Review of Lifeprint 2x3 Hyperphoto Printer at PCMag

  • PROS

    Innovative “hyperphoto” technology for turning stills to videos. Prints well. Small and light. Easy to set up and use.

  • CONS

    No way to print from PC. Relatively high running costs.

  • BOTTOM LINE

    With its innovative photo-to-video technology, the Lifeprint Photo and Video Printer 2×3 proves itself an intriguing novelty snapshot printer.

Pocket photo printers such as the HP Sprocket and the Kodak Photo Printer Mini offer the convenience of printing on the go from your phone or tablet. The Lifeprint 2×3 Hyperphoto Printer ($129.99) takes this a step further: It comes with its own social media site for sharing photos, and using an augmented reality (AR) technology, it allows you to turn stills into movie clips, or what Lifeprint calls “hyperphotos.” Overall, Lifeprint 2×3 prints well, and it’s an appealing option if you’re open to a unique twist on photo sharing.
Read the entire article at PCMag


  • PROSReview of the HP Envy Photo 7155 All-in-One Printer at PC Mag

    Reasonable purchase price. Good overall print quality. Low running costs with Instant Ink. Attractive design. Supports SD card flash memory.

  • CONS

    Cost per page is high sans Instant Ink. Potentially wasteful two-cartridge ink cartridge set holds all four inks. Noticeable banding when printing dark gradients and backgrounds.

  • BOTTOM LINE

    A well-designed and attractive consumer-grade photo AIO, the HP Envy Photo 7155 All-in-One Printer is capable of churning out good-looking photographs at highly competitive running costs, but only with HP’s Instant Ink subscription.

A step below the HP Envy Photo 7855 —the flagship model in the photo-centric HP Envy all-in-one (AIO) line—the HP Envy Photo 7155 All-in-One Printer ($149.99)  prints well overall, and it’s fast enough to keep up in this relatively slow genre of home-based and small office printers. In direct competition with the Editors’ Choice Canon Pixma TS9120 Wireless Inkjet All-in-One,($99.99 at Amazon) the Envy 7155 lacks a few features, and it doesn’t print quite as well, especially photos. With a subscription to HP’s Instant Ink program, however, the Envy 7155 is cheaper to use than the Canon TS9120, making it a sensible alternative for families and home-based offices on budgets.

My review of the Brother HL-L2390DW at PC

  • PROS

    Low price. Small and light. Fast print speeds. Excellent text quality. Decent graphics and photos. Competitively low running costs.

  • CONS

    No automatic document feeder (ADF). Lacks memory drive support. No Ethernet support.

  • BOTTOM LINE

    The Brother HL-L2390DW is a reasonably fast, sensibly priced entry-level monochrome all-in-one laser printer with competitive running costs.

The Brother HL-L2390DW ($149.99)   is a no-frills, entry-level monochrome laser all-in-one (AIO) printer designed for small and home-based offices with low-print-and-copy-volume requirements. It has a lower price tag, and is faster and less expensive to use than the Editors’ Choice Canon ImageClass MF249dw ($214.00 at Amazon) and the HP LaserJet Pro MFP M130fw. On the other hand, the Brother model is short on a few key features, such as an automatic document feeder (ADF) for sending multipage originals to the scanner. While the HL-L2390DW is not the fastest entry-level monochrome laser out there, it’s plenty fast enough for what it is, and it delivers competitively low running costs, making it a good choice for low-to-moderate-volume printing and copying in small and home-based offices, or as a personal monochrome laser printer.
Read the entire review at PCMag


Review of the Canon Pixma TS8120 Wireless Inkjet All-in-One at Computer ShopperIt’s been less than a year since we reviewed Canon’s last round of TS-series Pixma printers, which included the Pixma TS8020 Wireless Inkjet All-In-One. That model is the precursor to the machine we’re reviewing here, the $179.99-MSRP Pixma TS8120 ( at Amazon).

It’s unusual for a printer maker to refresh its line so soon. Speculating why Canon did so here would be, well, speculation. All we know for sure? Earlier in 2017, the Pixma TS series replaced the company’s MG-series Pixmas, a line of long-in-the-tooth photo-centric all-in-ones (AIOs) that we’ve reviewed year after year throughout the ’10s. Perhaps Canon felt that the first round of the new TS series wasn’t quite right. Or perhaps evolving market trends tipped the imaging giant’s hand.

In any case, the Pixma TS8120 is second from the top dog in Canon’s recent TS-line upgrade. This new line of five printers comprises the Pixma TS9120  ($199 MSRP, discounted to $149.99 as we wrote this in mid-October 2017) ($99.99 at Amazon), today’s Pixma TS8120 (discounted at many e-tailers to $149.99) , the Pixma TS6120 ($149.99 MSRP, discounted to $99.99) ($99.99 at Amazon), the Pixma TS5120 ($99.99 MSRP, discounted to $89.99) , and an all-new entry-level iteration, the Pixma TS3120 ($89.99 MSRP, discounted to $59.99). We’ll be reviewing four of the five; this is the first in our Canon review wave.

All but that last one are updates to existing models. And, as usual, from top to bottom, as the prices shrink, so do the feature sets. For a $20 higher list price than the Pixma TS8120, for example, the Pixma TS9120 adds Ethernet connectivity and has a 5-inch display, whereas the Pixma TS8120 does not support wired networking and comes with a 4.3-inch screen.

Canon Pixma TS8120 (SD Card Front)

Because these models are positioned as photo printers, how well they print photos is paramount to everything else. As we’ve seen over the years, five- and six-ink printers tend to do a better job of printing across a wider variety of photos than standard four-ink (cyan, magenta, yellow, and black, or CMYK) machines. With that in mind, the two top TS Pixmas, the TS9120 and TS8120, use six inks; the next two down the chain (the TS6120 and TS5120) use five inks; and the TS3120 uses the standard four inks.

A change this time around is that instead of the “photo gray” ink that six-ink Pixmas have been using for the past several years, the sixth ink is now a “photo blue.” Where the photo gray ink was claimed to increase the color gamut (or color range) somewhat and help print superior gray-scale images, the new photo blue, according to Canon, reduces graininess. (We assume that the photo blue ink should increase the color range, too.)

The TS8120 comes in three colors: black, red, and white, as shown below. Canon sent us the red one…

Canon Pixma TS8120 (Colors)

A standing difference between consumer-grade photo AIOs and their office-oriented counterparts is that the former generally cost more to use: The per-page ink cost is higher. Canon’s photo-centric Pixmas traditionally have had slightly higher running costs than their competitors, and printed some of the best-looking images among consumer-grade photo printers. Nothing has really changed on those fronts.

Whether the Pixma TS8120 is right for you depends on several factors. Positioned as a photo printer foremost, not only does it cost more to use than some other inkjet AIOs, but it also lacks an automatic document feeder (ADF) for sending multi-page documents to the scanner. ADF AWOL is not unusual with this class of printer, especially those under $200. That trend has begun to change of late, though, with newer models such as the HP Envy Photo 7855 All-in-One (Check on Amazon at Amazon); we’ll look a little closer at this important development in the next section.

Canon Pixma TS8120 (Mobile)

The bottom line on the Pixma TS8120? If you’re looking for a machine mainly for printing photos, it’s hard to beat this little AIO (aside from getting the stepped-up Pixma TS9120, which we’re also reviewing, or one of a few Epson photo-centric models to be discussed later). If, on the other hand, you also need your photo printer to be nimble at making copies, printing lots of documents, and scanning pages with regularity, the Pixma TS8120 has a few shortcomings in those areas.

How much should they affect your buying decision? That depends on just how much printing, copying, and scanning you need to do. Let’s dig in and judge.

Read the entire review at Computer Shopper



 

IWilliam Harrel's reviews on Computer Shoppert’s hard to believe, but I have been writing for the legendary Computer Shopper for over eight years (as of October 2017), and have been a contributing editor there for about seven years. My beat has covered everything from desktop systems and laptops, to tablets and 2-in-1s in several flavors (operating systems) and size, printers and all-in-one printers in all shapes and sizes, video cards, SSD and other types of disk drives—you name it. It’s been a wild ride.

More so than ever, competition in the tech markets is cutthroat and fierce. It’s been my pleasure to do what I can to keep you all informed.

For a list and links to my articles on Computer Shopper, click here


 

Digital TrendsCamarillo, CA – October 2017: Almost three years and over 40 articles later, I have covered numerous products and technology news for the immensely popular online digital technology magazine, Digital Trends. My beat covers all aspects of computer-related news and reviews. For example, my first few articles included information about DDR4 memory, USB 3.1, Sata Express, and Nvidia G-Sync, .

But since then I have covered everything from mouse and keyboard combos to 4K 360 degree digital cameras, and everything in between. My two latest news stories at Digital Trends cover Bluetooth Mesh technology and the latest, fastest Wi-Fi technology, 802.11ax.

You can get a complete list of my articles on Digital Trends here.


 

IN A WORLD SATURATED IN WI-FI, THERE’S STILL ROOM FOR BLUETOOTH MESH - at Digital TrendsYes, current Wi-Fi-based smart home technology can turn on the lights with your smartphone or voice. But do you call that home automation, really? Isn’t it just a slightly more convenient light switch?

How about this? When you unlock your front door, the lights in the foyer come on, the motion sensors on your alarm system turn off, the thermostat starts the air conditioning, and your entertainment system begins playing your favorite music—all before you put your keys down!

Now that’s home automation, right?

What about a more serious, or potentially life-and-death scenario, where hospital staff could track patients, staff members, and equipment from any console, PC, or tablet on the premises?

While the best Wi-Fi systems allow us to take baby steps into building automation, wireless security, asset tracking, and more, a new technology called Bluetooth Mesh — an update to the standard Bluetooth wireless solution that most of us know — promises a better, more efficient, and much less expensive solution.

“As people’s expectations for networks go up, they demand networks capable of handling hundreds (or thousands) of IP addresses, offering Wi-Fi-level of signal performance across the house and building,” Daniel Cooley, Senior Vice President of Silicon Labs, told Digital Trends. “People won’t put up with flaky Wi-Fi anymore. If they can get away with fewer antennas, it would be much better.”

Cooley is a member of the Bluetooth Special Interest Group, or SIG, which oversees and develops Bluetooth technology. If he’s right—and industry watchers and makers of networking equipment are betting that he is—many aspects of our lives will soon be secured and simplified by this latest Bluetooth update.

Read the entire article at Digital Trends


 

Review of the Altia Systems PanCast 2 at Digital TrendsLogitech’s Brio 4K Webcam  briefly had bragging rights as the maker of the only 4K Webcam, but Altia Systems’ Panacast 2  has changed that—and then some. Perhaps to sophisticated be called a mere “webcam,” — Altia calls it a “camera system” — it’s $1,000 price tag relegates it to businesses, and the most dedicated video conferencing consumers. This is a webcam on steroids

It promises a 180-degree coverage area with automatic panoramic zooming and exceptionally clear video. It’s also small and elegant in appearance. Unfortunately, the zooming feature costs extra, as does a very slick add-on called Whiteboard that automatically centers on a whiteboard during, well, a whiteboard presentation. As our Panacast 2 Camera System review will show, this gadget is high-tech and impressive — but by the time you get it decked out the way you want it, it could cost you about $1,350. For most individuals, (and even most companies) this is the kind of investment that requires serious consideration.

Read the entire review at Digital Trends



 

Review of the Microsoft Wireless Comfort Desktop 5050 at Digital TrendsIf you, like us, spend a good portion of your life banging on computers, the first thing you do after buying a new PC is replace the stock USB keyboard, and mouse that comes with it. Upgrading to aftermarket peripherals such as, say, the Microsoft Wireless Comfort Desktop 5050  review unit we have here, not only improves the aesthetics of your desktop and increases comfort, but can also be a wise investment in the well-being of your wrists and hands.

Compared to some other keyboard and mouse combos we’ve looked at recently, including the Logitech Performance MK850 Wireless Mouse and Keyboard Combo ($80) , Microsoft’s Desktop 5050 is relatively inexpensive. It lists for $70, but we found it at several outlets for $50. While the Logitech MK850 specializes in allowing you to pair with multiple devices simultaneously, the Desktop 5050, in addition to its ergonomic design, comes with several additional keys for assigning shortcuts in Windows. Does it, however, provide enough comfort and convenience to warrant laying out half a C-note?

See the entire review at Digital Trends



 

Review of the Logitech K480 Multi-Device Keyboard at PCMagMany of the keyboards we’ve looked at lately have been multi-device models, in that you can pair two or more computing devices—smartphones, tablets, PCs, Macs—to them simultaneously, and then switch back and forth with the touch of a button. Aside from Microsoft’s Universal Foldable Keyboard ($70) , though, none have been small enough to consider carrying around with you — except Logitech’s Bluetooth Multi-Device Keyboard K480.

The K480 is compact and light compared to many multi-device keyboards, including those in Logitech’s line-up. It’s also inexpensive. Logitech lists it for $50, but we found it at several online outlets for around $30. At that price, the only real issues left are — does it, as its more expensive siblings and competitors do, perform well, and is it really portable?

Read entire review at Digital Trends