HP PSC 1410 All-in-One
At a Glance
At $80 (as 4/1/2006), the PSC 1410 is one of the least expensive inkjet multifunction devices we've reviewed. We found it a good option for a novice PC user.
The compact and lightweight unit has a USB 2.0 interface, but as you'd expect at this price point, there are some trade-offs. For instance, rather than an LCD screen, the PSC 1410 uses a two-digit LED to indicate the number of copies you're making. Regardless, you can still make copies up to 8.5 by 11 inches in monochrome or color, with or without a computer.
The device doesn't feature a media card reader, so you'll need a PC to print photos. You can produce borderless 4-by-6-inch photos and 8.5-by-11-inch photos with borders. While it isn't the fastest printer we've seen, taking almost 2.5 minutes to print our test photo on letter-size photo paper, its quality earned a Very Good score from our panel. Though skin tones looked natural, we noted some slight graininess. The results were still quite good, considering that the PSC 1410 doesn't employ individual ink color cartridges, using instead a more rudimentary black and tricolor cartridge design (a 5ml starter cartridge of each type comes in the box).
Control buttons shaped like jelly beans run along the top-left side of the unit and provide easy enough access to functions and options such as paper type, monochrome/color, scanning, and power. Setup was fairly straightforward, though software installation took a little longer than that of other printers despite not including extra programs. Among HP's own utilities are Image Zone Express (basic photo editing such as red-eye reduction, album creation, and image sharing via the Internet) and HP Solution Center (for scanning, copying, and on-screen how-to guides). A 60-page all-English manual plus a startup guide round out the thoughtful introduction to the features.
In use, the PSC 1410 is a little louder than some other printers, but its sound level wasn't too drastic. Its input tray holds a minimal 100 sheets. Our lab test result of 4.7 ppm for text prints was acceptable for a printer of this price, and is faster than the speed of some more costly inkjet multifunctions. Our judging panel noted that text looked good overall, though not as sharp or dark as on other models. The PSC 1410's scan and copy quality was also decent, and it scanned our 4-by-5-inch color photomontage at 100 dpi in 25 seconds.
If you're in the market for a no-nonsense multifunction printer that provides acceptable output quality at a great price, the PSC 1410 could be one to compare other entry-level models against.