What's a good printer for OSX Tiger?
August 16, 2005 10:26 PM   Subscribe

Can you recommend a good printer that runs on well on OS X Tiger?

I just upgraded my dual G4 to Tiger and now I am having issues (not working) with my old printer (epson stylus photo 750). Epson hasn't made any new drivers for it and I am doubting they will. Also apple gimp-print driver doesn't work for it either. I've been thinking of getting a new printer anyways, so any help would be very much appreciated. Thanks for your time and help.
posted by alteredcarbon to Computers & Internet (16 answers total)
Epson or Canon, as far as ink jet printers that's about all you need to consider. Just pick your price range.
posted by doctor_negative at 10:36 PM on August 16, 2005

What features are you looking for?

I have a b&w laser printer, HP LaserJet 1320. Prints double sided and up to 4 pages per 8.5 x 11 sheet. So, you can fit 100 page documents on 12 sheets of paper. Great for proofreading.
posted by dobbs at 11:29 PM on August 16, 2005

If you're printing a lot of photos, i don't think you can go wrong with Canon. I've had an i960 for over a year now, and it's fast, quiet, produces beautiful prints, and Canon has great OS X support. I've tried out several of the printers in their current 'Pixma' lineup, and they're all great.
posted by toddshot at 11:30 PM on August 16, 2005

"sheet" should be "side".
posted by dobbs at 11:30 PM on August 16, 2005

I don't recommend Epson for ease of use. Their printers work with Mac OS X; but in my experience, they often require Epson software and sometimes additional drivers. Canon printers, cameras, camcorder, etc. are usually plug-and-play.
posted by cribcage at 4:30 AM on August 17, 2005

I actually just got the HP 1320 myself. So far so good (and Office Depot has then on discount right now, I discovered last night). Plug it in and print. Some people have had trouble discovering the duplexing (it's under "layout").

I had been frustrated by (what I suspect was) increasingly imperfect compatibility between Tiger and the Lexmark printer drivers for my olde printer. I could print some documents, but not all, and many would result in the deadly "instant ejecting of dozens of pages with postscript garbage."
posted by adamrice at 6:27 AM on August 17, 2005

Epson kind of dropped the ball with OSX. Their printers were golden under OS9, but they failed to keep up with OSX.

HP and Canon are good bets.
posted by Thorzdad at 6:51 AM on August 17, 2005

Last week I picked up a Canon Pixma iP3000 (list price $100) for $35 after rebate, tax included. Admittedly, this is because the clerk at CompUSA made a mistake in price-matching Circuit City, which had the printer for $70 with a $20 rebate. (The CompUSA dude gave me the rebate in the form of a gift card on the spot, assuming the $20 rebate from Circuit City was a store rebate, but it's a manufacturer rebate and I'm still eligible for it.)

Right now the printer is $68 after rebate at Circuit City, but Buy.com still lists it for $50 AR (though they're out of stock). Frankly, either is still a fine price for a fast, quiet inkjet with two paper trays that can print on both sides of the paper. The last is a killer feature that few printers in the price range have -- in fact I believe it's exclusive to Canon at this time. Also, Canon uses separate ink cartridges for each color so you don't have to replace the whole cartridge when one color runs out.
posted by kindall at 7:51 AM on August 17, 2005

I just got a Canon iP3000. It's great. The native CUPS drivers provide limited functionality if you're printing over a Windows network share (PrintFab fills in the gaps) but the supplied Canon USB drivers work fine if you're plugging it in directly or sharing with an AirPort express.

PrintFab also supports your Epson Stylus Photo 750 with enhanced colour profile functionality. At EUR49 (c. $61) it's not cheap -- a decent new printer costs the same these days -- but it's bloody good, especially if you're after consistent colour reproduction.
posted by holgate at 8:18 AM on August 17, 2005

I absolutely love my EBay-purchased HP Laserjet 4mp. It was $150 with shipping, and is absolutely bulletproof and reliable, printing equally beautifully from my house network Mac, Windows, and Linux systems, as well as drop-in relatives with wireless connections on whatever OS. Well-implemented, full bore Postscript is a beautiful thing, and close to universally supported.

Unless you really *like* overpaying for ink prices & enjoy dealing with dried out cartridges, or have a legitimate need to do a lot of color proofing at home for some artistic purpose, get a solid B&W laser. Send your color photos out to a service like Shutterfly, where they'll be printed cheaper and better than you will ever be able to accomplish without a seriously high-end printer.
posted by Invoke at 9:08 AM on August 17, 2005

Altered Carbon: do you print a lot of photos? Do you require color? If not you might want to consider one of the low priced B&W lasers on the market. You'll save a considerably on ink cost over the lifetime of the printer.

I'm using a Samsung laser printer I bought new for $100 last month. I swore off inkjet after too many bad experiences with my (fairly new) Epson printer, which clogged if it wasn't used on a near-daily basis and required cleaning cycles that drained (expensive) ink for no apparent reason. Add to this the bizarre requirement that all color cartridges be full in order to print black and white pages, and you'll see why I tossed this POS into the dumpster with a quickness.
posted by FearTormento at 10:07 AM on August 17, 2005

Speaking of solid laser printers and OS X, I have a nice HP1100 laserjet.

It has only a parallel port!

How do I connect it to my iBook??
posted by five fresh fish at 1:47 PM on August 17, 2005

Use a wireless or wired print server, such as the Linksys WPS11 or the DLink DP-311P. Otherwise you could just skip the network and use a usb to parallel adapter such as the one made by keyspan.
posted by Invoke at 3:40 PM on August 17, 2005

If you still like your printer, there's no reason to replace it. It will work perfectly fine if you can locate the driver it used in Mac OS 10.3.X.

Did you do an Archive and Install when you upgraded to Tiger, or do you have a backup? If so, get the driver (called SP750.plugin) from your former /Library/Printers/EPSON folder and drop it into your current Library folder in the same location.
posted by pmbuko at 3:41 PM on August 17, 2005

Response by poster: Thank you all for your great advise and smart opinions. I truly love this part of Metafilter. Everyone gave me plenty to chew on and digest. I'll now go off happier into my decision.

pmbuko: I upgraded from Mas OS 10.2.4 and my epson worked fine in there. I did exactly what you advised though(SP750.plugin drop into library folder) and it still wouldn't work. It's something to do with epson drivers in OS 10.4 that causes problems. But thank you for your help and time.
posted by alteredcarbon at 4:07 PM on August 17, 2005

Tiger came installed on the new iBook. Should I check out the CD that came with it? I've just been assuming it's one of those lousy wipe-out-everything reinstall CDs.
posted by five fresh fish at 6:33 PM on August 17, 2005

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