capsule review

HP Business Inkjet 2300

At a Glance
  • HP Business Inkjet 2300

    PCWorld Rating

    This model is speedy, can handle high-volume use, and has low ink costs, but its print quality didn't impress us.

HP Business Inkjet 2300
Photograph: Rick Rizner

The HP Business Inkjet 2300 is tailored for office use, offering high paper capacity and workgroup-friendly options, but it only partly delivers on its goal of providing efficient workgroup printing. For more background on HP's line of inkjets aimed at office workgroups, see our review of the Business Inkjet 1100d. PC World tested the base configuration of the 2300, which costs $499. But add an ethernet card, and the upgraded model (the 2300n) costs about the same as an ethernet-capable, low-end color laser: $799.

The Business Inkjet 2300 has a high, 400-sheet paper capacity, but in all other respects it can't keep up with low-cost color laser printers we've seen from several vendors, including the LaserJet 1500L from HP itself.

The 2300's graphics speeds were impressive, but its print quality was less so. The printer churned out graphics at 2.2 pages per minute--significantly faster than the average speed of 1.2 ppm posted by recently tested inkjets. In addition, it printed text at an above-average 5.4 pages per minute, but the Canon i350 Color Bubble Jet Printer was just as fast at text and costs only $60. In the Business Inkjet 2300's price range, the $799 Oki Data Oki C5100n color laser printer produced text at 9.9 ppm and color graphics at 4.9 ppm. The 2300 printed blacker, cleaner letterforms than most other inkjets, but so do the comparably priced color lasers we've tested.

The 2300 printed our test document of narrow parallel lines better than most inkjets, though it did leave some random specks among the lines. But the quality of its photos on both plain and glossy paper was disappointing (and on a par with the output of sub-$100 inkjets): Color photos on plain paper had noticeable banding and a dotty texture--though on better-quality inkjet paper, detail improved and there was no banding--while color glossies came out so dark that much of their detail was lost.

The 2300 has two paper trays, so you can keep two sizes or types of paper loaded; the internal tray holds 150 sheets, and the second tray holds 250. The ink tanks are specified to print 1750 pages and cost $34 each, so ink costs per page are almost certainly less than with most inkjets, but they probably add up faster than toner costs for most color lasers. In our page yield tests, the 2300 turned in the lowest cost per page for black alone (2.1 cents per page) and for color plus black (7.7 cents per page).

A control panel with a backlit LCD provides status messages and the kinds of menus your IT staff would use to manage a network device: You can print a configuration page or a list of installed PCL fonts, for example, as well as a map of the printer's menus.

Like many HP inkjets, the 2300 has an internal paper tray that the user must either hold up with one hand (while inserting paper with the other) or remove altogether. The second tray uses a normal slide-out drawer design. Though HP's printed documentation is cursory, the on-screen help files are thorough. The watermark feature prints only in a few basic colors, though you can set the font to any size you want, unlike with some other HP printers.

HP's Business Inkjet 2300 is speedy, can handle high-volume use, and has low ink costs, but its print quality didn't impress us.

HP Business Inkjet 2300


Rated 9 ppm text/8 ppm graphics, 4800-by-1200-dpi maximum color resolution, 1200-by-1200-dpi maximum black-and-white resolution, 400 pages input, 100 output.
$499
800/888-0262
www.hp.com

Dan Littman

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At a Glance
  • PCWorld Rating

    This model is speedy, can handle high-volume use, and has low ink costs, but its print quality didn't impress us.

    Pros

    • Low ink costs
    • Impressive print speeds

    Cons

    • Print quality didn't impress
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