This might be my last post on mini-printers, as I’ve found a driver that just works with CUPS on Raspberry Pi. It also works on Ubuntu on my laptop, and should work (though untried) on Mac OS. You’ll have to build it from source, but it’s not too hard.
The hard part is working out if your thermal printer will work or not. There are many out there, and they’re all slightly different. If they support the ESC/POS bitmap command GS v 0 on 58 mm wide paper, they should work. The ones I’ve tested are:
- Catex POS5890U — USB, cheap, fast.
- “701” control board panel printer — fairly generic, decent quality printer with serial input. A bit slow for daily use at 9600 baud.
- Xiamen Embedded Printer DP-EH600 — as above.
The following should also work, but haven’t been tried:
- Adafruit Mini Thermal Receipt Printer — again, serial, so not super fast.
- Sparkfun thermal printer — which now appears to be identical to the Adafruit unit, and is referred to as the “A1 (or A2) micro panel printer” in the documentation.
Known not to work:
- BTHT-V6 printer — which uses a completely different command set.
If you have a manual for your printer, check it to see if it prints bitmaps by sending a three byte header of 29 118 48 (or 1D 76 30 in hexadecimal). If you’re not sure, try it with a small test image, and be ready by the power switch …
Featured Adafruit Product!
Mini Thermal Receipt Printer: Add a mini printer to any microcontroller project with this very cute thermal printer. Thermal printers are also known as receipt printers, they’re what you get when you go to the ATM or grocery store. Now you can embed a little printer of your own into an enclosure. This printer is ideal for interfacing with a microcontroller, you simply need a 3.3V-5V TTL serial output from your microcontroller to print text, barcodes, bitmap graphics, even a QR code! Read more.
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