Kodak ESP-7 All-in-One Printer Review

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kodakesp7sml
Kodak knows a lot about cameras, photography, and paper, so it would seem likely that they would produce a good All-in-One printer. And this printer does excel at photo printing, however it does not do well in some other areas.

The Kodak ESP-7 is easy to set up and even goes on a wireless network quite easily. Printing photos on the ESP-7 is a near perfect experience. If you use Kodak paper, the printer automatically senses the type of paper and adjusts the printing accordingly. No fuss. No muss.

Kodak claims the cheapest ink costs in the industry. However, to take full advantage of this printer’s capabilities you have to buy Kodak photo paper, which is often more expensive. Then again, if you use the Kodak paper and the Kodak printer, I believe that you will have fewer mistakes saving on ink and paper.

Unfortunately, my printer needed an immediate fix. The print head needed replacement. Kodak tech support was excellent and a new print head was sent in 3 days. This is, however, problematic. Who wants to spend an hour with tech support on a brand new printer and then have to wait 3 days before you can use it?

With the new print head, printing, scanning, and copying was good. However, the slots for the media cards only read some of my cards and not others. So it was back to tech support. After another hour, I simply gave up and the problem was not solved. To be fair to Kodak, their tech support representative was willing to spend as much time as necessary to fix the problem, but I was not.

I am sure that there are people out there who are happy with their Kodak printers. However, my experience suggests that there are probably others who wish they had not purchased this printer.

Conclusions

I was honestly impressed by the quality of the prints and the ease of printing that this printer produced when printing on Kodak paper. It eliminated the stress of choosing the proper paper and the proper settings which ultimately eliminates mistakes and wasted paper and ink. I was equally impressed with the ease of use and the ease with which the printer attached to a wireless network.

Unfortunately, poor quality control and other problems plague this printer. I have also read complaints about paper jamming, but my printer did not exhibit any problems in this area.

While the photos are truly beautiful, I would also like to see a better quality color print on regular, non-Kodak paper which some other printers seem accomplish quite easily.

In fact, because of the problems I had, I cannot recommend this printer. Who wants to buy a new printer only to spend hours with technical support to get it working properly? Yet, I feel that Kodak is a printer manufacturer to watch very carefully. Kodak’s first digital cameras came up short, but after several generations, I found them to be greatly improved. If Kodak can work through their problems with these printers,  they could create exceptional printers.

Pros:

* Excellent prints on Kodak paper
* Very easy to print photos on Kodak paper
* Wireless connectivity easy to set up and use
* Separate photo paper tray
* Excellent fade resistance and photo longevity
* Multiple memory card slots
* Easy to navigate menus
* Good touch screen
* Automatically straightens and separates multiple photos during scan

Cons:

* Noisy
* Fairly slow network printing
* Colors on plain paper (non-Kodak) appear washed out
* Test printer needed new print head
* Not all media cards worked with test printer

Current retail is $199. My full review, including photos is at the Hardware Secrets website.

KODAK Store
KODAK Store

27 Comments

BRIAN 12-10-2009, 16:17

Hi of all the printers i have ever used this one is poetry in motion,it turns out prints that will make you gasp ,i had 5 manuals to print each having up to 100 pages and more ,it was effortless for the esp 7,giving perfection to every page,the ink hardly moved ,the wifi was wonderful to set up and use, i am sure i heard the esp 7 say ,go and find a fault with me if you can,and i did try ,but there are none ,treat this beauty like a lady and she will amaze you ,outstanding ,very best wishes Brian

Sandy Berger 12-10-2009, 16:24

If you don’t have any trouble with this Kodak printer, it can be a very satisfying experience. When you do have a problem, however, you will not love it!

BRIAN 12-10-2009, 17:02

Hi Sandy Berger ,you are quite right ,as no one likes a problem,but i feel the esp 7 does not get the praise it deserves,i have used canon and lexmark printers ,and they too have there own problems,but here in the esp printer we have a well priced printer that uses cheap priced ink,looks beautiful ,performs beyond exspectation ,and as for noisey, no it runs with precision ,steady as a mountain goat at the push of a button ,nearly music to my ears,here is a printer that should lead the world for star quality, my opinion only but kodak done good ,best wishes Brian

mark bishop 23-10-2009, 18:36

I’am having a problem connecting to my network printer. It’s a kodak esp 7 and i use a d-link router. I also have network majic. The message i get is printer not responding.

Sandy Berger 26-10-2009, 12:51

Mark,

Call Kodak tech support. They are usually pretty good. I believe they have a toll-free number listed in their documentation. Let us know how it goes.

Di 27-10-2009, 20:53

This is my worst nightmare printer of all. I have owner more than a dozen and never had so many problems. First: noisy. Then, jams. Even if there’s no jams, it complains of jams. Then, it stops printing colors. Cleaning the printhead uses 5% of the ink. Turning it on and off uses 5% of the ink. The ink flows like water through this printer. The software was outdated. Un-installing and re-installing was a nightmare that took many hours to resolve. Now they tell me the printhead is bad. I’ve only had it for less than 2 months, I use it lightly (less than 100 pages and a dozen pictures), I used 2 sets of cartridges. FALSE ADVERTISING… it doesn’t take less ink, it takes MUCH more than any other printer. It’s not reliable, I never know what it will do (or won’t do) next!
PLEASE, SAVE YOUR MONEY, DO NOT GET THIS PRINTER!

Tim 28-10-2009, 09:02

The esp 7 is or was the worst printer I have ever owned. I bought it in April used it about two weeks it stopped working call the India support after two hours of talking they sent me a print head this did not fix the problem.
I spent another two hours with support they wanted to send me another print head i refused. I wanted the printer preplaced they would not. I threw it in the garbage… I will never buy anything kodak again. DONT WASTE YOUR TIME AND MONEY

Linda 08-11-2009, 15:46

I had a Aio5500 it went out under warranty Kodak replaced it with a ESP 9 (a piece of crap machine) I uninstalled – restalled the software. The thing would NOT engage with the computer running vista. After 4 hrs on phone with India then another 3 hrs following day with India. They decided the printer was faulty. They sent me another. After installing the 2nd ESP9 I find that it will not work either. After being on the phone for two more days of lenghty calls. They have washed their hands and turned me to someone else in Kodak group. That, who knows when will be contacting me about the software. The printer, fax, scan, copy will work but the scan will NOT work with my computer. So far no response from Kodak. So guess I’m out a scanner machine. I would recommend anyone that is considering purchasing a aio printer from Kodak to run very quickly and not look back, you will be throwing your money in the trash. Buy Epson the ink is a little more but much more reliable machine. I wish I had.

Chris 01-12-2009, 11:39

Hello,

My issue is the software does not load to my Dell computer which is running XP 3…..I tried the disc multiple times and downloaded the one off the Kodak website….Still says it cannot complete the installation of the software….Is there a way to reset the printer….

Johnny Mac 01-12-2009, 14:10

I have had several printers over the years – and was using the HP 970CSE which I am guessing I have printed well over 10,000 pages. The double sided printing would always JAM – and the ink cartridges are steep in price. We were in need of new ink cartridges – and decided to purchase the Kodak ESP 7.. And at first – seemed like a great printer – and priced right on the replacement cartridges. I have had it now for 7 months – and have experienced several problems with it – from paper jams, to slow response (Set-up as wireless), noisy during printing and slow on printing. I am not sure on the spec’s on pages per minute (black or color), but it is very slow compared to our HP 970CSE.. I am totally disappointed in this printer – and cannot recommend it to anyone. I stopped using the memory card slots – as they would not always read the cards! I would only say! shop before you purchase this model – I am not happy with it at all – and even purchased the extended warranty coverage. However – my experience thus far with Tech support over the phone and via chat are also disappointing.

Jack Farrell 16-01-2010, 00:02

This printer is a piece of junk and without a doubt the worst printer I have ever owned or operated. Replaced 4 print heads so far. It typically takes between 20 – 30 minutes to print 1 page of text because of troubleshooting required. And the very latest event is almost unbelieveable: After replacing both print cartridges (you do this quite frequently!) I attempted to print a one page report for my job. one hour later I used over 1/2 of the ink in both cartridges running tests and cleaning the printhead, but no print document. Also, I’ve completed at least three surveys and provided feedback to Kodak re my problems and dissatisfaction but have not heard from them. I’ve been a fan of Kodak for years but they really missed with this printer.

Joe G. 28-01-2010, 13:34

Very dissappointing. The noise and speed are bad enough but I am using it (or trying to) in a wireless configuration and the thing constantly drops off the network. I can ping it but cannot print. Kodak’s brilliant tech support suggested the following:
– Move the printer to wihin 20′ of router (brilliant why don’t I just sit on on my router then I wouldn’t need wireless. BTW it is within 20′)
– When this occurs reboot printer PC and router thats the fix! “Your printer is working fine” I am told.

I am an engineer at a very large computer technology company so I know a little about wireless communications, HW and SW and this thing is a piece of junk.

I wish it would stay conneccted long enough for me to comment on the ink utlilization and print quality but I can’t!

Consumer Report Digital Camera 05-02-2010, 09:54

Victory! At last I have found a site that answers my questions. Thank you from a very grateful heart. Dorothy Wildman.

Dave Gerber 08-02-2010, 20:16

I can provide some info as a precious Kodak “Insider”. I was around when the first generation of Kodak AIO’s were released (5100, 5300, 5500) those printers were built like a rock. 1 1/2 years later Kodak contracted with a different manufacturer to produce the ESP line. These new models were built very cheaply and some features were even removed. now, of course the big selling point is the cost of the ink and I can tell you that from Independant Test Labs the Kodaks are the cheapest when in comes to cost per page. Kodak was also VERY smart in making it simpler for the consumers by having all of thier printer use the same exact cartridges. The weak point since the very beginning of theriventure into consumer printers are the printheads. (and they know it). The only reason that I can think of as a reason for not improving the printhead is tha fact that they do not want to make any changes to the cartridges. I have had a 5300 for almost 2 years now and have had the printhead replaced 3 times. Even though the printer comes with a 1 yr warranty, Kodak continues to provide new printheads well after the warranty period has passed. You don’t have to call them to get a new printhead, you can do that directly from the Kodak Support pages and they’ll send a new one via overnight. The Kodak support far exceeds that of HP (the worst) and Lexmark (who I also worked for in the past). Even though I was laid off by Kodak last March I feel I’ve been fair in mt comments.

Framkalla foto 19-03-2010, 15:41

Hi, that was without a doubt an awesome post. I had actually been looking for a photo printing related blog for a while now. Great! Is there a way to subscribe? because I can’t seem to find the information anywhere.

Hans Demilt 19-06-2010, 01:59

I really appreciate the writer’s skills over here as he has presented the facts in the right manner. Also he has kept the content simple, engaging and concise.

anna whitt 07-09-2010, 11:08

does anyone know how to get the paper jam error to go away if there is no paper jam to begin with? I have checked everything and there is still an error saying jam.. Please help..

Charlie Boatwright 13-10-2010, 21:14

I am having the same problem with the paper jam error. Checked everything – went step by step per Kodak. No use it just sits there and blinks. Like the printer the the problems I’ve had
are making me rethink my decision.

Mark Benson 18-10-2010, 22:45

Does anyone know how to persuade or trick the ESP9 into accepting 8 1/2 x 11 NON-Kodak photo paper? I like to make photo cards and write on the inside, not on top of Kodak logos, but the Costco paper (which makes fine photos) always causes “jams” and so I wonder if there is a sensor I can block on the printer somewhere.

Wilson Hrbacek 28-10-2010, 17:27

My HP M425 its the poorest cam ever, batteries don’t have extended live and direct the pics to a pc takes long time, the video record is really dark, the battery’s door its really slim a modest squeeze can break it… Its not the first time I have a trouble with HP productions.

joan miller 06-12-2010, 13:38

i need help in scanning a document on my kodak esp 7 all in one printer. kie yesterday. thank you

digital printing brisbane 16-02-2011, 21:17

it looks small in size. but good to hear about its features.Actually I am not really good at scanning documents.so better learn it on this new printer

Aleta Albert 05-03-2011, 01:44

I also had problems with my Kodak ESP7 printer very shortly after I purchased it. I talked to tech support which was difficult. The staff was very nice but had very heavy Indian accents. I had trouble understanding them and they had trouble understanding me. So we tried the on line chat method, not much better. Then we emailed. They still had difficulty understanding what my problem was. I had to explain the problem about five times. They also replaced the printhead — three times. My photos were printing with about a one inch white margin at the beginning of the photo and it would trail off at the other edge without printing a complete photo. It was finally resolved when they sent me a replacement printer. The replacement printer worked fine but it was a reconditioned printer which I felt a bit chagrined at since I had just paid full price for a brand new printer which I couldn’t use for weeks only to have it replaced by a reconditioned printer. It does print beautiful photos but using it for general printer is a bit clunky and loud.

dominic bright 13-06-2011, 14:40

I’ve had ESP7 for about 18 months, it came up on the screen paper jam, but there was no paper jam so I done all the trouble shooting online. No joy so I called customer support and the tech guy was not very helpful at all just told me to go to thier website and buy a new one. Why would I buy another Kodak

Jonathan Blycker 21-09-2011, 11:17

Cue the broken record. I also have an ESP7, and it’s the same story as the above posts. Multiple printheads requested from the tech support from India after hours of stilted, frustrating cross-cultural conversations. I constantly have to run maintenance, clean print nozzles, printheads, etc. The wireless connection is AWFULLY intermittent and the machine is not even 6′ from my wireless router!!! Now the paper jam party has begun; the only guest not to arrive…an actual paper jam! I can’t follow the advice from internet wizards who talk about moving the cartridge to the left. It is stuck. I don’t have a paper jam. I have a print head jam. Ugh. Don’t buy the hype about the ink prices. The printer is junk. It is pretty and sleek, but junk. When it does print, on every other full moon and leap years, the quality is usually great, but not always. This is unacceptable, Kodak.

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fred wessels 10-08-2015, 13:37

Loved the printer till I got the dreaded “paper jam” I went through all of the hoops including India, online chat and help places. I am going to use my $35.00 HP for everything except pics and will go to Walmart for those.

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