Reviews – the HP OfficeJet H470 Mobile Printer – what you need to know

Today I’m going to be reviewing the HP OfficeJet H470 mobile printer which comes in four different versions which are all very similar with slight but important differences.  I’m actually glad you found this page because trying to find information on these printers is very difficult.  Find out more below.
This printer has a ‘base model’ which is plainly the HP Officejet H470, but it has three other offshoot models which you should know about.

The first one is purely a demo model and so I’m not going to dwell long on it, the only reason I’m mentioning it is because they’re for sale on Amazon and some people have bought them and have been very disappointed.  The model itself is called the HP Officejet H470wf and please just don’t buy it, manufacturers and people are simply trying to ‘dump’ them onto people for lower prices but they’re unreliable and faulty.

The second one is the HP Officejet H470b which include an external lithium-ion battery which allows two hours of printing operation.  If you’re looking for a mobile printer for laptops then this is a must because the base model doesn’t come with it, meaning it simply isn’t portable.

Finally there’s the HP Officejet H470wbt which comes with the lithium-ion battery, Bluetooth adapter and a protective case.  Remember that this a long with all the other models are the same as the HP Officejet H470, the same specifications – they just come with optional extras creating what most people know as wireless mobile printers.

HP Officejet H470

So now that you’re familiar with the similar off shoot products lets take a look at the HP Officejet H470 itself.

So let’s take a look at the good.  From a quality perspective you’ll find it hard if not impossible to find a mobile printer which can print to the high resolutions that this printer can.  It goes to 1200 x 1200 dots per inch when printing in black and white and 4800 dpi printing color.  When you compare this to a lot of other portable printers it blows them out of the water with a quality that is on par with desktop printers.  It can print quickly too, 22 pages per minute for black and white and 18 ppm for color which again allow it to reach the standard of desktop printers

Just before I get fully into the review, if you’re looking for what is currently the very best HP wireless portable printer – a reasonable price but a fantastic product then frankly I’d considering skipping this review and just checking out the HP OfficeJet 100 because the truth is it’s of similar price and substantially better quality and reliability

Although there are different ‘versions’, they’re more akin to ‘buying options’ and you can buy the battery or wireless adapters when required.  The battery costs around 40 dollars, the wireless access point dongle is 50 dollars and this is the same price for the Bluetooth dongle, so it’s important to factor in these costs when you’re thinking of buying the device if you’re looking for a real wireless portable printer.

With regards to connectivity it has the two additional wireless options (Bluetooth and WiFi), but also comes with 2 usb 2.0 ports, 1 PictBridge port and finally 1 Secure Digital/MultiaMedia card port.  It supports most paper sizes: letters, legal, statements, executive, envelops, cards and photos.

It weighs just 4.5 pounds and although it can hardly be considered a small mobile printer it’s still relatively lightweight considering some ‘mobile’ printers can easily weigh up to 10-13 pounds.

For those who need high quality prints while travelling then this is for you.  It’s multiple connectivity options cater to all needs although admittedly at a rather high price.  It’s reasonable size and weight mean it can be carried around in a rucksack or bag with admittedly a little discomfort but not a huge amount considering you’re getting the benefits of a stationary printer wherever you go.  Just make sure that you factor in the costs of buying the lithium ion battery and Bluetooth adapter if you want true portability and connectivity.  Another really great choice would be the HP DeskJet 460C which I class as HP’s ‘second best’ but that’s another review!

Ok let’s look over what’s bad about it.  To start with they’re simply not compatible with some Windows 7 and all Windows 7 Ultimate operating systems.  The information displayed both on their website and Amazon state otherwise, but reading literally dozens of user reviews has led me to believe that the printing drivers simply have not been updated in a long time which is a real let down for both HP and its customers because there are going to be a lot of dissatisfied people.

Secondly I’ve seen numerous complaints about the printing jamming when travelling.  I fully understand that inkjet printers have moving parts and that these are susceptible to breaking if they’re being constantly moved around – but my understanding does not excuse it.  It’s not acceptable that there are malfunctions due to people travelling with it – it’s what it’s designed for.  It’s branded as a wireless mobile printer which means it should live up to that name in reliability and durability and from a lot of what I’ve read it does not.

HP OfficeJet H470

HP OfficeJet H470

Finally a lot of people complain that there’s no sufficient warning that the device doesn’t come with any battery or wireless adapters as standard.  I’m glad you’ve read this review because it clears a lot of misconceptions up, but if you want true portability prepared to pay out an extra 100 dollars otherwise you’re just buying a stationary printer – an expensive one.

Summary

If you want high quality printing on the move, but you’re not storing the printer in the luggage hold in planes and you’re very aware that you can cause issues for yourself then I would go for this printer.  It really bottles down to how careful you are, I’m a careful person and I wouldn’t have any problems because I would treat it like a baby.  But when most people see ‘mobile’ they think it can be treated like any portable device, but the truth is no inkjet printers can be treated in anything but the most gentle manner.  They have moving parts, and if you constantly move moving parts then you’re going to break them or in some cases here cause malfunctions which require you to keep trying to print out what you want until you can get it to work.

HP OfficeJet H470 Mobile Printer

HP OfficeJet H470 Mobile Printer

I’m a little disappointed with how HP have consistently shown a lack of transparency with some aspects of this printer – as well as of some other HP portable printer devices they produce.  Having to buy the battery to actually make it ‘mobile’ when you’ve already put mobile in the name is dishonest in my opinion.  Also some people don’t realize they need to pay extra for the Bluetooth adapter which again isn’t made clear in the various sales pages I’ve looked over.  Finally their lack compatibility when it comes to supporting Windows 7 or Windows 7 Ultimate is surprising and not something they should be purposefully overlooking in my opinion.

HP OfficeJet H470

HP OfficeJet H470

The faults such as the printing suffering occasional jams isn’t (in my opinion) completely HP’s fault and you need to understand the printing mechanics to realize that unless you’re buying a thermal portable printer, most inkjet’s simply are not designed for mobile use and will display this occasionally with jams and error messages.

Overall, despite my criticisms I think the HP Officejet H470 Mobile Printer is a good choice for the right person.  If you want good printing out of let’s say, your car, where it’s going to be moving but stable then it’s a good choice.  But if you know it’s going to be sustaining bumps and bruises then I’d steer clear.  Even though this is is far from the best, it’s far from the worst worst which is easily the HP 450Ci which has been described as some as the ‘Nightmare Printer’

Categories: HP

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