need to lift the top cover and press down on the indentation on the lid, which will pop open the cartridge bay lid. Replacing the cartridges is easy and intuitive, but the HP Tango X must be on to remove and insert them. You can also access the sheet roller from here, but the space is very small, so it might be very hard to remove paper in the case of a paper jam.

0
Design
Display Screen
Display Screen No
Display Screen Size
N/A
Touchscreen No

The HP Tango X printer doesn't have a display screen. Instead, it has backlit, touch-sensitive buttons for Information, Cancel, and Resume. There's also a light near the input tray that lets you know if there's a paper-related issue. The light at the output changes color depending on the printer's status, and there's audible feedback whenever a print job is complete. The power button is located at the back, along with the power cable port and the Wi-Fi button.

HP advertises that it's voice-activated, so you can print specific items with a voice command. We tested it with our Amazon Echo Dot Gen 4, and it worked well, as you can see in this video demonstration.

3.9
Design
Cartridge
Photo Cartridge
No
Number Of Color Cartridges
1
Black Cartridge Model
HP 64 Black
Tested Black Page Yield
7.72 prints
Estimated Black Page Yield
146 prints
Color Cartridge Model
HP 64 Tri-Color
Tested Color Page Yield
5.81 prints
Estimated Color Page Yield
123 prints
Third Party Cartridge
Purchased One Worked
Ink Type
Dye And Pigment
High Yield Cartridge
Yes

The HP Tango X printer doesn't yield many black or color pages before the cartridges run out. Also, there's only one color cartridge, so you need to throw out the entire cartridge even if only one color is running low. Fortunately, there are high-yield versions of the cartridges available that will last you longer. When running low on ink, the ink cartridge light glows amber, and the HP Smart app gives you a few out-of-ink alerts before the cartridge is empty. That said, it doesn't stop you from continuing to print in color even if one of the cartridges is empty, which helps you save money if you only need to print with one color but are out of another.

The HP Tango X accepts third-party cartridges. While we had no issues printing with our third-party black cartridge, we got an error message on our computer saying "the indicated cartridges are not communicating correctly with the printer" whenever we installed the third-party color cartridge. That said, if your third-party cartridges aren't defective, they will work fine in your unit.

0
Design
Scanner Features
Scanner
No
Scan Flatbed
No
Flatbed Extendable Hinges
N/A
Automatic Document Feeder
No
ADF Capacity
N/A
Scan Speed
N/A
Duplex Scanning
No
Flatbed Scan Size
N/A
Fax
No
Copy
No
OCR Included
No Scanner

While HP advertises the Tango X printer as an all-in-one, it doesn't have a scanner. Instead, you can "scan" and "copy" a document through the app by using your smartphone's camera. Like the desktop version, the HP Smart mobile app has OCR technology that lets you save these scans as a searchable PDF.

0
Design
Scanning Resolution And Color Depth
Max Scan Resolution
N/A
Max Scan Color Depth
N/A

We scanned a document through the HP Smart app using an iPhone 11, which you can see here. Keep in mind that results will vary depending on your device and its camera specs.

Design
Printing Size
Letter (8.5" x 11") Yes
Legal (8.5" x 14") Yes
Tabloid (11" x 17") No
A6 (105mm x 148mm) Yes
A5 (148mm x 210mm) Yes
A4 (210mm x 297mm) Yes
Photo (2" x 3") No
Photo (4" x 6") Yes
Photo (5" x 7") Yes
Photo (8" x 10") Yes
Max Paper Weight
300 g/m²

The HP Tango X's input feeder has width sliders to adjust to different paper and photo sizes. It accepts any media size from 3" x 5" to 8.5" x 14", but it can only print borderless images up to 5" x 7".

Design
In The Box

  • Power cable
  • 1x HP 64 Setup Black Instant Ink Ready
  • 1x HP 64 Setup Color Instant Ink Ready
  • Setup guide, info sheets, and notices flyer

Design
Battery
Advertised Battery Life
N/A
Tested Charging Time
N/A
Document
6.3
Document
Cost-Per-Print
Black Cartridge Price
18.99 US$
Color Cartridge Price
24.99 US$
Black Only Printing
0.130 US$/print
Color Printing
0.203 US$/print
Photo Printing
0.543 US$/print
Ink Subscription
Optional

The HP Tango X printer's running costs can quickly exceed the original price of the printer, especially if you most often print in color. On the bright side, the cartridges are relatively cheap. If you sign up for HP's Instant Ink subscription, you can choose a plan to pay for an allotted number of pages per month. At the time of writing, HP offers free photo prints from your phone up to 5" x 7", meaning they won't count towards your total monthly page allotment.

5.3
Document
Printing Speed
Black Only Text Document
8 PPM
Color Document
5 PPM
Photo Printing Time
44.2 s
Single Page Out Time (Black Only)
13.2 s
Duplex Printing
Manual
Input Tray Capacity
50 pages

Overall, the HP Tango X's printing speed is disappointingly slow. When sending a multi-page document to the printer, it takes more than one minute to start printing, and it stays consistently slow no matter what type of document you print. On the bright side, photos don't take too much time.

Unfortunately, the HP Tango X printer can't automatically duplex print. To print on both sides of a document, you need to select "Two-sided (Duplex) Printing" in the printer properties. This will let you print all the odd pages, and after reloading the document back into the feeder in the correct orientation, pressing the Resume button will print all the even pages on the blank side.

Document
Document Sample
Color Ink Needed for Black & White
No
Photo
7.5
Photo
Photo Printing Quality
Borderless Printing
Yes

The HP Tango X printer has good photo printing quality. Pictures look well-detailed, but they're a bit grainy, and there's a warm tint to everything that causes skin to look pinker than it should. Also, it struggles with some color gradients, as seen in the banding in the sky of the sunset photo.

5.9
Photo
Color Accuracy
Average Color dE
8.36

The HP Tango X Printer's color accuracy is disappointing. Most colors look different from their originals, especially the natural colors, blacks, and blues. It's fine for casual photo prints, but if color matters a lot to you, you may prefer a different choice, like the Canon PIXMA MG3620.

5.5
Photo
Color Gamut

The HP Tango X printer's color gamut is disappointing. The transitions between colors aren't smooth, and the gradient of colors to white and to black isn't in the right areas.

Mobile App And Connectivity
4.5
Mobile App And Connectivity
Connectivity
Ethernet
No
USB Input To Computer
No
Bluetooth
No
Wi-Fi via Router
Yes
Wi-Fi Direct
Yes
External Storage Support
No
Apple AirPrint
Yes
Mopria Print Service
No

The HP Tango X printer is a wireless-only model, meaning it lacks any wired connection options. It's best used with a smartphone, a tablet, or a computer with a Wi-Fi card. It supports Bluetooth for setup purposes only; you can't use it to print.

10
Mobile App And Connectivity
Mobile App
Mobile App Yes
App Name HP Smart
iOS Yes
Android Yes
Photo (JPEG, PNG)
Yes (Android and iOS)
PDF
Yes (Android and iOS)
Microsoft Office Files
Yes (iOS Only)
Text Files (TXT)
Yes (iOS Only)
Webpages (HTML)
Yes (iOS Only)

The HP Tango X printer is compatible with the HP Smart app, which lets you print photos and documents, manage your HP Instant Ink subscription, and send mobile faxes. Also, you can use the app to "scan" and "copy" documents or images with your phone's camera. There's also a "Printables" section where you can print free calendars, coloring pages, greeting cards, and other crafts.

While you can print photos and PDFs from Android or iOS, you can print some other commonly used file types only on iOS. Also, the iOS version lets you use the app to print documents from cloud services, like Dropbox and Google Photos, but you can only do so from Facebook on Android phones.

Mobile App And Connectivity
OS Compatibility
Windows Fully
macOS Fully
Chrome OS Fully

The HP Tango X is compatible with all operating systems, but Windows requires you to download drivers. On macOS and ChromeOS, no drivers are needed.

Differences Between Sizes And Variants

We tested the HP Tango X printer with an Indigo linen cover, but it's also available with a Charcoal linen cover. You can see our unit's label here.

Compared To Other Printers

The HP Tango X is a sub-par family printer, especially compared to other models in its price range. Its cartridges run out of ink quickly, resulting in high running costs. It prints slowly, and it can't automatically duplex print, while many other inexpensive models can. Also, it doesn't have a scanner, and while you can "scan" a document using the app and your phone's camera, the quality might not be good enough for some people. That said, many other cheaper options offer more features, like the Canon PIXMA MG3620 or the Brother MFC-J1205W.

See our recommendations for the best home printers, the best printers for college students, and the best wireless printers.

Canon PIXMA TR150

The Canon PIXMA TR150 and the HP Tango X are both very compact printer-only models, but the Canon is much smaller. It comes with a rechargeable battery, meaning you can keep printing even without a power outlet. It yields slightly more pages, giving it a much lower cost-per-print. On the other hand, the HP prints faster overall. Also, it comes with a linen cover to hide the printer when not in use and to keep dust out.

HP OfficeJet 250

The HP OfficeJet 250 and the HP Tango X are both very compact printers. If you want something you can print on the road with, the OfficeJet 250 is the better choice since it comes with a rechargeable battery, meaning you can keep printing even without a power outlet. Also, it has an automatic document feeder, unlike the Tango X, which is a printer-only unit. On the other hand, the Tango X prints slightly faster, and it also prints better-looking photos. It comes with a linen cover to hide the printer when not in use and to keep dust out.

HP DeskJet 3755

The HP Tango X is better overall compared to the HP DeskJet 3755. If you only need to print, the Tango X has a higher page yield, a lower cost-per-print, and a faster print speed. You can "scan" via the app by using your phone's camera, but the resulting quality doesn't look as good. On the other hand, if you also need to scan, the DeskJet 3755 has a sheetfed scanner, despite its more compact size. It comes in different bright colors to match your office setup.

Canon PIXMA MG3620

The Canon PIXMA MG3620 is better overall compared to the HP Tango X. The Canon yields more pages before its cartridges run out of ink, resulting in a much lower cost-per-print. Also, it has a faster printing speed and a flatbed scanner with high resolution. On the other hand, the HP is more compact and feels much better built. It's designed with aesthetics in mind, and it comes with a linen cover to hide the printer when not in use and to keep dust out. Unfortunately, the HP doesn't have any built-in scanner features, and it can't automatically print double-sided whereas the Canon can.

Epson EcoTank ET-2720

The Epson EcoTank ET-2720 and the HP Tango X are two very different printers. The Epson is a supertank designed for high-volume printing, so it has a much higher page yield with a much cheaper cost-per-print. Also, it has a flatbed scanner, a USB port to connect directly to your PC, and supports Mopria Print Service. On the other hand, if you're looking for a compact model to print only, the HP is much smaller, and it comes with a linen cover to hide the printer when not in use and keep dust out.

HP DeskJet 2755

The HP DeskJet 2755 and the the HP Tango X are both home printers. If you need a scanner, the Deskjet 2755 is a better choice, thanks to its flatbed scanner. Also, it has a USB cable to plug it into your computer directly, while the Tango X offers wireless connection options only. On the other hand, the Tango X is a better option if you only need to print. It's more compact and yields more pages at a lower cost-per-print. Also, it prints slightly faster, and it comes with a linen cover to hide the printer when not in use and to keep dust out.

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