We compare two all-in-one printers and find out if either is a good fit for your office.
The HP Officejet Pro 8600 Plus comes in a smaller/taller packaging with not much empty space around it. HP does a good job of securing the All-in-One in its packaging and bundles quite a few cables and accessories such as three different types of telephone cables and three different types of power connectors for accommodating all the different types of plugs and connectors. A USB cable is also present along with the user-manual and a drivers CD. HP also bundles four cartridges inside the packaging and our particular unit came with the XL high-capacity cartridges variety. However, I am assuming that the retail version will feature “Setup” cartridges like Brother. Also included in our bundle was a sample of “ColorLok” paper that presumably provides a better print quality along with quicker drying.
Getting the HP Officejet Pro 8600 Plus up and running was fairly easy, however, it did require me to install the duplexer on the back. On the other hand, the paper tray was already secured in the printer so the total number of steps were the same as Brother. Following the assembly, I plugged in the cartridges which, unlike the Brother, don’t snap into place to provide an audible clue. What I did like about the 8600 Plus is that during the entire setup, HP shows videos on their LCD screen on getting the task done.
Speaking of the touchscreen, it is pretty much the primary and only way of using the printer so it;s a good thing that HP uses a fairly large 4.3″ screen that is quite a bit more responsive to touch than the Brother;s 1.9″ screen. The screen displays status of the printer along with rather large icons that you can scroll for basic functionality like Copy, Fax and Scan. Since the printer supports apps, there is an icon for that as well. The setup procedure guided me through setting and connecting the printer to our wireless network.
By default HP has Apps for businesses such as Google Docs and Quick Forms as well as for fun and entertainment like Sudoku and Crosswords. You can download and install new Apps on the 8600 which can certainly improve the functionality of your printer along with bringing in some fun.
Below the LCD screen you have a power button while to the left you have USB and media card slots- no PDF support here either. The overall construction quality of the 8600 Plus is definitely better than the Brother MFC-J5910DW and the matte black finish that HP uses gives it a very premium and stealthy look. There are no creaking parts either- you know you’re getting a quality product with the 8600 right from the moment you set it up.
The paper tray can accommodate 250 sheets of paper and you have the option of adding another 250-page tray as a separate purchase. The output sheet can also hold 150 sheets- a fairly large number that I’m not sure will ever be utilized to its fullest. HP doesn’t mention the number of sheets that the scanner/copier feeder can hold but it looks a bit thicker than the Brother so I would assume it would be 50 sheets or so.