After Canon and Epson rolled out their bulk-ink all in one printer, HP finally decided to join the competition. The previous year, this giant manufacturer launched the HP Smart Tank Plus 651 that boasts low running costs. Thanks to the smart tank feature that allows you to save consumables for more page yields. Well, is the Plus 651 that excellent?
As one of the members of HP’s big family, HP Smart Tank Plus 651 receives as much attention as its counterparts. This all in one printer delivers a number of features to help tackle your office documents. Also, this small machine is a great space-saver, which means it consumes a little space in your workstation. Get prepared for the thorough review below!
Small Build with Stylish Look
The Smart Tank Plus 651 is one of HP’s bulk-ink products aside from the HP Smart Tank Plus 551. This printer is constructed in a small design, allowing you to place the device almost anywhere. Measuring 7.8 inches high by 17.7 inches wide by 14.7 inches deep, this printer can sit on the desktop as well as the room corner. Weighing about 13.6 pounds, it’s your lightweight partner in the office.
The multifunction printer offers a modern and stylish look with a combination of the white body and top lid. On the top, you can find an auto document feeder with manual duplexing functionality to support your work efficiency as well as scanner bed. There’s also a small section of the control panel with a 2.2-inch touchscreen. This monochrome touch screen provides you with easier control and access during operation.
Another thing that attracts my attention is cartridge indicators that stick out from the body. You can clearly see three separated tanks in one section and one larger black tank in another section. The transparent ink tanks enable you to check on ink levels without opening the lid. So practical!
HP Smart Tank Plus 651 Functionality and Performance
HP’s Smart Tank Plus 651 is a wireless printer with all in one functionality, which means you can print, copy, and scan using this device. Specially designed for home office and small business, it boasts inkjet printing technology for quality output. Here are what you can get from this multifunction printer:
1. Printing, copying, scanning specifications
Despite the Plus 651 comes with a smart tank feature, it remains an inkjet printer. It boasts color inkjet printing technology combined with HP thermal inkjet for trusted quality. It also supports up to 4800 x 1200 resolutions for color printing, or up to 1200 x 1200 resolutions for mono. This is not the best printing resolution, I know, but this device manages to deliver quality results.
The Plus 651 also supports copy functionality with 600 pixels resolutions, both for color and mono. It enables you to enlarge copied documents up to 400 % and reduce to 25%, with maximum rate at 99 pages. There are some copying features to enjoy, including collation copy, ID copy, and resize. For scan functionality, this machine boasts 1200 x 1200 optical resolutions for clear and sharp scanned documents.
2. Paper handling
When it comes to paper handling, the Plus 651 offers three kinds of paper trays. It has a 35-sheet auto document feeder that lets you print 2-sided pages. However, unlike Epson’s ET-4760 with automatic duplexing, the Smart Tank Plus 651 comes with manual duplexing. It means when you want to copy or scan two-sided pages, you have to flip the original documents by yourself.
The printer is also equipped with a 100-sheet input tray capacity that extends upward from the back. The tray can be adjusted for various media sizes, such as envelopes and label media. It can hold up to 10 envelopes (no.10) or 30 sheets of label media. Meanwhile, the output tray extends forward from the bottom and it can hold up to 30 sheets.
The Plus 651 lets you print on various media sizes. It works well for glossy paper, envelopes, photo paper, plain paper, and matte paper. Whether you need to print leaflets, brochures, or other creative projects, this printer can handle it. In addition, HP rates monthly duty cycles up to 1,000 pages with recommended monthly volume up to 500 pages.
3. Speed and performance
Speed is not the best thing the Plus 651 can offer. I found that HP rates this machine at 11 pages per minute. This rate is relatively low, especially when compared to its competitor, the Epson ET-4760. I noticed faster speed when using it printed color draft on A4 paper, which reached 16 pages per minute. But the speed dropped significantly to 5 pages per minute for color printing.
When I tried to print a 4 x 6-inch photo, the machine needed 76 seconds. This rate is not satisfying, especially when you need to print colorful flyers or brochures for everyday printing tasks. So, I guess this printer is not suitable for hurry tasks.
Scanning and copying speed are quite similar. The Plus 651 managed to copy up to 10 pages per minute for mono and 2 pages per minute for color. Meanwhile, it delivered 3 pages per minute for color scanning and 5 pages per minute for mono scanning.
HP Smart Tank Plus 651 Output Quality
Printer manufacturers are trying to improve the output quality of their inkjet printers and HP is no exception. This longstanding manufacturer launched the Plus 651 that offers reliable output quality with amazing details and accurate color. According to the test, I noticed well-shaped characters and legible texts even to the smallest size. This is what you need for professional and business documents.
When I tried to print photos, I saw good-looking pictures with sharp and vibrant colors. However, there’s some minor banding in gradient and dark fills as well as minimal graininess. But overall, this inkjet printer works great to be your business partner. I don’t have much to say as it delivers high-quality output.
Affordable Running Cost
As mentioned earlier, the Plus 651 features Smart Tank that boasts practicality when refilling the tank. It comes with three separate color tanks, including Cyan, Magenta, and Yellow. Meanwhile, the black tank is located in a separate section with a larger volume.
This printer uses HP 31 for color inks (CMY) and HP 32XL-High Yield for black ink. The standard HP color ink bottles yield up to 2,665 pages while the high-yield HP black ink bottles yield up to 6,000 pages. The spill-free bottles offer hassle-free, practical tank refills. Just be careful when refilling the inks, make sure you put the right bottle on the right color.
Thanks to the Smart Tank feature that allows you to enjoy affordable running costs. The Plus 651 cost per page (CPP) is comparable to Epson’s EcoTank, rated at around 0.3 cents per black page and 0.9 cents per color page. Compared to standard inkjet printers, this Smart Tank Plus is reliable for higher monthly volume. This is what you need to save the office’s budget.
HP Smart Tank Plus 651 Connectivity and Software
Again and again, connectivity is not that impressive. The standard connectivity includes dual-band Wi-Fi, Wi-Fi Direct, and USB 2.0. You can also enjoy the connection using Bluetooth Low Energy. It lacks Ethernet connectivity, bringing the Plus 651 a step behind the Epson ET-4760 that offers this feature.
To enhance your printing experience, this device supports mobile printing connectivity including Apple AirPrint, Mopria, HP ePrint, and Wireless Direct printing. You can also install the HP Smart App which really useful for remote printing. Unfortunately, voice-activated printing is not available in this machine.
HP Smart Tank Plus 651 Pros and Cons
HP’s Smart Tank Plus 651 is designed to help grow your business. It features inkjet printing technology to deliver detailed results with accurate color as well as low running costs. And yet, this device brings a number of drawbacks that should be taken into account. I’ve shortlisted the pros and cons so that you can make a decision easily.
HP Smart Tank Plus 651 Pros
HP Smart Tank Plus 651 is a great space-saver. Constructed in a small and compact design, this printer allows you to use a narrow desktop, room corner, or shelves to locate it. This machine does consume very little space, so it will be a great choice if you have a small space issue.
- High-quality output
You can rely on this printer to handle your business document. It boasts dependable output quality, both for texts, graphics, and photos. You can enjoy well-shaped characters as well as legible texts to make your invoices, flyers, and brochures look more professional.
- Affordable running cost
While most inkjet printers share the same problem—high running cost, the Plus 651 is an exception. Thanks to the Smart Tank feature that allows you to save more money on consumables. It costs less than 1 cent for mono and color pages, which is significantly lower than other inkjet printers. In addition to low running costs, HP also provides spill-free ink bottles that let you refill the tank conveniently.
HP Smart Tank Plus 651 Cons
- Lacks of auto duplexing
I cannot deny that the Smart Tank Plus 651 features an auto document feeder (ADF). Unfortunately, this feature does not support automatic duplexing. It means when I want to scan or copy, I have to flip the original documents manually. It significantly reduces work efficiency and productivity, especially when I have to scan or copy plenty of documents.
- Limited features
Compared to its price, the Plus 651 comes with limited features and connectivity. It lacks Ethernet connectivity that makes it one step behind its competitor. In addition, Epson’s printers with a similar price also offer voice-activated printing which is unavailable in HP’s Plus 651. If you are looking for a full-featured printer, this maybe not a good option.
- Relatively slow performance
Last but not least, this printer is not recommended for hurry tasks. The speed and performance are relatively slow, so you have to wait a little longer to get the documents done. Compared to the competitors at the same price such as Epson EcoTank ET-4760 and Brother MFC-J6945DW, the Plus 651 is nearly the slowest. If you have to print documents with a tight deadline, this printer is going to give you trouble.
It seems like HP Smart Tank Plus 651 is a nice multifunction inkjet printer to be part of your workgroup. It features high-quality output and affordable running costs to help you save a lot of cash. However, the comparison between price and feature makes this printer less attractive. It delivers limited features as well as slow performance, so I think for its price is too pricey for this machine.