Forms of Printers And Their Interfaces

Earlier than you begin

Aims: learn the way do dot matrix, ink jet, stable ink, dye sublimation and laser printers work, and which kind of interface can they use.

Conditions: no conditions

Key phrases: ink, paper, print, dot, matrix, jet, head, stable, laser, pins, dye, high quality, ribbon, usb, parallel

Dot Matrix Printer

A dot matrix printer is an impression printer that transfers characters by hanging a sample (from a matrix) by way of an inked ribbon and onto paper. There are 4 crucial elements in a dot matrix printer. The primary is the print head which is a sq. block, and it’s acquired a collection of pins. The second vital part known as the platen. Platen is the black curler that we put paper by way of and roll it round. It’s like a giant cylinder and its job is to carry the paper in place and function a backing to which the print head can hit. Different elements are ribbon and the tractor feed. The ribbon accommodates the ink that will likely be transfered onto the paper, and the tractor feed is used to attract continuous-feed paper up by way of the printer. The tractor feed pulls a chunk of paper and rolls it across the platen.

 Dot Matrix

335.1 – Dot Matrix

The variety of pins in print head can fluctuate. Cheap dot matrix printer will solely have 9 pins, as in our case. Greater high quality dot matrix printer might need upwards of 24 totally different pins. The most typical variety of pins on a dot matrix printer is 9, 18, or 24, with extra pins offering the next decision. 24-pins create a near-letter high quality print and something with lower than 24-pins supplies a draft high quality print. Every of those pins is definitely retracted contained in the print head they usually’ve acquired springs that retains them pulled inside the print head. Within the again additionally they have {an electrical} solenoid. To print, the printer sends electrical present by way of the sample of these pins. When the solenoid receives that present, it fires the pin out of the print head. The pin then smacks the ribbon after which paper which leaves an imprint on the paper. By utilizing a unique number of patterns, we will create totally different letters. A whole lot of the nine-pin dot matrix printers present an possibility the place it makes two passes for every line of textual content. By doing that, it will possibly really create higher wanting letters. The down facet of that’s that it takes twice as lengthy to print. The velocity of dot matrix printers is measured in characters per second (CPS). Widespread speeds for a dot matrix printer are 32 to 72 CPS.

Dot matrix printers are nonetheless used at the moment, and the reason being that dot matrix printers can can print in duplicate or triplicate utilizing varieties. Meaning we will put carbon copies by way of the dot matrix printer and have them print out. The general print high quality of a dot matrix printer is sort of poor when in comparison with that of different kinds of printers. They can be fairly loud as a result of printing takes place by pins bodily hanging the ink ribbon, paper, and the platen.

Ink Jet Printer

Ink jet printers can create top quality output and they’re low cost. Similar to with the dot matrix printer, now we have our platen and we use a form-feeder to tug a chunk of paper by way of, wrap it across the platen, and insert it between the platen and the print head. Not like a dot matrix printer, which makes use of continuous-feed paper, an ink dispersion printer really makes use of reduce sheets of paper, similar to we’d use for a duplicate machine. The print head in an ink dispersion printer is much like a dot matrix printer indirectly. Nevertheless, as an alternative of getting pins inside that come out and strike the ribbon, now we have a bunch of nozzles which include ink. When printing, the present is utilized to a selected sample of nozzles. The ink that’s inside the nozzle then boils, which creates an air bubble. When that occurs, it really shoots a jet of ink and makes a dot on the piece of paper. By various the present and making use of it to totally different nozzles within the print head, we’re in a position to create totally different patterns on the paper. This sort of Ink Jet printer known as a Bubble jet printer, and it’s the preferred type of ink jet printer.

The crispness of an ink jet printer’s picture is normally rated when it comes to Dots Per Inch or DPI. Ink jets vary from 150 to over 1400 DPI. New ink jet printers can produce photo-quality printouts when used with photo-quality paper. They do have one weak spot and that’s the indisputable fact that a lot of the digital circuitry that makes up the printer will not be really within the printer, itself. Many of the digital circuitry that makes up the ink jet printer is definitely within the print head. So when now we have to vary the ink reservoir, we even have to purchase new printer part. That’s why the cartridges are so costly, and the printer itself is so low cost.

Strong Ink Printer

A stable ink printer creates smaller, extra uniform dots than a dot matrix or ink jet printer. As a substitute of utilizing a ribbon or liquid ink, a stable ink printer makes use of stable sticks of ink. The method for printing in a stable ink printer is just a little bit totally different than in a dot matrix or inkjet printer. It’s form of a hybrid between an ink jet printer and a laser printer. In a stable ink printer, stable ink sticks are inside the print head. The melted ink is then jetted onto a drum which is as huge because the paper, and which rotates. A bit of paper is then drawn from a paper tray and is rotated across the drum. The melted ink from the drum is then transferred onto the piece of paper. The ink then cools and adheres itself to the paper.

Thermal Printer

Thermal printers use an older, thermal know-how. Lots of the older fax machines use thermal know-how. As a substitute of utilizing ribbon, ink or melted ink sticks, we use particular paper that reacts to warmth. We use warmth to switch a picture from the printer to the particular paper. That particular paper is fairly costly and additionally it is appears to be like a bit totally different when it comes out of the printer. It has a shiny really feel to it. Monochrome thermal paper is chemically handled to darken the place heated (photosensitive). Many money registers use such a printer for creating receipts. Coloration thermal paper is chemically handled to soak up shade from a ribbon the place heated. Ink is utilized through the ribbon in the same method to a stable ink printer. The colour system utilized by thermal printers is CMYK (Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, and black). The paper should make one move for every software of a unique shade. Coloration thermal printers are very costly, top quality, and function quietly.

Dye Sublimation Printer

A dye sublimation printer permits us to print top quality photos. They supply a easy mixing of colours. That’s one thing that’s onerous to realize with different kinds of printers. It’s additionally much less susceptible to fading and distortion over time. In dye sublimation printing, the colours are usually not laid down as particular person dots, as with an ink jet, stable ink, or dot matrix printer. As a substitute, inside a dye sublimation printer now we have an extended roll of semi-transparent movie. That movie is made up of particular person purple, blue, yellow and grey sheets of movie. On this movie stable dyes are embedded, equivalent to the 4 fundamental colours utilized in excessive finish printing, that are cyan, magenta, yellow and black. In this sort of printer we even have a print head, like we do with different kinds of printers. Then now we have our clear movie, after which now we have our piece of paper.

 Dye Sublimation

335.2 – Dye Sublimation

The print head heats up and passes over the clear movie. As that occurs, the dyes which can be inside the movie vaporize and are transferred to the paper. The dye really permeate the shiny floor of the paper. As they cool they return again to the stable type. On this manner we will switch a really top quality picture to the piece of paper. Dye sublimation printers create a mild gradation. As a substitute of getting distinct dots of explicit colours, dye sublimation printing prints in transitioning colours quite than pixels.

Laser Printer

Laser printers produce very top quality output for a comparatively low value. Different kinds of printers resembling a dot matrix or an ink jet printer print knowledge one line at a time. With laser printers we use a laser beam to switch a picture to a photograph delicate drum. The laser creates a mirror picture of the doc we need to print on the drum. This fees the drum, and due to that we will switch toner (which is ok plastic) onto the floor of the drum, run a chunk of paper beneath it, switch the toner to the paper after which run the paper between fuser to really soften the toner into place.

 Laser Printer

335.3 – Laser Printer

As a substitute of printing one line at a time, laser printers really print one web page of knowledge at a time. One web page of knowledge is transferred to the drum and one piece of paper at a time rolls by way of and has the picture transferred onto it. Laser printers must have plenty of reminiscence as a result of as an alternative of simply remembering one line at a time of knowledge they’ve to recollect a complete web page. Textual content doesn’t dissipate a lot reminiscence, however advanced graphic can dissipate very a lot reminiscence. Trendy laser printers don’t have this downside, they’ve sufficient reminiscence to deal with very advanced graphics. Of all of the kinds of printers mentioned on this article, laser printers have the very best print high quality.

Printer Interfaces

Through the years, quite a lot of several types of interfaces have been carried out that enable us to attach our PC system to the printer. A few of them are now not used. The oldest one is the serial interface.


Within the early days of printing, we despatched paperwork to the printers utilizing a serial connection. This labored, however serial connections had a few disadvantages. Primary, they have been onerous to configure. We needed to configure the beginning bits, cease bits, stream management, transmission charge, and parity. As well as, it was gradual as a result of the doc is distributed to the printer one bit at a time. One of many nice benefits of serial interface was the truth that the printer cable itself may very well be very lengthy.

SCSI Interface

For a time, there have been quite a lot of totally different SCSI interfaces used to attach work stations to printers. SCSI stands for Small Laptop System Interface. They weren’t used that always as a result of SCSI printers have been additionally onerous to configure. We needed to perceive the idea of termination and ID. Nevertheless, they have been used for high-end printers the place efficiency was a difficulty.


Parallel printers was the usual methodology of connecting printers to a pc. Parallel was lots simpler to implement than serial or SCSI. With the parallel printer, we plugged one finish into our work station, the opposite finish into the parallel port on our printer, and that was it. Additionally, it was sooner than serial connection. Parallel interface is being changed by USB.


USB can also be straightforward to make use of. There is no such thing as a configuration wanted. We simply plug every thing in and it really works. With USB we will join a number of printers to our computer systems, as a result of we normally have a number of USB ports on our laptop. With parallel we couldn’t do this since we normally had one parallel port.USB connections enhance velocity significantly when evaluating to an ordinary serial port.


Along with USB, one other commonplace that’s used to attach printers is FireWire. FireWire has not caught on as strongly for printing as USB, however they’ve a number of the identical benefits as USB.


We are able to additionally use an infrared interface to attach our work station to the printer. As a substitute of utilizing a wire, we use an infrared gentle sign to ship data from our work station right here to the printer. Infrared connections are literally serial connections utilizing gentle and air as an alternative of wires to make the connection. Infrared has some limitations like line of sight (no obstructions within the path). As well as, if the printer is just too far-off, greater than a few meter away, then issues begin to go fallacious. There are additionally safety points. The infrared sign might be picked up by anyone else with an IR port.


Along with IR we will additionally use a wi-fi connection (802.11a/b/g/n requirements) to ship print jobs from a piece station to a printer. Wi-fi makes use of a radio sign to ship the print job to the printer. With wi-fi we’re not involved with obstacles. The radio waves can undergo issues. We are able to transfer the printer into a unique room and nonetheless be capable to print our paperwork. As well as, with radio alerts, we will configure encryption in order that we don’t have to fret about someone intercepting radio alerts.

Community Connection

Some printers even have their very own community interface card. In that case we join our printer to the community on which our workstation additionally resides. In that manner we will ship our print job by way of the community medium to the printer. Community printers are helpful for permitting a number of folks to share the identical printer.

Keep in mind

A dot matrix printer is an impression printer. Ink jet printers are non-impact printers with ink saved in a reservoir. Laser printers use lasers and electrical fees to switch photographs to paper. A dye sublimation printer is a non-impact printer that makes use of film-embedded dye. Strong ink printers soften ink onto the print head, which is as huge because the paper. A thermal printer is a non-impact printer that makes use of warmth to trigger a response on specifically handled paper. Right now printers use both a parallel, USB, wi-fi or a community connection.