Last Updated on December 1, 2023 by Daniel Osakwe
The new HP Sprocket Plus mobile printer is a great companion for a smartphone with its built-in printer and scanner. It connects to your smartphone via Bluetooth and can print directly from your smartphone. It comes with a 50-sheet input tray, an output tray, a document feeder, an auto document feeder, and a USB cable. This device can print to a variety of media, including plain paper, photo paper, and envelopes. You can also print directly to a memory card, SD card, and USB drive. The HP Sprocket Plus mobile printer is available in black or white for $139.99.
Table of Contents
HP Sprocket Plus: Design & Features
At just 18g, the Sprocket plus is incredibly lightweight, portable, and – as its name implies – small enough to fit into your pocket.
This Sprocket is slightly larger than the standard Sprocket (8mm longer and 12.7mm wider), but shorter in height. The print size increases from 2 x 3in to 2.3 x 3.4in, roughly the size of a credit card.
Sprocket Select comes with a 10-sheet Zink paper pack. Even though the paper loading process isn’t complicated, you must do it with care.
Make sure the Zink paper is loaded glossy side up. Before printing images, the printer must process the barcode sheet at the bottom of every new pack. Similar to your inkjet printer’s printhead alignment process, but without ink.
As the heat intensity is increased, the microcrystals in zink paper produce different colors. As a result, the printer can become slightly warm when it is in use.
On the top of the Sprocket Select, Zink paper is loaded, and a marbled cover reveals the paper tray underneath. When closed, the cover magnetically snaps back into place, which is very handy if you’re going to roll the printer around in your handbag or backpack. If you want to protect your Sprocket, you can buy a case.
The Sprocket Select can load ten sheets at a time – on paper at least (pun shamelessly intended). When I stacked up the paper tray, I found that it caused the printer to jam, which is not something you want to deal with if you’re out with friends. If you load fewer sheets than recommended, you should keep the barcode sheet to realign the print head.
Micro-USB charging (with cable included) and Bluetooth 5.0 capabilities allow the Sprocket Select to connect to multiple devices at once. Its charging status is displayed by an LED light. I was able to fully charge my laptop within an hour of connecting it.
HP Sprocket Plus: App
The HP Sprocket app is the main benefit of the HP Sprocket plus (available on Android and iOS). In this hub, you can play around with your images, whether it’s adding filters, text frames, stickers, or tweaking the color and contrast. Additionally, you will need the app to pair your phone with the printer in the first place – which is very easy.
Due to the simplicity of the app, the Sprocket is incredibly easy to use. You can then select all the images you wish to print on your photo roll. Using Instagram, Google, or Facebook, you can create a collage or print photos.
HP Sprocket Plus: Print Quality
The first time I used zero-ink paper was with the Polaroid Snap instant camera. Since then, zero-ink paper has advanced significantly.
Zink prints lacked saturation and definition with the Snap. Despite the Sprocket Select’s apparent improvements, there is still the specter of this issue, as the Tone looks slightly washed. It impressed me.
Although the prints won’t be as clear as your phone display – or Sprocket’s marketing material – they’re still detailed and sharp. Photo prints with better clarity in bright light, and reds look especially rich and vibrant.
The printing process takes about 40 seconds per print.
Unlike Snap, which felt like a toy camera, Sprocket Select prints from a high-resolution image.
Pros and Cons
|Improved Zink print quality||Occasional paper loading issues|
|Simple app UX|
Undoubtedly, the Sprocket Select is marketed to the social media generation that is enamored with smartphones but hankers after the nostalgia and tactile quality of printed photos as well.
Instant prints on film remain expensive in the long run, but Sprocket Select, which uses a cheaper Zero Ink paper, provides an excellent, affordable middle ground.
Compared to an inkjet print from a shop, the image quality isn’t as sharp, clear, and vibrant, but that’s not what you pay for. With an instant keepsake at your fingertips, you are paying for novelty.