A Full Guide to PostScript and PCL Print Languages

May 19, 2023

4 min read

A Full Guide to PostScript and PCL Print Languages

It’s important to know the difference between PostScript and Printer Command Language (PCL) print drivers in the world of printers. Both of these print languages have their own benefits and uses, and picking the right one for your needs can make a big difference in how you print. In this blog post, we’ll talk about the background of PostScript and PCL, their different uses, and when to choose one over the other.

Novatech is an expert in the printer and copier industry with tens of thousands of devices under supplies and service agreements. With our passion for print, we wanted to help our clients know the core differences between PS and PCL print drivers. Let’s get started!


How PostScript and PCL Print Drivers Came to Be



  • Adobe Systems made it in 1984.
  • Mostly used in the publishing and graphic arts fields
  • Made to work with vector images and fonts that can be resized.
  • Gives you exact control over how graphics are drawn and the quality of the output

Adobe Systems came up with PostScript in 1984 as a page description language (PDL) to get around the problems with other printer languages. PostScript quickly became popular in the graphics and printing industries because it could work with vector graphics and fonts that could be changed in size. Its design lets you have exact control over how graphics look and how well they print, making it the best choice when you need high-quality printing.



  • Hewlett-Packard (HP) made it in 1980.
  • Widely used at the job and at home
  • Made to be easy to use and quick
  • Compatible with many different machines.

Hewlett-Packard (HP) made Printer Command Language (PCL) in 1980 as a simpler and faster alternative to the printer languages that were already in use. PCL quickly became popular in both the office and at home because it worked with a wide range of printers and was designed to be simple and fast.


How PostScript and PCL print drivers are used



  • Graphic creation and publishing on a computer
  • Professional settings for printing and prepress
  • Uses that need accurate color reproduction
  • Complex layouts of documents with many fonts and pictures

PostScript is the best language for printing in environments like graphic creation, desktop publishing, and professional printing. It is perfect for apps that need high-quality output because it can handle both vector graphics and accurate color reproduction. PostScript does a great job of handling complex document layouts with many fonts and pictures, which makes it a popular choice for making content with a lot of visuals.



  • Printing at work and at home
  • High-volume paper printing
  • Simple text and picture papers
  • Compatible with a lot of different printers

PCL is made for printing in the office and at home, with a focus on speed and ease of use. It works well for printing a lot of documents and works with many different printers. PCL is the best choice for printing everyday papers with simple graphics and text because it works well with both.


When to use PostScript instead of PCL and vice versa


When to choose PostScript:

  • You need skilled, high-quality work.
  • The images, fonts, and layouts you need to print are complicated.
  • It’s important to get the colors right.
  • You work in a professional printing or prepress setting B.


When to choose PCL:

  • Speed and ease of use come first.
  • Most of what you print is text and simple pictures.
  • You need to be able to work with a lot of different printers.
  • You are working on a printing project in an office or at home.

When choosing the right print driver for your needs, it’s important to know the differences between PostScript and PCL. PostScript is great for professional printing and graphic design because it has better quality and more control. On the other hand, PCL is all about speed and ease of use, which makes it great for printing at home and in the office.


Novatech Can Help With Your Print Drivers

Novatech is the place to go if you want to learn more about PostScript and PCL print languages or if you need help picking the best print driver for your business or personal needs. Our team of pros is ready to help you make the right choice and make sure you get the most out of your printing experience.

Get in touch with Novatech right away to talk with our expert team about your printing needs. We’re here to help, whether you need help picking the right print language, updating your printer, or getting the most out of your printing processes. Get in touch with us by phone, email, or our website to start using Novatech’s skills to improve your printing.

Don’t let the complicated nature of print languages hold you back. Instead, let Novatech help you make the right choice and use your printing setting to its fullest.

Written By: Editorial Team

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