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 Forum index » Advanced Topics » Hardware » Printers
Epson printers...
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Mike Walsh


Joined: 28 Jun 2014
Posts: 556
Location: King's Lynn, UK.

PostPosted: Thu 09 Jul 2015, 20:35    Post subject:  Epson printers...
Subject description: I must be a dinosaur..!
 

Reading through this sub-forum, one thing strikes me RIGHT between the eyes. How is it that nearly every post concerns printers that either require tedious workarounds, or are simply downright awkward..?

I've been using Epson printers for more years than I care to remember. And not these new-fangled wireless printers ...which supposedly allow you to 'configure' the layout of your office or room to your own convenience. A good old-fashioned, USB, cable-connected printer.

I know a lot of people view Epsons as somewhat 'staid' and in some ways even 'conservative'. They often don't have lots of flashy gizmos and features.....but what they do do, is just simply work. And very well, in my experience.

Wireless certainly gives you convenience to move around, without wires getting in the way.....but for ease of setting-up (once you know your way around CUPS, of course!) the older, conventional inkjets take some beating. I've lost track of the number of Linux distros I've tried out over the last 15 months; and in every case bar none, I've had the printer up & running (including sharing to other boxes) inside 5 mins, tops.

What price the 'march of technology', eh?


Regards,

Mike. Smile

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rcrsn51


Joined: 05 Sep 2006
Posts: 10058
Location: Stratford, Ontario

PostPosted: Fri 10 Jul 2015, 06:57    Post subject: Re: Epson printers...
Subject description: I must be a dinosaur..!
 

Mike Walsh wrote:
How is it that nearly every post concerns printers that either require tedious workarounds, or are simply downright awkward..?

Because people who get their printer working by themselves don't need to ask for help.

HP and Epson supply all-inclusive drivers, so you only need one package to do the setup regardless of your model. Vendors like Canon and Brother supply separate drivers for each model, so they are going to be more work. But that's true for any Linux, not just Puppy.

And the bigger the Linux, the more drivers you can afford to include in your base system.
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Burn_IT


Joined: 12 Aug 2006
Posts: 1604
Location: Tamworth UK

PostPosted: Fri 10 Jul 2015, 07:36    Post subject:  

Most printer software packages consist of a couple of megabytes of drivers and HUNDREDS of megabytes of PUPS.
That is Potentially Unwanted Packages/Programs

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rcrsn51


Joined: 05 Sep 2006
Posts: 10058
Location: Stratford, Ontario

PostPosted: Fri 10 Jul 2015, 08:02    Post subject:  

Burn_IT wrote:
Most printer software packages consist of a couple of megabytes of drivers and HUNDREDS of megabytes of PUPS. That is Potentially Unwanted Packages/Programs

Correction.

Most Windows printer software packages consist of a couple of megabytes of drivers and HUNDREDS of megabytes of PUPS
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Burn_IT


Joined: 12 Aug 2006
Posts: 1604
Location: Tamworth UK

PostPosted: Fri 10 Jul 2015, 10:37    Post subject:  

Most printer packages don't bother with Linux drivers at all.
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Mike Walsh


Joined: 28 Jun 2014
Posts: 556
Location: King's Lynn, UK.

PostPosted: Fri 10 Jul 2015, 10:56    Post subject:  

rcrsn51 wrote:
Burn_IT wrote:
Most printer software packages consist of a couple of megabytes of drivers and HUNDREDS of megabytes of PUPS. That is Potentially Unwanted Packages/Programs

Correction.

Most Windows printer software packages consist of a couple of megabytes of drivers and HUNDREDS of megabytes of PUPS


+1!!^^^

Now, with THAT I most heartily concur. My old Epson 830U, well.....when I was running it under XP some 10, 11 years ago, it probably took about 15 mins to install.

The SX218 all-in-one that I'm using now (purchased about 4 1/2 yrs ago) is up-and-running in Puppy in minutes. Probably helps that I've gone through about 30 some-odd Puppy installs in the last year or so; familiarity does tend to 'breed contempt', as it were.

Mum's got a Dell Inspiron 15R running Win 7. She didn't buy a printer, because anything we wanted to print, I used mine to do it for her. I forget the details, now, but for some reason we hooked my SX218 upto her Win 7 machine about 2 years ago. D'you know, it took almost 50 minutes to install? Un-believable.

I agree with Burn_IT, too. Epson have a tendency to bundle in with the driver & scanner software at least half-a-dozen programs for photo printing, creating albums, scanner tutorials ( their scanner software has so much unnecessary stuff included, it's unreal), and all sorts of other stuff. And, of course, trying to install ANYTHING in Windows is a nightmare at the best of times. It has to jump through so many hoops before the system will permit it to do so. When it was finally installed, I promptly turned around and un-installed all the crap; I didn't want it.....and Mum certainly didn't!

Admittedly, this is mostly provided for the great unwashed.....Joe Public. Who just wants to turn his/her machine on, click a few buttons.....and everything's done for them. They have no interest in what goes on under the hood, and no intentions of (or interest in) trying to learn about it. We Linux afficionados are definitely in the minority, insofar as setting up our equipment to do exactly what we want it to do.....the way we want it to.

C'est la vie.

BTW: Can anybody answer me this? Some while ago, I tried to re-position my printer by using a USB extension lead. Not a cheap'n'cheerful.....a good quality, Belkin lead. When plugged into the 'puter via a single lead, as usual, it works fine. When you try to use two leads ( the original, plus an extension), all of a sudden, the system can't 'see' it anymore.

I've found the exact same thing with an external USB drive. The original lead as provided, works fine. Add an extension lead.....once again, the system can't 'see' it.

Why is that?


Regards,

Mike. Smile

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rcrsn51


Joined: 05 Sep 2006
Posts: 10058
Location: Stratford, Ontario

PostPosted: Fri 10 Jul 2015, 11:17    Post subject:  

How long is the extension? I have put printers on a 6 foot extension many times without problems.
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Burn_IT


Joined: 12 Aug 2006
Posts: 1604
Location: Tamworth UK

PostPosted: Fri 10 Jul 2015, 11:57    Post subject:  

Yes the maximum effective length of a standard USB cable is 3-5 meters and this assumes good quality cables/equipment and clean connectors. This can be extended using powered extension boxes that amplify the signals.

This was by design in the USB specification which was for DESKTOP equipment so that would be plenty.

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Mike Walsh


Joined: 28 Jun 2014
Posts: 556
Location: King's Lynn, UK.

PostPosted: Fri 10 Jul 2015, 16:10    Post subject:  

rcrsn51 wrote:
How long is the extension? I have put printers on a 6 foot extension many times without problems.


It's a 5 metre extension lead (about 16 1/2 feet). Actually, now I think about it, Burn_IT's right. I do remember reading somewhere on Wikipedia in the section on USB, something about maximum lengths for particular standards. I believe the length increased for each upward revision of the standard. I could be wrong, of course.


Regards,

Mike.

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davids45


Joined: 26 Nov 2006
Posts: 730
Location: Chatswood, NSW

PostPosted: Fri 10 Jul 2015, 21:14    Post subject: Epson ink-jets
Subject description: and wonky USB extension leads?
 

G'day Mike,

Epson Ink-jets
Just to add my good experiences with Epson ink-jet printers generally, and with Puppy.

I have an FujiXerox C1110 colour laser on its last toner cartridges as I can't justify maintaining its beginning-to-waer-out workings and higher running costs. I no longer want to print lots of orienteering maps and fast printing rates are not essential for general home printing. And it is very heavy and noisy.

The resident quilter here has her own Epson ink-jet multifunction (which Puppy can run with when I've been allowed to borrow it) but which is not easily networkable. I did set it up as a network printer with a Puppy Pi but a conventional networking printer is more desirable to replace the networked colour laser.

So I've recently been looking around for an operationally cheaper networkable printer (multifunction now seems standard) and the Epson range is hard to go past. I assume their wi-fi will be useful (?) but I may still get one with a wired connection to simply plug in the former FujiXerox network cable.

I have found generic ink cartridges are available for all the Epsons, another good point as inks often seem expensive given how few copies they may print compared to a laser. HP ink-jet printers appear not to have much choice on the ink cartridge price front.

And the Epsons feel slightly more robust than the other brands (the cheap printers are all plastacky of course).

USB leads
And regarding your extension USB issue, I'd suspect one of the extension cable's plugs is the problem as I've used various USB extension leads of up to 3m and not had any problems.
But I do have intermittent contact problems with plugs and sockets, particularly with micro-USB cables.

David S.
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Mike Walsh


Joined: 28 Jun 2014
Posts: 556
Location: King's Lynn, UK.

PostPosted: Sat 11 Jul 2015, 12:21    Post subject:  

G'day, David!

I suspect you may be right. I've got another, shorter cable around here somewhere (hanged if I can find it at the moment) which I know I definitely used with the Epson previously...and which worked A-OK. It seems to have gone 'walk-about'..... Laughing

I agree with you about the Epson's build quality. I've always thought they were that bit better constructed than most of the others; and you're right.....everybody and his dog seems to do replacement cartridges for them. My SX218 was an early relation of the WorkForce business-class series, so it's built even more solidly...like a tank, actually! It weighs a ton...

If I was to pay the full Epson official retail price for a set of four (the three colours, and black), I'd be looking at more than £45 currently (that's like, what? AU$90, or something like that? That's CRAZY money...) We've got a small, local repair shop near here. In fact, it's no longer a repair shop; it's now a pet supplies shop, but the guy who owns it still runs computer consumables from his flat upstairs. The stairs from the upstairs to the street, he's blanked it off at the street end, and turned it into a sort of 'cubby-hole' cum hatch type of thing.....literally, a hole in the wall! You go in from the outside door, ring the bell, the hatch will eventually open, and he serves you like that.....cute!

I get my cartridges from him for about a third of that; £15 for the set, or AU$30...much better. They last very nearly as long, too.....and the chips still identify them as 'genuine Epson' cartridges, so.....I don't get any nasty surprises in that respect. I've been buying my consumables from him for the better part of a decade now; long may it continue!

I have had some really cheap ones that were nowt but trouble. You live & learn, don't'cha? Rolling Eyes


Regards,

Mike. Smile

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