Frequently Asked Questions
Frequently Asked Questions: Printing
INFO: Get the Best Possible Reliability and Quality Printing with M-Color
Posted by admin on 26 April 2004 04:37 PM
The information in this article applies to:
  • M-Color, all versions

Summary

Printing quality is affected by all the following factors: Windows platform, printer driver and its version and settings. 

More Information

Choose the Best Printer Driver

It is very important that you use the best possible printer driver for your output device. Choose the driver that uses the most appropriate technology for M-Color printing and make sure you have the latest version of this driver.
 
For many printers/plotters, only one driver technology is available. In these cases, just make sure you are using the newest available version. For some plotters you can choose between multiple technologies.
 
Example: Many HP DesignJet plotters support both PostScript and HP-GL/2 & HP RTL. With M-Color, you will usually get better performance with the HP-GL/2 & HP RTL driver than with PostScript. HEIDI drivers or other AutoCAD-specific drivers cannot and should not be used with M-Color. M-Color requires a Windows printer driver.
 
Visit the printer manufacturer's web site to obtain the latest Windows printer driver for your output device. Some popular brands are listed below:

Take an advantage of the printer driver possibilities

Many printer drivers let you choose between two printing modes: Process in Printer and Process in Computer. The names of these modes may vary but essentially they define whether the rasterization process takes place in the printer or in the computer.
 
In general, Process in Printer is the default because it frees the computer more quickly for other tasks. The printer device then continues to process the data before actually starting to print.
 
However, in M-Color printing, the Process in Computer mode often gives much better performance. If the M-Color plot is complex and especially if it contains lots of effects such as gradient fills and translucent fills, the printer hardware may not be sufficiently powerful to process the data in reasonable time. The printer may also run out of memory and refuse to print at all.
 
If printing takes a long time or if you are getting incomplete results, make sure you try the Process in Computer mode of your printer driver, if available. This tells the driver to perform the rasterization process in the computer where there are generally more memory and more computing power available.
 
The Process in Printer and Process in Computer modes can be found in all HP DesignJet printer drivers. In DesignJet 800PS drivers the modes are called Maximum performance and Avoid out of memory. Note that even though the Process in Printer mode is called Maximum performance in the DesignJet 800PS drivers, the Avoid out of memory mode usually results in much better performance in M-Color plotting.
 
Many other printer drivers include similar mode settings, too. 

Use Modern Windows versions instead of Windows Me/98/NT/XP

There are great differences in the implementations of the GDI engines (Graphical Device Interface engines) between different Windows versions.
Modern Windows operating systems generally provide much better printing performance than obsolete ones. 
 
The Modern Windows operating systems also provides a more isolated environment for drivers and applications. There are fewer possibilities for driver/application conflicts that could result in application termination, for example. 
 
References
 
 
Here is a list [Currently outdated] of HP DesignJet printers divided by the name of the setting
 
Process in Computer:
HP DesignJet ColorPro CAD
HP DesignJet 1055CM
HP DesignJet 1050C
HP DesignJet 3500CP
HP DesignJet 3000CP
HP DesignJet 2500CP
HP DesignJet 2000CP
HP DesignJet 750C+ (E/A0)
HP DesignJet 750C+ (D/A1)
HP DesignJet 755CM(C3198B)
HP DesignJet 700 (E/A0)
HP DesignJet 700 (D/A1)
HP DesignJet 488CA (E/A0)
HP DesignJet 488CA (D/A1)
HP DesignJet 455CA (E/A0)
HP DesignJet 455CA (D/A1)
HP DesignJet 450C (E/A0)
HP DesignJet 450C (D/A1)
HP DesignJet 430 (E/A0)
HP DesignJet 430 (D/A1)
HP DesignJet 750C (E/A0)
HP DesignJet 750C (D/A1)
HP DesignJet 755CM(C3198A)
HP DesignJet 350C (E/A0)
HP DesignJet 350C (D/A1)
HP DesignJet 330 (E/A0)
HP DesignJet 330 (D/A1)
HP DesignJet 650C(C2859B)
HP DesignJet 650C(C2858B)
HP DesignJet 650C(C2859A)
HP DesignJet 650C(C2858A)
HP DesignJet 600 (E/A0)
HP DesignJet 600 (D/A1)
HP DesignJet 250C (E/A0)
HP DesignJet 250C (D/A1)
HP DesignJet 200 (E/A0)
HP DesignJet 200 (D/A1)
HP DesignJet 220 (E/A0)
HP DesignJet 220 (D/A1)
HP DesignJet 230 (E/A0)
HP DesignJet 230 (D/A1)

Avoid out of Memory:
HP DesignJet 500 42
HP DesignJet 500 24
HP DesignJet 500PS 42
HP DesignJet 500PS 24
HP DesignJet 500 42+HPGL2 Card
HP DesignJet 500 24+HPGL2 Card
HP DesignJet 500PS42+HPGL2 Card
HP DesignJet 500PS24+HPGL2 Card
HP DesignJet 800 42
HP DesignJet 800 24
HP DesignJet 800PS 42
HP DesignJet 800PS 24
HP DesignJet 5000 42
HP DesignJet 5000 60
HP DesignJet 5000PS 42
HP DesignJet 5000PS 60
HP designjet 5500 42
HP designjet 5500 60
HP designjet 5500ps 42
HP designjet 5500ps 60
HP designjet 100
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