[OT] printing question

David Kelly dkelly at hiwaay.net
Tue Nov 18 11:23:22 PST 2008

On Tue, Nov 18, 2008 at 07:51:47PM +0100, Roland Smith wrote:
> On Tue, Nov 18, 2008 at 10:49:44AM -0600, Andrew Gould wrote:
> > Time to buy a new printer.  I don't print much from FreeBSD; but the
> > need occasionally arises.  Most of my printing is done while using
> > Mac OS X.  The Epson Artisan 800 is looking awfully nice; but it's
> > not in the Linux printing database yet
> > (http://openprinting.org/printer_list.cgi).
> > 
> > Question:  Since Mac OS X uses CUPS, if I share the printer on the
> > Mac, will I need to worry about FreeBSD compatibility of the
> > printer?  I only need printing functions (not scan, etc) for the
> > FreeBSD computer.
> I'm not sure that apple uses a non-modified CUPS. It is conceivable
> that they have incorporated extra (not open) drivers that aren't in
> the standard distribution.

MacOS X will share a printer with Windows. I don't know how the driver
thing is negotiated. The Mac may happily accept Postscript and then do
whatever is needed to print.

> If you want to be safe, buy a printer that understands PostScript.
> That will work on FreeBSD (and all other UNIX variants).

Sounds like the OP is looking for color. If B&W is enough my favorite
inexpensive printer is the Brother HL-5250DN. Speaks Postscript-clone,
PCL-5 and PCL-6. Direct network connection so each computer speaks
directly to the printer. Duplex. About 25 ppm. Third party toner reloads
cost about $25 for 5,000 pages. The printer sells for $150 to $250
depending on sales and whether you can find a refurbished unit.

Years ago I had access to an HP 5000N that would print photo quality
matte (not glossy) B&W on plain paper. Not quite sure what it is about
the Brother (or printer drivers because this was pre-MacOS X) but I
enjoyed wonderful cheap B&W prints off the HP but the Brother isn't
nearly as good. Text and line graphics are excellent.

David Kelly N4HHE, dkelly at HiWAAY.net
Whom computers would destroy, they must first drive mad.

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