Episode 93 – Peripherals

Keyboards, Mice , Printers, Accessories

What do we call peripherals?

peripheral or peripheral device is an auxiliary device used to put information into and get information out of a computer. The term peripheral device refers to all hardware components that are attached to a computer and are controlled by the computer system, but they are not the core components of the computer, such as the CPU or power supply unit. In other words, peripherals can also be defined as the devices which can be easily removed and plugged into a computer system.

Several categories of peripheral devices may be identified, based on their relationship with the computer:

  • An input device sends data or instructions to the computer, such as a mouse, keyboard, graphics tablet, image scanner, barcode reader, game controller, light pen, light gun, microphone and webcam;
  • An output device provides output from the computer, such as a computer monitor, projector, printer, headphones and computer speaker;
  • An input/output device performs both input and output functions, such as a computer data storage device (including a disk drive, solid-state drive, USB flash drive, memory card and tape drive), network adapter and multi-function printer.

Many modern electronic devices, such as Internet-enabled digital watches, keyboards, and tablet computers, have interfaces for use as computer peripheral devices.

Some of my favourites

Mechanical Keyboards
KUL ES-87 Cherry MX Black or Clear Switches – I must double check
Keychron K2 Wireless

On my whislist:
HHK Classic Pro
UHK v2 * Hungarian project*


Trackball Mice
(I have 2x Logitech, 1x Kensington 1x Microsoft)

Logitech MX Ergo (At work , wireless)
Kensington Expert Mouse Wireless Trackball (At home, wireless)
Logitech Trackball Marbel ( Backup one cable USB)
Microsoft Trackball Optical 1.0 ( Backup one cable USB)

MFP Printers
( like the HP M3035 or Canon MF6180dw)

I will talk in more details about them below.

——

Monitors with Monitor Arms ( Ergotron) as accessories.

My main GPU in my Fedora Workstation the Fujitsu R940 is an Nvida Quadro NVS 510 which has 4x Monitor Outputs I can use natively. That was the most required feature I wanted out of the GPU.

There is a newer but similar card from Asus if you are in the market for 4x Display out and You are not a gamer:

Asus GT710 4H-SL 2GB DDR5 around 88 Euros here where I live ( it used to be around 50-60 euros but price went up unfortunately)
The NVS 510 has also 2GB Ram but its DDR3 so it might server as an Upgrade for me at some point if needed (( native 4x Display out is definitely what I need from a GPU)

The Asus card with the GT710 Nvidia chip is still compatible with the latest Nvidia drivers for Linux and its on the linux hardware .org list as compatible

https://linux-hardware.org/?view=search&name=GT+710#list

I don’t have any 4K Monitors I’m not sure I need one. I have 2x BENQ GL2460 1080P 24″ one mounted to an Ergotron LX Dual Side-By-Side Monitor Arm ( Front Left – Front Right) and an Old Benq T2210HD 22″ 1080p on the Side Left and a Lenovo T2224p 22″ 1080p on another Ergotron LX Single arm

(( I am missing an Ergotron LX Single Arm for the small Benq T2210 but I shall get it soon ))

Ergotron Monitor Arms = Lexus of Monitor Arms.
Built like a tank, solid and awesome.

My Printers

Switched to B&W Lasers some years ago and I must say it turns out to be more economical than inkjet ones were for me even with the added maintenance every once in a while exchanging the consumables ( pick up rollers and bits a and pieces which needs to be replaced as part of general service maintenance just like on a car after X amount of Kms driven ) apart from the toner/s after every X pages printed.

One thing for sure that with the inkjet ones I was unable to estimate cost per print per page as there was no real way to measure printed paged amount nor to estimate how many pages I could print in average with a new ink when replaced.

This is very different with the laser printers. Their toners are estimated to X amount of pages printed and I found out that they always comply with these numbers ( in HP and Canon’s case this is what I have experienced) and even go a tiny bit beyond to give you some margins.

Also there is built in monitoring / webui in these small business or mid enterprise size machines to precisely measure printed pages, amount of copies made , pages scanned ,etc.

The price of the toners are economical in light of the amount of pages can be printed with them and its in the X amount of cents per page which is under what a normal internet cafe use to charge in 10 – 15 cents per page ( or at least those are the prices I remember)

The HP M3035 I have is a more than 25 year old unit if Im not mistaken and it was used when I purchased it ( came with the addon 500 page drawer) and I managed to pick up some toners for it NOS (New Old Stock) for around 15 euros which are able to print up to 6500 pages calculated with pages with 5% of coverage of ink on them with the HP Q7551A toner ( HP 51A).

Mine is on 79% and estimates 3300 pages to be printed with it still.

HP M3035 Supplies Status Page


This old HP M3035 which might not be everyones favourite ( and it is big and heavy) compared to the Canon MF6180dw the only thing it can not do is:
Apple Airprint compatibility

Also while it has no Wireless Built in You could get a Wireless 802.11g module for it but as I am on the network cable I can still print just fine with My android phone being connected to wireless network (android with the HP Print Driver app) and it sees and recognizes my printer on the LAN ( another subnet Vs the Wireless of the Android phones ) and I am able to print when I am on the Wifi just fine. So no need the wireless module ( nor the bluetooth module you can get for it IMHO)

Specs and Modules info for it here:

https://h10057.www1.hp.com/ecomcat/hpcatalog/specs/provisioner/05/CB414A.htm

http://www.i-print.com.hk/datasheet/LaserJet%20M3035.pdf

It does and compatible with everything I need. It does PCL 5 and PCL 6 its estimated for volumes of 75 000 pages per month ( so I am really using just occasionally and taking very good care of it). It works under Linux / Unix (HP-UX) / Windows without a problem.

It is a reliable piece.

Now the Canon on the other hand. I bought it new and using very lightly just before it reached 11 months of age I had to send in for repair as the control board/motherboard gave up and it started to do very weird things:

– sent a page to print .. never printed it out but I did see it on the print jobs list however It neither allowed me to cancel it … eventually it timed out after 20 some minutes but not always –

I had to fight with their technical support explaining them nothing has changed in my environment and yes the drivers are up to date and yes I tried with 3x different machines ( Windows , Mac , Linux) and under none of those its willing to work tough It did just fine a few days ago, etc. etc. and Yes i tried on Wireless and on Cable and on USB plugged in directly to the computer … it was a nightmare.

Eventually I got it back and it did happen the same symptoms again after like 5 months or so maybe 7. I recognized the symptoms instantly and I explained again to technical service. This time it was not in the type of warranty as before when It was just about being 1 year old. Unfortunately after the first year the warranty did not cover free pickup and delivery back to the customer , I had to pay for it.

They sent it back after a few weeks saying they found nothing wrong with the printer and it works fine.

When I got it back and tried miraculously it was working. I am still convinced they did change the part one more time in it but did not want to admit it.
Otherwise it was the biggest miracle ever if it was not the case.

When the Canon was in service the second time that’s when I picked up the HP M3035 as it was a time when I needed a printer to print some documents weekly/daily for a while and that was exactly when the Canon failed me again/

Keyboards and Mice

In my opinion these are one of the most important pieces because they are the main input devices you are using every day if you are working in IT.

Having a keyboard and mouse which you can handle and work with without fatigue and with ease and comfort in my opinion is important to your health and wellbeing.

On the keyboard typing experience for me adds a lot to the comfort and the speed I can input what I have to into the computer.

The mouse its design and shape and ease of use for long periods and everyday activities helps me avoid strain and injury in my hand.

I prefer mechanical keyboards for their typing experience and trackball mice for moving the mouse pointer around the screen all day without the need to move my whole arm as I have to do if I use a regular non trackball mouse.

I admit there is / was some learning curve to get use to and precise / quick enough with the trackball mice and also with the mechanical keyboards as its a different feeling with both devices but eventually I can say it worth the effort.

On my wish list I have some keyboards still ( I think mice I do have enough for now 🙂 )

HHK Classic Pro
UHK v2

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