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Printer ribbons are mainly used in typewriters and impact printers which are the oldest of the most common printing technologies still in use.
The printer ribbon is an inked soaked strip of cloth. Normally the printer ribbon is encased in a cartridge construction for easy installment.
A Dot Matrix Printer is an impact printer that works by pressing the paper against a rotating drum that moves the paper forward during the printing process. The printhead, containing a set of pins, moves across the paper and repeatedly impacts with the printer ribbon. This imprints small inkjet ink dots on the paper which together form the individual letters and characters.
The advantage with a printer ribbon based printer is the often low printing cost and that the printer ribbon does not easily dry out. This makes them suitable for printing situations where reliability is more important than the printing quality.
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