I am the process of converting a database from an ancient PC based dinosaur to Filemaker Pro running on an Apple.
The one problem I keep coming up against is printing labels. We print about 100-150 labels a week- with the cost of Dymo or Brother labels for their small thermal printers being 4x or more the cost of the old fan-fold tractor feed labels, it seemed obvious we should stick with an impact printer. Several companies still make impact printers. They are simple, bullet proof and inexpensive to run. (And though the cost of the printer itself is 2x the cost of the little Dymo or Brother, the savings in labels makes up the difference quickly.)
HOWEVER, Epson doesn't support Apple's operating system. There is a generic "Epson 24-pin" print driver option in Snow Leopard, but the image quality of the labels is abysmal - and there doesn't seem to be any options to improve the print quality. A call to Epson tech support reveals that they don't support the Apple environment and suggested calling Apple. The other big player in the tiny 24-pin impact printer market is Okidata - but the research there looks to be about the same. (And there are a few other companies still making impact printers, like Panasonic, but I think the story is the same.)
Does anyone have any suggestions?
One of the ideas I have heard is to have another Apple machine running 10.4 or 10.5 and run my labels through that - that seems crazy to me. I know dot-matrix printers are dinosaurs, but, if you have to printer more than 20 labels a day, they are MUCH more cost effective than anything else I am aware of.
I am open to suggestions.
- Rob Rinaldi