Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Dot Matrix Printers aren't a blast from the past

Everyone jumps on board for the latest and greatest technology has to offer. This is no more true that in the printer market. Color photo printers have been a growth market for years. While continuing to drop in price, many of these wonders of the modern technological age no longer even need a computer to be connected to print your photos directly from your digital camera. These print marvels can direct connect using a common USB connection or simply remove the flash memory card from the camera and place it into the printer.

While the growth of laser printing for the office and color photography printing is undeniable, there's a older technology that's critical to running many of the day to day business operations throughout the country. It's considered by many who don't understand the critical nature this technology as nothing more than obsolete.

for all the fantastic technology offered in todays laser, color and photo quality printers, there's 1 thing that none of them have been able to do. This one thing is absolutely critical to business and hasn't been replaced in decades. We're talking of course about the ability to do multiple forms.

And that technology is the lowly dot matrix printer. Now don't laugh. Businesses who deal with the public typically need 1 or more copies of completed forms. These forms have historically been written out by hand and would still need to be done manually if not for the dot matrix printing technology.

Here's why:

A laser printer, which uses high voltage, and iron oxide to place the letters on a sheet of paper. It uses high temperature but the printing head doesn't actually touch the paper itself.

Photo and color copiers use a series of ink jet nozzles to spray the correct colors onto the sheet of paper to create the letters and pictures.

Although very simplistic explanations, the thing to remember is that neither technology comes in direct physical contact with the paper.

Dot Matrix on the other hand modified the technology of the old typewriters. That is, a dot matrix uses a printing ribbon and actually comes in direct contact with the paper. Therefore, a multiple copy form can be printer on a dot matrix printer without a problem.

One of the common complaints about dot matrix printing has been the lack of "letter quality." To this end the industry, lead by Okidata, developed a 24 contact pin print head that delivers very acceptable printing.

Although the dot matrix printer should probably not be considered as a replacement for your laser printer at the office, recognize that it's far from obsolete and plays an important role in many businesses throughout the country.

Abigail Franks writes on a variety of subjects which include family, Business, and Home. For more info on Dot Matrix Printers visit the site at http://www.dot-matrix-printer.vitalsource.org

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