close this bookTidBITS#47   19910311
View the documentApple's New Printers
View the documentCompression Field Expands
View the documentSingle Purpose Printer
View the documentApple 1, Microsoft 0
View the documentReviews/11-Mar-91
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Single Purpose Printer

Some people try to make their printers capable of handling every sort of paper size and type, including envelopes. But those envelopes have always been the catch (literally, if you feed them through a finicky laser printer). My answer is simple - use email! OK, so that's not a solution for everyone in every instance (though it should be).

CoStar has come out with its second special purpose printer to solve this nagging envelope problem. CoStar calls it the AddressWriter, and it joins the LabelWriter in the CoStar lineup. The LabelWriter could print out the sort of labels you need to stick on envelopes and floppy disks. The AddressWriter, on the other hand, can only print on envelopes in a variety of sizes. That's not entirely true, since CoStar plans to sell an optional $75 label feeder as well, but that's not the point. The point is that you can buy this thing for $595, plop 100 envelopes in it, and have it address them (with an optional return address, logo, message, and postal bar code, the last of which gives you a 10% discount somehow). That's pretty cool. Even on my QMS-PS 410 printer, which does a decent job with envelopes (I've never had one jam on me), it's still a pain to move the paper guide, put the envelope in, and make sure it doesn't go through the normal paper path.

The current AddressWriter is a serial printer, but CoStar plans an AppleTalk version for 1992. The AppleTalk AddressWriter will be about $100 more expensive, and CoStar will offer a simple $150 serial to AppleTalk converter box for people wishing to upgrade. The envelope hopper on the AddressWriter accepts envelopes up to (and a little larger, to work with European sizes) the standard business envelope. The print mechanism has an 8-pin head, but since it makes three passes, it achieves a decent 144 dpi resolution. Not laser quality, by any means, but no one ever looks at an envelope for more than about 12 seconds anyway.

CoStar -- 800/426-7827 -- 203/661-9700

Information from:
Deborah at CoStar -- costar1 on AppleLink

Related articles:
MacUser -- Apr-91
Macworld -- Apr-91