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HP OfficeJet Pro 8720 review

Simon Handby
1 Jun 2016
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HP OfficeJet Pro 8720 header
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
191
inc VAT

HP's OfficeJet Pro 8720 is a fast and practical inkjet MFP for a home office or small business

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Specifications

Technology: Thermal inkjet, Maximum print resolution: 4,800x1,200dpi, Maximum optical scan resolution (output bit depth): 1,200x1,200dpi (24-bit), Dimensions (HxWxD): 339x500x530mm, Weight: 15kg, Maximum paper size: A4/legal

HP's hulking OfficeJet Pro 8720 is one of the biggest A4 inkjet multifunction peripherals (MFPs) I've reviewed. That's largely down to an unusual printer design where paper is ejected away from you into a 150-sheet tray (most inkjets print towards you). The top portion contains a flatbed scanner with a 50-sheet automatic document feeder (ADF).

The OfficeJet Pro 8720 is perfectly specified for a busy small office, with support for wired and wireless networking, and a USB host port for walk-up print and scan jobs. Speeds are high, with HP claiming up to 24 pages per minute (ppm) for black A4 printing, and 20ppm for colour. The paper tray holds 250-sheets, but if you need to expand you can add another paper tray for a 500-page total. Both printer and scanner support automatic duplexing, so you can print, scan, copy or fax double-sided documents. Also, with this being 2016, there's a big colour touchscreen for control, and NFC for quick and easy pairing with mobile devices.

This MFP's touchscreen is intuitive, but not as responsive as HP's' best. I was disappointed to find a few simple office features were missing: there's no option to secure a print job, and from an inserted USB stick you can only print photos, not PDF or other document files. It's also a shame to find no bypass feed for special media.

These relatively minor grumbles aside, there's a lot to like about the OfficeJet Pro 8720. It's a particularly fast printer, delivering our black text test at 21.4 pages per minute (ppm), and at draft quality reaching 25.4ppm - faster than HP's claimed speed. Colour prints were impressively fast, too: its 8.6ppm on our graphics-heavy test is well above average. Fortunately, this speed doesn't come at the cost of quality: black text was crisp and dark, and graphics were strong and free of obvious grain or streaking - although I did spot a small amount of bleed through on our 80gsm test paper.

Photocopy quality was also very high, with single copies taking about 14 seconds, and a 10-page mono copy just 65 seconds. The same job in colour needed 90 seconds, which is still quite quick. Scan performance was a bit less impressive: while a 300 dots-per-inch (dpi) A4 scan took just nine seconds, there was a 46-second wait for a 600dpi photo scan. I'm not a fan of HP's over-simplified TWAIN scan interface, in which 150dpi scans aren't usually available. This MFP also failed to scan at 1,200dpi unless I completed a preview first and, as usual, scans at 600dpi and above appeared to have been digitally sharpened, with no opt-out.

HP OfficeJet Pro 8720

While it's not perfect, this is generally a very good MFP. It's helped by reasonable ink costs of about a penny per black A4 page, or 4.3p in full colour - calculated for the 953XL colour and 957XL black cartridges. At this price, if you can live without a PCL driver, I'd recommend Epson's WorkForce Pro WF-5620DWF. If not, the OfficeJet Pro 8720 is a decent alternative.

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Hardware
TechnologyThermal inkjet
Maximum print resolution4,800x1,200dpi
Maximum optical scan resolution (output bit depth)1,200x1,200dpi (24-bit)
Number of colours (cartridges)4 (4)
Maximum number of colours (cartridges)4 (4)
Quoted photo durability (source)Not stated
Standard interfacesUSB, USB host, Ethernet, 802.11b/g/n wireless
Optional interfacesNone
Dimensions (HxWxD)339x500x530mm
Weight15kg
Duty cycle (pages per month)30,000 maximum, 250-2,000 recommended
Paper handling
Maximum paper sizeA4/legal
Maximum paper weight280gsm
Standard paper trays (capacity)1 (250)
Maximum paper trays (capacity)2 (500)
DuplexYes
3550
Photo features
Borderless printingA4
Direct (PC-less) printingUSB
Memory card supportNone
Supported operating systemsWindows Vista or later, Mac OS X 10.8 or later, Android, iOS, Linux
Other features10.9" colour touchscreen, NFC sensor
Buying information
WarrantyOne year RTB
Price£191 inc VAT
Consumable parts and prices957XL black (3,000 pages ISO/IEC 24712) £29. 953XL cyan, magenta and yellow cartridges (1,600 pages each ISO/IEC 24712) £18 each
Quoted life of supplied black cartridge(s)745 pages (approx)
Quoted life of supplied colour cartridge(s)400 pages each (approx)
Cost per ISO/IEC 24712 A4 page inc VAT4.3p
Cost per ISO/IEC 24712 A4 page inc VAT (colour part)3.4p
Cost per ISO/IEC 24712 A4 page inc VAT (mono part)1p
Part codeD9L19A

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