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What printer options do I have?

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Posted (edited)

Back in the day I had an Epson MX-80 dot-matrix printer with GrafTrax+ added (I loved it)! I think GrafTrax+ was a chip that was added to aid in printing graphics. 

 

I could hunt one of these dinosaurs down on the Internet, or I could ask all of you if you have a new replacement printer that would work on our TI today? 

I am not worried about WYSIWYG text, just good old dot-matrix style printouts for programming. 

 

I would like to buy a modern/new dot-matrix printer so I can get new ink cartridges for it and paper. Epson still sells dot-matrix printers for business applications and provides ink and paper for them. Would any of them work? Are there any printers out there that still speak an ancient dialect of Epson?

 

Thanks for your interest and help in advance. I just want to get up and started without having to build a Frankenstein Monster printer setup. 

 

I have a PEB with an RS232 card that I used for this purpose back then. I am assuming it all still works. I know it had a special cable with a couple of wires moved around on the connector at the printer end.

EpsonMX-80_dot-matrix_Printer.jpg

Edited by x24b
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The last printer I was able to have work with the TI was a Canon BJC-210 (parallel) back in the late 90s and early 2000s.  I believe it eventually kicked the bucket.

th?id=OIP.dYrDP6XWtzYiIqLpgiPmEwHaFj&pid

 

 

 

It seems a modern dot-matrix would work, assuming it has legacy connectors.

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5 hours ago, WhataKowinkydink said:

The last printer I was able to have work with the TI was a Canon BJC-210 (parallel) back in the late 90s and early 2000s.  I believe it eventually kicked the bucket.

It seems a modern dot-matrix would work, assuming it has legacy connectors.

Thank you! The Canon would be new-ish and it is good to know about a device that was actually used with our little TI! 

The 'modern dot-matrix' with legacy connectors is what I am comfortable with. I like the idea of fan-fold paper too. Easier to keep track of without using staples!

I'll check the Epson product site and look at the specifications. Auto repair places are still using them with multi-part paper for invoices and such.

 

This printer is WAY too much printer (Price, Speed etc.), but maybe not if it does what I want. I can still use it with my PC's and SBC's. 

It does everything else that I would want.

 

                                            22756-productpicture-lores-en-lq-590ii_main.png.png.2db577e9aacbbb35e1bd3bf921858ba5.png

EPSON LQ-590II SERIES
Dot matrix printer

Printing Method = Impact dot matrix
Number of Pins = 24 pins
Number of columns = 80 columns
Hi-Speed USB - compatible with USB 2.0 specification,
Parallel 

Here is where I fall down.

How do I find out if this is associated with the ancient Epson communication code?
Barcodes            = Code 128, Code 39, EAN-13, EAN-8, Interleaved 2 of 5, POSTNET, UPC-A, UPC-E
Character Tables = PC437, PC708, PC720, PC850, PC858, PC864, PCAR864, ISO-8859-15, Roman 8, Italic

 

4 hours ago, arcadeshopper said:

You can get this:  http://www.retroprinter.com/

or get a TIPI and the functionality is included with PI.PIO in the TIPI..  

That RetroPrinter seems worth investigating. I will poke around checking it out.

The TIPI seems to be the thing lots talk about. I'll actually have to read more. Just a bit Leary of added complexity. One more thing for me to screw up or maintain! I was in the IT industry for more than 2 decades and I am a bit tired of hunting down printing problems. My old MX-80 just worked like a brick in a wall. It did what it was designed to do and never quit. I just had to add ink carts and paper.

 

Thank you both for contributing! 

 

I'll report back when I find a solution I'm comfortable with. Onward!

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They need to make a dot matrix printer with a built in speaker to automatically send out noise cancelling (inverse) sound waves.  I'm thinking a quiet(er) dot matrix printer might be welcomed in this day and age for some cheap printing of stuff that you don't intend to keep.

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5 minutes ago, INVISIBLE said:

(inverse) sound waves

Noise canceling anything is a boon to mankind.

Headphones in light aircraft are finally comfortable, other than the sweat, and you see them on passengers in planes and trains.

I agree that dot-matrix printers are annoying! At least they sound like they are working really, really, hard at producing something for you.

 

I wonder why you seem to be the first person to think of this.

Companies find millions of ways to diversify their product lines, but this never crossed their minds?

Great idea.

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2 minutes ago, GDMike said:

Can the pi print to a wireless printer?

I would think that the powerful, supported, hacked, Raspberry Pi CAN print wireless to a WiFi enabled printer.

Even my iPhone, with software, prints to my WiFi printer. Why not the Pi? 

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Can the pi print to a wireless printer?
Yes of course but you can just open the PDF it creates in any of your computers and print it at will

Sent from my LM-G820 using Tapatalk

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19 minutes ago, x24b said:

I wonder why you seem to be the first person to think of this.

I cannot imagine that I'm the first to think of this.  I'm thinking this kind of technology in a printer might cut into their obscene profits on toner and inks.

From a business perspective, a quiet dot matrix printer might be like shooting themselves in the foot, stock holders might rebel forcing some out of a job.

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Posted (edited)

The X-24B is my 2nd favorite aircraft of all time. My first is the X-3!

Not for their technical specifications or historical value or achievements, just their looks.

 

They both look 'RIGHT'!

 

Douglas-X-3-Stiletto-Title.jpg.ae28ff37bc5a20a69844441169b38ab7.jpg  1816433501_1920px-X-24b-flying(1).thumb.jpg.fdbc39fff460d92a5fc0087ce596f3d6.jpg

Edited by x24b

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Posted (edited)

I may have found it!!!!!!

 

It looks like an 80's dot-matrix printer, it's name sounds sorta like MX-80, is priced like one, has a 9-pin head, prints slow, prints graphics poorly and looks like it might work with our old hardware.

Tell me what I'm missing...

 

 

 https://epson.com/For-Work/Printers/Impact/LX-350-Impact-Printer/p/C11CC24001

 

 

 

LX-350 Impact Printer

 

1087746589_C11CC24001_Matriciales_EpsonLX-350_ES.png.1f47d4712bde0fab2032c2aeebdf38db.png

 

$231.00

 

Epson, world leader of Impact Printers, introduces a new printer with the same technology, reliability and quality of its predecessors, but with a more compact presentation and robustness. The new LX-350 has fast and durable EPSON 9-Pin technology, prints up to 347 characters per second and is ideal for front and back office applications needing continuous paper or multi-part stationery. Now more reliable than ever, the LX-350 has a mean time between failure of 10,000 operating hours.

  • Model: C11CC24001 

 

  • High reliability: MTBF of 10,000 operating hours
  • Power-efficient: Energy efficient model for less power consumption
  • Economical: New Ribbon yield of 4 Million characters
  • Easy integration: Parallel, Serial and USB interfaces
  • Compact design: Fits neatly onto desks
  • In the Box:
  • Epson LX-350 Impact Printer
  • Ribbon
  • Printer Driver
  • Quick Installation Guide
  • Parallel Cable
  • Power Cable

Printing Technology:

9-pin, serial, impact dot matrix, narrow carriage

Print Direction:

Text Mode: Bi-directional
Graphics Mode: Uni-directional (bi-directional via software)

 

ISO Print Speed:

  • High Speed Draft: 347 cps (10 cpi), 357 cps (12 cpi), 390 cps (15 cpi)
  • Draft: 260 cps (10 cpi), 312 cps (12 cpi), 223 (15 cpi)
  • Near Letter Quality: 65 cps (10 cpi), 78 cps (12 cpi), 55 cps (15 cps)

Character Sets:

  • 13 standard versions
  • 15 international character sets
  • 43 NLSP versions

Resident Bitmapped Fonts:

  • Epson Draft: 10, 12, 15 cpi proportional
  • Epson Roman: 10, 12, 15 cpi proportional
  • Epson San Serif: 10, 12, 15 cpi proportional
  • Epson OCR-B: 10 cpi

Bar Code Fonts:

EAN-13, EAN-8, Interleaved 2 of 5, UPC-A, UPC-E, Code 39, Code 128, POSTNET,

 

 

 

REVIEWS:

 

 

★★★★★2 out of 5 stars.
· 3 years ago  

Great for Documents; Lousy for Web Pages and Forms

I really like the printer for documents especially since it has a USB port and can be connected to a router for remote printing. Printing web pages and forms such as 1099Rs is terrible. The print is not legible. I have tried all combinations of settings on the control panel Font and print quality (dots per inch) in the Printer setup on my computer. I can tell no difference in readability no matter what combination I use. I bought the printer primarily because my wife likes to print recipes from the internet. The printer is virtually useless for that. My recommendation below is for printing the items I bought the printer for.

 No, 
I do not recommend this product.

 

 

 

★★★★★5 out of 5 stars.
· 7 months ago  

I salute Epson for still supporting legacy intefaces

I don’t understand the harsh criticism of this product. If you want nice graphics and crisp text, buy a laser printer or an ink-jet printer. Back in the eighties, when I got my Epson, a dot matrix was the only affordable printer. These days laser and ink-jet printers are sold absurdly cheap, so they can hook you on the consumables. I kept my eighties dot matrix Epson to print labels, a task it excels at. I am grateful to Epson that they still make this product, supporting legacy interfaces at an affordable price for what must surely be a very limited market, because if mine fails, I’ll need to replace it with this one.

 Yes, 
I recommend this product.

 

 

Edited by x24b
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There's a few MX80's on ebay at a decent price ~$70+/–. Several are tested and working. Also ribbons.

 

I still have mine, stored in a shed. It has an enhanced LQ-type chip as well, that might also involve a printhead upgrade. My memory's vague on that. Working when parked. You're probably looking for something a little less used-looking. :grin:

 

I also have the Apple equivalent of that Canon BJ (an inkjet BTW). The Apple is serial-output only, I'd assume that's the only port available on the printer, though I never paid attention to that and would have to take a look.

 

Another thing you'll have to pick up is the connector to the PEB's parallel non-standard port. BITD, I wired up my own cable, still have that as well.

-Ed

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41 minutes ago, Ed in SoDak said:

There's a few MX80's on ebay at a decent price ~$70+/–. Several are tested and working. Also ribbons.

 

I still have mine, stored in a shed. It has an enhanced LQ-type chip as well, that might also involve a printhead upgrade. My memory's vague on that. Working when parked. You're probably looking for something a little less used-looking. :grin:

 

I also have the Apple equivalent of that Canon BJ (an inkjet BTW). The Apple is serial-output only, I'd assume that's the only port available on the printer, though I never paid attention to that and would have to take a look.

 

Another thing you'll have to pick up is the connector to the PEB's parallel non-standard port. BITD, I wired up my own cable, still have that as well.

-Ed

Thanks!

I'm tempted to grab an old MX-80 but fear a breakdown when I'm deep in a project and neeeeeeed to see a print out so I can scribble on it and comprehend the spaghetti code I created. 'New' would calm my nerves.

I still have my old printer cable from the MX-80 in a box deep in my garage (I won't be able to find it when I need it though). I made mine too, from a diagram from something somewhere. It worked, so, there's that.

I'm sure I can research that easy enough.

 

A friend had that Canon... I think. I just remember how sleek it looked next to my 'box' of a printer.

 

That LX-350 is calling my name. I just wish I could be sure it would work. I might just have to get one to tell if it will. It sure looks 80's NEW!

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My guess is Epson is still Epson for printer codes. I saw user and technical manual downloads in my online search for MX80. I likely have my dead-tree version somewhere, stashed in deeper strata than your old cable. Electro-archeology! That listed all the character and printing codes. Locate same manual(s) for the LX-350 and Bob's your uncle.

 

I got pretty good at calling up the TL codes for TI-Writer from memory. Nowadays just remembering I once knew all that is effort enough. :-) If the codes are different, might only need to look up the equivalent for the TransLiterate TL code to enable it. I had many disks of little printer apps that automated that stuff for you. A few were pretty slick.

 

At least with a new unit, a return or exchange is likely more doable if it ends up being Nouveau Epson.

-Ed

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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, Ed in SoDak said:

My guess is Epson is still Epson for printer codes. I saw user and technical manual downloads in my online search for MX80. I likely have my dead-tree version somewhere, stashed in deeper strata than your old cable. Electro-archeology! That listed all the character and printing codes. Locate same manual(s) for the LX-350 and Bob's your uncle.

 

I got pretty good at calling up the TL codes for TI-Writer from memory. Nowadays just remembering I once knew all that is effort enough. 🙂 If the codes are different, might only need to look up the equivalent for the TransLiterate TL code to enable it. I had many disks of little printer apps that automated that stuff for you. A few were pretty slick.

 

At least with a new unit, a return or exchange is likely more doable if it ends up being Nouveau Epson.

-Ed

 

Bob's your Uncle, is right!

 

I think it's just that simple. I had read that someone here, used a Laser Printer with his TI, and said; "If it's got a parallel port, It'll work". That's the kind of chutzpah I need! I should just pull the trigger on the LX-350 and keep the shipping box and receipt.

 

My Uncle Bob is RIGHT!

 

Ah... to be able to remember codes within a word processor so you can italicize something. Yes, Electro-Archeology is also something we are forced into once we bought our first home computer, no matter the brand.

 

A TL code here, and a TL code there and I'll be writing Novels and Screen Plays with my trusty TI in no time! Who needs Word, Edit, WordPad or Libre Write?

 

We have TL codes darn-it!

 

Well, probably just a coin toss program in Basic, but that's almost the same... right?

 

Thanks for the info... and banter.

Edited by x24b
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10 hours ago, x24b said:

The X-24B is my 2nd favorite aircraft of all time. My first is the X-3!

Not for their technical specifications or historical value or achievements, just their looks.

 

They both look 'RIGHT'!

 

  

 

My #1 is also not on specifications, but simply on size and appearance... The T-38 Talon!

 

2115585671_T-38Talon.thumb.JPG.48b3094623a23f5789a9e272d1c762d0.JPG

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11 hours ago, INVISIBLE said:

This may be of some interest if you get an Epson printer for your TI...

TI-Writer Epson Control Codes.pdf 3.05 MB · 4 downloads

Excellent! THANK YOU! You are a kind person. I was looking for those last night, and then I had to sleep. I think I was up until 3:30AM.

Some light reading and then I'll hunt down the LX-350 manual and codes. Maybe there won't be any guess work after all.

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11 hours ago, INVISIBLE said:

 

My #1 is also not on specifications, but simply on size and appearance... The T-38 Talon!

 

2115585671_T-38Talon.thumb.JPG.48b3094623a23f5789a9e272d1c762d0.JPG

You Sir... understand!

 

T-38_Talon_Thunderbird1.thumb.jpg.e6f932186b920ef29039ffe665aec40a.jpg

And then the Thunderbird's had a brain-wave and got some for all of us to ogle at. I concur with your opinion. A Beautiful Aircraft, even if it was a Trainer. It was the most elegant and wicked Trainer of all time!

During the Apollo missions the Astronauts had their own private T-38's to travel from Coast-To-Coast for the program. I want one too!

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12 hours ago, INVISIBLE said:

 

My #1 is also not on specifications, but simply on size and appearance... The T-38 Talon!

 

2115585671_T-38Talon.thumb.JPG.48b3094623a23f5789a9e272d1c762d0.JPG

Flew her from 88-92! Great fun! 

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Posted (edited)

I was at Nellis 83-89 with a 1 year Iceland tour with F15s. 

But a mechanic, not a pilot. Thank you for your service!! Awesome!

Oh, those J85s oh man put it on your truck and you can get though any mud hole! What a tiny engine..

The guys next door would wheel one of those through on a dolly and we're like, where's the rest of it as the F100/200( F16) that we were working on dwarf's that at 19'

Crazy power

Oh there I go again.. rambling.... sorry threadsters, but there's nothing like flying over Dreamland from time to time in the desert heat, ok again, I was sweating it out on the tarmac day after day and would do it over and over

Edited by GDMike
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Posted (edited)

You guys are making my day. Thank you all for your service! I was too young for Vietnam, but I was in the last Lottery for the Draft. My  Birthday was in one of those large blue pills rolling around with all the other guys. My number was not called, but by then, even if I were drafted, I would have been relegated to marching around in the heat or unloading planes for the guys just coming home. 

 

Here's an off-topic, T-38 Talon related story. My Cousin and I attended a Thunderbird's show at Edwards Air Force Base in California. It was a VERY windy day and they should have called off the show, but pressed on anyway. Chuck Yeager flew supersonic for the last time in an SR-71 at that show. My cousin was a bold and saucy fellow and told me to follow his lead. We walked up to the VIP set of bleachers that were guarded by armed guards. My cousin said something to the guy, and he raised the yellow tape and let us in! We walked up the bleachers and sat in the center/center area. The Thunderbird Announcer was right in front of us. Quite a PERFECT location to watch the show. Then I realized that my knees were up against the back of a man that looked familiar.

 

It turned out to be Buzz Aldrin! You know, the 'Right Stuff', 'second man on the Moon' guy. The wind was howling, but the T-38 Talon Thunderbird's took off and started their show. Their routines were great as ever, but they sure changed positions as the wind blew them off course here and there. They wobbled and yawed a bit. Then two of them headed right at each other, low on the deck, just over the runway. They went into a mirrored knife-edge so their wings were 90 degrees to the ground. A HUGE GUST of wind struck just as they passed! 

 

Buzz Aldrin pressed back into my legs and winced like he was dodging a fast ball! His hands raised a bit and then just as they passed without incident, he regained composure and sat up subdued once more. Something MUST have been VERY dangerous for him to react that way! 

 

I saw Buzz Aldrin wince regarding a T-38 Talon in action!

 

THE END.

 

Ummm... Uh... I want to print an image of a T-38 Talon on my new printer being driven by my Ti 99/4A.

(Did anyone notice we were off-topic?)

Edited by x24b
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47 minutes ago, x24b said:

(Did anyone notice we were off-topic?)

 

Hey buddy, it's YOUR THREAD, how can we be off topic?  😁

 

You mentioned the SR-71,  nice looking plane, even if it leaked like sieve on the ground.  Here's a view many people have never seen, a somewhat dated cockpit by today's standards, but still cool.

SR-71 Cockpit.jpg

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