Posted on Biomedtalk on July 6, 2012.
$tryker has done it again! But I can’t seem to access the “Wall of Shame” lately (http://home.att.net/~wallofshame/), so please help if you have an updated link.
Previously we’ve been systematically price gouged by $tryker:
– their proprietary $1345.55 xenon lamp for the X8000 light source
– their $586.50 power supply for their LCD monitor (which I found elsewhere for under $40).
Now we have the Stryker SDP1000 printer; which is simply a re-branded Sony UPDR80MD printer. This is actually a really great dye sublimation printer, which uses “Self-laminating Roll Media”. But we’re sick of paying $tryker for their overpriced media (print packs). Stryker charges $400 for a 2-pack of roll media (100 pages max), when we could get the Sony version (UPCR81MD) for about 60% less!
We ordered a Sony print pack to test it, and naturally the Stryker SDP1000 gives a ‘ribbon error’ when trying to use the Sony ribbon. I popped the “IC tag chip” out of an old Stryker ribbon and put swapped it with the Sony IC tag chip. Still no go. The chip not only identifies the paper (8×10 vs. A4), but it also works as a ‘fuel gauge’ to let the printer know how much unused ribbon is left on that particular spool. And, of course, Stryker chips won’t work in the Sony printer, and Sony chips won’t work in the Stryker printer; even though the ribbon itself is IDENTICAL.
Gone are the days when a company would make a living by producing a quality product. Now companies like $tryker get filthy rich by forcing the consumer to buy overpriced consumables ONLY FROM THEM.
How to get around it?
– Learn to reset the Stryker chip counter (I have a few Stryker chips if anyone is inclined to help out).
– Find a way to reconfigure the SDP1000 printer back to its Sony roots, so it will accept the Sony ribbon.
– Stop buying from $tryker, and build our own video towers with non-proprietary equipment.
I’m tempted to trial a Sony UPDR80MD printer, and see if our Stryker video capture units will communicate with it. Yet I doubt it, because the only printers we’re “allowed” to use are those for which Stryker loads the drivers. If the Sony printer *did* work, it would be a matter of time before Stryker came out with a ‘firmware update’ for our capture units, preventing us from using the Sony printers (much like Apple updates will ‘repossess’ a jail-broken device).