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#6149 - 11/28/09 11:13 AM Need new printer: tricky spec.
Bensheim Offline


Registered: 08/16/09
Loc: UK
I researched this a year ago and can still buy the one I identified at that time. However before I commit to ordering it, I would really appreciate your opinions.

This is what I need:

1. Mono A4 laser printer

2. Must be networkable (i.e., will run off our Ethernet hub which connects all four Macs, and also (irrelevant in this context, the broadband.)

3. Must have drivers for both OS9 and OSX Tiger. (We have 4 Macs, two of each, all happily printing* at the moment.)

Tall order, huh?

I've found one:

This is it: http://www.brother.co.uk/g3.cfm/s_page/166900/s_level/38090/s_product/HL5240LZU1/s_detailType/specs

The only question I have, therefore, is, what does "High Speed USB" mean in this context. Yes I know what USB means.....does this spec mean that there is no ethernet connectivity? It looks like it.

Oh heck.

What I want is an A4, Mono, Laser, Network, OS9 AND OSX.

Now you can laugh.......

Somewhere else on the internet (I do my research) I've found a USB-Ethernet converter for Macs, maybe, I think. Is that relevant or a silly red-herring? Be nice, please. Thanks.

*the 4 Macs are perfectly happy but I can tell that the current Brother is getting geriatric. I know how to nurse it through its hissy-fits but this can't go on indefinitely.

I like Brother printers but am not averse to considering any other brand as long as it does all the things I need.

I hope this is coherent. It makes sense to me.

Thank You! <wrings hands>


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#6178 - 11/28/09 06:05 PM Re: Need new printer: tricky spec. [Re: Bensheim]
Virtual1 Offline


Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Iowa
OS 9 being old tech and ethernet printing being somewhat newer tech you are probably better off getting an older printer. The trick will be reliable access to the printer. Normally I'd recommend hooking the printer directly to one of the macs (to eliminate the need for an ethernet add on for the printer) but I don't know how well print sharing works between OS 9 and OS X. You'd be using appletalk at the very least and that means you're restricted on how far up with OSX you can go. (I think)

You may have an easier time sharing the printer on an OS 9 machine...
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#6193 - 11/28/09 10:17 PM Re: Need new printer: tricky spec. [Re: Bensheim]
Sturner Offline


Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Cyber Space
This is what you might be looking for. Keyspan was purchased by Tripp-Lite but they produced some very good connectivity solutions. This server being one. This is probably what you want because the printer is connected through USB.

Also, Belkin makes a 4 port peripherial USB switch that works well for a printer. however, it isn't ethernet.


Edited by Sturner (11/28/09 10:27 PM)
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#6199 - 11/29/09 04:25 AM Re: Need new printer: tricky spec. [Re: Sturner]
Bensheim Offline


Registered: 08/16/09
Loc: UK
I must have mislead you, probably my fault.

The current set up is:

Two old G4 towers OS9. Both are ethernet wired into the router.
Two new iMacs OSX. One is ethernet wired into the router the other is wireless.

All four share the printer seamlessly. Despite their antiquity the old G4 OS9 towers have been ethernet-connectivity for years.

Doing some more research, surely all I need is an USB to Ethernet (RJ45) adaptor. It's a little box. I'd plug the new printer's USB cable into one slot, and plug the current printer Ethernet cable into the other slot. (The other end of the printer Ethernent cable remains connected to the router.)

Could it possibly be as simple as that? I sure hope so. The additional spend will be a mere £8 or so. There's loads of them on Amazon.

I've emailed Brother to ask them too.

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#6202 - 11/29/09 08:41 AM Re: Need new printer: tricky spec. [Re: Bensheim]
grelber Offline


Registered: 08/05/09
Loc: North of 49th ||
Lexmark E120n has everything you need. You might have to download the OS9 driver (as I did) from their website.
And it's very inexpensive (at least in North America): I bought mine a year ago for less than $100; a week later I could have gotten it for less than $80 at Staples (an office supply chain).
It comes with a 200-page toner cartridge (although mine still hasn't run out after 800 pages, but the 'low toner' LED came on just at 200 copies), so pick up a standard 2000-page cartridge at the same time.
And if you don't have one, also pick up a USB2 cable of appropriate length.

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#6207 - 11/29/09 11:07 AM Re: Need new printer: tricky spec. [Re: grelber]
Bensheim Offline


Registered: 08/16/09
Loc: UK
Grelber, thanks for replying.

I briefly got interested in your Lexmark recommendation then read a few reviews........

I've been working on this single research topic for hours now. All by myself I have learned a great deal.
If I committed to buying a USB-connectivity printer and a USB>Ethernet adaptor, I would also have to get Driver software, called Pegasus, apparently.
It is not as easy as it looks.

Grelber, it must be me, it seems. I still have not made myself clear. Why would I want to buy USB cables when everything here is Ethernet-connected? Why would I be debating USB>Ethernet adaptors?

This all takes hours, but I have finally decided what I'm going to do. I have found two different sources on Amazon for exactly the same printer as we have now, a Brother HL-5070N. This decision is aided by the fact that there are about £200-worth of consumables for it, in the stationery cupboard (yet another toner cartridge and a replacement drum). If I buy another model from Brother, or a completely new one from another manufacturer, those £200-worth will be rendered junk.

The UK source on Amazon states that it is "refurbished" so I have asked for clarification from the seller. The USA one - there would be long shipping delays.

Incidentally, in the hours of research, I am amazed to see that some of their new models, NEW!, are only USB, not ethernet. I can only suppose that they are aimed at the sole-user market.

I'm knackered. Toothache don't help either. :-(

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#6209 - 11/29/09 11:37 AM Re: Need new printer: tricky spec. [Re: Bensheim]
grelber Offline


Registered: 08/05/09
Loc: North of 49th ||
My bad = mea culpa. I don't have wireless anything and so had to pick up a 12-foot USB cable.
The E120n has standard Ethernet 10/100 card (which I don't use).
All the drivers (except for OS 9) came with it on CD; so I went to the website (which is quite complete) and downloaded the one for my vintage iMac DV SE.
From a 2006 review of the E120n (which persuaded me to finally buy one - and in 2006 it was going for $170):
"E120n is perfect for a small home office. The networkable, monochrome printer is rated at 10,000 copies per month. The E120n easily fills the bill for a busy student or someone who runs a small business from home. It is fast -- 20 pages per minute of A4 letter size monochrome pages at 600 x 600 dpi. Something I really liked is the first-page-out time. That's how long it takes the printer to spit the first copy of a document out after you hit print. The E120n is able to fire that first copy out in about 8 seconds or so. The input paper tray is capable of holding 150 sheets."

Now what do you think?

(Don't get me wrong. My first choice in laser printers was a Brother - until I saw the Lexmark.)

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#6212 - 11/29/09 01:16 PM Re: Need new printer: tricky spec. [Re: Bensheim]
Sturner Offline


Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Cyber Space
D-Link has a simple usb to ethernet server solution. It connects by wire and has a wireless capablility.
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#6217 - 11/29/09 06:52 PM Re: Need new printer: tricky spec. [Re: Bensheim]
Sturner Offline


Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Cyber Space
A print server would simplify your printing to a great extent. Is your router also wireless? I would think so if one of the Macs connects wirelessly. I would hope you don't connect it through one of the other Macs.

If it is a wireless/wired router then your connection only needs to come in through your router from the printer, and a wired connection is best. To that end either the Keyspan server or the D-Link printer server would work well.
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#6219 - 11/30/09 09:13 AM Re: Need new printer: tricky spec. [Re: Sturner]
Bensheim Offline


Registered: 08/16/09
Loc: UK
I have had a definitive answer to this USB>Ethernet adaptor route I was pursuing, from another Mac forum. He said it won't work with printers, the printer simply won't know what to do with it. (That begs another question: what do people use these adaptors for, then?)

In view of the £200+ consumables in the stationery cupboard for the existing Brother printer, I have now sourced and bought another, identical one, from Amazon. Phew!


Good that there is so much free advice available on forums. Bad that Brother never replied to my email. It would have been a lot less effort and TIME (grrrrr) if they had done that. I especially do not understand their lack of response since I stated from the outset that (1) I am a customer and a fan of theirs, and (2) I asked them about buying another printer from them. So, they've lost a sale. Isn't that odd?

Thanks for your notes on different routers. I had no idea that there was such a thing as a broadband router/ethernet/USB hub all in one. That might come in handy one day, so thank you.


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#6222 - 11/30/09 10:24 AM Re: Need new printer: tricky spec. [Re: Bensheim]
joemikeb Offline
Moderator

Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Fort Worth, Texas
Originally Posted By: Bensheim
I have had a definitive answer to this USB>Ethernet adaptor route I was pursuing, from another Mac forum. He said it won't work with printers, the printer simply won't know what to do with it. (That begs another question: what do people use these adaptors for, then?)
I use an Apple USB/ethernet adaptor with a MacBook Air which does not have an ethernet or firewire port and it works well excepting the fact the USB connection slows the overall connection speed down. When the adaptor is plugged in, System Preferences > Network recognizes it as an ethernet adaptor and opens a new "port" for it.

I don't know about using the USB/ethernet adaptor with a "dumb" device such as a terminal as I have never tried it, but I have a Canon IP4500 (not network enabled) connected via USB to an Airport Express and it is Bonjour discoverable on the WiFi network and uses the standard Canon drivers just as if it were directly connected to the various Macs — no tricks or gimmicks necessary.
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#6236 - 12/01/09 11:49 AM Re: Need new printer: tricky spec. [Re: Bensheim]
macnerd10 Offline


Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Los Angeles, CA
Sorry to intrude but just curious: why would you keep the old G4's when you have two new iMacs? And why not put OSX on the G4's? This might simplify the task.
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3.1 GHz 13" MacBook Pro 2015, 8 GB RAM, OS 10.11.2, Office 2011, TimeWarner Cable
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#6270 - 12/02/09 11:38 AM Re: Need new printer: tricky spec. [Re: macnerd10]
Bensheim Offline


Registered: 08/16/09
Loc: UK
Gee Macnerd, it was well over a year ago I researched that, and it took months. It would take me far too long to explain why we decided to stick with the set-up of two old PowerPC G4s on OS9 plus two new iMacs on OSX, so therefore my answer is

Because. wink

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#6272 - 12/02/09 12:30 PM Re: Need new printer: tricky spec. [Re: Bensheim]
Sturner Offline


Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Cyber Space
The belkin print servers and the Tipp-Lite (Keyspan) print server both satisfy your requirements.
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#6277 - 12/02/09 02:41 PM Re: Need new printer: tricky spec. [Re: Bensheim]
_Mike_ Offline


Registered: 12/02/09
Loc: Bemke, Germany
Bensheim,
I've got a network of five Macs similar to yours.

As for office printers, I'd always try to get one that "talks" AppleTalk and Postscript via Ethernet. That way, any Mac on the LAN that runs anything from System 7 to OSX 10.5 can use all features of this printer without the need of special driver software, only the (system-independant) PPD file for the printer is needed.

What so far worked very well for me and a couple of friends are HP printers of the LaserJet 4000 series. These printer were made for jobs like doing over 60000 pages per month and have costs per page that are hard to beat. The models with an "N" at the end include an ethernet port.
Refurbished ones are frequently offered for ~100 Pounds and normally still last for several years.

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#6294 - 12/02/09 07:14 PM Re: Need new printer: tricky spec. [Re: _Mike_]
joemikeb Offline
Moderator

Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Fort Worth, Texas
Yes but as of Snow Leopard Appletalk, which Apple long ago deprecated, is no longer with us.
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#6301 - 12/03/09 12:33 AM Re: Need new printer: tricky spec. [Re: joemikeb]
artie505 Online


Registered: 08/04/09
Originally Posted By: joemikeb
Yes but as of Snow Leopard Appletalk, which Apple long ago deprecated, is no longer with us.

Mike specified "any Mac on the LAN that runs anything from System 7 to OSX 10.5." (Emphasis added)
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