Monday, September 27, 2010


My wife and I decided to upgrade our printers this weekend. Long ago, when she had her office on one end of the house and I on the other, we had two printers -- a habit we kept when we bought new systems. 

Recently, my printer (6+ years old) clogged up past the point that the self-clean operation would do it any good. If you have ink-jet printers, you need to crank them regularly, else they do that, gum up. My office isn't completely paperless, but it isn't far from it, so the printer doesn't get the exercise it once did. 

Hers -- also ancient in computer-years -- was also getting spotty, and since both were from two or three computers back, we thought it was time. 

Gotten a lot cheaper, these devices, and all-in-one -- printer, fax, copier, scanner. We found one at Costco, and since we now live in an age wherein electronics can talk to each other wirelessly and since we really don't need two printers, we got one. 

Good that we aren't using such a toy as much, the ink cartridges, of which you need five, cost almost as much as the hardware itself to completely replace. 

These are supposed to be plug-and-play, but of course, they aren't. Eventually, I got around to doing what every red-blooded American man only does as a last resort -- I read the manual, and thus equipped with how it's supposed to be done, mostly got it working.

My wife can access the printer from her laptap anywhere in the house. We can print, copy, and, in theory fax, though I didn't bother to hook that up. Scanner doesn't want to light up, and turning things off and on and re-installing HP's software doesn't seem to help. Odd that the computers can see the printer and copier just fine, but can't find the scanner via any of the three kinds of software I have that are supposed to do that. 

Always been something of a problem with flatbed scanners and my Macs, Lord knows why. 


J.D. Ray said...

Not to play the paranoid one, but be careful with wireless printers. There's very little in the way of security on them (or hasn't been in the past), and you might find that neighbor kids are punking you by printing high-color photos on your printer from down the street just to use up your ink.

Also, if you don't print much, you might consider a laser next time you buy; the ink never dries up. We've had one laser for years, printing rarely, and it still does what it needs to when we need it to.

Steve Perry said...

In theory, you need a password to access my router, least that's been the case with anybody who has come to visit and wanted to use my wifi. Plus I turn it off whenever I'm not in the office.

I had a B&W laser printer years ago -- color was out of my price range. And they've come way down in price, but the toner cartridges cost more than the printer I just bought. Cheaper to run a couple of sheets through the ink jet every day.