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Hi all,

I'm just curious to know whether the HP-IL printer was sucessful over the directy connected 82143a. It seems to me that:

1/The 82162a was significantly more expensive, let alone the fact that you had to buy the HP-IL interface if you did not already owned it for some other purposes (e.g. tape drive).

2/The selling points over the 82143a seems a bit weak:
- a new format (FMT) instruction to either center test or left/right justify two colums of text - was this feature really a killer one ?
- a parse/non-parse mode to avoid word cutting (but even at the time, certainly an HP-41 + 24-column printer was not exactly a state-of-the-art word processing system, so what for ?);
- the ability for print barcode was certainly more appealing, but I understand that it was quite tidious to get this to work;
- A standby mode (certainly convenient);
- the fact that it would use only one port for both tape drive (or whatever peripheral) + printer instead of two.

Were users really convinced by this product ? Did they stick to their good old 82143a if they already had one ? or even, did choose to buy a new 82143a rather than the more expensive (and little added value) 82162a ?

Thanks a lot in advance for your answers,

Best regards,

I could never afford a printer back then and only used one briefly when a friend temporarily had a borrowed 82143A, but my feeling was that everyone that could afford to expand their HP41 system went for HP-IL.

You have to remember that in the early days, ports was quickly filled up and people looked for ways to plug in more peripherals, if they could afford.

Memory modules very combined in single shells, modules were wired inside. Port extenders were used. HP introduced first the CV to free up ports from memory modules, then CX to free more ports from Extended functions and Time module.

The 82162A printer was a way to reduce another port and it probably made more sense when using HP-IL.

I would agree with hth. My friend with a 41cv who got me into the 41 in the mid-1980's (and I bought a 41cx) started with the '143, then later got the '162 (and later the Thinkjet). I think he had his ports full; but he also got HPIL for the tape drive (even though he started earlier with the card reader), the '165 HPIL-to-parallel interface converter, the '164 HPIL-to-RS232 interface converter, and other things.
(11-01-2016 04:14 PM)hth Wrote: [ -> ]The 82162A printer was a way to reduce another port and it probably made more sense when using HP-IL.

I too fully agree with Håkan. At the time, it was all about not enough 41C ports, so any means to use a peripheral without needing a dedicated port far outweighed the other "improvements" the 82162A provided. While the improvements surely were nice/convenient albeit small changes, they were probably never even considered (if known), despite the higher price.

It's hard (maybe impossible?) to look back on these products and features today and make sensible conclusions about what we "should" have done, without also knowing the limits and trends at that time.

Today, it's a no-brainer that it wasn't worth the extra $, even though at the time, it took only a split-second to decide to spend it.
In mid 1981, I bought my personal computing dream kit ...
  • HP-41CV Calculator
  • HP-82151A Module Holder (2)
  • HP-82143A Thermal Printer
  • HP-82045A Thermal Paper Box (6 rolls)
  • HP-82153A Optical Wand
  • HP-82104A Card Reader
  • HP-00097-13143 Magnetic Card Kit (120 cards + 3 holders)
  • HP-00041-15006 Circuit Analysis pac
  • HP-00041-90098 Electrical Engr. Book
  • HP-00041-15022 Games pac
  • HP-00041-90099 Games Solutions Book
Ports were configured as followed ...
  1. Circuit analysis pac (page 8)
  2. Games pac (page A)
  3. Thermal Printer (page 6) or Optical Wand (page C)
  4. Card Reader (page E)
Then in mid 1982, I expanded my dream kit with ...
  • HP-82180A X-Functions/Memory module
  • HP-82181A X-Memory module (2)
  • HP-82182A Time module
  • HP-82160A HP-IL module
  • HP-82161A HP-IL Digital Cassette Drive
  • HP-82162A HP-IL Thermal Printer
  • AME-4107 Port-X-Tender
Ports were configured as followed ...
  1. Time module (page 5)
  2. X-Functions/Memory module (page A)
  3. Port-X-Tender (no page)
    1. Circuit analysis pac (page 8)
    2. X-Memory module (no page)
    3. Games pac (page C) or Optical Wand (page C)
    4. X-Memory module (no page)
    5. not-used
    6. not-used or Thermal Printer (page 6)
    7. not-used or HP-IL module (page 7) [IL Thermal Printer + IL Cassette Drive]
  4. Card Reader (page E)

Then came module doubling, tripling, 41CX, ZEprom, etc who optimized port usage and allowing me to remove the port-x-tender.
As other said, port availability were always an issue and everything that would help alleviate that, was used.
Thanks a lot for your answers.
So, nobody bought this for the FMT feature ? Any way to emulate this on the 82143a btw ?
Or for the parse mode or barcode printing ? Maybe the latter was better on the thinkjet ? (any 41 applications written for 80 columns ?)
When I bought my original CV I did not buy a printer, that decision came a little later.

I remember reading the Educalc catalog and deciding that the IL printer was worth the extra money because 1) it potentially saved port space if one was considering other HP-IL devices and 2) it had the ability to print bar codes with the Plotter module. I also remember that I was deciding between the infrared printer and the IL printer, maybe by then HP was no longer making the 82045A. I still print barcode occasionally with the printer for small(ish) programs. I don't believe I knew about the FMT command when I made the buying decision.

I get the impression that there were many more 82162As produced from the population of listings on TAS of the various printers.
(11-02-2016 12:39 PM)Vincent Weber Wrote: [ -> ]Maybe the latter was better on the thinkjet ? (any 41 applications written for 80 columns ?)

I got the 41cx for controlling equipment on the workbench and taking data. I had a test setup where I printed out test results in 80 columns on the Thinkjet. You can make a line as long as you want (even for a wide-carriage printer in compressed mode) by using functions like ACA (ACcumulate Alpha) and ACX (ACcumulate X) in the HPIL module. I also had the EXTended I/O module built into the HPIL module so as to save a port.
Hello Vincent,

(11-02-2016 12:39 PM)Vincent Weber Wrote: [ -> ]So, nobody bought this for the FMT feature ? Any way to emulate this on the 82143a btw ?

FMT was a nice addition but you could replicate it by doing manual formatting with spaces.

(11-02-2016 12:39 PM)Vincent Weber Wrote: [ -> ]Or for the parse mode or barcode printing ? Maybe the latter was better on the thinkjet ? (any 41 applications written for 80 columns ?)

For barcode printing, I used an HP-7470A plotter with the plotter module (82184A).
The IL thermal printer (82162A) worked but was less than optimal for big programs.

For HP-IL protocol sniffing, I used the HP-IL Development ROM with the 41 thermal printer (82143A),
because I did not want to have print data messing up with my HP-IL data.

For data coming from HP-IL/HP-IB acquisition and instruments devices, I used ...
-> Modules: the extended I/O module (82183A) and sometime the Data Acquisition-Control Pac (44468A)
-> Reporting: the IL thermal printer (82162A), the impact printer (82905B) or the Thinkjet printer (2225B)
-> Viewing: the MC00701A 80 columns video interface (92198)

Thanks everyone for your answers.
I guess that nobody bought the HP-IL printer for FMT or Parse mode then ? Smile
i have several 82162, because they were handy to "throw them into the loop" in case some printing was required.
to me, the 82143 has one nifty advantage over the 82162 (albeit very obvious and by no means surprising): it's a cool diagnostics tool when you want to protocol low-level data traffic on the IL.
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