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456 comments

who's your daddy!!! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4222347)

FP MF's

Re:who's your daddy!!! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4222355)

Vanilla Ice is Eminem's daddy, that's fo shure.

That punk ass sucka ain't fit to rap at a 4 year old's birthday party.

Nilla lives 4eva.

Shout out to my homies. Word.

Re:who's your daddy!!! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4222378)

Or as the slashdot crowd would have it, "whose you're daddy"?

VI 4eva

(+1 funny, you hosers, come on you know it's true!!)

Re:who's your daddy!!! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4222414)

u=|/\|4|\||<><0r

lexmark and hp (2, Informative)

chunkwhite86 (593696) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222353)

Lexmark and HP LJ's have good linux support and come with good toner. I'm refering to the laser jets printers.

Lexmark inkjets and Epson inkjets (3, Interesting)

Andy Dodd (701) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222431)

It's probably improved a bit, but a few years ago Lexmark had *NO* Linux support.

I don't know about speed, but quality-wise when printing photos, Epson is one of the best AND has *excellent* Linux support. (Not from the vendor, but Epsons always seem to get the coolest new driver improvements under Linux.)

Re:Lexmark inkjets and Epson inkjets (2, Informative)

nphillips (321320) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222516)

I will second the comment about Epson Inkjet. I have a Photo 785EX and had no problem getting my Linux box to talk to it, via CUPS and gimp-print. And the quality is phenomonial. Most people can not tell the borderless 4x6in prints are NOT photo prints.

Re:lexmark and hp (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4222434)

True, HP and Lexmark have good linux support. However, the ink and toner cartridges cost a fortune. ($50+ canadian for ink)

If you plan on printing lots, you better have very deep pockets.

Epson printers are fairly decent, I'm not sure of their compatibility with linux. However, the cartridge replacement costs are much cheapier ($13-$25 canadian), leaving you with more money for the upgrades that will make your system n33t.

I prefer epson, you pay more to start with, but pay less in the long run.

Re:lexmark and hp (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4222444)

I have found lexmark lasers have not only great linux support, but are great printer. I'm running 3 Lexmart T series (all network printers with mutliple trays) and to date have never had a problem. Lexmark even provides Linux Drivers.

Re:lexmark and hp (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4222589)

For a Z52, I've had no troubles with Mandrake 8.2, but countless problems with Win 98/ME/NT on the Mandrake machine, a P166 and a Dell INsprion laptop. The drivers for the Z52 for those flavors of Windows are a constant source of problems. The Win2K drivers haven't fried anything yet.

Linux (5, Insightful)

tmark (230091) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222357)

What the fsck does Linux support have to do with whether or not printer manufacturers are screwing their users ?

Re:Linux (2, Insightful)

NetMasta10bt (468001) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222366)

Nothing. He was hoping that there is a printer that does what it claims, and as a BONUS that it would work in Linux.

Re:Linux support (2, Insightful)

wytcld (179112) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222425)

Manufacturers who provide Linux support are enabling their users. In my modest life experience, those people and organizations that are more generous in enabling others are also more likely (not a perfect correlation, but a significant one) to be honest and straightforward in other ways. Openness tends to generalize across dimensions.

Re:Linux support (1)

1millionmhz (34257) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222651)

It is a gross generalization to say that "openness generalizes across dimensions." Providing Linux support just opens up one more market segment where HP and its ilk can cheat its customers through deceptive claims. HP's aim is to get as many people churning paper and ink as it can. How else can it prop up its PC business?

Re:Linux (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4222427)

Nothing. He wanted to know what quality printers are out there, and he's been around long enough to know how to get a story posted on Slashdot.

That reminds me: Linux rocks! Mod me up!

Re:Linux (3, Insightful)

Audin (17719) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222432)

If the printer lacks linux support then most likely it's because the manufacturer isn't decent enough to publish interface specs.

Selling a product while refusing to tell the purchaser how to use it counts as slimy in my book.

Re:Linux (1)

a_timid_mouse (607237) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222433)

Well, he's trying not to get screwed. He uses Linux, so that's a good first step. Now he needs a good printer that won't screw him over and that will work with his nifty Linux system.

Re:Linux (0)

JJAnon (180699) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222645)

I took a cognitive science class where every student had to come up with 2 "intelligent questions" every class. After a few weeks, it was pretty simple to create vacuous questions which sounded deep. Seems like this is what the /. editors are resorting to :). Just tag on a "linux-support" or "m$ sucks" message to the end of every post.

First Raymond Post! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4222361)

As Raymond would say, "Fuck YOU!"

my lame first post (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4222363)

hehe now i know what it feels like

like a troll

FIRST POST (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4222367)

FIRST POST

Lexmark Z33 (2, Funny)

hattig (47930) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222370)

I finally managed to get my cheap-ass USB Lexmark Z33 to work with Linux. This would have been simpler had CUPS not been running, as the Lexmark provided Linux drivers are for LPD only... it wasn't the simplest thing ever. The Lexmark GUI tool looks good though.

However, the printer is ass. The sheet feeder puts a dent in the paper at the bottom, and the paper goes in at an angle, and it only works one sheet at a time.

Never again will I listen to the wife when it comes to buying a printer. I wanted a black and white laser with a network connector. She was like "but that is expensive when you could get this one"...

Re:Lexmark Z33 (3, Informative)

Ctrl-Z (28806) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222382)


I haven't had any trouble with the Epson Style Color 777 that I bought a year and a half ago. It works great with Linux. I remember when I got the printer, I checked linuxprinting.org [linuxprinting.org] and found that Lexmarks weren't very well supported at that time.

Re:Lexmark Z33 (1)

denisbergeron (197036) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222652)

I have an Epson Stylus Color in my basement. I buy one because of the great Linux Support. But after using it for 2 or 3 month I begin to be tired to buy 60$ ink tank every mount or so. So I go to my local computer store to find a printer with separete ink tank I buy and Canon S500 with no Linux support, but with separated ink tank. I the last half year I replace the blank Ink only once for 10$ not 60$ every month, 10$ twice a year !

My Printer of Choice (2, Interesting)

MxTxL (307166) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222372)

HP 2200

Full duplex. Fast. Ethernet ready.

mmm...

Re:My Printer of Choice (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4222455)

Thanks. For. The. Review.

James. T. Kirk.

Agreed! (3, Informative)

Jerky McNaughty (1391) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222476)

I picked up a 2200dse (duplexing, USB/parallel but no network) for just over $700. It has built-in PostScript which makes setup under UNIX-like OSes easy and eliminates the need for ghostscript which I've used over the last eight years. HP had a deal where you buy an additional toner cartridge at the same time and get 16 MB of RAM free. I sprang for it. I also picked up a 610n JetDirect 10/100 card off of eBay reasonably cheap. It's quite nice to have it on my network at home with minimal setup hassles.

Great quality printing at a not-too-unreasonable price. My previous printer (HP LJ 4L, which I paid $700 for back in, oh, late 1993/early 1994) ran without a single problem around 15K-20K sheets---hopefully this will last as long or longer.

Re:Agreed! (3, Informative)

afidel (530433) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222570)

I think time got to the plastic more than wear, the LJ series typically has routine maint times around 200-300K pages (bigger models like the 8150 are around 350K), and they typically last 2-3 main cycles before things become bad enough to put them out to pasture in high use environments. I have serviced several LJ3 and LJ4's where a single plastic gear had just gotten old and brittle and shattered, after replacing said gear the printers typically last another couple years.

Re:My Printer of Choice (1)

Guppy06 (410832) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222482)

Sounds like why I got myself a Lexmark Z65n.

Re:My Printer of Choice (1)

TellarHK (159748) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222542)

Quite nice. I got a really good deal on mine, though. There's a local mini-chain of discount/salvage stores that occasionally gets a total mix of stuff in. Once, they had a bunch of Apple laptops, so I picked up my iBook. $789.

A few weeks later, I went back and spotted a printer. I thought to myself, there was no way in hell I could afford it, the price couldn't be very good, so ignored it. A few days later I went back and actually looked. $52.

It was a LaserJet 1200. After a really brief scan at home to make sure they weren't lemons, I ran back and bought the sucker. 30 day no questions asked warranty at the store, and full manufacturer warranty to boot. Still brings a grin to my face walking into Staples and seeing a printer barely different from mine (1220) going for $399.

Even if I barely use it, it might be nice for eBay someday. :)

Stick with HP printers (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4222373)

you won't be disappointed. Especially since they bagged that linix hack Perens.

-Linus

Re:Stick with HP printers (0, Offtopic)

Perl-Pusher (555592) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222385)

I guesss you didn't read the earlier article. Peren's was fired by HP.

Re:Stick with HP printers (2)

laserjet (170008) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222473)

"Bagged", in the instance used in the parent post to which you replied, means "got rid of". The troll meant "since they got rid of Bruce Perens". You didn't catch the altered meaning, so now you know.

Re:Stick with HP printers (1)

Obfuscant (592200) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222392)

you won't be disappointed.

It was HP injet ink that was being sold locally as a "two pack", when the truth was it was simply one of the large cartridges. It's not quite honest to call a one-pack a two-pack, is it?

Tiny ink refills cost more than the printer... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4222374)

... now what can be more "crippled" than that?

If HP made automobiles (3, Informative)

darylp (41915) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222483)

They'd roll off the production line with half a tank of petrol, but if you ever wanted to fill them up again you'd need to buy a new HP-approved carburettor.

Inkjet printers are one of the worst IT scams in the business. Ink should be a commodity, like fuel. We shouldn't have to be locked in to the tyranny of overpriced printer cartridges with built in heads and the like.

Understandable (1)

masterkool (550633) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222379)

It only makes sense that the printer companies would use such ploys. Most people would never take the time to record how fast pages are actually printed, and it is even less likely that someone would try and calculate the DPI.

i sold hp for a while... (2, Interesting)

psychalgia (457201) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222384)

basically they teach you not to lie but they teach you lies and hype about the product. its amazing how three companies cna do 9 independant studies and arrive at 27 different results.

Re:i sold hp for a while... (5, Interesting)

macdaddy357 (582412) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222475)

I fix HP, and other brands. The following is a true story about an Officejet G-85 a customer brought in for repair that would not fax or receive fax. It gave an error message, and prompted to cycle power when either was attempted. HP is a sinking ship. Before the merger, HP had serious problems, all of which have been aggravated since the merger. They have lost market share, and are losing money and don't for a minute think it's because they give lousy customer service. I am a repair technician. Recently, a customer who bought an Officejet G-85, a single unit that prints, scans, faxes and copies. It failed in about a month, but more than 14 days, so the retailer wouldn't take it back. The end User called HP. Lexmark, Brother, or just about any other manufacturer would have replaced the unit, but the customer was told to take their G-85 to an authorized service provider, so it came to me. My company was not able to repair the unit. Like all ASPs, we were only authorized to "facilitate repair" by sending it in to HP. They sent me a replacement with no automatic document feeder; with out which the unit was useless. When I complained, they said one was on it's way, but instead sent a manual and cable set. This whole process took three weeks. At this point, I asked HP to just send the end user a new G-85, as they should have done in the first place. They refused, and sent me a document feeder, but the emblem that says HP Officejet G-85 was missing. Again, the unit was incomplete, and I could not return it to the user. By now, it had been one month. I e-mailed Carly Fiorina, and called their headquarters, all they did was offer phony apologies, and pass the buck, blaming other people. Eventually, the end user, called HP, and was accused of wanting something for nothing by a man named Jim Williams. He told me at that point that he was going on vacation, but the problem would be handled. The end user would get a new unit. A week later, I heard from the end user, who still had nothing. I e-mailed and called again. Finally, they replaced the end user's unit with a new one. It had been nearly six weeks. They also kept sending me parts, including a second document feeder, worth $185.00 retail. When it was over, they asked me to return the G-85 base unit only, without either automatic document feeder, the accessories, or the manual and cable kit. They instructed me to just throw away more than $400 dollars worth of parts. How can a company that is losing money afford to just throw away four hundred dollars, when they couldn't afford to give an end user any customer service or customer satisfaction at the outset? I have not thrown away the parts, and hope I will have an opportunity to use them, but I don't have a lot of storage space. HP has angered a customer who will never buy their products again, and probably tell dozens of people why. They have also made a service technician, namely me, lose confidence in their products, and stop recommending them to anyone. HP is a sinking ship because Carly Fiorina, and the entire executive staff view their customers as a dirt-cheap commodity, and take them for granted. Based on the news, they must also think that their employees are a cheap commodity, too. People are starting to call them Hewlett Packard Bell all over again, and this time, it is not because they are confusing two companies.

Samsung ML-1210 (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4222386)

I have a Samsung ML-1210 that came with some linux drivers, however the standard Redhat 7.x install seem to handle everything nicely as is. The printer was right at $180 when I bought it, and it has worked great. I have had it for almost a year now, and no complaints so far.

Re:Samsung ML-1210 (1)

idealego (32141) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222591)

Same here, had mine for about 6 months and it's worked perfectly.

I'll never buy another inkjet.

Beware HP (1)

BigGreen03 (532234) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222388)

HP is known for screwing people on cartidges. They make two types of toner, regular and X. X is more expensive so people by the regular. The only difference is that the X is a full cartridge and the regular is half full so the X works out cheaper... everyone wastes their money.
Toner is a much greater source of revenue than the actual printer.

Re:Beware HP (1)

ejdmoo (193585) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222467)

Though that *is* dishonest, in their defense, it is regular practice to sell non-full cartridges. Go to an *office store* as opposed to a best buy to get your cartridges. There you can get a couple extra ml for only a few more $$. They're called "extra capacity," and actually contain more ink. Just because you have a print cartridge, even one you just bought, doesn't guaruntee it to be full. Look and compare the measure of ml on the box!

What about paper type? (1)

Syn Ack (3105) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222395)


Why does my HP printer need to know that I'm using HP paper? Maybe I'm paranoid but is it possible that the printer prints a little worse when you don't choose HP Paper as the paper type?

I think I'll print a comparison and see if choosing "HP Paper" as my paper type makes the picture better even if I'm not using HP paper.

syn ack.

Re:What about paper type? (2)

laserjet (170008) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222486)

HP doesn't make the paper, they just buy it from another manufacturer and put their name on the label. A lot of companies do this. And no, HP printers can not tell if it is HP paper.

Re:What about paper type? (3, Interesting)

zangdesign (462534) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222491)

Most people don't know about paper quality. HP inkjet paper has a higher density and brightness than the standard paper you run through your laser printer. It is designed to hold the ink better.

The trick here is that they want you to buy HP printer supplies, but reality is Hammermill and Weyerhauser have perfectly good inkjet paper that is just as bright and dense.

So whenever is says HP quality paper, think "bright and dense". That's all it takes.

Re:What about paper type? (2)

bluGill (862) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222565)

HP does not make paper. They do however spec paper, and have the cheapest paper mill THAT MEETS SPEC make it. All other manufactures do the same. So the trick isn't just trying with HP paper, it is trying with all brands of paper, on all settings to see what works. Epson might have a slightly different spec for their paper that you happen to prefer in your printer.

Note that the right paper is critical for ink jet printers, while lasers can deal with a large range of papers. However the right paper and quality is often different. There is quality of how the paper handles ink, and quality of the paper itself (watermarks).

What you want to print makes a big difference too. When printing photos that you want to display, use the expensive photo paper in a ink jet, it will look great. Plain text on the same paper won't look enough better to justify the cost. Plain text that matters will look enough better on a laser that you should seriously consider spending extra cash. If you print text often you will save money by buying a laser, since you not only get better text, but it is also cheaper to print with a laser.

In short experiment, not just with the setting, but also with the paper. I doupt that it prints worse when you select normal paper, so much as it puts a different amount of ink on the page. It probably prints better on normal paper in normal mode than hp mode, while on hp paper it prints better in hp mode. With some other brand name paper you will have to compare.

HP and "starter cartrages. (1)

mwjlewis (602559) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222396)

I have experanced first hand that HP sells their cheeper line of inkjets with ink cartrages that are, uhm, Lacking in the ink dept. I had a sales man even inform me of that. I find it kinda upsetting that they are willing to sell that so cheep, yet 5 days/20 pages later, you are out spending another 50.00 on a 100.00 dollar printer just to keep it working. That IMO is rediclous. I don't know how it is for their more expensive Ink Jet printers. I no longer buy HP ink Jet's. However, their Laser printers are great.

Epson Stylus 640 (1)

Akuinnen (174212) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222401)

I have an Epson Stylus 640. When I first bought it, the printer worked fine. Sure it's a few years old but now it never seems to work right. Colors will be missing from pages, or the output will look horrible or corrupted. I've run all of the cleaning and other printer utillities many times. Sometimes it helps but often it doesnt.

I really want to get a new printer but all the ones I've had up to now have gone to crap in a short period of time.

The problem with Epson inkjets... (2)

ncc74656 (45571) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222527)

...is that on most of them, the head is part of the printer and isn't easily replaceable. HP and Lexmark inkjets make the head part of the cartridge...the cartridge costs more, but you get a new head every time. Some Canon printers separate the ink and the heads, but even in these printers, the heads are in a cartridge of their own.

If the heads clog up on an HP or Lexmark, you buy new cartridges. If the heads clog up on a Canon, you buy new heads. If the heads clog up on an Epson, you end up sending the printer away for service. How convenient of them to do that.

(At home, I currently use a Lexmark Optra Color 40 and a Brother HL-630. The inkjet supports PostScript, while the laser printer supports PCL 3. I've used both with Linux with no problems...use Ghostscript with the Brother printer, send stuff straight to the Lexmark. Lexmark supplies are a little on the high side, but the HL-630 is one of the cheapest-to-operate printers on the planet...the drum and toner are separate, so a new 3000-page toner cartridge only costs about $30. I've not even bothered checking the refill price.)

Re:Epson Stylus 640 (1)

idealego (32141) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222608)

Buy a laser printer and your problems will be over.

I'm using a Samsung ML-1210.

HP's (2)

strredwolf (532) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222402)

Alot of the HP printers, both inkjet and lazer, have very good support from HP themselves. Since Ghostscript came out with a plugin interface for printer drivers (instead of patch and recompile), installing the drivers is eazy no matter what LPD/LPRng/CUPS/etc you use.

Re:HP's (3, Informative)

mickwd (196449) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222477)

If you're an unfortunate owner of an HP DJ9xx class printer (e.g. HP DeskJet 970) which the HP Linux driver doesn't (yet) support in hi-resolution printing mode, please see this entry in the Sourceforge forums for the HP Inkjet Driver project for a patch to HPIJS to support hi-res printing in 1200x1200 mode (and other enhancements).

It's here. [sourceforge.net]

Yes Xerox.. (5, Funny)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222405)

Xerox Phaser 850 color laser printers live up to all the claims, have the best linux support on the planet (Postscript printer... out of the box) and you wont get robbed blind on the ink prices....

granted... the printer is $3500.00USD Appx (I have 4 of them... 2 DX's and 2 N's so I got a good deal :-) but is the best thing cince sliced bread IF.... your users have 1/3rd of a brain... all of them have had ZERO trouble except for one receptionist who has done $1500.00 worth of damage to one printer in 2 seperate instances... and has caused another $400.00 in damage to it recently...

First she violently rips a jammed paper out of it... leaving a nice 3"X3" chunk stuck deep inside instead of using the obvious levers for releasing a jammed piece of paper.. then she loads the paper tray with inkjet lables that decided to adhere to the printing drum...after she ran the same label sheet through 5 times trying to get them looking just right and removing a few of the labels..

oh and finally she broke the high capacity paper drawer by "using her foot" to remove the paper guide.... because it wouldnt come off easily (you have to lift a tab first that is labelled in several languages..

so if you are stupid.... dont get a Phaser 850 printer... or if you have stupid workers in your office...

Re:Yes Xerox.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4222489)

shitcan that dumb ho

Re:Yes Xerox.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4222646)

So, why is she still working there? Come on, this isn't a family forum, you can tell us!

Not necessarily lying (2)

afidel (530433) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222406)

You often have to read the fine print (if you can find it). The industry loves to do things like qoute printing costs based on 15% color coverage, which is less than one embeded pie chart. They will also almost never quote time to first page, because heat up times or nozzel cleaning cycles would put most people off. Another common trick is to quote print speed for 150dpi economy printing then quote the great high end resolution that takes 9 minutes per page.

Linux printers. (4, Informative)

aardvaark (19793) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222411)

Both Epson and HP are really pretty Linux friendly. They release info to the community, and I think Epson has actually written some Linux printer drivers, and released them open source. I chose an Epson printer after learning they are also very good about supporting their scanners with Linux.

I've purchased several printers and scanners from both HP and Epson over the years, and never felt like I was cheated or what have you. They've all worked under Linux without a hitch.

However, if you want absolute Linux compatibility, spring for a postscript printer. They will always work without a hitch, but are a tad spendy.

I use an Okidata laser (2)

WCMI92 (592436) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222417)

I have two printers... A dinosaur of a HP DeskJet 672 for color, one that I can easily get cheap 3rd party carts and refills for, and an Okidata OL4W LED/laser printer. I got the Oki used, and I now use it for virtually ALL my printing (which isn't all that much, actually). It also gives me the advantage of being able to print anything that I have that needs it (ie, resume) in sharp, professional type.

Toner for the Oki is cheap, and I've not replaced it even once. Both print fine from Linux.

The HP Deskjet is slowly dying, which is to be expected given it's age (6 years). Given what I've read about HP's tricks with their low end deskjets (and their firing of Bruce Perens) I would have another one only if GIVEN to me...

I am in the market for a new color printer... Which manufacturer sticks it to you LESS than the others? I'm considering Epson, Lexmark, and Canon (I owned Canon prior to the HP, and was less than impressed with the durability of their printers).

even if given to me... (1)

paranoic (126081) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222628)

I still wouldn't use an HP printer. Who wants to give them $25 for every cartridge? That is where they make their money.

When my HP-600 died a couple of months ago, I bought an Epson. Their windows driver kinda sucks. It seems to render the entire print job (locally) before it sends it to a networked printer.

Lexmark supports Linux (2, Informative)

Whatthehellever (93572) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222419)

I bought a Lexmark Z22 and Lexmark supports Linux right out of the box. Even their technical support staff (well, some of them) are Linux savvy.

modern printers (2, Informative)

PiGuy (531424) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222420)

Most modern printers are terrible - they don't
support PostScript, they have no internal memory,
they hold a miniscule amount of paper, and they
get jammed often. My family's Lexmark inkjet is
case in point - it holds about 30 sheets, has no
memory, and only uses Lexmark's "jnl" format.
Laser printers are somewhat better, but I've no
expreience with them.

Me? I use an Apple Imagewriter II. Sure, it
doesn't support PS, but that's what ghostscript
is for (does a nice job, too). Never jams, has
unlimited paper supply (the paper is stored
externally), almost never gets jammed, and even
has 2KB memory in it, upgradable to 32KB! Most
printers die after a few years, but this one's
twelve years old and running strong!

OT: Your Sig (0)

Amazing Quantum Man (458715) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222558)

And behold! ... it was naked, ... and it stank. - J.R.R. Tolkien, _The Return of the King_

Couldn't resist. How did JRRT know about CowboyNeal way back then?

Re:modern printers (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4222649)

Using an old Apple Personal Laserwriter NTR networked with a Hawking print server.

Wife says "This is 10 years old, why don't we get a new one?" Because we don't have to.

Wish I could've found an ethernet to appletalk converter instead of what I had to use.

Texas Instruments 820 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4222429)

Built like a tank!
Stylish good looks!
Tried and true RS232 interface!
Gets the job done!

When teamed up with a 99/4A, it just rocks!

The old Epsons was cool too.

Ah, the good old days.

They layed me off you know, 14 years and they just shoved me out the door. I'd have 23 years by now! I would be subworthless by now! Damn them!

The Adam came with a printer standard out of the box.

Not all geeks run Linux... (0, Flamebait)

dublin (31215) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222440)

Are there any printers that actually live up to the manufacturers' claims, ideally with Linux support?"

Really, folks, you'd think from reading Slashdot that Linux is the only OS geeks run...

It just ain't so - I've gone to BSD for over half my servers (the rest are Linux, but the shift is underway), and will stay with Windows on the desktop, just because it makes my life one heck of a lot easier.

Windows with cygwin or U/Win gives me the best of both worlds. Since this configuration is one of the most popular in the geek world (far more popular than Linux desktops, I'm sure), why should we care or be bothered about trying to get printing to work on Linux anyway. (Seriously, printing has always been significantly problematic in Unix, and I speak as a strong Unix bigot with over 17 years of experience. (When I worked at Chevron ten years ago, well over half our Unix helpdesk calls involved printing!) I stopped having time to fuss with printing in Linux/Unix years ago, and I don't regret it one bit, either...)

Re:Not all geeks run Linux... (2, Insightful)

dattaway (3088) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222488)

As much as I detest Microsoft, I've reached the conclusion that the GPL is a greater long-term threat.

And printers, specificly a troublesome one made by Xerox, is why RMS developed the GPL.

Re:Not all geeks run Linux... (2)

DunbarTheInept (764) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222537)

Care to elaborate?

Re:Not all geeks run Linux... (2)

gorilla (36491) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222510)

Printing is a problem with any OS. Handling paper & ink/toner is a mechanincal process, and as such means that there is lots which can go wrong. Unfortunatly the majority of users won't think what to do when the printer displays 'paper jam' and just call the help desk.

The next biggest problem is probably spooling, sending their printouts to the wrong print queue, or a disabled or just slow queue.

Unix definatly has some challenges, for example the lack of a universal driver standard, but these are configuration issues, not user issues.

Re:Not all geeks run Linux... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4222549)

How is this flamebait?

Oh my, he said something negative about my precious linux, I better mod it down before anyone else reads it.

You get what you pay for. (5, Insightful)

silverhalide (584408) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222452)

Hate to be a whiner here, but you get what you pay for. If you pay $200 for a printer, you're not getting a 24ppm anything, period. My personal experience has been the higher end printers are more loyal to their specs. I've worked for a company that owns several laserjet 5siMxs (HP's workhorse from a few years ago), and those things nailed 24ppm on the dot after the first page was out on most jobs. The newer 8000 had a faster processor which got the first page out quicker. Point being, if you want a fast printer, pony up the money and pay for it. Otherwise, be content with your slower inkjet and/or laser. The best deal by far are the old Laserjet 5L and 6Ls on ebay for around 50-100 bucks that reliably churn out 3-5 pages a minute. With recycled cartridges, they are by far the most economical printing solution (under 3 cents a page), and their prints look just as good as the new printers. Save your money, buy used printers.

Not the point... (3, Insightful)

Lurkingrue (521019) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222511)

You may, indeed, "get what you pay for", but that isn't why everyone is so ticked off. The point of this whole thread is about how printer companies practically lie to potential customers about their machines' specs.

A low price may warrant selling junk, but it doesn't (shouldn't?) permit deceptive marketing practices.

6L (2, Informative)

PW2 (410411) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222574)

When I bought this printer (new) over 5 years ago, I didn't know it came with a toner cartridge so I bought an extra one -- I still have the extra one in the box as the first toner cartridge is still working great. Buy a laser printer!

Re:You get what you pay for. (4, Informative)

Hollins (83264) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222580)

The HP 5L had a terrible feed problem because they relied on gravity to pull in the paper. They would like to suck in 8 pages at a time. I owned one that had this problem, and found a lot of users online complaining about it. It seemed to crop up after a couple thousand pages. HP told users to be sure their printers were on stable, horizontal surfaces (duh), but not much else.

I don't know if this was corrected in the 6L, but I won't be buying a gravity feed printer again.

Re:You get what you pay for. (2, Insightful)

SoCalChris (573049) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222619)

I have a 5L that was having this problem. I talked to the friendly HP service rep at our office, and he sold me a new pickup mechanism for $20 and gave me instructions how to replace it. The thing has worked like a champ again since then.

I can't even imagine how many thousands of pages it has printed in it's lifetime, but it has gone through at least 10 toner cartridges so it has really been quite a workhorse for me.

Time to *start* printing (2)

ckedge (192996) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222471)


I tell you what, my Cannon 750 prints damn fast, but the amount of time it takes to get the very first page out is outrageous!!! (I'm talking about a simple plain old page of ascii text, no graphics, no special fonts.)

A full minute!!

I'd bloody well like to see some statistics on that. I rarely print big long documents, but I often print the odd page or two. The *effective* print speed ends up being 1-3 ppm, even though once it gets going it can do 11ppm.

WTF is the printer doing? I don't remember the old BJC 200's taking that long to get started.

Re:Time to *start* printing (2)

afidel (530433) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222604)

The printer is assuring that the inkjet tubes are clean and full of liquid ink instead of dried out crud that has been sitting there. This is the only way that you can assure good page quality after the printer has been sitting for more than a few hours, especially as drop size is now down to single digit picoliters. Lasers have similar warm up times but for them it is warming the fuser to assure the toner is fused properly to the paper.

Xerox Document Centre Office Multifunction Machine (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4222472)

They support a whole host of open-source technologies: lpr, IPP, SNMP as well as proprietary (AppleTalk, Netware, NetBIOS, HP PJL)!

Plus you can scan to TIFF!

HP Deskjet 960C. (2)

garcia (6573) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222478)

Contrary to popular comment here on /., the HPDJ 960c does NOT do what I expect it to do on the Linux platform w/CUPS.

Sure it works, and for B&W it works fine. But when I try to print color photos (on photo paper) it just blows. I have to print over the network to it from a Windows machine.

According to HP [hp-at-home.com] this printer will print 15ppm draft B&W and 12ppm draft color. Unfortunatly I have absolutely *no* use for draft mode so what good do these numbers do me? Marketing ploys and mind games. I am thinking for the work I do (B&W mostly) that it is around 5 - 7ppm all text.

I like the printer in that it is about $200 retail, it has both USB and LPTx, and it is relatively quiet compared to my previous printer.

Problems are that it is slow, it runs out of ink WAY too fucking fast (I mean w/my DJ 400c I used 2 B&W cartridges, and 1 color cartridge in 5 years), w/this printer, 2 B&W's and 1 color since December 25th. Note: I printed TONS more shit in 5 years than I have since Dec. 25th.

CUPS makes printing on the Linux machine ok. It's nothing special but it works. I still have to print from Windows if I want color photos to look right. It's slow and it sucks ink.

If you are using it for B&W text mostly, it's affordable, good quality printing (600x600 dpi black, 2400x1200 dpi photo color), and it has an LPTx port for Linux.

YMMV.

The best printer on Earth (that we can afford) (5, Informative)

pla (258480) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222479)

About two years ago, I bought a Brother HL-1270N. Around $450, but probably cheaper today (and still competitive as a reasonably high-end home and small-office printer).

It does 12ppm, connects directly to 100bt ethernet (so I don't need a slave PC as a print server), and of course it works just fine with Linux (supports PCL6 and PS2).

Black-and-white laser, but *very* good quality (1200x600... At 25-up, I can still read a 10pt font, though I need a magnifying glass to do so) and a high throughput make it thge single best printer I have ever used (not just owned, used... at my previous job, we had a variety of serious high-end HP lasers, y'know, the $15k type) and they all SUCKED in comparison).

Not as cheap as a chinsy little $80 color inkjet, but, 99.9% of the time I care more about printing speed and quality than having color on my printouts. And when I do, I visit Kinkos (If I actually need a color document, you can bet I won't accept the crappy quality of those $80 inkjets).

Incidentally, for quite a lot less (around $150) you can get the HL-1240. It has very similar stats (my parents have one of these, and it impressed me enough to get the 1270N for myself), except no ethernet and half the memory. If you don't mind needing a PC to act as a print server for it, this makes a GREAT deal on an amazing printer.

article benchmarks are disappointing... (2)

yorgasor (109984) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222484)

Along with almost every printer's ppm benchmark I've seen, manufacturers also include the time to first page. Printers consume a lot of power (my HP 4P laserjet sends my lights flickering every time it prints), so it rests in a power saving mode. When it gets a print job, it takes it a little while for it to heat up enought to burn the toner on the paper. This warm up time can often take 30 seconds or more. If the author wanted to give meaningful statistics on a printer's ppm, he would've started timing after the first page was printed, or include the initial warm up time.

Re:article benchmarks are disappointing... (1)

Boomer2 (515406) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222636)

my HP 4P laserjet sends my lights flickering every time it prints

Where the heck do you live?!! Liberia?

wrong test (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4222490)

Print engines on laser printers are rated by how fast they can print a page of text NOT by how fast they can convert whatever document you have (RIPing) in order to be able to print it.

Take a 1 page document--even with graphics--and try printing 17 copies of it. The first one will take a while while it RIPs then the copies will come out at your PPM rating.

Amazing new printer (1)

Shamanin (561998) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222497)

Prints over a million pages on one ink cartridge.

(fine print - provided user prints no more than one character per page at 10 point courier)

Resolution, ppm, Durability (1)

Tmack (593755) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222512)

What Ive been wondering for a long time (ever since I got an Epson 600) is how they advertise such high DPI ratings, yet fail to mention that thats only possible with a special "photo" cartridge on special paper on a certain day of the year at 3:05 am and only if you dont live in Canada. The epson I had, had the best dpi (720x720 iirc)at the time for a decently priced printer, but would only print at that res on expensive photo paper, at maybe 1 page per minute. Not only did it take forever, the output looked like crap compared to a lower dpi(600x300) HP printer (it also liked to clean its printheads ALOT).

Alot of the specs published on boxes are more misleading than just straight up lies. Sure the DPI is higher, but the lower res printer might actually render better dots, or do something with the dots to make the output look better. Sure it can print 7 pages per minute full color, but only if its in draft mode.

A couple of things that arent advertised that really gets to me are reliability and durability, and cost of cartridges. That epson worked good for about 3 months (just long enough that I could no longer return it), then started doing weird stuff. I had to replace the color cart after only 2 months. Epson wanted something around half the cost of the original printer for one, and the carts were only tanks, the heads were part of the printer.

I will NEVER buy a lexmark, after helping 3 too many friends attempt to get theirs working and having them die shortly after. In the end you get what you pay for, there's a reason those lexmarks cost only $20. I replaced the Epson with an HP 932c, and have had no problems since. Sure, it cost a little more, but I can count on it to print when I need to, and the carts dont cost more than the printer.

TM

Does reporter ignorance really equal "ploys"? (5, Insightful)

Snowgen (586732) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222513)

So, I read the article, the bulk of which was that the reporter's 17 ppm printer had a throughput of significantly less than that when printing a trio of single pages.

No kidding. The problem here isn't that the printer manufacturers are trying to pull a fast one on the consumer. The problem here was that the consumer in question was ignorant about what the rating meant.

I bought my first laser printer back in the 1980's. Back then it was only computer geeks buying these toys, and we all knew that when a printer was rated at 6 ppm, that meant that the printer engine itself was rated at 6 ppm. The engine speed didn't account for the time the printer's processor took to render the PS or PCL code into a laser raster. We all knew that in order to get 6 ppm you would have to set the printer to print 6 (or 12 or whatever) copies of the same page. That way the printer's CPU only had to parse the PS/PCL file once and just start spewing forth paper.

Back then, when most home use dot-matrix printers were printing at about 100 cps (roughly 1.1 ppm if my math is right), this seemed like a fair and equitable way to rate laser printers.

So it's not that the printer manufacturers are trying evil ploys to up their PPM ratings. It's simply that times have changed, and that consumers no longer bother to educate themselves before making a purchase.

At least that's how I see it. It's a free Internet--you can disagree if you want.

Re:Does reporter ignorance really equal "ploys"? (1)

Winterblink (575267) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222569)

Not everyone wants to learn the differences in rendering times for document types, and a lot of people just don't care. I'll agree, this is stupid -- consumers should always be informed ones. Maybe the answer is three fold:

1) Manufacturers should report "true" PPM ratings for different types of print jobs. Cite real-world examples, as well as hard stats for us techies.

2) Point of sale people need to stop being fucking crooks, selling the most expensive printer with the highest PPM rating as "the best".

3) People DO need to read up a bit before going and buying something.

Re:Does reporter ignorance really equal "ploys"? (5, Insightful)

chill (34294) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222588)

Since it's a free Internet -- I'll disagree.

Printer manufacturers print the PPM in big, bold letters on the box. They use it as a main selling point, same as with DPI. Yes, there are several cavaets that the buyer must be aware of. However, it is deceptive marketing.

Same goes for tape drive manufacturers who quote 2:1 compression figures in 2" high letters; monitor manufacturers who make the "viewable" size much smaller than the regular size.

Well, the monitor people are getting better. A couple years ago you couldn't find "viewable size" anywhere on the box. And LCDs are "true" size -- not that inch-behind-the-bezel size.

Yes, it is up to the buyer to educate themselves. However, printer manufacturers are very much like car dealers in that they SHOUT the one number, while whisper all the "gotchas". Deceptive.

Xerox Phaser 1235 (1)

slavemowgli (585321) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222514)

I usually use a Xerox Phaser 1235DT [xerox.com] , and am quite happy with it.

Linux and Printer Compatability (2)

randomErr (172078) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222533)

When you get a printer just get a PostScript 3 compatable printer. As long as you pipe the the postscript right out to the printer you will never have to worry.

You made have to tweak the PPD file some, but thats half the fun :)

Printer Vendor Ploys . . . (5, Funny)

Dausha (546002) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222535)

I'll say! Those vendors really know how to sell a piece of shiznet. I have an HP 845c that prints every single copy upside-down. In order to right them again I have to use the company photocopier.

Anybody have a patch for the CUPS driver that can fix this?

Perfectly Accurate (4, Funny)

cloudscout (104011) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222536)

The speeds listed by the manufacturers are 100% accurate. It's just that those are the page-per-minute ratings for blank sheets of paper being pushed through the printer. It doesn't include any actual printing.

Computer speed (1)

digitalhermit (113459) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222540)

One thing to keep in mind is that many "dumb" printers require the host computer to do a lot of the processing. This keeps the printer cost down but requires a fairly fast machine. Is the times the author mentioned from the moment he hits the "print" button or from the moment the computer receives the data? How are the printers attached? If via USB the bottleneck may even be the connection.

Harsh review (1)

vsprintf (579676) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222550)

What prompts this fantasy is a round of tests I just ran on three new printers advertised as delivering speeds of "up to" 11, 15, and 17 pages per minute, respectively. In some ways, all three are excellent products -- I'll have more to say about their virtues in a future column -- but none comes close to its "up to" speed.

The review was overly harsh. It's really very simple. Just fill a file with "^L^L^L^L^L^L^L^L^L^L^L...", and send it to the printer. You'll be amazed at the ppm.

My Canon BJC-2100 (2, Insightful)

Boomer2 (515406) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222585)

...sucks. It is a total scam.

Oddly, I bought a second to replace the first because I had invested in a large quantity of ink cartridges during a sale. It turned out to be cheaper to buy a second Canon and use up the ink rather than shift to a new printer. Once this ink is gone, though, I'll never buy another Canon.

HP Personal & Small Business LaserJets. (5, Informative)

thesolo (131008) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222597)

I own an HP LaserJet 1200 Personal printer, and it is by far the best home printer I have ever purchased. It's very fast for a personal model, 15 PPM, with the first page always printed within 10 seconds of the print command. Size-scalable paper trays, which are great for envelope printing, and it supports an addon module for scanning & copying. Even the price isn't too bad, Pricewatch.com has it for less than $400.00 US.

And if you're wondering what OS it works under, well, you're in luck. It is fully PostScript compatible, and works under Windows, MacOS, and Linux. I've used it under all 3 with perfect results. HP gets a big thumb up from me with this printer.

Laserjet III (0)

bizitch (546406) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222605)

This is still the most stable and reliable printer ever made - not the fastest.

The PCL5 driver date is from 1987 - and it still just flat out works ...

All about the marketing ploys (3, Funny)

delcielo (217760) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222610)

I'll have to try something similar at home.

"Up to twelve inches long, depending on usage."

With HP it Isn't Just Printers (1)

tmjva (226065) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222624)

The PA8700 chip on the HP3000, HP has put
some sort of "delay" feature that is not
on the HP9000 Unix box.

Samsung (2)

austad (22163) | more than 11 years ago | (#4222629)

I just bought a Samsung ML-1450 laser printer. They advertise linux support, and so far, I haven't found anything in what they advertise to be a lie. Of course, I haven't used up the toner yet, so who knows if it's only half full like some of the inkjet manufacturers have been doing. But I have to say that so far it's lived up to its specs, and you can't beat the price. I paid $230 for it.
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