Printer Languages and Printers 
Author Message
 Printer Languages and Printers

I've noticed that it is customary to speak of postscript and non-postscript
printers, although some printers can do both, and do so on the basis that
some printers can print postscript files. We recently purchased an Epson
Stylus Color 3000 and it ships with the Epson PowerRIP. Due to the fact that
we run NT, we noticed immediately that the 'software' RIP does not run under
NT since the package informed us of this fact when we unpacked it. (Of
course, it would have been a nice thing if Epson would have included this
information on the relevant Stylus Color 3000 web page and not buried knee
deep in a FAQ in a tech support page). To print postscript output, we need
to run the RIP under Windows 95. Epson's RIP works much like the software
RIP we used with a Lexmark Ink Jet, a non-postscript printer. The file is
ripped by the computer and then sent to the printer for printing. One could
easily print it directly from an application without going through the extra
step of printing to a file as a bit of postscript. It would seem, then, that
the Stylus Color 3000 is not a Postscript printer. It would seem to be a PCL
printer with a driver that facilitates postscript printing.

And yet, I've noticed that the 3000 rips and prints postscript output much
faster than a Software rip using a generic windows print driver or the
printer's driver as ship from the hardware developer. Moreover, when first
installing the PowerRIP, one needs to write a bit of code to the EPROM on
the printer which licensees the printer as an Adobe Postscript printer.

This greater speed when ripping and printing seems to blur the lines a bit
as does the printer 'update.' Since the Stylus Color 3000 ships with a
postscript capacity, is it then a postscript printer? or Is it a PCL printer
with a postscript RIP tacked on? I ask because companies besides Epson have
developed postscript solutions for this printer. They might be better. Or,
they may be worse because the Epson RIP is optimized for the Epson printer,
as one might expect.

Insight and explanations will be appreciated.

Steve



Fri, 30 Mar 2001 03:00:00 GMT  
 Printer Languages and Printers

Quote:

>...It would seem, then, that
>the Stylus Color 3000 is not a Postscript printer. It would seem to be a PCL
>printer with a driver that facilitates postscript printing.

The word "driver" is over-used, and this leads to much confusion.

In Windows at least "printer driver" is best used only to mean the
component which hooks into Windows and which takes as its input the
application's graphics calls, and as output writes a printer language
(be it PCL, PostScript or whatever).

An applicaion that takes PostScript is properly called a PostScript
interpreter. In fact, for a non-Adobe interpreter it is properly
called a PostScript compatible interpreter. When this program runs
inside the printer, the printer is likely to be called a PostScript
printer (or PostScript-compatible).  When it runs on the host the
program is likely to be called a PostScript emulator.  Anyway.

Quote:

>And yet, I've noticed that the 3000 rips and prints postscript output much
>faster than a Software rip using a generic windows print driver or the
>printer's driver as ship from the hardware developer. Moreover, when first
>installing the PowerRIP, one needs to write a bit of code to the EPROM on
>the printer which licensees the printer as an Adobe Postscript printer.

That's probably a dongle-like function to prevent the same
emulator/interpreter from being used to drive a pool of printers;
unlikely to serve any other role.

Quote:

>This greater speed when ripping and printing seems to blur the lines a bit
>as does the printer 'update.' Since the Stylus Color 3000 ships with a
>postscript capacity, is it then a postscript printer? or Is it a PCL printer
>with a postscript RIP tacked on? I ask because companies besides Epson have
>developed postscript solutions for this printer. They might be better. Or,
>they may be worse because the Epson RIP is optimized for the Epson printer,
>as one might expect.

You'll find RIPs from all sorts of people. Arguably a very good one,
costing more than the printer, would be the Harlequin one, which would
provide many of the extra features of high-end RIPs, like the ability
to do profile-to-profile conversions. That means you can send it CMYK
intended for a different output device and it will translate it -
turning it into a true proofer, not just a colour printer - at least
within the limitations of the technology.

----------------------------------------

Visit http://www.*-*-*.com/ ,
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Fri, 30 Mar 2001 03:00:00 GMT  
 
 [ 2 post ] 

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