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Thu, Mar

This is not the cheapest printer but is it good value for money? Nessan Cleary puts it to the test.

SwissQ Print has built up a good reputation for the quality of its flatbed printers so I’ve been looking forward to testing one of these. There are four printers in all, ranging from the entry-level Oryx to the top end Nyala, recently updated to the Nyala2. For the test we got our hands on the mid-range Impala.

HP has rejuvenated its entry-level wide format printers with the addition of the third generation latex inks. Nessan Cleary talks to Latex 360 user Ian Penman of IntroScan.

Nessan Cleary takes a look at those substrates that can lead to new applications and new revenueopportunities.

Nessan Cleary asked users for their take on this all-in-one textile printer aimed squarely at the graphics market.

In recent years there have been quite a number of textile printer launches, mainly due to the growth in the garments and home furnishings markets. But there has also been movement in the soft signage market with textile printers producing flags and exhibition graphics as well as outdoor banners. But printing to fabrics is not quite as straightforward as with other substrates and many textile printers are designed to print to transfer paper first, necessitating a heat press for the actual sublimation - and the prints will also require fixation so they can be washed without the inks disappearing. 

Nessan Cleary conducts a test to check whether this printer lives up to its promise to deliver good quality results at a relatively low cost.

The Japanese manufacturer Mutoh has been around since 1953, having started off making drafting machines before moving into wide-format inkjet printers. The mainstay of the Mutoh printer range currently is its solvent series, including the ValueJet 1638X that was launched earlier this year and the focus of this test. 

With DirectSmile now in EFI’s domain, should it become part of yours too? Sophie Matthews-Paul considers its place in the wide-format arena.

Nessan Cleary talks to Asanti user Barry Laver of Wincanton Print about his experiences with this wide-format workflow solution.  

As wide-format printing continues to grow, so too do the individual service providers with most now having multiple printers. That usually means having to manage multiple Rips, which can complicate the workflow. We've taken a closer look at some of the issues around workflow and the various software options available elsewhere in this issue, but for this story we'll concentrate on just one of these - Agfa's Asanti - which was formally announced at the London Fespa show in June 2013 and has been shipping with most Agfa wide-format printers since the start of this year. 

Mimaki launched this solvent printer at the last Fespa Digital show but it’s only recently started appearing in the UK. Here’s how Nessan Cleary found it when he put it to the test. 

Solvent technology still dominates the market for roll-fed wide- format printers, mainly because it’s a proven performer that offers good quality results at a reasonable price. So this month we’ve been testing Mimaki’s latest solvent printer, the JV300. 

The ability to link different parts of the production process together with a degree of automation is becoming increasingly important in wide-format print production, but there are several different approaches. Nessan Cleary investigates.

It’s long been argued that improving your workflow and automating as many processes as possible is the key to realising greater efficiencies and hence higher profit margins. Given that wide-format covers such a huge gamut of print producers, there's no one size fits all approach and, to complicate matters, ‘workflow’ means different things to different people - from simply ganging jobs together right through to orders that come in via a Web-to-print system being automatically fed through to printing, finishing and fulfilment. 

…could be the start of something big. Nessan Cleary brings you up to speed on cutting tables for finishing rigid materials.

The Korean built Jetrix printers appear to offer good value for money, so how did this Jetrix model fare on test? Nessan Cleary reports.

Inktec, which was founded in 1992 in Korea, is best known as an ink manufacturer but has also developed its own range of Jetrix UV flatbed printers. It has a European office, based in Witney, Oxfordshire, which has installed some 35 printers in the last three years. Last year Inktec launched the first of its KX series, which now include the compact KX3, the mid-range KX5 and the much larger KX7, which we've tested this month. 

The Onset S40 promises high productivity but does it justify the cost? Nessan Cleary asks the question.

Until a few years ago people thought of digital printing as being only for short run until a couple of high production flatbeds appeared on the scene to challenge offset and screen printing. This month Image Reports looks at one of these, the Onset S40i, developed by Inca Digital but sold by Fujifilm. 

This month Nessan Cleary tests the latex printer that marks Ricoh’s first foray into wide-format printing.

The market for latex printers has been completely dominated by HP, despite a challenge from Mimaki. Now Ricoh, which supplies the Gen5 heads used by Mimaki, has entered the fray with the L4100 printer, available in 1.3 and 1.6m widths. Ricoh has rebadged Mimaki's JV400 LX series, and there's no discernible difference between the two apart from the sales and servicing, with Ricoh targeting its existing customer base of commercial printers and corporate print rooms. 

These days everything can be personalised. So how useful is this HP solution? Nessan Cleary asks those who have bought it.

Home furnishings and interior decoration are rapidly becoming popular wide-format print applications, with wall coverings high on the list. There’s a good range of wallpaper substrates available now and HP has built a complete solution around its latex printers that also includes design software, called Wall Art.