HP LaserJet III and PostScript


M

Michael

How does one tell if a particular LJ-III has the "optional" PostScript
feature? I have no docs. for the LJ-III that I picked up recently, and
I see no menu item that appears to address PostScript. This printer
does have an HP PostScript Cartridge Plus (C2089A) plugged in but that's
just fonts, isn't it?

I used to have an IBM 4029 w/ PostScript that I used with an old DOS
graphics package for laying out and printing PC board artwork. That
package's available driver selection offers only a Postscript drivers
for LJ-III, so I selected that driver and printed an old piece of
artwork to my LJ-III. The output looked like I had sent a PostScript
data stream to a non-Postcript printer .... lots of text. Do I have to
select PostScript mode on the printer? How do I do that?

Michael
 
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W

Warren Block

Michael said:
How does one tell if a particular LJ-III has the "optional" PostScript
feature? I have no docs. for the LJ-III that I picked up recently, and
I see no menu item that appears to address PostScript. This printer
does have an HP PostScript Cartridge Plus (C2089A) plugged in but that's
just fonts, isn't it?
Looks like it's a full PostScript level 2 implementation. Genuine
Adobe, even.

The printer has a 68000 processor running at 10 or 16 MHz, so it's not
likely to interpret PostScript very quickly. Try it on a reference
document and time it. Then remove the C2089A and run the same document
through Ghostscript on your computer, feeding PCL output to the printer.
I used to have an IBM 4029 w/ PostScript that I used with an old DOS
graphics package for laying out and printing PC board artwork. That
package's available driver selection offers only a Postscript drivers
for LJ-III, so I selected that driver and printed an old piece of
artwork to my LJ-III. The output looked like I had sent a PostScript
data stream to a non-Postcript printer .... lots of text. Do I have to
select PostScript mode on the printer? How do I do that?
Probably through the front-panel menus. Later printers would
auto-select, but the LJIII may not have had that ability, or it may not
be enabled.
 
B

Baz

Warren Block said:
Looks like it's a full PostScript level 2 implementation. Genuine
Adobe, even.

The printer has a 68000 processor running at 10 or 16 MHz, so it's not
likely to interpret PostScript very quickly. Try it on a reference
document and time it. Then remove the C2089A and run the same document
through Ghostscript on your computer, feeding PCL output to the printer.


Probably through the front-panel menus. Later printers would
auto-select, but the LJIII may not have had that ability, or it may not
be enabled.
You have to select either PCL5 or Postscript using the front panel controls.
Here is how you do it.

To change from PCL5 to Postscript (and back)

a.. Press <ON LINE> (and take machine off line)
b.. Press <Plus & Minus>, and while holding, press <ALT> and <RESET>
together and watch the LCD and let go when the desired mode is displayed.
With a modern PC, using ghostscript to do the conversion to PCL5 will be
much faster than printing to the Laserjet in postscript. You can try both
ways and measure it.

Regards
Barry
 
B

Bob Niland

No, the C2089A is the whole Ps2 interpreter, probably
including the base Ps fonts.
Warren Block <[email protected]> wrote:
Looks like it's a full PostScript level 2 implementation.
There was also an HP 33439Q, which was Ps level 1.
The printer has a 68000 processor running at 10 or 16 MHz,
so it's not likely to interpret PostScript very quickly.
And it's probably slowed down even more by the font-slot
interface. That PS code may even be executing from the ctg.
Try it on a reference document and time it.
And don't be too surprised if printing to file.ps,
distilling to PDF and then printing the PDF to the
LJ-III in PCL mode is actually faster for large jobs.

I used an LJ-3D with a C2089A briefly, and concluded
that about all I'd want to use the Ps for was for jobs
that wouldn't render properly in PCL mode.
 
Q

Quadrajet1

How does one tell if a particular LJ-III has the "optional" PostScript
feature? I have no docs. for the LJ-III that I picked up recently, and
I see no menu item that appears to address PostScript. This printer
does have an HP PostScript Cartridge Plus (C2089A) plugged in but that's
just fonts, isn't it?
No, it's Postscript AND fonts. Does the cartridge have a blue or pink
graphic on it? Blue is Postscript v1, and pink is Postscript v2.

Raymond
 
M

Michael

Quadrajet1 said:
No, it's Postscript AND fonts. Does the cartridge have a blue or pink
graphic on it? Blue is Postscript v1, and pink is Postscript v2.

Raymond

I gues you'd call it pink. For sure it ain't blue. Says "PostScript",
lists 11 typefaces, but nothing about Postscript level.

I could swear I got this printer to list its PostScript "fonts" several
days ago while playing with menus but today I got nothing. After power
ON and near the end of Self Test, there is a brief message ... something
like "starting PostScript" ... which is replaced with the message
(something like) "starting PCL".
 
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M

Michael

Baz said:
You have to select either PCL5 or Postscript using the front panel controls.
Here is how you do it.

To change from PCL5 to Postscript (and back)

a.. Press <ON LINE> (and take machine off line)
b.. Press <Plus & Minus>, and while holding, press <ALT> and <RESET>
together and watch the LCD and let go when the desired mode is displayed.
With a modern PC, using ghostscript to do the conversion to PCL5 will be
much faster than printing to the Laserjet in postscript. You can try both
ways and measure it.

Regards
Barry


Many thanks for the magic key sequences. I gotta get the "book of
words" for this beast.
 
M

Michael

Bob said:
No, the C2089A is the whole Ps2 interpreter, probably
including the base Ps fonts.



There was also an HP 33439Q, which was Ps level 1.


And it's probably slowed down even more by the font-slot
interface. That PS code may even be executing from the ctg.


And don't be too surprised if printing to file.ps,
distilling to PDF and then printing the PDF to the
LJ-III in PCL mode is actually faster for large jobs.

I used an LJ-3D with a C2089A briefly, and concluded
that about all I'd want to use the Ps for was for jobs
that wouldn't render properly in PCL mode.

I hear ya. My last laser, an IBM 4029, could be slow in PostScript, and
IIRC its controller ran faster than the one in this particular LJ-III
(10 MHz).
 
M

Michael

Baz said:
You have to select either PCL5 or Postscript using the front panel controls.
Here is how you do it.

To change from PCL5 to Postscript (and back)

a.. Press <ON LINE> (and take machine off line)
b.. Press <Plus & Minus>, and while holding, press <ALT> and <RESET>
together and watch the LCD and let go when the desired mode is displayed.
With a modern PC, using ghostscript to do the conversion to PCL5 will be
much faster than printing to the Laserjet in postscript. You can try both
ways and measure it.

Regards
Barry

Uh ... where the heck is the <Alt> key?? I've got:
On Line
Form Feed
Continue/Reset
Print Forms/Test
Menu
Enter/Reset Menu
+
-
 
B

Baz

Michael said:
Uh ... where the heck is the <Alt> key?? I've got:
On Line
Form Feed
Continue/Reset
Print Forms/Test
Menu
Enter/Reset Menu
+
-
Whoops, sorry Michael, I missed yours was a III not a IIIP like mine.. The
cartridge can be used on models III, IIID and IIIP.

However I have a C2089A manual and it gives the following instructions:

To switch the printer language using the control panel keys, do the
following:
HP Laserjet III and IIID Printers
1. Make sure the printer is not processing data
2. Press the <ON LINE> key to take the printer offline
3. While holding down the <+> key, press the <RESET> key.
4. The printer will automatically return online
Your printer will now print in the other printer language.

Sorry for giving the instructions for the wrong machine.

If you are interested in the C2089A manual, email me at
(e-mail address removed) (with all the x's removed) with your
address. Most of it talks about the old DOS days. In my opinion everything
you really need to know these days is how to manually change from PCL to
Postscript. I haven't used my postscript option for some time, but its nice
to have available.

Regards
Barry
 
A

Alan

No, the C2089A is the whole Ps2 interpreter, probably
including the base Ps fonts.
The PS SIMM in my HP4 has a copyright notice for the Linotype fonts,
as well as Adobe. I think any PS add on will include at least the
"LaserWriter" 35 fonts, or clones.
There was also an HP 33439Q, which was Ps level 1.


And it's probably slowed down even more by the font-slot
interface. That PS code may even be executing from the ctg.
I had an LJIII with a different make of PS cartridge (Pacific Page),
it also required an additional RAM card (built in RAM was 500k, the
card was 4M), and I'm pretty sure the PS was executed from the RAM.
And don't be too surprised if printing to file.ps,
distilling to PDF and then printing the PDF to the
LJ-III in PCL mode is actually faster for large jobs.
I found that too. The cartridge was good for compatibility with pure
DOS PS, but I'd already set up Printfile (freeware) to process PS to
PCL, first using GhostScript, which was fairly fast, second using
Distiller and Acroreader to print -- this gave better quality
printouts than GS. One plus of the cartridge was that you could load
fonts in RAM, and mostly text jobs would print fairly fast.

If you do use it in PCL mode, note that it probably has more RAM than
the default, (should show if you print a status page) so put that in
your printer properties so it can be used in PCL mode too.
 
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M

Michael

Alan said:
The PS SIMM in my HP4 has a copyright notice for the Linotype fonts,
as well as Adobe. I think any PS add on will include at least the
"LaserWriter" 35 fonts, or clones.


I had an LJIII with a different make of PS cartridge (Pacific Page),
it also required an additional RAM card (built in RAM was 500k, the
card was 4M), and I'm pretty sure the PS was executed from the RAM.
I still don't know how to get this LJ-3 into PS mode. Another poster
very nicely spelled out the procedure for doing this ....... all very
well except it includes pressing the "<Alt>" key. I see no key marked
<Alt>, so the procedure was not useful.

Base mem. on a LJ-3 is 1 Meg. Mine is expanded with a 4 Meg card that
is populated with 2 Meg, so it has 3 MB total. That ain't much; I think
my IBM4029 w/ PS had 6 MB yet I overran it many, many times.
 
B

Baz

Michael said:
I still don't know how to get this LJ-3 into PS mode. Another poster
very nicely spelled out the procedure for doing this ....... all very
well except it includes pressing the "<Alt>" key. I see no key marked
<Alt>, so the procedure was not useful.

Base mem. on a LJ-3 is 1 Meg. Mine is expanded with a 4 Meg card that
is populated with 2 Meg, so it has 3 MB total. That ain't much; I think
my IBM4029 w/ PS had 6 MB yet I overran it many, many times.
Hi Michael,

Sorry about the wrong printer type. Did you try the suggestion in my second
post on 2-1-2005

Regards
Barry
 
A

Alan

Alan wrote:

I still don't know how to get this LJ-3 into PS mode. Another poster
very nicely spelled out the procedure for doing this ....... all very
well except it includes pressing the "<Alt>" key. I see no key marked
<Alt>, so the procedure was not useful.
With my Pacific cart, you switched modes with a PCL command. Probably
not applicable, but these are:
to PCL mode: <ESC>&l1057.32259J
to PS mode: <ESC>&l5257.1058J

I Googled on C2089A and found a few possibly useful things.
Search groups.google.com for
"HP III/IIID PostScript Cartridge Plus - Turning Off Start Page"
and you find a couple of messages:
"press the control panel's Menu button for a few seconds to reach the
second Configuration menu level, tap the Menu button ..."
-- can you get to this "second" menu?

And another post for a software archive listed this file:

99957 1995/10/25 09:22 /printers/software/psplus.exe
HP LaserJet printer PostScript Cartridge Plus (C2089A) PCL/PostScript
DOS device driver for language switching between PCL and PostScript.

This should be on the LEO archive, at
<http://www.leo.org/information/computer/software/msdos/index_en.html>,
but it doesn't seem to respond now.
Also found a link
<http://kd002.kud.com/ftp/pub/hardware/hp/psplus.exe>, but this also
times out.

Maybe give them a few tries, or email the webmasters.
Base mem. on a LJ-3 is 1 Meg. Mine is expanded with a 4 Meg card that
is populated with 2 Meg, so it has 3 MB total. That ain't much; I think
my IBM4029 w/ PS had 6 MB yet I overran it many, many times.
The LJIII is 300 dpi, I think the 4029 is 600 dpi, so 3MB can cover
more than the same area.

~~~~ Alan
 
M

Michael

Baz said:
Sorry about the wrong printer type. Did you try the suggestion in my second
post on 2-1-2005

Regards
Barry

I didn't see that post, Barry, but I just looked it up on Deja and
copied the relevant part. Will give it a try. Thanks for going the
extra mile for me. And for offering the C2089A manual, which I think
I'll pass on. I would like to find a LJ-2/3 Combined Maint. Manual
however.

Michael
 
M

Michael

Alan said:
The LJIII is 300 dpi, I think the 4029 is 600 dpi, so 3MB can cover
more than the same area.
Oh yeah! I forgot about the difference in resolution. 3 MB mem.
suddenly sounds not quite so bad. This is good also because I probably
won't be able to find suitable chips at a reasonable price and in a
reasonable time.

Thanks for all your input, Alan.

Michael
 
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M

Michael

Baz said:
Hi Michael,

Sorry about the wrong printer type. Did you try the suggestion in my second
post on 2-1-2005

Regards
Barry

Just gave it a try. Display says "POSTSCRIPT READY". Thanks again,
Barry.

Michael
 
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Joined
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Messages
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I bought an HP 33439Q Type 1 Blue cartridge on ebay for my LJ III, and It won't boot. It says postscript start, and the power supply keeps trying to start and stop, over and over. I took out the cartridge, the printer works fine. I tried inserting the cartridge in with the unit on (a No-No) and it says: FC RIGHT NO FONT (or FC LEFT NO FONT if I put the cartridge in the left side)
I have rebuilt the power supply with all new caps. Could it be as simple as not enough memory? I know I need at least 2MB of memory, and I only have the 1MB stock.
I took the cartridge apart, and there are no shorts. I think it's a bad ROM IC or some other glue logic chip.
I am looking for an Appletalk interface module for it,as well, to use with Ancient Apple IIGs, Quadra's, etc.
 

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