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Kodak Hero 9.1 review

Can this cheap-to-run touchscreen printer challenge its rivals on quality?

Our Verdict

For

  • Low running costs
  • Feature-rich
  • Excellent photo printing
  • Great scanner
  • 4.3-inch touchscreen

Against

  • Mediocre build quality
  • Poor plain paper image printing
  • 3D printing is Windows-only
  • Not very aesthetically pleasing
  • No disc on-body printing

Kodak hero 9.1 review

The Kodak Hero 9.1 uses two ink tanks. A single-ink cartridge supplies pigmented black, which is ideal for printing text, and its colour cartridge holds five pigmented inks. Having all its colour inks in a single cartridge isn't ideal, because you have to replace the whole thing when just one of its tanks is empty, but the amount of ink wasted is usually small.

Kodak claims its premium pigmented inks won't fade over time like the dye-based inks used by its rivals, and should last around 120 years.

Setting the Kodak Hero 9.1 up is easy enough. Despite a few teething troubles, we soon got the printer up and running. You can connect it directly to your computer through USB, but some of its best features are only available when it's on your home internet network, through an Ethernet link or Wi-Fi connection.

Kodak hero 9.1 review

Like the rest of the Kodak Hero range, the 9.1 model is Google Cloud Print-ready, and also has Kodak Email Printing enabled. After connecting your printer to your network and registering it online, it's given a unique email address. You can then print documents such as Microsoft Office files, PDFs, images and text by emailing them to this address from any internet-enabled device, regardless of whether it's on the same network as your printer.

If your Android or iOS smartphone or tablet is on the same network as the Kodak Hero 9.1, you can print from it directly using Kodak's free Pic Flick app. The range is not yet AirPrint-enabled, but Kodak hopes to add this feature at a later date.

The printer has automatic Duplex, so you can print on both sides of the paper without having to manually reload the sheets after the first page.

When printing photos, it automatically recognises when you're using photo paper, and adjusts the print quality accordingly.

Kodak hero 9.1 review

It's PictBridge-compatible, and you can print images from USB sticks and memory cards without using your computer. Obviously, the 4.3-inch colour touchscreen is a great asset when doing this.

The Kodak All-in-One (AiO) Home Center application also has a fun - if gimmicky - facility for taking and printing 3D images for viewing with the cardboard glasses bundled with the printer, but it only works with Windows PCs.

The Kodak Hero 9.1 can't print on optical discs, and it doesn't have downloadable applications like those enjoyed by the Lexmark Genesis S815 and recent HP printers, but it does have facilities for printing simple forms such as music paper, graph paper, shopping lists and more.

Connect it to a telephone socket and it can send and receive faxes, both from the device itself and directly from your computer.

Photo printing is very good. Our professional A4 PhotoDisc image printed with crisp, clear colours, sharp detail and smooth gradient ramps. We have no cause for complaints here at all.

Kodak hero 9.1 review

Unfortunately though, plain paper image printing is terrible, with dull, lifeless colours and noticeable speckling. Images that dominate the page can make the paper curl.

Its pigmented black ink makes for clear, vivid text printing, although it's not as vibrant as a Canon or HP printer's text output.

Although far from fast, the Kodak Hero 9.1 offers acceptable speeds. Our 20-page test document printed in five minutes, 27.6 seconds, which is too pedestrian for serious office use, but acceptable for home printing.

Scanning quality is excellent, although the scanner's a little noisy. You can scan directly from the printer at the push of a button, or for more options, use the bundled scanning application.

Tech Specs

Product TypeInkjet Multifunction Printer
Maximum Photo Print Speed28 Second
Green CompliantYes
Wireless LANYes
Display Screen TypeLCD
Standard Input Media Capacity140 sheets
Ethernet TechnologyEthernet
USBYes
PictBridgeYes
ISO Color Print Speed (ipm)5.5
ISO Mono Print Speed (ipm)8.5
Product FamilyHERO
Maximum Print Resolution9600 x 1200 dpi
Brand NameKodak
Form FactorDesktop
Print ColourColour
Duplex PrintingAutomatic
Media SizeA4, Letter, Legal, A2 Envelope, Envelope No. 10, Envelope No. 9, Index Card, Custom Size, A4 - 210 mm x 297 mm, Letter - 216 mm x 279 mm, Legal - 216 mm x 356 mm, Index Card - 127 mm x 203 mm, 101.60 mm x 152.40 mm, 127 mm x 177.80 mm, 215.90 mm x 297.18 mm
Multifunction DevicesCopier/Fax/Printer/Scanner
Recommended UsePhoto Print
Optical Resolution2400 dpi
Green Compliance Certificate/AuthorityENERGY STAR
TouchscreenYes
Copy ColorColour
Scan ColorColour
Fax ColorColour
EthernetYes
Maximum Copy Resolution1200 x 1200 dpi
Number of Input/Multipurpose Trays Installed2
Number of Input Trays Supported2
Interpolated Resolution9600 dpi
Maximum Input Media Capacity140 sheets
Height231 mm
Width445 mm
Depth432 mm
Media TypePlain Paper, Photo Paper, Inkjet Paper, Premium Paper, Envelope, Transparency, Card Stock, Postcard, Label, Iron-on Transfer, Index Card
Colour Depth24-bit
Copier TypeFlatbed
ManufacturerEastman Kodak Company
Product Model9.1
Product NameHERO 9.1 Multifunction Printer
Product LineHERO
Scanner TypeFlatbed
Screen Size10.9 cm (4.3")
Modem Speed33.60 Kbps
Image SensorCIS
Manufacturer Part Number3954039
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.kodak.com
Marketing Information

State-of-the-art technology meets versatility with the KODAK HERO 9.1 All-in-One Printer. It's from Kodak, so it brings you the ultimate in premium quality, affordably priced ink. But it also comes fully loaded with the latest in intelligent features. Like being Google Cloud Print and KODAK Email Print ready so you can print from any location and any mobile device-your smartphone, computer, or tablet. Smart Sensor technology that detects paper size and predicts supplies and time needed. A large, sleek, intuitive touchscreen that's as easy on the eyes as it is easy to use. Faxing directly from your PC in as fast as 3 seconds per page, plus copying and scanning. Double-sided printing to save time and paper. It even has an automatic document feeder and a separate tray for photo printing. The KODAK HERO 9.1 All-in-One Printer. It's advanced. It's efficient. It's versatile. It's everything you ever wanted a home printer to be.

Number of Copies99
Platform SupportedPC, Mac
Package Contents
  • HERO 9.1 Multifunction Printer
  • 1 x Black Ink Cartridge
  • 1 x Color Ink Cartridge
  • 3D Glasses
  • Power Supply and Adapter Cord
  • Setup Guide
  • User Guide
  • Software CD
Limited Warranty1 Year
Transmission Speed3 sec/page
Weight (Approximate)8.50 kg