News & Events

A400 Protocol Issues

1. Introduction

The A400 CP protocol is documented in Domino’s


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This paper describes issues in the communication and work arounds. The facts are known but are described again here.



2. INITIALIZATION: there are some inkjets where the initialization of the A400 with the EditorGT does not work. Most probably, there are different software versions in the A400s. In the A400 manual, it says that Fault reporting is enabled with the following operation:



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Select Advanced Service by selecting the green character set key and the

Service topic key then entering the advanced service password and pressing OK.

Use the scroll keys to find “CP Print Set-up”. Select this function to display

the following options with their current settings:

Check Print Speed Enabled/Disabled

Fault Reporting Enabled/Disabled

Print Format 7 / 9 / 14 / 16 drop.

These settings can changed using the “+” and “-” keys. Select OK to enter

new settings into the printer operation.


Some A400 inkjets respond to a clear message with the fault report. The EditorGT looks for a printer ready condition (10hex). If not, the EditorGT does not go into run mode because the A400 is not ready to print !


May be someone knows how to activate the fault reporting after a reset and clear message. Also while in production (see point 3).



1) From version 3.52E, the A400 version is selectable when going into the A400 menu. V1.0 does not expect a fault report from the A400. V1.2 expects a fault report, V2.1 is the latest A400 software and has not been released by Domino.


2) You can also select SOLO instead of A400 as inkjet. The fault report is not expected for the SOLOs. You will have to allow A400s and SOLOs in the EditorGT license file.

3. FAULT REPORT: another problem is that, even if the inkjet is not ready to print or the high voltage is taken down while in production, the inkjet will continue to set daisy and semaphore signal as if it was printing.


This problem is fatal and must be addressed by Domino. It may always be that there is setting in an A400 menu to take care of this. So far, all tests have failed.


4. SPEED: when producing from the 1st product detect, the EditorGT sends 5 messages in advance (3 are not enough in fast web applications). But when producing from a synch point, the message is only sent to the inkjet when the product is actually there. While a Jetarray with 8 channels does not present a problem, the A400 does. As work around, the A400 must be placed as far as possible from the photocell but this is not always possible.



5. TWIN LINE: some A400 do not support writing 2 lines. The print looks intertwined. The only work around known is to replace the firmware with the latest A400 software.



6. DAISY CHAIN: one cannot daisy chain 2 or more A400 as it worked with the SOLO. The work around is cabling it differently but then the print control does not work.



7. FAULT HANDLING: this is the way the EditorGT handles reported faults from V3.52E if the A400 reports it:


bit 3 set to 0: fault monitor Handling (3.52E) Before

01hex: High voltage fault (stop/red) (stop/red)

02hex: Charge fault (stop/red) (stop/red)

04hex: Gutter fault (stop/red) (stop/red)

10hex: Printer ready to print (run) (run)

20hex: Make up cartridge empty (warning/amber) (warning/amber)

40hex: Ink cartridge empty (warning/amber) (warning/amber)

80hex: Reservoir level too low (stop/red) (warning/amber)


bit 3 set to 0: error condition Handling (3.52E) Before

09hex: P-GO received, no message (stop/red) (stop/red)

0Ahex:Stroke rate too fast (warning/amber) (warning/amber)

0Bhex: invalid control character (stop/red) (stop/red)

0Chex: message longer then the aperture (warning/amber) (warning/amber)

0Dhex:Print-go received while delay (stop/red) (stop/red)

0Fhex: Message number not in sequence (stop/red) (stop/red)

18hex: Viscosity out of range (warning/amber) (warning/amber)

28hex: Ink system fault (stop/red) (stop/red)

48hex: Ink reservoir timed out (stop/red) (warning/amber)

58hex: Viscometer error (warning/amber) (warning/amber)

68hex: Ink reservoir has 24 hours to go (warning/amber) (warning/amber)

88hex: Door open (warning/amber) (warning/amber)

C8hex: Ink reservoir has 2 hours (warning/amber) (warning/amber)




Epilogue: hopefully, with version 2.1, all issues will be solved.