Thursday, September 14, 2006

Dell 720 Photo Printer

I bought a Dell computer earlier this year. The Dell had been strongly recommended to me by some well-informed friends and I considered it a pretty good deal. I even convinced my mother to buy one when she was ready to upgrade. Since I bought the Dell though, a few things have gotten me pretty worked up.

First, Dell is no different than any other PC company in that they pre-load their computers with all kinds of "free" software that is actually just a bunch of trialware garbage. I am pretty computer-savvy compared to the general populace, I suppose,(Now that is soime faint praise, if I ever heard any.) but it took me several frustrating minutes (I didn't count) to encounter, evaluate, and ultimately dispose of all the crap that Dell includes for free.

But the thing that drove me nuts from day one was the Dell 720 Photo Printer. I didn't ask for it, but it was included for free with my purchase of the Dell Dimension 5150. At first I thought, "How nice, a free printer." because I was pretty fed up with the Lexmark product I bought. NEVER buy a Lexmark unless you want to overpay for ink. Turns out, the Dell 720 Photo Printer comes with a few built-in caveats. First, you need to go out and buy the cable that will connect it to your computer. That will cost you about 30 bucks. Second, the ink they include is TRIAL ink. yeah, in addition to trial versions of Corel Office and Paint Shop Pro, you get itty-bitty trial ink with your printer. What a joke.

But it gets worse from there. The Dell 720 Photo Printer is absolutely the worst printer I have ever used. Paper repeatedly jams, it complains that something is blocking the cartridge carrier when nothing is, it's slow, and it wasn't able to print a range of pages from Microsoft Word. In all, it made me so livid, I decided to go "Office Space" on the piece of crap rather than even asking Dell for help.

No wonder they include it for free.

Dell, we're done. I wish I could undo this purchase, but I can't. But we are done.


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