AutoCAD Civil 3D General

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Mentor
sfore
Posts: 388
Registered: ‎08-27-2007
Message 1 of 11 (1,055 Views)

post script plotter

1055 Views, 10 Replies
08-04-2009 03:09 PM
I was told that post script plotters are mainly for macintosh and if I don't have a macintosh then I should get a non-post script plotter. Is this true? We don't have anything macintosh.

We're in the process of ordering the HP 4000 plotter and one guy asked for a post-script plotter because he said anything non post-script will create large plot file sizes with images. We use aerials a lot.

What's the verdict and could someone explain the difference between post script and non-post script?

Thanks
*Jason Hickey - Autodesk
Message 2 of 11 (1,055 Views)

Re: post script plotter

08-04-2009 06:57 PM in reply to: sfore
PostScript is used in raster plotting tasks, as it is a raster image
processor. AutoCAD (and the verticals built on it) are all vector-based
programs. Unless your office does desktop publishing in addition to CAD
plotting, PostScript is an unnecessary expense. It has zero to do with an
Apple/PC relationship other than the fact that a LOT of desktop publishing
is done on a Mac - PostScript can be used with both platforms. You can find
more about it at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PostScript.


--
Jason Hickey
Autodesk, Inc.
http://beingcivil.typepad.com


"sfore" wrote in message news:6231176@discussion.autodesk.com...
I was told that post script plotters are mainly for macintosh and if I don't
have a macintosh then I should get a non-post script plotter. Is this true?
We don't have anything macintosh.

We're in the process of ordering the HP 4000 plotter and one guy asked for a
post-script plotter because he said anything non post-script will create
large plot file sizes with images. We use aerials a lot.

What's the verdict and could someone explain the difference between post
script and non-post script?

Thanks
Mentor
sfore
Posts: 388
Registered: ‎08-27-2007
Message 3 of 11 (1,055 Views)

Re: post script plotter

08-04-2009 10:12 PM in reply to: sfore
Thanks for the info, but I'm still a little confused. We're a civil engineering firm that mainly uses Autocad Civil 3D and Land Desktop. We use various types of images on many of our projects. Are you saying for CAD plotting only, regardless if I have images (sid, tif, jpg etc....) or a rendering in my drawing, that a postscript plotter will not plot any better/faster than a non-postscript plotter, even on large print jobs that contain aerial photos?

I want to be sure we get the right plotter for our needs. We currently have a hp1050 and a hp1055. The hp1055 is a postscript and the plot file size is much lower and manageable than on the 1050. We can't send large print jobs to the 1050c like we can the 1055.

We want the HP Designjet 4020 (was 4000), but I'm unsure if I should get the postscript model or NON-postscript model. The postscript model is about $2000 more than the NON. My last employer had the HP 4000 and I'm 98% sure it was NON-postcript. Everything always seemed to plot fine including aerial photos.

Shawn
*Jason Hickey - Autodesk
Message 4 of 11 (1,055 Views)

Re: post script plotter

08-05-2009 05:25 AM in reply to: sfore
Do you send PostScript plots to the 1055? If not, then you're not utilizing
the extra $2000 option - that language has to be specified with the plot
type. Plain AutoCAD plots are not in the PostScript language unless you
specify them to be - you can set up an EPS "dummy" plotter in AutoCAD and
print to that file format, which you can then sent to that plotter.

PostScript is a language, a file format. It doesn't happen automagically,
you have to export a PostScript file. AutoCAD uses PCL (HP-GL/2) plotting
formats, not PostScript formats. The difference between PostScript and PCL
is akin to the difference between the DWG file format and the PDF file
format - one is vector, one is raster, and if you want a PDF, you have to
export that format in some fashion. Google "postscript and autocad" and
you'll get a wealth of information about this.

How are you monitoring this "file size" on your 1055 vs the 1050? Does one
just work better? Are the internal hard drives in both of them the same? Do
they have the exact same amount of RAM? Are they both set to the same plot
mode? These are the things that determine plot speed.

Aerials plot fine without PostScript - quite often the plotter isn't the
problem when it comes to plotting aerials...high resolution SID imagery
takes a LOT of power to process, and can fail if your computers are not up
to spec.

--
Jason Hickey
Autodesk, Inc.
http://beingcivil.typepad.com


"sfore" wrote in message news:6231286@discussion.autodesk.com...
Thanks for the info, but I'm still a little confused. We're a civil
engineering firm that mainly uses Autocad Civil 3D and Land Desktop. We use
various types of images on many of our projects. Are you saying for CAD
plotting only, regardless if I have images (sid, tif, jpg etc....) or a
rendering in my drawing, that a postscript plotter will not plot any
better/faster than a non-postscript plotter, even on large print jobs that
contain aerial photos?

I want to be sure we get the right plotter for our needs. We currently have
a hp1050 and a hp1055. The hp1055 is a postscript and the plot file size is
much lower and manageable than on the 1050. We can't send large print jobs
to the 1050c like we can the 1055.

We want the HP Designjet 4020 (was 4000), but I'm unsure if I should get the
postscript model or NON-postscript model. The postscript model is about
$2000 more than the NON. My last employer had the HP 4000 and I'm 98% sure
it was NON-postcript. Everything always seemed to plot fine including
aerial photos.

Shawn
*wfb
Message 5 of 11 (1,055 Views)

Re: post script plotter

08-05-2009 05:35 AM in reply to: sfore
Wow Jason, you really know this stuff.
(I think.)

Bill
*Jason Hickey - Autodesk
Message 6 of 11 (1,055 Views)

Re: post script plotter

08-05-2009 07:00 AM in reply to: sfore
Waaay back when I was a CAD manager/network admin for a large AEC firm, I
had this argument. Our repro house wanted to give us a HP1055CM with PS, and
wanted to add a bit to our price per square foot because it was PS capable
(we were on a FM contract.) I argued that we didn't need it (even with our 1
copy of Quark Express) and told them we weren't paying for it. It was the
only machine they had to give us, so they put it in without up charging us
because I did my research :smileyhappy:

--
Jason Hickey
Autodesk, Inc.
http://beingcivil.typepad.com


"wfb" wrote in message
news:6231443@discussion.autodesk.com...
Wow Jason, you really know this stuff.
(I think.)

Bill
Mentor
sfore
Posts: 388
Registered: ‎08-27-2007
Message 7 of 11 (1,055 Views)

Re: post script plotter

08-05-2009 09:26 AM in reply to: sfore
I really appreciate your feedback. The discussion is more clear to me now.

No, we don't send postscript plots to the hp1055. We were monitoring the file size thru the windows que. I've only been with my current employer about 2 months, so I'm not totally up to speed with the specs on the plotter and exactly the settings on the pc3 files for both plotters. I know the memory can be stored on our computer or the server. We have 2 pc3 files setup for the hp1050. The one pc3 file for aerials is set to store it on our computer and any non-aerial plots use the pc3 file that stores it on the server.

Today, I was informed that our Marketing people sometimes send post script plots using whatever software they use. Also, the price for the postscript hp4020 has already been approved. It's looking like we're getting postscript. So I guess my final question is, if we get the postscript plotter, will we (cadd/engineers) need anything additional to accomodate the postscript plotter and/or if there's anything different that we need to do as far as setup of the pc3 file for the hp4020 PS?

Thanks again, Shawn
*John Mayo
Message 8 of 11 (1,055 Views)

Re: post script plotter

08-05-2009 09:36 AM in reply to: sfore
You should not have to do anything special because its PS. Get the right
driver, set it up & use it like any other plotter.

You impressed me here as well Mr. Hickey. :smileyhappy:

--
John Mayo, PE

Core i7 920 6GB DDR3
Radeon 4870HD 1 GB
Vista64
*Jason Hickey - Autodesk
Message 9 of 11 (1,055 Views)

Re: post script plotter

08-05-2009 10:25 AM in reply to: sfore
Nothing special to do here - as I said, I did use a PostScript plotter in
production. Your marketing department's software will send their plots in
the correct language, yours (AutoCAD) will send their plots in their correct
language. You have nothing at all special to do here - AutoCAD will still be
sending a PCL plot just like it always has, which the PostScript plotter
will handle without any input. There is absolutely no reason whatsoever for
you to use any third party software to convert your AutoCAD plots to
PostScript, as you will be working through a lengthy process without any
noticeable gain in performance. To put it another way, the thought that your
plotter has PostScript capabilities should never cross your mind as you plot
from AutoCAD :smileyhappy:

--
Jason Hickey
Autodesk, Inc.
http://beingcivil.typepad.com


"sfore" wrote in message news:6231710@discussion.autodesk.com...
I really appreciate your feedback. The discussion is more clear to me now.

No, we don't send postscript plots to the hp1055. We were monitoring the
file size thru the windows que. I've only been with my current employer
about 2 months, so I'm not totally up to speed with the specs on the plotter
and exactly the settings on the pc3 files for both plotters. I know the
memory can be stored on our computer or the server. We have 2 pc3 files
setup for the hp1050. The one pc3 file for aerials is set to store it on
our computer and any non-aerial plots use the pc3 file that stores it on the
server.

Today, I was informed that our Marketing people sometimes send post script
plots using whatever software they use. Also, the price for the postscript
hp4020 has already been approved. It's looking like we're getting
postscript. So I guess my final question is, if we get the postscript
plotter, will we (cadd/engineers) need anything additional to accomodate the
postscript plotter and/or if there's anything different that we need to do
as far as setup of the pc3 file for the hp4020 PS?

Thanks again, Shawn
Valued Contributor
SrealMcCoy
Posts: 50
Registered: ‎12-10-2003
Message 10 of 11 (1,055 Views)

Re: post script plotter

08-05-2009 11:00 AM in reply to: sfore
For aerial imagery, postscript drivers can allow better color control through plotting profiles. PS drivers allow you to apply plotter profiles while the HPGL plotter driver does not. This can make a difference when, as in our case, we had a 1055 and a 1050 and when plotting color aerials from Acad the output would be worlds apart. If one plot looked good, the other looked very dark or very light. Plotting through postscript allowed us to apply plot profiles so we could get the same output out of either plotter. Using profiles can allow consistent output across a variety of plotters.

Patrick

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