[SUMMARY] 600x600, 11x17 sheet color printer for UNIX

From: Bob Radvanovsky (i3cs@wwa.com)
Date: Fri Jul 17 1998 - 13:42:14 CDT

Thanks to:

Kevin Colagio <kcolagio@wc.eso.mc.xerox.com>
Robert Leonard <rleona03@harris.com>
Brian Wightman <bwightman@pop.erols.com>
Matthew Atkinson <m.atkinson@csl.gov.uk>
Steve Peck <stevep@hyphen.com.au>
Roar Smith <Roar.Smith@Ericsson.Dk>
David Evans <DJEVANS@au.oracle.com>
Jonathan Loh <Jonahtan.Loh@BankAmerica.com>
Chris O'Neal <onealc@AGEDEDWARDS.com>
Matt Reynolds <matt@aztek-eng.com>
Brooke King <jbking@sandia.gov>
Bill Fenwick <bill@splotch.digicomp.com>
Michael Richards <mar@ironbridgenetworks.com>
Nick Wilhelm-Olsen <wilhelm@lexmark.com>
Burak Baysal <bbaysal@siue.edu>
Danny Johnson <djohnson@nbserv1.dseg.ti.com>

Answers to the question:

Overall, I was very pleased with the responses from everyone!

Several people provided a suitable solution that can be very useful to my
client. Some provided some recommendations for graphical tools as a
solution, instead of a printer (sorry). Those that provided very viable
options have been presented to the client. Results will be summarized with
an additional commentary (perhaps) at a later date/time.

The general consensus is five (5) printers (in ranking order):

   Tektronix (Phaser 480 and/or 380)
   QMS (Magicolor 2EX)
   HP (DeskJet and DesignJet)
   Epson (Stylus Pro 5000 and 1500)
   Lexmark (Optra 45)

I have spoken with the client, and they would like to consider all five (5)
printers. All are within a relatively similar pricing structure and offer
similar results and features. The prices between (low) $5000 and (as high
as) $15,000. The features for all five (5) printer manufacturers include
all of the options that the client requires:

  - can print on either stand-along UNIX workstation or networked
    UNIX workstation environment
  - PostScript(tm) capable (some offered PANTONE(tm) capabilities)
  - can print on 11x17 sheets (some up to A3 and/or B3 sheets)
  - can print in COLOR on 11x17 sheets (not too many could do this)
  - can print with a resolution of 600x600 DPI (others had a higher
    resolution of up to 1400x1400 DPI)

An additional requirement that was placed yesterday was:

  - can print on an integrated networked environment of UNIX environments,
    as well as Novell, Windows NT and Macintosh

Not to appear to be favoring any one particular manufacturer, but Tektronix
and QMS are the leaders. HP printers DO NOT offer a COLOR mode for 11x17
for the Deskjet 1120C series printer. This was the end-result after
talking to about 12 different technicians from HP (sorry, HP) over the
course of yesterday afternoon. The biggest clincher was the UNIX
environment *and* capabilities of printing on 11x17 sheets in COLOR.

Epson and Lexmark will also be considered as well, mostly for
price-performance comparisons.

Lastly, there were some latecomers this afternoon providing some printer
manufacturers that I may/may not have heard of. These included:

  - Sharp
  - Xerox
  - Unity

I am certain that there are more printer manufacturers of this type of
printer. Mainstream is (predominately): Tektronix, HP, QMS, Lexmark and

Of the printers recommended, all use either a wax-transfer or
dye-sublimation process, with the later being a higher resolution (and
certainly more costly) imaging transfer method. Tektronix and QMS offer
the later (that I am aware of); I am unaware if any other manufacturer
offers a similar process (dye-sublimation).

Thank you folks (again) for your wonderful responses! Perhaps I can return
the favour someday. Enjoy your weekends!


Original question is shown below:

>Children of the Sun --
>I have a most unusual request. The client that I work for would like to
>print on (starting) 11x17 sheets of paper with a 600x600 dpi resolution,
>is PostScript(tm), is in COLOR and works with Sun and/or HP.
>I have spoken to HP and have been rather disappointed that HP does not
>have something to print for small printshop-quality printing.
>Price is not an option...yet. I will start next with Tektronix and
>Gents, I am looking for something that will print simple GIF or JPEG
>files in color under a UNIX environment. Any ideas?
>As always (and to conform to the Laws of the Land), please reply via
>email to me. I will summarize when finished.
>Thank you.

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