Kodak Office Hero 6.1 review
Kodak’s new Office Hero 6.1 is a real beast of a printer, weighing in at almost 10kg, and making compact rivals such as the HP Envy 110 look positively tiny. To be fair, though, it does include a fax machine along with its printing, scanning and copying features, as well as a sturdy 200-sheet paper tray and a 35-sheet automatic document feeder perched on top of the unit.
The Office Hero 6.1 doesn’t directly support AirPrint, but Kodak does supply its own Pic Flick app for the iPhone and iPad. It also gives you the option to print over the internet, by emailing documents to the printer or by using Google’s Cloud Print service. Other useful features include double-sided printing, the ability to scan multiple photos and save each one as a separate file, and a sort feature that lets you easily find and view pictures on your memory card by month, day or year on the LCD. The Hero 6.1 even includes a set of built-in templates, so you can quickly print out graph paper or sheet music paper.
Text output is nice and smooth, although the standard print setting isn’t as crisply black as it could be, so you might want to use the slower best mode for more important documents. Photo printing is very good, though, even on plain paper, and prints on glossy photo paper displayed fine detail and subtle skin tones.
Oddly, though, the Office Hero’s printing speeds turned out to be rather disappointing. The printer’s name and its imposing design clearly suggest that this is meant to be a rugged office workhorse, yet the Hero 6.1 could only manage about 5ppm when printing black text and 4ppm for colour.
The Office Hero 6.1 is hard to beat in terms of running costs and versatility, but there’s room for improvement
Still, the printer does partly compensate for those slow print speeds by offering very low running costs. Kodak quotes cost-per-page figures of just under 2p for black and white, and 5.5p for colour. Those figures are very competitive – and, in fact, our own estimates actually came in slightly lower – so the Office Hero 6.1 is certainly hard to beat in terms of running costs and all-round versatility. Even so, the modest printing speed and lack of support for AirPrint do leave a certain amount of room for improvement.