HP Officejet Pro 8500 Wireless review

Kat Orphanides
16 Apr 2009
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
inc VAT



colour inkjet MFP, 35ppm print speed, USB, PictBridge USB, 10/100 Ethernet, 802.11b/g wireless, 331x494x479mm

HP's Officejet Pro 8500 Wireless is far more expensive than the other inkjets here, but it's designed to compete with colour laser MFPs.

It has a comprehensive web interface, automatic duplexer, 10/100 Ethernet, 802.11b/g wireless, a 250-sheet paper tray and a 3?in touch screen. It's the only inkjet here to provide a duty cycle figure; at 15,000 pages, it's on a par with more expensive laser printers.

Its separate print heads reduce costs, as headless ink cartridges are cheaper to produce. The heads are easy to replace if they become blocked. The first time it's switched on, the printer takes about half an hour to charge its ink reservoirs, align its print heads and auto-initialise. Irritatingly, we couldn't find a way to switch the default Letter paper size to A4 using Windows' printer preferences or the printer's onscreen menus and web interface.

The Officejet produces mono text prints that rival those of most laser printers. It prints at 15.6ppm, and its colour print speed of 5.2ppm exceeded every colour printer here except for Lexmark's X544dn laser. Colour print quality was outstanding, even on cheap 80gsm paper, while thicker media produced even better results. However, photo prints suffered from poor shading and visible dithering.

The scanner's software interface is poor, with key settings buried several mouse clicks away. Fortunately, you can configure it to scan files to a designated format and location at the touch of a button on the device itself, which is far more convenient.

HP claims that the 8500 can print at half the cost of a colour laser, while producing prints of a similar quality. Print costs are indeed among the lowest we've seen, at just 0.9p per sheet of mono A4 and 3.5p per mixed colour page. It's also power efficient, as it draws just 35W while active. It's expensive to buy but cost-effective to run. With brilliant document quality, fast printing and low ink costs, the Officejet Pro 8500 is an ideal Business Buy.

Basic Specifications

Maximum native print resolution4,800x1,200dpi
Max optical resolution2,400x4,800dpi
Output bit depth48-bit

Quoted Speeds

Quoted speed, mono A435ppm
Quoted speed, colour A434ppm

Tested Print Speeds

Time for two 10x8in photos 1.06m 5s
Time for six 6x4in photos 1.09m 50s

Physical and Environmental

Standard printer interfacesUSB, PictBridge USB, 10/100 Ethernet, 802.11b/g wireless
Optional printer interfacesBluetooth adaptor (Q6273A), £15
Noise (in normal use)59dB(A)
Duty cycle15,000 pages
Power consumption standby5W
Power consumption idle7W
Power consumption active35W

Paper Handling

Maximum paper sizeA4/legal
Maximum paper weight250gsm
Standard paper inputs1
Standard paper input capacity250
Maximum paper inputs2
Maximum paper input capacity500
Duplex (code, cost if option)Yes


Printer technologythermal inkjet
Supported operating systemsWindows 2000/XP/XP-64/Vista/Vista-64, Mac OS X 10.4.11+, Linux
Other inkjet features3.5in touchscreen, automatic print head alignment
Other inkjet options250 sheet paper tray CB802A, £TBC

Buying Information

Consumable parts and pricesHP 940XL 2,200 page black C4906AE, £20, HP 904XL 1400 page cyan C4907AE, magenta C4908AE, yellow C4909AE, £12 each, HP 940 print heads black & yellow C4900A, cyan & magenta C4901A, £35 each
Price per colour A4 page2.6p
Quoted life of supplied black cartridge1000 pages (ISO/IEC 24711)
Quoted life of supplied colour cartridge(s)900 pages (ISO/IEC 24711)
Quoted life of supplied photo cartridge(s)N/A
Warrantyone year RTB

Print Quality

Number of ink colours4
Number of ink cartridges4
Maximum number of ink colours4
Maximum number of cartridges4

Tested Scan Speeds

Full scan area preview15s
A4 document at 150dpi11s
A4 document at 300dpi36s
6x4in photo at 600dpi42s
6x4in photo at 1200dpi3m 20s

Tested Copy Speeds

Time for single A4 mono copy 1.022s
Time for single A4 colour copy 1.026s
Time for 10 A4 copies using feeder 2.02m 8s

Photo Features

PictBridge supportYes
Borderless printingup to A4
Direct (PC-less) printingYes
Supported memory cardsCF, SD, SDHC, MMC, Memory Stick Pro, xD
CD printingNo

Copy Features

Maximum number of copies99
Max mono copy resolution1,200x600dpi
Max colour copy resolution1,200x600dpi

Fax Features

Max mono fax resolution300x300dpi
Fax memory (maximum mono pages)125