Kodak’s Hero 7.1 all-in-one inkjet printer combines printing, copying and scanning functions with a back-to-basics, subtly patterned matt design that displays the Kodak logo prominently on the scanner cover, and is finished with chic splashes of scarlet and chrome to match the overall brand colour scheme.
It’s a solid looking machine, measuring 445×432×190mm and weighing in at a reasonably chunky 7.5kg – so it won’t be easily bumped off the surface, but it won’t put your back out either. Although this multifunction printer (which scans, prints and copies only – no fax) is primarily aimed at the home office and small business user, it still has a number of extremely useful features.
Without doubt one of its high points of the Hero 7.1 is the range of connectivity it offers. For a start, there’s built in 802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi, which can be set up via the impressively clear, helpful and responsive 3.5in colour LCD touchscreen menu, and by installing the supplied setup disc containing Kodak’s highly efficient AiO Home Center software (which will even let you create, print and view 3D pictures using the supplied glasses).
In addition, there are both Ethernet and USB links to individual PCs or networks, plus access to Google’s cloud-based printing service, as well as a Kodak Pic Flick app for printing from iPhone, Blackberry or Android devices via your wireless network.
If you don’t necessarily want to print via your laptop, then there’s a USB PictBridge port at the front for attaching a digital camera directly, together with a memory card slot that will print images from an SD/SDHC, MMC or Memory Stick, using the printer’s display to select a photo.
When it comes to standard printing needs, there’s a compact 100-sheet feeder tray at the front with a separate 40-sheet photo paper tray above, so you won’t need to swap out the relevant paper when moving from documents to pictures.
Low running costs
Another useful trait of the Kodak is its auto-duplex facility, which will obviously save time and paper costs.
Kodak is also famed for the low cost per page of its printers, and despite the fact that the Hero uses only a single four-colour cartridge, an average colour page costs less than 4p.
Colour image quality is generally high, with strong blacks and just a slight reddish tinge to colour photocopies – this is when using Kodak’s own Premium photo paper.
Black text documents are equally solid, but as we’ve come to expect from Kodak all-in-ones, speeds are slightly on the slow side – 8ppm for black text (14ppm in draft), 35 seconds for 10x15cm colour snaps and 1 minute 55 seconds for A4 colour photos. However, despite the initial price looking a little high (Amazon, though, currently sells it for £150), the advantages far outweigh the niggles.
- Multiple connectivity including WiFi, Ethernet and cloud.
- Single four-colour cartridge could lead to wasted ink.
The Kodak Hero 7.1 shares the elegant style of the rest of the Hero multifunction range, with an exceptionally broad selection of connectivity plus an auto-duplex function, a large responsive touchscreen, separate photo paper tray and memory card slot.