Pros: Automatic sheet feeder, high quality print results
Cons: Physical buttons, small LCD screen
Like the other all-in-one printers in this range, the Office Hero 6.1 looks the business. Styled in moody black with a red trim, it’s clear this is the office model from the dedicated matrix of buttons on the front. You can print, scan and copy with a single click - and you’ll also find a numeric keypad.
The Office Hero 6.1 is a dedicated fax machine too. Even now, when email rules the world, there are still offices and institutions that demand documents by fax. Still, this seems like a curious step back in time. We found the physical buttons a little cumbersome too, to be frank, and wondered if the functionality might have been better accessed through the printer’s built in 2.5 inch screen.
The 6.1’s image scanning capabilities get a bump in quality. 2400 dpi -- twice the pixel ratio of the Hero 5.1 -- and rightly so. This welcome tweak is joined by other office friendly features, like a two-sided automatic feeder. Need to scan or copy multiple documents? Load up the Office Hero 6.1 and let it get on with it. It’s a feature you usually only see on dedicated photocopiers or in high end laser printers.
Photo-printing is a key capability. With PictBridge support and a multi-function card slot, there’s no need to start up your computer to get lab-quality prints. You can plug in a camera, USB key or memory card to access your files. That’s where that built in screen comes in - though at 2.5 inches, it’s a little small for image previews.
While it’s great for documents - printing crisp lines and deep blacks in monochrome, colour printing is a strength too. Image reproduction is vibrant and strong, with colour fidelity near perfect out of the box. That goes for large areas of flat colour in illustrations as well as the more complex demands of photographic imagery.
In common with the other printers in the Hero series, the 6.1 has built in Wi-Fi connectivity. There are lots of ways to get documents wirelessly to your device - with Kodak services that enable email and smartphones to send images through the ether. Again, your printer doesn’t actually need to be connected to a computer. There’s also support for Google’s Cloud Printing service, which enables you to print from any computer connected to the net.