How to choose a laser printer
Before you start choosing and buying a laser printer, you need to decide on one very important question. what will this device be used for? After all, the scope of application determines what characteristics you need to pay attention to when purchasing office equipment.
Specifications to Consider When Purchasing a Laser Printer
When choosing a laser printer, you need to pay attention to its following characteristics:
Color (color or black and white)
Estimated load (productivity in letters per month);
Print resolution (dots per square inch)
Built-in memory (in MB)
Print speed (in letters per minute);
At the same time, most of THESE parameters need to be considered only if you are purchasing a laser printer in an office, printing center, photo studio or similar organization. When buying a device for the home, it is enough to consider only the first parameter.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Laser Printers
Low printing cost. This parameter is calculated based on the consumption of toner and electricity for printing one sheet of document. text or image. In budget models, it can reach a few cents per sheet;
You do not need to periodically print documents to avoid drying the toner in the nozzle (due to the lack of a nozzle)
Low noise level;
High print speed. This parameter means how quickly the printer can print one sheet of the document. In high-performance models, it can go up to 1-2 seconds per letter.
The high price of the device itself. Laser printers are more expensive than inkjet printers, especially color models;
High maintenance cost. repairing a laser printer is more expensive than repairing an inkjet printer;
Inability to install a continuous ink supply system (CISS). This parameter can be critical for print centers;
The high price of cartridges. However, consumables for many inkjet models are also expensive.
Nevertheless, despite these shortcomings, laser printers remain significantly more economical and more practical than inkjet.
Color or black and white printer
Here, it would seem, the selection technique is quite obvious. If you plan to print color documents. images, photographs, presentations, infographics. then you need a color printer. If not, then black and white is enough.
However, when choosing a printer for home, it is worth remembering that color models are much more expensive than black and white (in terms of the cost of both the device itself and its maintenance). And if you plan to print photos and images every few months, buying a monochrome model will be a much more profitable solution. And photographs and other pictures can also be “printed on paper” in a specialized center.
If you plan to print significantly more, it is recommended that you select a model with a higher design load. Of course, a simple device with the theme of the most 1-2 thousand sheets after this amount will NOT break, however, it will wear out much faster, which will lead to a reduction in service life.
This parameter is very important if you plan to purchase a printer for printing photos and other graphic documents. The higher it is, the better you can see small details on the finished “sheet”.
For documents, 300 x 300 dots per square inch is sufficient. Even small text is readable at this resolution.
Images require at least 600 × 600 dots.
There is also the so-called interpolated resolution of 1200 × 1200 pixels, but it is supported only by some printers. It is achieved by introducing special firmware into the device firmware.
And finally, a printer with a native resolution of 1200 x 1200 dots is desirable for “perfect” photo prints.
Before printing a document, the printer places it in its RAM. Therefore, it is also advisable to consider its volume when purchasing a device. If you plan to print only small documents (abstracts, contracts, etc.), then 2 MB of internal memory or even less is enough.
For “weighty” photos, presentations, etc. Requires a printer with a lot of internal memory.
Parameters such as print speed and first sheet out time are only important if you plan to use the printer to its fullest. That is, to print on it a lot and often.
However, you shouldn’t pay too much attention to these parameters. For example, if a budget printer has a first sheet out time of 20 seconds and a print speed of 20 sheets per minute; and in the top one. 5 seconds and 30 pages per minute, respectively; then a document with a volume of 50 sheets on the first device will be printed in 170 seconds, and on the second. in 105. The difference is just over a minute. Is this “time saving” worth the additional financial costs?
This parameter refers to such service procedures as refilling toner, replacing a cartridge, minor repairs such as removing jammed paper, etc. It is advisable to clarify whether it is possible to carry out the last two operations on your own or whether you need to call a specialist? And also call the nearest service center and find out if they refill the cartridges of the selected model.
When choosing a printer for the office, you need to pay attention to some other parameters:
Is it possible to make the device networked without connecting it to a PC (i.E., connect it to the local network separately)?
What operating systems can the printer work with?
Do I need to pay extra for multifunctionality (scanner and copier mode)?
However, it is worth remembering that the vast majority of THESE parameters are too highly specialized to pay attention to when buying a device for everyday printing. For a home or small office, it will be enough to choose whether you need a color or black and white printer.
In the following articles, our experts will tell you how to choose the right printer paper, the secrets of choosing a printer for your home and the main criteria for choosing a photo printer for printing bright photos.
The term resolution is used to describe the contrast and quality of a printed sample. In all considered printing technologies, an image is created by reproducing dots on paper. The resolution of the printer, therefore, and the print quality depend on the size and number of THESE dots. When viewing a page printed at low resolution on dot matrix printers, the naked eye can see a pattern of dots that forms characters. This is because the dots are quite large and the same size. And when viewing a page printed at high resolution on a laser printer, the characters appear “solid” because the dots are much smaller and usually have different sizes.
Printer resolution is usually measured in dots per inch. Dpi “, in other words, it is the number of INDIVIDUAL dots that a printer can print on a line one inch long. In most printers, resolution is defined in two directions, vertical and horizontal. Thus. 300 dpi means 300×300 dots per square inch. A 300 dpi printer can print 90 thousand dots per square inch of paper. There are printers in which the resolutions in two directions are different (for example, 600×1 200 dpi). Such a printer can print 720k dots per square inch.
It is important to understand the difference between printer and monitor resolutions. The term resolution in PC monitors refers to the number of pixels, for example 640×480 or 800×600. If you convert this resolution to a “printer” standard, you get 50-80 dpi. We measure the real size of the image (length and width) on the monitor screen and comparing it with the number of pixels, you can calculate the monitor resolution in dots per inch.
Therefore, you should not understand literally the technology WYSISWYG (What You See Is What You Get. What You See Is What You Get). The printer with the lowest resolution will print more dots than will be displayed on the monitor.
90kdots per square inch may not be enough to display image detail and may produce a “jagged” effect when printing characters. There are several ways to improve print quality and eliminate this effect. First way. This is an increase in resolution. Almost all modern laser printers have a minimum resolution of 600 dpi, and in high-end models it can reach 1200 dpi. Photosetters can print from 1200 to 2400 dpi. Increasing the resolution to 600 dpi will eliminate “jagging”.
Another advantage of higher print resolution. Photographic quality of the resulting image. Some models of modern inkjet printers, when using special materials (paper and ink), can print images of Photo quality (resolution 600 dpi and higher). The use of special materials can reduce the point size.
You can improve image quality by changing the dot size rather than increasing the resolution. This method was first proposed by Hewlett-Packard and is called Resolution Enhancement Technology (RET). With this technique, smaller dots are placed in the “corners” formed by the larger dots.
Such mixing of points of different sizes leads to smoothing of the “jaggedness” effect. This type of image enhancement is only used in laser and inkjet printers. It cannot be used in dot matrix printers, since the needle diameter of the print head has a fixed size.
There is another way to increase image resolution called interpolation. Printer resolution is not only determined by the size of the printed dot; higher resolution. This is a much larger amount of data that the printer must process. A printer with a resolution of 600 dpi operates at 360 thousand dots per square inch, and with a resolution of 300 dpi. 90k dots per square inch.
Thus, higher resolutions require more internal memory. Some printer manufacturers increase the resolution rather than increasing the built-in memory. Such a printer can process an image at 600 dpi and then interpolate (or Scale) it to 1200 dpi. An interpolated image looks better than one obtained at 600 dpi without interpolation, but a printer with a “true” 1200 dpi produces higher quality images than a printer with a similar interpolated resolution. An increase in the “real” resolution of a printer increases its price. When purchasing a printer, pay special attention to the resolution indicated by the manufacturer: it is likely that the printer documentation contains an interpolated resolution.
Of course, the quality of the paper affects the printed image. Because laser and inkjet printing use different materials (dry toner and liquid ink), special care must be taken when choosing paper, especially if you intend to print high quality photographic quality. The wrong paper type can result in smearing of the printed image or the appearance of second defects such as shedding of toner particles. For Specialty Printing, there are currently specialized types of paper: for example, special paper must be purchased to print at Photo Quality 720 dpi on an inkjet printer. Smoother and faster drying.
Dot Matrix Print Quality
Dot matrix printers are completely different from laser and inkjet printers. The most important difference is that dot matrix printers do NOT form a complete letter like laser or inkjet printers, but work with a stream of characters. The resolution of dot matrix printers does NOT depend on the amount of installed memory or the components of the printing process (such as toner or ink), but only on the capabilities of the printing mechanism. The matrix used by such a character printer is a grid of metal needles that hit a sheet of paper through the ink ribbon, rather than a set of data in memory or a pattern on a photosensitive drum like in inkjet or laser printers. Thus, the resolution of a dot matrix printer is determined by the number of needles (most often 9 or 24).
A twenty-four-needle printer has a smaller dot (needle) size than a nine-needle printer. As with other types of printers, using more dots to display characters can reduce the “jaggedness”. In dot matrix printers, resolution enhancement or interpolation technologies cannot be applied, so the resolution of dot matrix printers is constant. Chances are, when viewing a letter printed on a 9- and 24-pin printer, you will not notice a significant difference.
Many manufacturers of 24-pin printers describe them as “quality lettering” printers. They are used when printing stickers, receipts, etc. Dot matrix printers do an excellent job with this task. However, if you need a printer for work in the office or at home, I recommend refraining from buying a dot matrix printer and pay attention to laser or inkjet models.
Page description language
Laser and inkjet printers are called page printers because they form an image of an entire page in memory before transferring it to paper. This is the main difference between laser and inkjet printers from dot matrix printers, which are symbolic. A specialized page description language (PDL) is used to “communicate” between a computer and a page printer. It is a means of encoding each part of a printed document into a data stream that can be sent to a printer. After the printer receives the Page Description Language codes, the printer’s firmware converts the code into a dot pattern that is transferred to the paper. There are currently two page description languages that have become the de facto standard in the computer industry. PCL and PostScript. They will be discussed further.
Printers other than those that support page description use an escape code sequence to control printer properties, in combination with standard ASCII text to convey document content. The printer driver is responsible for this, which recognizes the transmitted characters. Escape codes or page description language. When printing a document, it does not matter in which program it was created and in which file format it was saved; print data Must be converted to a Page Description Language data stream or escaped ASCII text stream.
PCL (Printer Control Language)
Page Description Language PCL was developed by Hewlett-Packard in the early 1980s for use in in-house printers. When Hewlett-Packard conquered a significant portion of the printer market, PCL became a standard, as many manufacturers emulate. In addition to the text to be printed, the PCL data stream contains many commands designed to control the printer. These commands can be divided into four categories.
Control codes. Standard ASCII codes that represent a function (for example, carriage return (CR) or line feed (LF)), not characters.
PCL commands. Mainly composed of a sequence of escape codes, which are used in dot matrix printers. These commands make up a significant portion of the control code of the PCL file and include printer-specific equivalents of document settings (such as page formatting and Font used).
HP-GL / 2 (Hewlett-Packard Graphics Language. Hewlett-Packard Graphics Language) commands. Prints vector graphics of a compound document. They consist of two-letter mnemonics and one parameter (or several) that determine how the command is executed by the printer.
PJL (Printer Job Language) commands. Allow the printer to “communicate” with a computer over a bi-directional line to exchange information about status, printing, and other parameters.
With the development of the capabilities of printers, the PCL language has also improved. The first versions of the language (1 and 2) were used in Hewlett-Packard inkjet and portable printers in the early 1980s and did NOT contain a page description language. The first LaserJet laser printer released in 1984 used the PCL3 language, and the latest laser printers support PCL 6.
Developed by Hewlett-Packard, PCL has become the de facto standard in the printer market. Therefore, many manufacturers advertise that their printer is compatible with a specific Hewlett-Packard printer.
This page description language was developed by Adobe and first used in the Apple LaserWriter in 1985. The early versions of PostScript already had features such as scalable fonts and vector graphics, while they were recently added to PCL. Therefore, PostScript quickly became (and still is) the industry standard for desktop publishing and graphics software. Adobe has licensed PostScript to a number of printer manufacturers, including those used in photosetting equipment widely used in the prepress of newspapers, magazines, books and other printed materials.
Postscript language Plasma escape codes like PCL; it looks more like a standard programming language. Postscript is called an object-oriented programming language because it is NOT an image that is sent to the printer, but geometric objects. In order to print text in a specific font, the printer driver must tell the latter the outline of the font and its size. The outline of the font serves as a template for creating characters of any size. The printer generates an image of the symbol from its outline, rather than loading from memory. This type of image, which is generated individually for each page, is called vector graphics, as opposed to raster graphics, which are sent to the printer as a ready-made set of dots. Font scaling was only added in PCL 5, released in 1990.
Using outlines makes printing fonts easier. Most printers contain embedded fonts of any size. Bitmap fonts Must be downloaded to the printer from the computer. The difference between vector and bitmap objects can be seen in the printed sample. Since the vector image is generated in the printer, its quality is determined by the capabilities of the printer. A vector image printed on a 600 dpi printer looks much better than a similar image printed on a 300 dpi printer.
The first modifications to the PostScript language reflected the development of the capabilities of Apple’s laser printers. Minor modifications of the language formed the basis of a new version, which Adobe released in 1992 and called PostScript Level 2. The development of the language did not stop there, and in 1997 its next version appeared. Postscript Level 3. THESE PostScript upgrades support faster PostScript printers, plus the ability to use more installed printer memory and multiple paper trays. However, PostScript is NOT going through revolutionary changes like PCL. It has all the necessary properties since its inception, and its existing versions remain backward-compatible.
When choosing a printer, you must consider the scope of its application. Today, both PCL and PostScript have all the tools you need to produce quality prints. However, if you plan on using your printer in prepress, opt for a PostScript printer as it is the standard in the publishing world.
You can also use a PostScript printer to distribute documents over the Internet. The output file (with the.Ps extension) is platform independent and can (and is) used for cross-platform exchange of documents containing graphics.
Let’s look at an example. The TCPIP protocol specification specifies that documents on the Internet are distributed in ASCII text. What if the document contains graphics that cannot be represented as ASCII text? This is where PostScript comes in. You can print a document from a.Ps file on any platform and get a hard copy. Currently, this method is actively used despite the fact that other non-platform-dependent formats have appeared, such as Adobe Acrobat.
Both languages. PCL and PostScript. Supports a huge number of printers. Postscript is the primary language on the Macintosh platform, and all Apple printers use it. Hewlett-Packard printers support PCL. However, some of their printers also support PostScript; in addition, special expansion modules are available to support PostScript in PCL printers.
Many printer manufacturers have licensed PCL or PostScript (or both) and implemented support in their own printer models. And manufacturers, and not licensed to support THESE languages, emulate it. In the mid-1980s, the term “LaserJet Plus compatible” was analogous to the term “Hayes-compatible” in the modem world. Almost all printer manufacturers have implemented the emulation of the PCL language (its latest, fifth version) quite well, which cannot be said about the emulation of the PostScript language. This is primarily due to the complexity of the PostScript language. When you print, you may or may not notice significant differences from “normal” PostScript. But the differences will certainly show up when printing on phototypesetting equipment with “pure” PostScript.
Considering the above, we can recommend purchasing a printer that implements the page description language licensed by its creator. Better if it is PCL 5 and / or PostScript Level 2.
Several printer manufacturers have implemented support for both languages. THESE printers use the required page description language depending on the type of document being printed. Language switching is done automatically. But sometimes it is necessary to switch the language manually, for this you need to send a certain sequence of commands to the printer. For a single user of the printer, this is not a problem, and when using such a printer on a local network, printing difficulties may arise.
All laser and most inkjet printers support at least one page description language, but this is not the case with some dot matrix printers. The dot matrix printer driver is connected using a sequence of escape codes. Like PCL commands, escape codes are escape codes that are used to activate printer options. The term escape codes comes from the name of the key: the ASCII value of this key is used as the first character of the code to signal to the printer that the instruction code will be transmitted further, and in addition, this character is not used in the text part of the printed document.
For a dot matrix printer, you can select the resolution, fonts and print speed that match the capabilities of the printer. The installed printer driver generates escape codes based on options defined in the driver configuration program.
Unlike page description languages, escape codes are NOT standardized: printers can use different codes to accomplish the same function. For example, codes for dot matrix printers from Epson (a leading manufacturer of this type of device) are supported by many printer manufacturers, although each uses its own codes. Older Epson printers use ESC / P escape codes, while newer ones. ESC / P2. New version supports built-in scalable fonts.
Recently, there have been printers (most often inkjet printers) that do not use any of the existing page description languages (PostScript or HP-PCL). THESE printers use a computer, or rather, Windows GDI (Graphics Device Interface) to create a page. Hewlett-Packard also produces a similar class of devices. Printing Performance Architecture (PPA). In theory, these printers have some advantages.
Low price. The device does not need to build in support for the page description language, since the entire page is generated in the computer.
Fast computer. Fast printing. Naturally, the faster the computer forms the page, the faster the printer will print it.
The PPA architecture is flexible enough. Depending on the model, the printer may have built-in functions previously performed by a computer.
However, they lack support for non-Windows operating systems and do not always provide sufficient performance. I am usually very wary of revolutionary change and I advise you to stick to THESE rules.
Each printer has memory chips, and laser and inkjet printers also have a built-in processor, so we can say that a printer. It is a specialized computer. The memory in the printer serves as a buffer for storing print job data; it is designed to store data in the process of creating an image, fonts and commands, as well as to temporarily store the outline of fonts and other data.
The amount of memory in laser and inkjet printers is a “mirror” of its capabilities. The printer must rasterize the entire page (graphics and fonts) in memory and then print it. Each vector image and font outlines must be converted to raster before printing. A large number of graphics and fonts on a page requires a lot of memory. In addition, memory is required to store the page description language interpreter and printer fonts.
If there is not enough memory, the printer prints a “mixture” of graphics and text, splits the graphic into two sheets, uses several fonts, or even does NOT print any font at all. Fortunately, many printers have the option of installing additional memory modules.
Memory modules have different designs. Some printers can accept standard SIMMs or DIMMs, others require Dedicated memory cartridges (Which, of course, have a higher price tag). Remember one rule: there is NOT a lot of memory! Additional memory in the printer will be used either to create multiple pages or as a buffer for data received from the computer.
Some printers use data compression. With these printers, the print speed is increased by installing additional memory. This is explained by the fact that the page is formed completely and the amount of memory is sufficient to accommodate it, and without using compression algorithms.
A printer with additional memory can accept more data from the computer. As a result of expanding memory (depending on the operating system and printer driver installed), you will gain system performance benefits. When printing from a DOS operating system, adding memory to the device will not speed up printing because the system will be busy while printing is in progress. Only multitasking systems such as Windows 9x with the ability to print in the background will take full advantage of the increased printer memory.
By knowing the amount of memory installed in the printer, you can determine how much additional memory you need to install. In addition, you need to know how much memory the page description language and fonts take and how much memory is available to hold the print job data. Different versions of the page description language, page size, resolution. Here are the basic parameters that affect the amount of memory required in the printer. For example, 12MB is sufficient for printing at 300 dpi on Letter (8 / 2xl 1 “) paper with head-to-head PCL, while for printing at 600 dpi on 11×17” paper and using PostScript such not enough memory.
Only laser and inkjet printers can expand memory. For most dot matrix printers, the amount of installed memory is not significant, since data from the computer to the printer is transmitted as a stream of ASCII characters and the printer does not need to generate the entire page. Therefore, a small buffer is installed in them for receiving data, most often. Several kilobytes. Even graphics are transmitted as a character stream, so more memory will NOT improve the performance of your dot matrix printer.
When printing documents, as you know, fonts are used. With the help of various fonts, you can give your document a complete look. The term type refers to a typeface of a particular style and size. Headset. It is a Designed set of alphanumeric characters in which letters, numbers, and symbols have the same outline. Thousands of typefaces have been created and new ones are constantly emerging. Some of the main typefaces are included with the Windows operating system: Times New Roman, Arial, Courier, and others. Font style. These are variations of the typeface, such as bold or italic. A headset can have multiple styles.
Typefaces are most often classified according to general properties. For example, Times New Roman. It is a serif typeface because all characters have a small decorative line called a serif. Arial typeface does not have THESE dashes and is called sans serif. Courier is called a monospace typeface because all characters are the same width as on a typewriter. Arial and Times New Roman are called proportional typefaces because all characters have different widths. For example, the width of the characters “h” and “z” in the proportional typeface is different.
The term font is used to describe a typeface of a specific size, usually measured in points (one inch equals 72 points). Courier 10 points and Courier 12 points describe two different fonts. This distinction came from traditional printing into the world of computers. recently, for printing text, sets of printing plates (each printing plate. This is one symbol) of metal or wood were used. Printing plates of the appropriate size were required to print characters of various sizes. Likewise, printers use a bitmap to create text. With this method of printing, each typeface character exists in its own grid of dots, which is sent to the printer. Essentially, each symbol is a separate small graphic. To print typefaces of different sizes, you need a separate symbol graphic for each size. Such fonts are called bitmap fonts.
Scalable fonts are currently used in virtually all printers. In this technology, only its outline is used to print a character of any size. The printer places this outline in memory and then generates a bitmap of the symbol of the required size. This image is placed in the font cache and is only kept there while the current job is being printed. In addition, the printer can rotate a scalable font to any angle, while a bitmap font can be rotated by multiples of 90 °. Font outlines take up less printer memory and have a wider variation range for each typeface. Because scalable fonts are vector graphics, they can use the printer’s maximum possible resolution, while bitmap fonts always have the same resolution. The only drawback of scalable fonts is that the printer must have a powerful enough computing part.
Bitmap fonts are rarely used for printing business documents, but some of them are used for prepressing publications. Bitmap fonts are used in some operating systems, such as Windows 3.1, to display text on the screen because scalable fonts do not look good on a regular monitor at low resolutions. However, the advent of font smoothing technology put an end to the “era of rule” of bitmap fonts.
The development of printing technology has led to the fact that the terms type and typeface have become interchangeable. In the past, when you bought a typeface, you received one set of characters of various sizes, with each size called a font. Currently, when you buy a headset, you get one font outline, which the printer can change to any size.
There are several ways to transfer THESE fonts to the printer. Because a bitmap font takes up much more memory space than a scalable font outline, it is NOT permanently stored in printer memory. For this, special software is used, with which the fonts necessary for printing a document are loaded into the printer’s memory, or a cartridge with fonts placed in a special connector on the printer.
Few printer manufacturers currently support a dedicated font cartridge slot. Font management software is widely used. Scalable fonts are more versatile and most importantly. They do not need to be permanently stored in the printer’s memory. The printer driver can automatically load the outlines of a particular font and generate any font size if needed. The introduction of TrueType technology in Windows and Macintosh operating systems has spurred the creation of thousands of typefaces in a variety of styles and in virtually any size.
Most PostScript printers come with a collection of 39 basic built-in fonts, but you can purchase additional fonts or entire collections. After purchasing the PostScript Type 1 outline fonts, you will also need the Adobe Type Manager software, with which you can download the fonts you need to print documents to the printer.
There is another common scalable font technology. Truetype. Introduced six years after PostScript was invented, the technology is a collaboration between Apple and Microsoft. Both firms wanted to integrate PostScript scalable font controls into their own operating systems and were NOT going to give Adobe such an important piece of operating system.
Despite the differences in font contouring, PostScript and TrueType work the same way. The main advantage of TrueType technology is that it is already built into Windows and Macintosh operating systems; in addition, you do not need to purchase additional software such as Adobe Type Manager to work with fonts. Many font manufacturers release their products in both versions. Postscript and TrueType, and the differences between them are almost invisible.
Many printer manufacturers build a collection of TrueType fonts into their models, which are made available to applications through the operating system. You can get font kits when you buy a printer, scanner or graphics package.
The price of fonts can vary from free (most often they can be found on the Internet) to relatively expensive (for example, Adobe). Don’t forget that free does not mean bad, but expensive. Good. Define your needs and choose the “golden mean”.
As with most peripheral devices, a driver must be installed for the printer to function properly. A printer driver provides an interface between a printer and an application or operating system. The main function of the driver. Inform the computer about the printer’s capabilities (for example, the page description language used, the supported paper types, and installed fonts). When you print a document, the selected print options are applied to the printer driver even though they appear as application properties.
In the DOS operating system, printer drivers are integrated into each application. Only a few programs come with support for a large number of printer models, and most applications. Only with drivers of basic models. If the printer driver you need is not supported by your application, select a driver that uses the same page description language as the printer. For example, the LaserJet TTT printer driver uses PCL 5 and will support all LaserJet III and PCL 4 printers. By selecting a printer driver in this way, you will NOT be able to fully use its capabilities.
In all versions of Windows, the printer driver is not installed for a specific application, but as part of the operating system. A large number of printer drivers are shipped with Windows, and drivers for newer models are either supplied by the manufacturer with the printer or can be found on the Internet. Note that the printer drivers provided with Windows are most often developed by the printer manufacturer, not Microsoft, although with approval from Microsoft. As a result, the number of problems caused by the introduction of products from two different manufacturers is reduced.
Postscript Printer Description
Windows uses a separate driver for printers that use PCL or the escape code. And PostScript printers use one generic driver to support the page description language. All versions of Windows call this driver Pscript.Drv. The driver uses additional modules called PostScript Printer Description (PPD) to support specific printer properties. The PPD file stores information about the specifics of a given printer model (for example, the size and number of paper trays), and language support is provided by the PostScript driver. Additional PPD files must be added to the existing driver architecture to support multiple PostScript printers on Windows.
In addition to the PostScript printer support included with Windows, you can use the AdobePS driver from Adobe, which developed the PostScript language. If you have purchased a printer with “true” PostScript support, this driver is the best choice because it provides the best possible implementation of all the language features. It doesn’t matter which PostScript driver you are using. Microsoft or Adobe; remember that a PPD file provides additional functionality, which can be obtained from your printer manufacturer.
Print resolution: how well a printer can print
Do you need to print an ad, poster or photo calendar? And you are NOT sure if your printing device will handle this task perfectly? Then it is worth understanding the concept of print resolution. Printer resolution refers to the maximum number of dots per square inch that a printer can print in a certain number of passes of printheads.
The term “resolution” itself is used to describe the quality and contrast of the print. This indicator directly depends on the number and size of points. This also affects print quality.
If you look at an image printed at low resolution, you can easily notice graininess. That is, the points that form the image are clearly visible. This effect is caused by the fact that these points are quite large and exactly the same size.
For comparison, you can look at an image printed on a high-resolution printer. Here the picture will be solid. In this case, the points are much smaller, moreover, they have different sizes.
Resolution is measured in units of “dots per inch”. dpi (dots per inch). For most printing devices, the print resolution is determined by the vertical and horizontal directions. That is, a resolution of 300 dpi means 300×300 dots per square inch. That is, a device with a resolution of 300 dpi can print 90 thousand dots per square inch letter.
There are printing devices in which the vertical and horizontal resolutions differ (600×1200 dpi). In this case, the printer can print 720 thousand dots per square inch.
Do not confuse the resolution of your printer and your computer monitor. The monitor resolution is understood as the number of pixels, let’s say 800×600. If you convert this amount to a print standard, you get about 50-80 dpi. Even a printer with the lowest print resolution will produce an image with many more dots than is displayed on your computer monitor.
For photo printing, 90k dots per square inch may not be enough. When printing text files with this resolution, characters may appear with a “jagged” effect. In this case, it is wise to increase the print resolution. The indicator of most modern inkjet printers is 5760×1440 or 4800×1200 dpi. Such devices will produce prints in higher quality and without graininess.
Image quality can be improved by configuring the dot size. This will NOT increase the resolution. This method was proposed by Hewlett-Packard. With this technology, small dots are placed in “corners”, which form large dots. By mixing points of different diameters, it is easy to achieve smoothing of the “jagged” effect.
Large print resolutions require an impressive amount of memory. Some manufacturing companies increase the resolution without changing the amount of built-in memory. Such a device can process a file with a resolution of 600 dpi, and then interpolate it to 1200 dpi. This image looks much better after interpolation, but a “true resolution” printer will print much better.
Which resolution should be used for different printing tasks?
In order to get a more saturated and brighter image, you can use printing with a large number of passes.
The number of passes affects the saturation of the print. Everything is simple here. The more passes, the brighter the colors. The essence of such an overprint is that the printing device “draws” the same area in several passes. This spills out more ink than usual.
This method is applicable for printing on translucent films, which are used “through”. It can also be used if you need to make the print more saturated.
When you need to create a banner, photo portrait or poster, the question often arises of what resolution to print it. Here are a couple of examples for clarity.
For printing billboards and advertising stands of large sizes, which will be viewed from a distance, use a resolution of 360 by 360 dpi. In such cases, the graininess of the image will not be noticeable. It is impractical to use high resolution here, because the price of a print in this case will be colossal.
If the image will be viewed from a distance of about 50 centimeters (a regular photograph, for example), then it is better to use a resolution of 720 by 720 dpi. Small details with such printing will be more clearly traced, and the image will look uniform. Here the cost will be slightly higher than in the previous version.
For high-quality interior printing, a resolution of 5760 x 1440dpi should be used. Such images will look great from any distance. Colors will be rich and vibrant. Printing cost will be high.
From all of the above, we can conclude that if you need to print Photographic quality, you should choose a printing device with a high resolution (5760 x 1440 and more). This can be, for example, an Epson XP-620 (if you need a multifunctional device) or an Epson 1500W printer.
If your advertising posters will be viewed from a distance of 50 centimeters or more, then printing from 360 to 720 dpi is suitable for you.
Unleash the power of your laser printer
Toner tactics Take control Accelerate print output Avoid paper problems Product at a glance Appearance. It’s all. Well, maybe
Appearance. It’s all. Well, maybe not all, but in business, effective-looking documents play an essential role, and you can usually make them like that with the help of a laser printer. Let’s see how to get the most out of your printer.
Laser printer manufacturers don’t make much money from selling them. The main income comes from the sale of consumables. Replaceable cartridges with toner powder. The consumer can save money by buying recycled cartridges. However, if you need to get high quality printing, then it is better to buy not just refilled, but rebuilt cartridges. This means that important parts that are most susceptible to wear have been replaced in them. Such cartridges are sold both in specialized firms and in some printer manufacturing companies.
To take full advantage of your printer’s capabilities, look at your printer’s properties menu (in Windows 95). Click the “Start” button and select the “Settings-Printers” menu item. Right click on the icon of your printer and select the “properties” line.
In the dialog box that opens, you will see the options (for example, choosing the paper size or setting the printer resolution) that are supported by the printer, and you will also find out which printer driver is currently installed.
Make sure you are using the latest printer driver. If you are using an earlier version of the driver, it may not be possible to fully realize the capabilities of your printer or achieve maximum speed. Manufacturers generally update their drivers regularly and post them on their Web sites.
To install a new driver, select the Details tab in the Properties dialog box, then Click the Change Driver button and click Yes on the screen that appears. Further in the dialog box “select device” Click on the button “Have disk”.
Determining the version number of an existing driver. The task is more tricky; you may have to look for the “In program” button.
Check out Zenographics’ excellent SuperPrint 5.0 utility for faster and more print quality. This program includes specially written drivers for more than 240 printer models, a special utility for organizing a print queue and a convenient filter that allows you to print PostScript files on a printer that does not have a built-in interpreter of this language.
Speeding up print output
Here are some tips you can take to speed up your printer.
Add memory. Increasing the amount of on-board memory in your printer can dramatically improve performance, especially when printing graphics. If the built-in memory of the printer is insufficient, some large graphics cannot be printed at all. This is due to the fact that most laser printers place a page image in their memory before printing. The required minimum memory when printing at 300 dpi is 512 KB, and at 600 dpi. 1 MB (2 MB is recommended). In order to print a document with more complex graphics or use the printer in a network mode, you will need 4 MB.
Many modern printers have standard SIMM slots. Check with your printer supplier for the correct SIMM configuration and make sure that the use of third-party memory modules does NOT violate the supplier’s warranty.
To set the memory correctly, you should always look at the Device Settings Dialog Box under Properties. If Windows cannot know about additional memory, then this memory will not be used.
Use the ECP port. Expanded port, or ECP port. This is a version of the standard parallel port that increases printing speed. It is available on most computers released in the past two years. If your computer and printer support the ECP specification, then you will get a significant speed up printing. If only the computer supports the ECP specification (and the printer does not), then using the ECP port will still be useful.
It can take some effort to use the ECP specification. First of all, go into your system CMOS setup and find out if the Corresponding ECP options are enabled. After that, click the “Start” button and select the “Settings-Control Panel” menu items. Click on the “system” icon, in the dialog box that opens, open the “devices” tab and see if the interrupt requests (IRQ) are set correctly. For complete instructions, open the Help file on the Windows 95 distribution CD: Admin ReskitHelpfileWin95rk.Hlp. When looking up a pointer, ask for extended, not ECP.
Set up a print queue. To set the PC to the desired mode for issuing a print job, select the “Information” tab in the options menu of your printer and click the “Queue” button. To start printing faster, select the “Print directly to printer” option. If you are interested in getting back to work as soon as possible, select the “Queue tasks” option.
Avoid paper problems
Using the correct paper type. An easy way to improve image quality and avoid problems. Whiter paper provides better contrast, which is especially important when printing graphics. Typically 90 g / m2 copier paper is most suitable for laser printers (thinner or thicker paper tends to wrinkle).
Handle labels carefully, and be careful NOT to feed label sheets through the printer more than once. Envelopes have their own tricks too, so try to use only the types of envelopes Recommended by your printer supplier.