Impact Dot Matrix

Resistant to a large range of temperatures and airborne debris, impact dot matrix printers are popular choices for harsh environments from busy restaurant kitchens to highway toll booths. Based on older technology, dot matrix printers are much slower, larger, and produce lower quality print outs when compared to direct thermal printers. Even so, their ruggedness keeps them a viable option to users in tough environments.  They require ink ribbon and paper to print.
 
Coming from a long history of usage, dot matrix printers were at one time limited to being very bulky, heavy, and only capable of printing full page documents. In short, they existed to serve as PC printers. Star Micronics was the first printer manufacturer to re-engineer this technology into a small footprint printer to be used specifically for POS applications. This printer was named the DP8340 and quickly became a long-time favorite of many users who enjoyed the benefits of printing small receipts instead of large invoices, high hardware reliability, and a small footprint which required only a fraction of counter space.
 
Since then, technology has evolved allowing POS printer manufacturers to produce faster impact mechanisms with special features to meet demands of specific applications. From splash resistant designs for kitchens to indelible ink ribbons for dry cleaning and all industries in between, small footprint dot matrix printers are available to fit in where direct thermal printers cannot.
 
How does it work?
 
A dot matrix print head contains a series of circular pins which tap against the ribbon. This repeated motion produces many dots on the paper, resulting in a finished printed documented. Most impact print heads today are bidirectional, meaning the print head prints while moving across the paper from its home position and also back as it returns.



What are the benefits of Star Micronics Dot Matrix Printers?

 High speed and reliability

 Resistant to a range of temperatures and airborne debris
 Industry-desired features like “drop in and print” paper and ribbon loading
 Friendly to counter space: Small footprint, Vertical operation, Wall mountable
 Recessed ports for cable protection
 Easy integration with a variety of connection interfaces
 
 
What are the general disadvantages of impact dot matrix technology?

- Slow performance when compared to direct thermal printers

- Due to older print head technology, image quality is not sufficient to produce scannable barcodes
- Impact printer receipts look dated
- Operation is noisy
- More mechanics inside making impact printers heavy

 



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