SV630 - Mac Interface for SV6500 Printer

Digital AV WS

The SV6500 printer was becoming a hot commodity. It had been discovered that you could transfer the printed thermal prints to ceramic coffee mugs. And so the mug personalization market was born.

The printer had a Centronics parallel interface, so it was pretty easy to connect it to a PC. EPD had a bi-directional card and developer toolkit available for the PC, so third party software developers could incorporate it in their products. My opinion was that sales would be even better, if we created a Macintosh solution for printing to the printer. You have to remember in 1988, only Macintosh II's, had support for 8-bit & 24-bit color displays, as well as native software for image editing. At the time, all PC's were monochrome, unless you added something like an $8000 National Graphics TARGA board, which provided video capture and editing with special on-board software. The cost of equipment for the PC version of a mug station made it an expensive solution. Connecting the printer to the Macintosh II would also require a bi-directional interface card. This would alllow users to to upload images that were captured in the video framestore of the printer, as well as being able to send an edited image back to printer.

Working with a local developer, I designed a Mac software program, called "SVPrinter" which gave you control over the printer and the ability to capture an image, upload it to the Mac, edit the image, re-download it to the printer, print it and then save the edited images to the computer hard drive. The print settings also featued a reverse image feature, just for imprinting mugs. I suggested we market it as "The Only True Color Capture Board that gives you something the others don't, Hard Copy Output." This was the very first digital imaging app for the Macintosh, shipped by Kodak.

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