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SiPix Pocket Printer A6

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  • Editors' rating
    Not yet rated
  • $149.99

Pros

  • Truly portable;
  • works with desktop Windows and Palm OS.

Cons

  • Monochrome A6 output only;
  • slow;
  • requires special thermal paper;
  • no Windows CE support.

It's all very well being a 'road warrior' with the latest, sleekest laptop -- but if you have to scribble out notes on the back of an envelope, something of the shine has gone. In the absence of portable laser printers, SiPix's Pocket Printer A6 may be the solution to this problem.

For once, the product name is spot-on: this is a printer that, measuring 15cm by 11cm by 2cm and weighing 400g, is fully trouser-compatible; it also churns out A6. Running on four AA batteries or a mains adapter, it has a serial interface and an infrared port. It can print on either roll or sheet A6 thermal paper. Resolutely monochrome, it has one resolution of 400 dots per inch (dpi) and comes with drivers for Windows (98, 98SE, ME and 2000 -- but not CE) as well as Palm OS 3.0 and 4.0.

The Pocket Printer A6 is a very handy little printer, and does things that nothing else so portable can manage. However, its mechanism is closely related to that of a till roll printer, and the quality of the output reflects that. Although text is clear enough, graphics look grainy: the thermal paper itself is curled from being tightly rolled to fit inside the printer, and each sheet has a ragged edge where it's torn off. Six rolls of paper cost £10, and you'll probably get thirty or forty sheets out of each.

Installing the driver software on a Palm handheld is simple enough, and you can then print from text applications. The same goes for Windows, which also allows graphics -- although fitting the screen image onto the A6 page while retaining readability and recognisable pictures is not so easy.

The printer is pleasantly quiet in use, although it can only manage two pages a minute and lacks a line feed button to advance the paper. The batteries don't last very long: the printer is rated at 15 watts, although it turns itself off after three minutes to save power. You can run it on rechargeables.

If you really need a printer this small and portable, then the SiPix Pocket Printer A6 is well worth considering -- and it does have a certain geeky charm.

Specifications

General
Printer Type Compact photo printer - direct thermal - monochrome
Form Factor portable
Power Device
Voltage Required Margin ± 10%
Type power adapter
Nominal Voltage AC 120/230 V
Frequency Required 50/60 Hz
Power Consumption Operational 15 Watt
Form Factor external
Connectivity
Wireless Ready Yes
Printer
Technology direct thermal
Print Speed Up to 2 ppm - B/W - A6 (4.13 in x 5.83 in)
Connectivity Technology wired, wireless
Interface Serial, IrDA
Type compact photo printer
Portable portable
Max H-Document Size 4.13 m
Max V-Document Size 5.83 in
Media Type plain paper
Media Sizes A6 (4.13 in x 5.83 in), Roll A6 (4.13 in x 8.2 ft)
Power
Voltage Required AC 120/230 V ± 10%
Frequency Required 50/60 Hz
Power Consumption Operational 15 Watt
Interface Provided
Type none
Battery
Included 4
Form Factor AA type
Miscellaneous
Rack Mounting Kit N/A
Color black
Color Category black
Hard Drive
Type none
Printing
Max Resolution B/W 400 dpi
Max Printing Speed B/W (ppm) 2 ppm
Software / System Requirements
Peripheral / Interface Devices CD-ROM, VGA monitor
Media Handling
Media Path Type straight
Max Media Size (Custom) 4.13 in x 5.83 in
Media Type Plain paper
Media Sizes A6 (4.13 in x 5.83 in), Roll A6 (4.13 in x 8.2 ft)
System Requirements
OS Required Microsoft Windows 98 Second Edition / Windows 2000, Microsoft Windows 98/ME, Microsoft Windows Millennium Edition, Palm OS 3.0 or later
Copier
Copier Type none
Environmental Parameters
Min Operating Temperature 41 °F
Max Operating Temperature 95 °F
Humidity Range Operating 30 - 60%
Document & Media Handling
Media Type Class plain paper
Media Size Class Other
Header
Brand SiPix
Product Line SiPix Pocket Printer
Model A6
Packaged Quantity 1
Compatibility PC
Office Machine
Type printer
Functions printer
Printing Technology direct thermal
Printing Output Type monochrome
Interface Required
Connector Type 9 pin D-Sub (DB-9), IrDA
Gender N/A, male
Connector Qty 1
Type IrDA, RS-232
Total Qty 1
Dimensions & Weight
Width 5.9 in
Depth 4.3 in
Height 1 in
Weight 0.55 lbs
Expansion Bays
Type none
Expansion Slots
Type none
Slot Required
Type none
Cable Details
Type serial cable
Form Factor external
Included Qty 1
Printer Output
Max Speed 2 ppm
Media Size A6 (4.13 in x 5.83 in)
Output Quality B/W
Software
Type Drivers & Utilities
Printer Media
Media Load Type manual
Media Feeder Qty 1
Media Feeder Max Format A6 (4.13 in x 5.83 in)
Media Feeder Capacity 1
PC Connectivity
Interface IrDA, serial
Service & Support
Type 1 year warranty
Service & Support Details
Type limited warranty
Service Included parts and labor
Location carry-in
Full Contract Period 1 year

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