When I reviewed the new Intermec PM43 printer, I mentioned that it didn’t behave the way I would have expected when using IPL.
At the time, it seemed that IPL support was somewhat lacking, which seemed odd as just about every Intermec customer of ours uses their printer in IPL mode.
We were particularly frustrated at one customer’s plant where we wanted to add some PM43 printers to a setup that included 4400, 3400 and PX4i printers. The customer’s label files were written in IPL and worked perfectly on both the older models and the newer PX4i’s (the PX4i needed to be set in Legacy Mode to work correctly with these files).
The PM43 would produce acceptable results on some labels, but not all of them and we ended up swapping them out for PX4i printers.
Since then, some of the issues have been addressed by new firmware updates for the PM43, but it seems that it is unrealistic to think that the new way of implementing IPL will ever be exactly the same as on the older models.
The nice Intermec folks have taken the trouble to produce a document that goes over the differences between the legacy and the new flavors of IPL. If you are looking to incorporate new PM43 (or the new PC Series of Intermec printers) into your IPL printing environment, it would be good use of your time to read through this document and see if you are likely to run into any issues. You can download your copy from the Intermec website.
One thing is for sure – Intermec is looking to get as many owners of legacy printers as possible to upgrade to the new ones. There is an attractive trade-in deal to help update to the PM43 and it has recently been announced that printheads for legacy models will not be available after 2013 (yes, I know there are 3rd party printheads on the market, but I’ve not seen too many for the 300 and 400 DPI Intermec models).
With these IPL changes and the sale of the business to Honeywell, things are very interesting in Intermec Land.
Do you use legacy Intermec printers in your operations? Give me a call if you need info on upgrading to the new printer models (we can also provide support and parts for your legacy printers!) – 603-598-1553.