Extech Data Systems, portable printer developer, introduces the Andes 3, the first in a series of enhanced Generation 4 printers that joins its existing family of portable printing products. Uniquely designed for harsh outdoor environments, the three-inch printer is able to withstand adverse weather conditions and drops to concrete without diminished performance. The Andes 3 unit features a highly integrated 32 Bit Microcontroller from ST Microelectronics, which incorporates 4 MB Flash and 1 MB SRAM memory. The lightweight printer boasts an in-field programmable CPU containing firmware, resident fonts, rotated fonts, downloadable fonts, graphics, multiple logos, and bar codes. Incorporating a thermal print head from SEIKO, the Andes 3 performs at a rate of two inches per second at a high resolution. Built-in detectors monitor voltage and paper out, and the unit offers automatic print contrast control. Operability is effortless with an easy load clamshell style paper load system with a pull-bar release for the paper door. The user can choose to employ the power adapter option or the new extra capacity Lithium Ion battery cartridge. While charging, the adaptor automatically switches to AC power guaranteeing a long length of life. The Andes 3 is fully MS-DOS and Windows compatible with drivers available for Windows 95, 98, 2000 and XP. The printer has a full-speed handshake and is compliant with .NET, CF and Palm based operating systems. With a variety of resident fonts, the Andes 3 series maintains the capability to print fonts ranging from 12 to 24 characters per inch. The unit incorporates both two-bay and four-bay battery chargers and features protective bumpers for optimum durability under harsh and adverse conditions.