The HP Deskjet D2545 is just, you know, an inexpensive inkjet printer, and sometimes that's all you want.

In a market where competition is fierce to create an affordable yet functional printer that can appeal to even the most casual user, HP has upped the ante by introducing the HP Deskjet D2545, an inexpensive inkjet printer that's also environmentally friendly.

The HP Deskjet D2545 comprises 83 percent recycled plastic and costs under £30. Considering how wasteful ink cartridges are, it's reassuring that the D2545's cartridges are also made from recycled plastic resins.

Ink costs are no more than average, but given the HP Deskjet D2545's ultracheap price tag, they may seem expensive. You could replace the printer for not much more - but that would sort of defeat the purpose of buying a printer made from mostly recycled material.

Depending on your perspective, the HP Deskjet D2545 is either streamlined or downright paltry on features. This general purpose inkjet printer differs from some of the inkjets we've reviewed recently in that it's designed to print relatively simple office and home documents as opposed to photos. Thus, there are no camera card slots, LCDs or other photo related features and no multifunction features like networking, copying or faxing to add expense to the product.

The HP Deskjet D2545 is just, you know, a printer, and sometimes that's all you want.

HP says the HP Deskjet D2545 can produce "laser quality" black text, but our lab tests reveal that its speed and its quality are not of that high standard. The printer's results on the 1-page printout test averaged around 19 seconds, while on the 10-page test it came in at 1 minute and 48 seconds. A jury deemed the HP Deskjet D2545's text to be of Good quality; in comparison, we often find that laser printers produce Very Good or Superior quality text. Thus, we found that the D2545's speed and quality were more on par with standard multifunctional inkjet printers than laser printers.

In our Fine Lines and Gradients test, the HP Deskjet D2545 was given a Fair rating by our jury. In our 22MB Photoshop file test, the printer took 4 minutes and 41 seconds on average to complete, while our 4-page PDF printout finished in 2 minutes. The Photoshop print colours were pleasing, and will likely satisfy casual colour printer users. Pickier users will notice that images appear overly bright, losing some detail in the highlights.

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HP Deskjet D2545: Specs

  • maximum dpi: 1,200x1,200dpi, 4,800x1,200 optimised
  • printer monthly duty cycle: 1,000 pages per month
  • printer life: 20,000 pages
  • claimed print speeds: black text, plain paper: up to 26ppm, mixed text/graphics, plain paper: up to 20ppm
  • image (4x6 with border), photo paper: as fast as 26 seconds
  • input tray capacity: up to 80 sheets
  • 140.8x37.5x209.1mm
  • 2.8kg
  • maximum dpi: 1,200x1,200dpi, 4,800x1,200 optimised
  • printer monthly duty cycle: 1,000 pages per month
  • printer life: 20,000 pages
  • claimed print speeds: black text, plain paper: up to 26ppm, mixed text/graphics, plain paper: up to 20ppm
  • image (4x6 with border), photo paper: as fast as 26 seconds
  • input tray capacity: up to 80 sheets
  • 140.8x37.5x209.1mm
  • 2.8kg

OUR VERDICT

The HP Deskjet D2545 will probably best serve anyone living in a university hall of residence, or someone who needs a printer to complement the family computer. Its professed status as an earth-friendlier printer makes it more recommendable than some of its competition. For those willing to spend a bit more, there are sub-£50 printers that offer better print quality, as well as integrated scanners, copiers, card slots, and LCD preview screens. But if you're looking for a cheap, basic printer, the HP Deskjet D2545 is it. And you can feel good about the purchase because it's environmentally friendly.

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