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hp500ps rip vs vectorworks

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I use this set up on a DP 533 G4 768 RAM 9.1 and I am not sure how it works with macplot, but with the HP ripper it only takes a couple of seconds to zip through the desktop laserwriter and then shoots it to the HPspooler which takes a couple of minutes and when it is about 50% spooled, it actually starts plotting.

Plotting an actual line drawing takes about another 3 minutes for a 24X36 while the computer intermittently "chokes" or freezes while plotting. Hope this helps - quality is very good, ink seems to last a long time - not blazing fast, but that is what the 800ps is apparrently good for (at twice the price!)

We are pretty happy with ours.

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i am thinking of purchasing a new hp500 ps 42 plotter with the hope of using the hp rip software on a print server. has anyone got this type of set up? my real concern is the speed of the rip.

we currently have a hp750c + and use macplot to send to the plotter. ideally with this new 500 i would omit the macplot step as i'm tired of waiting for the upgrades to all the drivers before able to use new software.

any comments would be appreciated.


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I think it's the best you can buy at this price. We've included the cheapest iMac that does the ripping. It has only 96 Mb ram, but it's enouth to even use it as fax and internet router. Print quality is very good, but you have to struggle once to get the colors match vectorworks.

by the way: you can also use it with mac plot, but it prints only with 300dpi and the result is frustrating.

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I have been dying trying to get our new hp500 to work reliably with macplot. I inquired about the 500ps so that we could eliminate macplot and was told some horror stories about the slowness of the 500ps and the mac. I think there are major problems with the 500 and 500ps, and am getting ready to send mine back for an 800.

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I was just on the MicroSpot web site and saw that they are selling a bundle for the HP 500 series. Perhaps that is what you need?

We use a DesignJet 488CA here and have had some complaints about the manner in which the HP Software RIP on the host computer. When the PostScript job leaves the client running VectorWorks 8.5.2, the Software RIP (also on a B&W G3) doesn't detect the file and begin the RIP process unless the Finder is made active. Unless you have a dedicated host, that means interrupting the user of the host computer to switch in and out of the Finder. Then, the Software RIP can really only handle two jobs at a time even though we have tried some really high memory allotments to the software. Five jobs may be queued up, but then you have to go and Quit the RIP, re-launch it and print two more jobs. Again, not fatal, but pretty hands on to keep the workflow moving.

I'm not sure if the RIP set-up will be different for your planned 500 series purchase, but those are the caveats I give. Perhaps MicroSpot is worth keeping around(?)

-Dan Rafferty

Ryall Porter Architects


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We have a HP455CCA. The RIP software works fairly well but gets corrupted occasionally and needs its prefs thrown out. Although the software is a bit clunky, the actual plot time is about the same as it was with macplot. Is the 500 series closely related to the 455?

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I have set up 2 hp 500PS plotters, one in a single user space on an iMac(don't ask... 8)) and one for an office with 16 users. I had great luck and relatively fast plotting from the single user. In the office it would plot fast enough but only one user could plot at a time, if two people tried to plot at the same time it locked up the queue. After a month on the phone with HP and very detailed error logging they very nicely replaced at no charge our 500 with the 800 which has been beautiful. Well there are some color issues... 8) HP never could figure out what was the issue with our network, as it is plain jane 3com hubs no switches all macs etc. if you have the bucks go for the 800, it is a much sweeter machine, and not having to hassle with a separate rip server alone is worth it.

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I use a 455CA on a Mac network and after some early problems have found it a good reasonably reliable machine. I'm looking to change machines now, the 455 is over 3 years old, and have been told the 500 ps is flaky on a network has anyone else got experience of this machine ?

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