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BadGoldEagle

Modern printer on old Mac?

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Hi all,

 

Just thought about this the other day. I know it's possible (with some limitations) to use an Imagewriter II on modern versions of macOS or Windows with a USB to Serial adapter.

I wonder if the opposite works... I have just bought a new Inkjet printer, it's a Canon TS8150. I use it over Wifi but it does have a USB B socket at the back.

I'm not too big a fan of old printers. I think they just require too much maintenance to get them properly working. My original IW's mechanism is completely stuck due to rust. The foam is also completely gone.

 

Hardware wise, this adapter would need to have the exact same wiring as the 'IW2 to USB' cable. I'm more worried about the software side of things. I found this Apple Communities thread about someone wanting to use a modern Brother laser printer with OS9. Someone recommended the OP to use the Laserwriter 8 drivers as they support PCL6. However, I have no idea if the Canon still supports this protocol? 

 

Looking forward to your thoughts on this.

Cheers,

BGE

Edited by BadGoldEagle

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Modern inkjets will not support Postscript or PCL at all. The only way around it is using something like a RPi or VM running netatalk + CUPS/Ghostscript to "create" a Postscript printer queue on the network that classic Macs can see. The printer server will convert the Postscript to whatever the printer wants. The Mac itself would need to have Ethernet or a Localtalk bridge.

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The easiest way is with a bigger office printer that does PostScript. Most mid range Laserjets do (does it have 2 paper tray support? Probably does PS). Ive printed to my P4015x and my P3005 from OS8 with no bridge before, need to try older OSes some day.

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Thanks! 

The Canon doesn't support any of this. So I guess it could be an interesting project to tackle after all. I've never done any RPi-ing before (but I do know Arduino), so this could be an opportunity to learn new skills.

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7 hours ago, BadGoldEagle said:

Someone recommended the OP to use the Laserwriter 8 drivers as they support PCL6.

It's more likely that the Brother in question supports PostScript emulation. Several of them did at least through just around a decade ago. I haven't checked on any newer models. Classic Mac OS does not come with PCL.

 

Anyway, as has been mentioned, laser printers are the way to go to get this. Inkjets rarely support postscript and even more rarely still have AppleTalk built in, which laser printers often still had as late as 2006 or so. I have a Xerox Phaser 6120EN that I used to use with some OS 9 machines, for example.

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