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HP print settings guide (Windows, Mac)

Find and change print settings, such as paper type and size, color or black and white, and print quality.


Available print settings and menu locations vary by printer model, driver type, and the app you are printing from.

Change print settings in Windows

When you set up your HP printer with the recommended HP software, a print driver installs that provides support and access to the features your printer supports.

Find print settings (Windows)

Change print settings from the app you are printing from.

  1. Open a document, photo, or webpage, click File, and then click Print or click the Print icon to open the Print window.

  2. Open the printing options. The button or link name depends on the app you are printing from.

    • Windows 10 Photos app: Click More settings at the bottom of the settings list.

    • Microsoft Word: Click Printer Properties.

    • Paint and WordPad: Click Preferences.

  3. Click the tabs on the top of the window or click Advanced to access available settings for your printer.

    Selecting tabs on the top of the window or clicking the Advanced button

Color and black & white settings

Control how the printer interprets colors and uses ink to print. For best results, edit photos and documents in the application you created them in before changing print settings.

Color or black and white: Select settings from the Paper/Quality, Color, Features, or Advanced tabs.

Settings and options




Uses ink from all cartridges for full color prints

Black & White, Black Ink Only, Monochrome, or Grayscale

Uses the black cartridge only for normal or lower quality black & white prints

Hi Quality Grayscale

Uses ink from black and color cartridges to produce a wider range of black and gray tones for high quality black & white prints

Print all text as black

Prints all contents of the document in black, regardless of color

Color management: Define the range of colors printed based on industry color standards and the application you are printing from. These settings are on the Color or Advanced tab.

Settings and Options




Common standard appropriate for most print jobs


Translates colors to the AdobeRGB color standard

Managed by application, ICM Handled by Host System or Printer, or ICM Disabled

Allows the printer or the app you are printing from to manage colors

Advanced color settings: Adjust saturation, brightness, and tone, or change individual color levels from the Color tab.

Paper type, size, and input tray settings

Paper size, type, and tray settings help ensure the printer properly handles and scales the print job to the paper. Set paper settings on the Paper/Quality or Features tab.


When loading paper into the input tray, look for a prompt on the control panel menu, if your printer has one, to confirm the paper type and size.

Paper type: Set the paper type you are using, such as HP photo paper, plain paper, or custom media, or select Automatic to let the printer select the paper type.

Paper size: Select the paper size that is loaded in the printer, such as 4 x 6, legal, or 8.5 x 11 plain paper. Check your printer specifications for supported paper sizes.

Paper tray or source: Select the tray you loaded the paper into, if your printer has more than one tray. If available, use Automatically Select to pull from the main tray. If the main tray is empty, paper is pulled from another tray with paper.

Print quality and improvement settings

Change print quality settings to suit your print job. Most text-only documents require normal or lower print quality settings, while photos often benefit from higher quality settings.

Print Quality: The main setting to improve the quality of printouts is print resolution. Print resolution is measured in dots per inch (DPI). Higher DPI produces clearer and more detailed prints, but slows print speed and might use more ink or toner. See printer specifications for print speeds (measured in pages-per-minute).

Change print quality on the Paper/Quality, Advanced, or Printing Shortcut tabs, or in Advanced Options.

Settings and options




Lowest DPI, used when cartridge levels are low or when high quality prints are not needed


Uses less toner per page and reduces print quality for printing drafts or proofs


Produces draft quality at the fastest printing speed


Includes a number indicating DPI

Normal or Everyday

Default quality setting suitable for most print jobs


Better DPI than Normal


Highest DPI setting available

HP Real Life Technologies or HP Real Life Digital Photography: Select an editing level to improve the quality of digital photos with resolution or exposure issues, washed out colors, or dark areas. HP Real Life settings can be changed in the Features, Advanced, or Paper/Quality tab, or in Advanced Options. The Printing Shortcut tab might also include shortcuts with this option.

Advanced color settings: Adjust saturation, brightness, and tone, or adjust the levels of each individual color used by the printer. Settings are available on the Color tab.

Resolution: View DPI details based on the printing shortcut or print quality settings selected on the Features or Print/Quality tab, or in Advanced Options.

Layout and format settings

Change how documents or photos are formatted and laid out on the paper, including orientation, adding borders, scaling to a specific size paper, and printing multiple pages on a single sheet. Some Printing Shortcuts have layout and formatting settings.

Portrait or landscape orientation: Select Portrait for vertical prints or Landscape for horizontal prints in the Orientation menu on the Layout, Finishing, or Features tab.

Add or remove a border: Leave a white border around a photo or print to the very edge of the paper, if supported by your printer. Border settings are available in the Borderless Printing or Paper Size menu in Advanced Options.

Print on both sides of the paper (duplexing): Depending on the printer model, you can automatically print on both sides of the paper, or set up the print job to manually flip the pages. Duplexing options are on the Layout, Finishing, or Features tab.

Booklet printing: Select page flip binding settings for booklet reading on the Finishing or Features tab, or in Advanced Options.

Page order: Print pages from front to back or back to front on the Basics, Layout, Advanced, or Features tab.

Pages per sheet: Print multiple pages of a document on one sheet of paper, and select the order they are printed on the page. Pages per sheet is available on the Finishing, Layout, or Features tab, or in Advanced Options.

Scale or resize the printout: Print to fit on different paper sizes, scale to fit a selected paper size, or change the percentage of the original size that prints under Resizing Options on the Features or Effects tab.

Minimize margins: Print close to the bottom edge of the page. This setting is on the Advanced tab.

Mirror printing: Reverse an image or document for printing iron-on transfers from the Advanced tab.

Poster printing: Enlarge an image and divide it across multiple pages so that it can be taped together as a poster from the Advanced tab.

Watermarks: A watermark is a subtle image placed within the printout that becomes visible when the page is held up to a light. Print a watermark on every page of the document or on the first page only, if selected. Click the Edit button on the Effects tab for formatting options.

Ink and toner handling settings

Some printer models include settings that allow you to change how ink or toner is applied to the paper, including how much ink to use, control of individual colors, and how long the printer holds the print for drying. Ink and toner settings can be changed on the Color or Advanced tab.

Advanced color settings: Adjust saturation, brightness, and tone, or adjust the levels of each individual color used by the printer.

Dry time: Lengthen or shorten the time interval between the printing of two or more pages or photos. Longer dry time provides extra time for slow-drying printouts by holding onto the printout until the dry time elapses.

Ink volume: Adjust the amount of ink printed on the page. The lighter the ink volume, the faster the dry time.

Overspray: If part of an image printed on a borderless photo is cut off, control how much of the original image extends past the edge of the paper.

Save preferred print settings

You can save print settings as a shortcut for similar print jobs, or as default for all print jobs.

  • Create a custom shortcut: In the Print Settings window, click the Printing Shortcut tab, if it is available, select the User Specified Print Settings shortcut at the bottom of the list, change any print settings, and then click Save As to name the shortcut.

    Selecting the User Specified Print Settings shortcut
  • Set defaults for all print jobs: Search Windows for printers, click Printers & scanners, click your printer, and then click Manage. Click Printer Properties, select the Advanced tab, and then click Printing Defaults. Change any settings, and then click OK.

    Clicking Printing Defaults on the Advanced tab of the Printer Properties window

Change Mac print settings

Change print settings on your Mac from the app you are printing from.

  1. Open a document, photo, or webpage, click File > Print to open the Print window.

  2. Make sure your printer is selected, and then click Show Details if it displays to access the print settings available for your printer.

    Print dialog with details shown
  3. Click the drop-down menu in the center of the window to change the settings category and access all available settings.

    Using the drop-down menu in the center of the window to access print settings
    • Color or black and white: Select or remove the selection from Black & White on the main dialog. The Presets menu also includes color and black and white options.

    • Paper type (photo, plain, specialty): Selecting the paper type ensures the printer properly applies the ink to the paper you loaded in the printer. Click Media & Quality > Paper Type.

    • Paper size: Select the paper from the Paper Size menu on the main dialog, if present, or click Paper Handling, select Scale to fit paper size, and then select the paper in the Destination Paper Size menu.

    • Custom paper size: Click Manage Custom Sizes in the Paper Size menu, if available. The feature might also be available from the app File menu in Page Setup.

    • Adjust print quality: Click Media & Quality, and then move the Quality slider to the desired setting.

    • Two-sided printing (duplexing): Select Two-Sided on the main dialog, select Layout from the Print Options menu, and then select a binding option in the Two-Sided menu. Follow any instructions during printing to load and flip the paper correctly for your printer.

    • Add or remove a border: Click Layout, and then click the Border menu to select a border width or select None for borderless prints.

    • Mirror printing: Reverse an image or document for printing iron-on transfers. Click Layout, and then select the Flip horizontally option.

  4. To save your settings for future print jobs, click the Presets menu, and then select Save Current Settings as Preset.






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