End of Life Vinyl Cutters
As technology advances, computers and their peripherals become obsolete. We are accustomed to the idea that what used to be cutting-edge PCs are now paperweights. Advances in memory, processing power, and operating systems require regular updates in order to stay current. Just as old computers have to be replaced as they become obsolete, the hardware connected to them eventually reaches end of life and becomes unusable.
As 32-bit operating systems give way to 64-bit OS* like Windows 10, computer-driven devices require driver and firmware updates in order to remain compatible. Some older devices used in digital sign making don’t have such updates and are therefore not compatible with 64-bit OS. Because we cannot guarantee communication between new 64-bit software and old 32-bit hardware, these devices are no longer supported by SIGNWarehouse Product Support.
This mismatch has become more relevant because of necessary software upgrades. As LXI 8.5 has reached end of life, some customers have begun purchasing LXI 19 software to drive older devices. This doesn’t work if your hardware isn’t compatible and can’t be updated. Before you purchase a new software license to drive old hardware, please check the list below. You may find that you need more than a new PC and software.
The following vinyl cutters are no longer supported by SIGNWarehouse Product Support. Some of these are obsolete due to outdated drivers. For others, including the Graphtec FC7000, replacement parts are no longer available. This list will be updated as we proceed from current to newer versions of some of these products.
- Vinyl Express Lynx ** (GCC Bobcat)
- Vinyl Express Panther/Ultra Pro (aka GCC Jaguar I)
- Vinyl Express Qe60
- Graphtec FC5100/FC7000
- Graphtec CE5000
- Roland Camm-1 CM24/CX24
Keyspan Adapter Option
One possible solution for users of legacy Lynx, Panther, or Jaguar cutters is to use the preferred USB to serial keyspan adapter and simply update to the 64-bit driver for the adapter. The adapter is designed for connecting vinyl cutters with 9-pin serial ports to a computer’s USB port. If you don’t have one, a new adapter can be purchased online. If you just need to update the drivers for your existing adapter, you’ll find the link and more information here.
Note: If your legacy cutter isn’t compatible with the keyspan adapter, you may be able to download an updated cutter driver from the GCC Club website. You’ll need to create an account first. However, the cutter’s firmware must also be updated. Click here for instructions on updating cutter firmware. This process can damage the main board. Proceed at your own risk. SIGNWarehouse is not liable for damage to equipment caused by firmware updates to out-of-warranty hardware. A new vinyl cutter is a much more practical solution.
*Operating system. i.e. Windows 10. Old equipment designed to run in 16 or 32-bit operating systems cannot be used reliably in a 64-bit OS.
** Some products, such as Lynx cutters can be updated with new firmware from GCC that may update the cutter, but there is a risk that the firmware update will damage the main board, rendering the product useless. The simpler solution is a new vinyl cutter.