HP OfficeJet Pro 6978 Review | HP’s Worst Printer Ever?

HP OfficeJet Pro 6978 Review Feature Image
Our Rating:

Are you tired of dealing with unreliable printers? I know I am. After endless frustration, I decided to give the HP OfficeJet Pro 6978 a try. Spoiler alert: it was a disaster.

From paper jams to connectivity issues, this printer tested my patience like no other. I couldn't believe a modern printer could be this bad.

Curious to learn why the HP OfficeJet Pro 6978 earns my vote for the worst printer ever? Stick around. You're in for an eye-opening review.

Why you should trust my opinion of the

Joe Goldhard Author PhotoI’ve worked in retail sales for over 10 years now, specializing in selling and fixing printers and other consumer electronics.

When I write reviews, I rely not only on my own testing but also on the feedback and experiences of my customers.

I’ve sold more than I can count, so you can trust that I’m giving you the full picture!

My HP OfficeJet Pro 6978 Review Rating: 2.8/5

After my experiences with the HP OfficeJet Pro 6978, I’m not satisfied with the quality of this printer. I try not to sell it, and I don’t recommend it.

Key Features

  • Wireless connectivity
  • Print, scan, copy, and fax capabilities
  • 2.65″ touchscreen display
  • Automatic document feeder with a 35-sheet capacity
  • Automatic duplex printing


  • The printer produces high-quality prints with vibrant colors.
  • The automatic document feeder is a convenient feature that saves time when scanning or copying multiple pages.
  • The wireless connectivity allows for easy printing from various devices.
  • Automatic duplex printing is a great feature that saves paper.


  • This printer has a high failure rate out of the box. There’s a good chance you’ll need to exchange it.
  • The inkjet heads tend to fail after 16-24 months of use
  • It’s quite noisy when printing

The Bottom Line

Overall, the HP OfficeJet Pro 6978 Wireless All-in-One Color Inkjet Printer is a decent option for a home office printer, but its slow speed and frequent jams may be deal-breakers for some users.

However, the biggest problem with the HP OfficeJet Pro 6978 is the high failure rate. I’ve sold a lot of these printers, and at least one in four gets returned for being dead on arrival. It’s just not a reliable printer.

If you’re in the market for a reliable all-in-one printer, I recommend checking out other options before making a final decision.

All In One Inkjet Printer

HP OfficeJet Pro 6978

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03/07/2024 02:04 pm GMT

My Full HP OfficeJet Pro 6978 Review

Print Speed: 3/5

The HP OfficeJet Pro 6978 has a print speed of 20 pages per minute for black and 11 pages per minute for color.

While this speed is decent, it is not the fastest I’ve seen.

The draft mode is available, which boosts the speed to 30 pages per minute for black and 26 pages per minute for color. However, the quality of the prints is not as good in draft mode.

Print Cost: 3/5

The HP OfficeJet Pro 6978 uses four ink cartridges: black, cyan, magenta, and yellow. The cost of the cartridges is average, and they are easy to replace.

However, the cartridges do not last very long, especially if you print a lot of color documents.

Thix printer is compatible with HP’s Instant Ink program, which can save you money if you print a lot. If you’re interested, learn more by reading my HP Instant Ink review.

Durability: 1/5

In my opinion, this printer has negative durability. It has a high failure rate out of the box. I’ve sold dozens of this model of printer, and nearly one in four gets returned as defective.

The inkheads also tend to fail after 16-24 months of use. I’ve found several reviews from other users who have experienced the same issue. This is a significant problem because replacing the inkjet heads is too expensive and time-consuming to be worth it. You’ll need to replace the printer.

I don’t think this printer will last very long, which is disappointing.

Print Quality: 3/5

The HP OfficeJet Pro 6978 has a print resolution of 600 x 1200 dpi, which is decent.

The quality of the prints is good, but not exceptional. The colors are vibrant, but I’ve noticed some smudging on occasion.

Scan Quality: 3/5

The HP OfficeJet Pro 6978 has an optical scan resolution of 1200 dpi, which is decent. The quality of the scans is very average.

Nowadays, printer scanners are all pretty good. But if you need professional scan quality, this printer doesn’t have it.

Duplex Features: 3/5

The HP OfficeJet Pro 6978 has automatic duplexing, which is a great feature. You can print double-sided documents without having to flip the pages manually.

However, the duplexing is slow, and there is a noticeable delay between printing the first side and the second side.

Connectivity: 4/5

The HP OfficeJet Pro 6978 has built-in Wi-Fi and Ethernet connectivity, which is great. You can print from your computer, smartphone, or tablet without connecting them directly to the printer.

The printer also has a front USB port for printing from or scanning to a portable drive.

Usability: 4/5

The HP OfficeJet Pro 6978 has a 2.65-inch LCD touchscreen, which is easy to use. The touchscreen provides an intuitive method for viewing status and changing settings.

The printer also has a 35-sheet automatic document feeder and an 8.5 x 11.7-inch flatbed. The input tray can hold up to 225 sheets of paper, which is a decent amount.

Brand Reputation and Customer Support: 1/5

It’s no secret that I don’t like HP’s customer support. In my opinion, they do a terrible job of helping customers once they’ve gotten their money.

I’ve had several great customers complain to me about their experience with HP’s support team.

While it’s not a total dealbreaker, and bad service isn’t unique to HP, it’s something to keep in mind before you make a decision to buy this printer.

HP OfficeJet Pro 6978 Review | Bottom Line

Major Wins

After using the HP OfficeJet Pro 6978 for a while, I found several features that stood out as major wins.

First, I love the printer’s wireless connectivity options. It’s easy to connect to Wi-Fi and print from a smartphone or tablet without any issues.

The 2.65″ LCD touchscreen also made navigating the printer’s settings and functions easy. It’s also got a 35-sheet automatic document feeder, which makes scanning and copying multiple pages a breeze.

Major Drawbacks

Of course, there’s a lot about this printer I don’t like. Starting with how many times it just doesn’t work.

When you buy a printer, or anything, you expect to open the box and put it to use. I don’t know anyone who buys a printer before they need it. With this printer, there’s a good chance you’ll get a defective model, and need to exchange it.

Another issue my customers have had is the inkjet heads. They tend to fail after only a few months of use, and they are impractically expensive and difficult to replace.

Additionally, the printer seemed to perform maintenance tasks for several minutes every time Iused it, which was a waste of time and resources. Again, when people need to print, they need it now, and this printer makes that difficult.

Final Verdict: 2.8/5

Overall, I have mixed feelings about the HP OfficeJet Pro 6978. While it has some great features like wireless connectivity and an automatic document feeder, the inkjet head issues and excessive maintenance tasks were major drawbacks.

We would only recommend this printer to someone who’s willing to put up with these issues, and even then, I would caution them to be aware of the potential problems. There are way better options available at this price.

My Favorite HP OfficeJet Pro 6978 Alternative: The HP OfficeJet Pro 9015e

The HP OfficeJet Pro 6978 falls short in several areas. That’s why I recommend the HP OfficeJet Pro 9015e as a better alternative.

The HP OfficeJet Pro 9015e boasts faster print speeds; up to 22 pages per minute in black and 18 pages per minute in color. Its automatic document feeder can handle up to 35 pages at once, and it has a larger 250-sheet input tray. The 9015e also has a larger 2.7-inch touchscreen display, and is a more current model.

The HP OfficeJet Pro 9015e is a more powerful and versatile all-in-one printer than the 6978. I highly recommend it to anyone needing a reliable and efficient printer for their home or office.

All In One Inkjet Printer
HP OfficeJet Pro 9015e
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03/08/2024 05:16 am GMT

HP OfficeJet Pro 6978 Review | Final Thoughts

After using the HP OfficeJet Pro 6978 Wireless All-in-One Color Inkjet Printer, I can confidently say it’s one of the worst printers I’ve tested.

Yes, it’s not all bad. It’s a decent size and has a lot of the features people look for in a modern printer.

I just can’t confidently recommend a product that doesn’t work so often. I’ve had so many customers return this printer that I’ve started actively discouraging people from purchasing it.

If you’d like to roll the dice, then check out the HP OfficeJet Pro 6978 on Amazon.

As always, be kind to each other, and happy printing!

All-In-One Inkjet Printer
HP OfficeJet Pro 6978

The HP OfficeJet Pro 6978 is one of the most disappointing printers I've encountered. I've had so many of these printers come back defective that I no longer recommend it to any of my customers.

  • Decent footprint
  • Good connectivity options
  • Often Defective
  • Printheads dry out
  • Reliability problems
  • Terrible customer service
GearRank: 90
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03/07/2024 02:04 pm GMT

16 thoughts on “HP OfficeJet Pro 6978 Review | HP’s Worst Printer Ever?”

  1. hello Joe,
    I bought one 8978 Saturday to replace a very disappointing Brother J885DW (I had very good satisfaction with Brother LaserJet in the past) and it blacked out on us Sunday morning, internal psu gone, exchanged it, luckily had purchased Best by insurance, printer was replaced no questions asked. I agree with you in regards to the touch screen being very small and I’m surprise you recommend the 8710 as it seems to share the same screen. I still have 15 days to return the printer so I am still looking.
    Another issue I have with the 6978 is that 1 of our old lap top still runs under XP and it seems the driver is not compatible.
    I would be interested to know which you would recommend at this time considering your review is now 10 months old.

  2. Hi Denis, sorry to hear you’ve been having trouble. I currently use the HP OfficeJet Pro 8720, and I love it. It’s fast, reliable, and efficient, and it has a big screen. Just make sure you have a big enough place for it, as it is quite large.
    The issue with XP is going to be one you run into with most printers. Almost everything you find in store now will only support back to Vista service pack 2. You could try emailing documents from your computer to your printer, but it doesn’t always work smoothly.
    Best of luck! -Joe

  3. I’m on my second HP Officejet Pro 6978. First one lasted two months…printhead error did it in. I got the second one direct from HP (factory reconditioned…yeah, right). It has lasted around three weeks and now magenta isn’t printing. Decided to change cartridges from the starter one to my first instant ink shipment…still waiting on the printer maintenance to finish. I wish I had gone with the next higher model!

  4. Joe,

    You are right on — the HP 6978 is a piece of junk!! The printer will not stay connected to the drivers on user PC’s. It drops offline frequently and requires rebooting the printer and the PC to re-establish a connection. HP’s customer support always blames the network even though the printer is still accessible via its IP address. This printer has a serious design flaw and should not be purchased for use in a wireless environment.

  5. Hi Johnny,
    I’m sorry you’re having issues. Unfortunately, the only remedy I’ve found is to bring the printer back and get a different model. I hope you find something that works for you! -Joe

  6. Unreal, I just bought this printer last week at Office Depot and from day one, I have been getting that same problem. I hope when I return it to Office Depot I will get my money back for the cartridges as well! Getting a bit fed up with HP. I had the Instant ink program but found out that there is no way to print if you are not on the internet. Not practical if your are an Event planner and need to print onsite. I have lost 2 printers because of this stupid problem.
    What else would you recommend besides the Officejet Pro 8710? I do have one of those, but need to have another printer as we are away for 4 months. Thanks in advance.

  7. I have an HP Office Jet L7590. Yes its old and yes it still works. Have had some issues with it over the years, but it has proven to be a work horse. HP advised me that has been End of Life for some time now and recommend and sold me an 8720 (glad to see you are using one and like it). I have read some very negative reviews on Amazon and Best Buy about the printer, but overall it seems to be a good product, and the price is right $179.00.

    What do you think about taking a 2 year extended warranty for $55.00. I figured if it lasts 3 years, I got my money’s worth and will just buy a new one at that point.

  8. Hi Dennis. For $55 I’d pass. I usually shoot for 25% of the purchase price or less when buying warranties on printers.

  9. HI Joe !
    Here is my problem with HP OfficeJet Pro 6978:
    It Does Not Print at all !!!!!!!!!
    Document sits in the queue … and this is it !!!!!

    No matter which way it is connected to the computer:
    WEP, Wi-Fi, USB, Ethernet port …
    Document sits in the queue … and this is it !!!!!

  10. I gave up on my HP OfficeJet Pro 6978 as a color printer because it consumed all of the colored ink in self-maintenance. I hoped this was just a one-time start-up issue, but it continued to happen with the second set of color cartridges. The ink levels quickly drained away even though I printed only a few occasional color copies. I took the printer back to the store. They exchanged it for another printer. That one did the same thing. I now use it only as a black and white printer. I really miss having a color printer, but I’m unwilling to purchase color cartridges and have the ink quickly “evaporate” in self-maintenance.

  11. Great article.
    So true.
    Thanks for revealing.
    I tell people to read this when they ask me about a HP.
    And I just tell them to ignore the 2nd part, when you recommend another HP.
    What are you thinking?
    Brother is not perfect, but much better than HP.
    H and P are rolling in their grave.

  12. Joe, I have read all the comments about and your review of the HP 6978 and as always I take everything with a grain of salt. I have had my 6978 for maybe two years without any problems whatsoever other than color ink usage. In fact this printer was more reliable than the larger HP used at our local City Hall office. Then it happened, two months ago in the middle of a small printing project the printer quit, I called in the local IT guy to help, to no avail. I am so proud of my little printer that I often print and fax items for locals at my home office so I was facing levels of frustration as I needed the printer and in that moment of frustration I punched the printer and lo and behold it began to work and continued for at least two months then stopped again. Well, one more punch and we’re working, but my hand can’t continue so I will be making a change soon, per your recommendation.

  13. I just want to say thank you for an honest review. I try so hard to find reviews that aren’t guided by th almight dollar bill, but it seems near impossible these days. I actually ordered the 6978 on backorder for $89 ( still waiting to be fulfilled). But reading your review and all the comments, this still doesn’t sound like a good deal at all. Luckily I still have time to cancel. Tbh, I literally have no knowledge of printers, but I know I know this is not the model I want. Thank you again for the honesty, it is much appreciated.

  14. On 2nd HP 6978, no problem with 1st one but this one does not print a full page in any color. I have run printer maintenance 5 times and changed cartridges to new ones twice, cleaned cartridge heads twice and still get very bad copies but when I print the alignment sheet it is ok. Anything I can do besides dump it. It’s out of warranty by 1 month

  15. That is my problem all the freakin time!!!! Always have to connect it back to my wifi, such a pain in the ass, why can’t it just stay connected!!!

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