Welcome To Signs101.com: Largest Forum for Signmaking Professionals

Signs101.com: Largest Forum for Signmaking Professionals is the LARGEST online community & discussion forum for professional sign-makers and graphic designers.

 


  1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Older Plotters with Newer PCs

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous Plotters' started by neato, Mar 17, 2013.

  1. neato

    neato Very Active Member

    2,139
    284
    83
    May 16, 2003
    Henderson, IL
    Hey Guys.

    I'm looking to buy an older, used plotter so I can start doing some signs again.

    In the past, I've owned Rolands and have always been happy with them.

    I'd like to find an older PNC 1100, but from what I understand, it won't run on a Windows 7 system.

    Is this going to be the case with all older plotters now? Is anyone successfully running and older plotter on a newer windows system?
     
    Tags:
  2. FrankW

    FrankW Very Active Member

    1,305
    131
    63
    Oct 19, 2008
    Germany
    Plotters with serial interfaces will basically run with every operating system. Most of the newer computers will not offer a serial port, but it can be easily added by installing an serial interface card.

    The problem could be the driver. But if running for example a windows 7-compatible plot application like Flexi, it will be no problem too.

    If trying to drive really old plotters with windows 7, please be shure the interface card support a FIFO 6c550-compatible buffer (thats not standard specially with cheap interface cards). Specially plotters with very small internal memory will have problems without that buffer.

    I have connected plotters from the late eighties (old Wild tables) with windows 7 successful. A Roland from the 90' will not make any trouble.

    But: I really don't understand why buying such old plotters for business when newer ones are really cheap like Goland GX-24 or SummaCut D60R.
     
  3. DizzyMarkus

    DizzyMarkus Active Member

    822
    0
    0
    Jan 23, 2012
    I have a 8+ year old Lynx S-60 that I have running on Windows 7 via serial to usb adapter. When asked the listening port.....it's one of the USB001.....USB0002 etc

    Markus
     
  4. neato

    neato Very Active Member

    2,139
    284
    83
    May 16, 2003
    Henderson, IL
    Thanks for your help!

    I don't make signs full-time and don't plan on running a vinyl shop. This will be used mainly for paint masks and pounce patterns. So limited use. Speed isn't a necessity.

    I've seen PNC 1100s for around $300. Hard to find a new brand name machine for that price. ;)
     
  5. Jillbeans

    Jillbeans Major Contributor

    14,457
    18
    38
    Dec 24, 2003
    Butler, PA
    I'd get an old PC, Win 98 SE or so, at a yard sale and buy a Gerber Envision plotter (ideally) or an old 4B or 4E and Graphix Advatage or an early Omega program with an LMK module and a connecting cable.
    Probably could get all of that for about $1K or less.
    Gerber plotters make the best pounce patterns, I always plotted in reverse to make the pattern perform better.
    Love....Jill
    PS
    I know someone who has all of the above and some extra parts (hint hint) but does not want to sell them locally, all need a bit of TLC but are not beyond hope. You can design in Corel, save as an ai (early version) and import into the Gerber software for plotting.
     
  6. neato

    neato Very Active Member

    2,139
    284
    83
    May 16, 2003
    Henderson, IL
  7. DizzyMarkus

    DizzyMarkus Active Member

    822
    0
    0
    Jan 23, 2012
    http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_2?url=search-alias=electronics&field-keywords=usb+to+serial

    Sorry didnt I explain? I have a super old plotter --serial -- running on a Windows 7 machine via a usb to serial adapter. It will now NOT be listed as a Com port or a LPT port but instead will be listed as a "USB0001" type listing-- could be USB0002 depending on what number your pc assigned that usb. Try the first, doesnt work try the second -- one of them will work :0)

    Sorry if I misunderstood
    Markus



    http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_2?url=search-alias=electronics&field-keywords=usb+to+serial
     
  8. Jillbeans

    Jillbeans Major Contributor

    14,457
    18
    38
    Dec 24, 2003
    Butler, PA
    I think that's the type of cable I have on mine.
    Really think if you want to do pounce patterns that a Gerber is the way to go.
    But I know very little about all the details only that somehow I know how to run one.
    :)
     
  9. round man

    round man Active Member

    637
    1
    0
    Oct 16, 2005
    Like FrankW stated above it is not the plotter or operating system that makes an older plotter function correctly (or not function) but the interface(serial port/comm port/usb adapter) and the driverr for your softare that you use to send files to th plotter.Most newer pc's tend to use a 64 bit operating system and that sort of software uses a 64 bit port addresses to tell the machine where to send the files,where older 32 bit use the older standard 32 bit addresses. the problem facing most users are the drivers used by the cutting software on older versions tend to be 32 bit drivers,and they don't work on 64 bit operating systems,...almost all machines(at least a very high percentage) can be loaded with a 32 bit operating system in oreder to circumvent this problem if 64 bit drivers are not available for the users plotter and cutting software.

    Another issue facing some users are proprietary communications port standards,gerber being the foremost that comes to mind. their early plotters needed a special 16 bit isa port card from gerber to work and some have bypassed this with aftermarket adapters.

    when it is all said and done most user problems arise when the user wishes to use older 16 bit or 32 bit software rather than pay for costly updates and upgrades to newer 64 bit versions. This is where we get all the suggestions to find an older machine with win 98 and xp installed so the -plottetr will work. The only problem there is it isn't the plotter that will not work but the software which has become obsolete.

    Once you get past the software issues there are physical connection issues involving the cableing and port settings that have to be setup to match the needs of the older plotters,...these settings for the most part are not simple for the average user and there are not one button wizards that one can push to make them happen,they require the user become aquainted with some of the more complex settings within the operating system in order for them to function.

    When it is all said and done it all boils down to the end users wants and needs, Are you willing to go thru the learning curve and cost of software upgrades in order to make the older plotter work or is it more cost effective to just purchase a newer usb plotter that will load its own driver and setup simply by plugging in the usb cable and waiting on the operating system to do it for you,

    All this being said it is not the plotter but the user and software that dictates whether or not a plotter will work on a newer pc with windows 7 etc,....My best advice here would be to check your software first to make sure it is 64 bit compatible and has 64 bit drivers available for the plotter you wish to use. Otherwise a simple fix is to load a 32 bit version of the operating software.
     
  10. Techman

    Techman Major Contributor

    8,520
    8
    38
    Jun 24, 2003
    michigan
    In the old days of Win 98, XP.. and almost into Vista.

    The software authors were wild and carefree with their code. They used illegal dll calls and other API tricks to shortcut their work. In other words they were lazy and produced junk code.

    Later M$ was forced to security holes in the standards which forced bad code authors to rewrite their drivers to be compliant with standards. The cheaters got caught with their pants down.

    In fact I predicted and posted a warning that dongle software would fail before XP SP 2 came out because so many dongle software drivers were not even close to being compliant. We all know what happened when SP2 did come out.

    So today we are using old equipment with older drivers written for the old guidelines and standards. Good luck. Most will work with win7. Some will not. But do Like I do and keep a good XP machine just for the older hardware that otherwise works perfect.
     
  11. SightLine

    SightLine Premium Subscriber

    I'll also point out, it was mentioned that most newer computers do not come with a serial port. That should be pretty much all HOME user computers do not. A large percentage of true business class computers do still come with true serial ports as well as parallel and PS2 keyboard/mouse ports. This is due to the fact that many businesses use a wide variety of equipment that still uses these type ports (a good bit is still made to use serial communications as well).

    As also mentioned the trick will be if you can get older software to run and play nice on Windows 7, if not you might have to load an older version of Windows but much of the newer software out still supports older machines. The nice thing about serial controlled devices is no drivers for the device are generally needed as the software just addresses the serial port directly.
     
  12. OldPaint

    OldPaint Major Contributor

    ROLAND PNC-1100 will run in WINDOWS 7 with no problem. i was cutting from COREL X3 and windows 7, but my computer has parallel ports.
     
  13. Mosh

    Mosh Major Contributor

    5,809
    41
    48
    Oct 19, 2009
    Nerbaska
    I have a Roland PNC 1100 that is over 20 years old and still a workhorse!!! I just keep the serial port and card and install it on every new computer we get, so far so good. I would guess it has been through 15-20 computers. I got a USB to serial port deal, but never tried it yet. I got it last year when Win 8 came out, but ended up not needing it. If you don't have a serial card, there are computer "thrift stores" online I bet you could find one. Or try the USB conversion deal, not heard good things about doing that though.
     
  14. neato

    neato Very Active Member

    2,139
    284
    83
    May 16, 2003
    Henderson, IL
    Good to know guys. The Rolands are great machines. There's a lot of them still out there.

    Are you using it on a 64 bit system Old Paint?
     
  15. OldPaint

    OldPaint Major Contributor

    why do you need a 64 bit windows? NO........win 7 can be loaded as a 32 bit program. unless your playing HALO 3 on that same machine, you have no need for 64 bit.
     
  16. SignManiac

    SignManiac Major Contributor

    8,494
    37
    48
    Mar 25, 2006
    Mars Florida
    I have a need for 64bit machine. I work with larger files and needed more than 4 gigs of ram. Plus Corel X6 is 64bit compatible and that's where the additional ram comes in handy.
     
  17. round man

    round man Active Member

    637
    1
    0
    Oct 16, 2005
    the original poster only stated his need to cut vinyl not run a rip and contour station,...thus no need to confuse the need for an older plotter that won't do contour cutting anyway,...a cut file 90% of the time isn't large enough for the extra ram to be an issue unless that file has a bitmap included

    oops edited to add,,,the older plotter mentioned is not contour cutting compatible so logic would be that he or she only wanted to cut vinyl not rip and contour cut,....
     
  18. OldPaint

    OldPaint Major Contributor

    well sign manic.you jump out of perfectly good airplanes.....MOST OF US WOULDNT))))
     
Loading...

Share This Page

 


Loading...