Preferences Dialog "Printing Memory Use" Page


 

This page lets you set a options that determine how much memory the software uses when it prints. If the label maker is printing correctly for you, you don't need to read any further. If your print is omitting portions of labels or refusing to print anything at all, though, it may be memory related, in which case the options here may solve your problem.

The label maker changed the way it prints in version 3.13 in order to accomodate effects that use transparency. Instead of sending each element on the label to the printer one at a time, it renders everything on the label onto a single bitmap image and then sends that image to the printer. This new approach allows support for effects that use transparency, but often uses more memory than the earlier printing method. This shouldn't be a problem if you're printing on just about any kind of inkjet printer, provided you've got a sufficient amount of free disk space on your computer for the printer drives to spool temporary files to, but it could lead to problems on laser printers or on computer systems that are short of memory or drive space.

In general, if you're not having any problems printing, you can ignore this page. If you're experiencing problems such as only a portion of the label getting printed or the printer lights blinking but no paper emerging, which can be signs that the printer is having memory issues, you might fix the problem by trying some of the options on this page.

Please Note: Preferences you set on this page don't apply to LightScribe printing.

The "Printing Technique" Radio Buttons

1) Lowest memory, some effects unavailable:  At this setting, the label maker always prints using the pre-version-3.13 method, which usually requires less memory but doesn't allow effects that use transparency. If you check it, the options to use these effects will be disabled, and the software displays your labels as they'll look without the use of these effects. You probably don't want to set this option unless you're having troubles printing. (Note: the lite version of Acoustica CD/DVD Label Maker has transparency-based effects permanently disabled; in that case, choosing this option won't hurt. In addition, HP Tattoo labels always have to be printed by the single-bitmap technique, whether you've got this option checked or not.)

2) Software chooses best technique (recommended):  With this setting, the default, the label maker will print using the lower-memory technique if your label doesn't have anything on it that uses transparency, or the use-a-single-bitmap technique if it does. You'll probably be better off using this setting unless printing isn't working correctly.

3) Always print as bitmap (higher memory use): With this setting, the label maker will always render the entire label to a bitmap before printing. This generally uses more memory than the other method, especially at print resolutions of 600 DPI (dots per inch) or above.


The Limit Bitmap Resolution to Save Memory checkbox: If this box is checked, the label maker will limit the resolution of labels when printing via the single-large-image technique (options 2 and 3 above). By default, this option is checked with maximum resolution set to 300 DPI. This means that if you've got a printer with that prints at a resolution of 300 DPI or higher, the label maker will create a 300-DPI image of the label and send it to the printer, and if the printer is printing at, say 600 DPI, it'll scale the 300-DPI image up to fit.

There are differences in 300 DPI and 600 DPI printing, especially in vector-based items like text and WMF images, but they're subtle and you need to look closely to detect them. If you're an especially discerning label designer, you can up the limit to 600 DPI or turn off this option entirely, in which case the label maker will always create a label bitmap at the printer's resolution. This will work for most inkjet printers, but if your printer stops printing correctly when you up the resolution, turn this setting back to 300 DPI. Increasing resolution from 300 DPI to 600 DPI actually uses up four times as much memory. A CD label will usually be around 5 mb (megabytes) of memory at 300 DPI and 20 mb at 600 DPI. A DVD case cover will use 20 mb at 300 DPI and 80 mb at 600 DPI. And if your printer prints at a true 1200 or 1440 DPI, this number will quadruple again.


The Preferences Dialog

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