Digital textile printing systems are making it easier for home-textile designers and entrepreneurs to order shorter runs of customized products. For example, Catalyst Fabric Solutions, a large web-to-print manufacturer of home textiles, has installed multiple Epson SureColor F10070 dye-sublimation printers to increase productivity and fulﬁll print-on-demand orders.
Catalyst Fabric Solutions oﬀers more than10,000 customizable home textile products, including tablecloths, placemats, bean bags, backpacks, lunch totes, pillows, and custom blankets. The customized products that can either be ordered through retailers or shipped directly to customers.
“The print on-demand business has tripled in the last four years, and it continues to grow at a great rate,” said Chuck Smith, owner, Catalyst Fabric Solutions. “We’ve seen business increase over the last two years and a lot of people are searching for internet on-demand businesses. We needed more technology; we needed more printers to keep up. The SureColor F10070 was everything we wanted.”
Orders at Catalyst Fabric Solutions typically spike in October, November, and December as customers prepare for the holiday season. Catalyst sees an increase in demand for photo products, including photo blankets.
“The ﬁrst of our SureColor F10070 printers were installed in December 2020 – in the middle of our busiest season,” said Jim King, operations manager, Catalyst Fabric Solutions. “Had they not been a plug-and-play set up, we would have had some real problems, as we were counting on their capacity to meet deadlines. However, they hooked into our network easily and we were able to begin printing immediately.”
“Because of the capacity on the SureColor F10070 printers, we were able to take all our blankets that we previously put through 30 other printers onto the new Epson printers. And they were printing them in less than a minute – about four times faster than our previous machines,” said King. “There’s nothing I haven’t put through this printer yet – it’s the workhorse right now for the plant.”
“As one of the largest and most advanced facilities of its kind, Catalyst Fabric Solutions runs an impressive operation,” said Tim Check, product manager, Professional Imaging, Epson America, Inc. “They are putting the SureColor F10070 to the ultimate test in their industrial facility and pushing a vast majority of their dye-sublimation projects onto the SureColor F10070 printers to best deliver results for clients.”
The Epson SureColor F10070 oﬀers industrial reliability and round-the-clock productivity at a low total cost of ownership. The printer features four 4.7- inch PrecisionCore® printheads to deliver roll-to-roll performance at speeds up to 2,700 sqft/hr.
Features to maximize eﬃciency and minimize downtime include user-replaceable printheads and a low-cost, high-capacity replaceable ink pack system that holds up to 20 Liters of ink per color for longer print runs with less user intervention.
For additional information on the Epson’s textile printing solutions, visit Epson’s website.
The printer features inline fixation (inline sublimation) for an efficient 1-step direct-to-fabric printing process.
When the inks are fused directly into the fabric, producers of decorated textiles maintain the soft feel of the printed fabric without the extra time, costs, and floor space of using a rotary heat press (sublimation calendar) to transfer the inks printed on specialized paper to the fabric rolls.
Andrea Riccardi, head of product management, Durst Group AG, notes that “The Durst P5 TEX iSUB is operated by only one operator, and the process acceleration increases our customers’ ability to deliver.”
The P5 TEX iSUB printer can print onto transfer papers if a specific job requires it. The combination of direct-to-fabric and dye-sub transfer processes in one system gives users enormous flexibility.
Soft Signage Market is Growing
The P5 TEX iSUB printer can help print-service providers meet the growing demand for digitally printed polyester fabrics in multiple markets, including visual communications, decor, and apparel.
Sublimated fabrics are commonly used to make photographic backlit and front-lit displays for stores, museums, and trade shows as well as theatre backdrops, and custom upholstery, pillows, drapes, and tablecloths for restaurants, hotels, offices, homes, and event venues.
“Durst has been active in the soft signage market since 2010,” says Christian Harder, Vice President Sales, Durst Group AG. The company has placed more than 250 Durst Rhotex textile printing systems in the market worldwide.
“The P5 TEX iSUB combines efficiency, quality and productivity at the highest level,” Harder adds. “We are convinced our solution will give a significant boost to the soft signage market.”
Contactless Fixing Technology
Durst RIP software and Durst Sublifix dye sublimation ink delivers vivid colors, even on difficult media such as blackback materials for frontlit displays or backlit fabrics for lightboxes.
The innovative contactless fusing on the Durst P5 TEX iSUB printer ensures excellent color consistency as well as extreme sharpness of detail in images and text. Blurring or bleeding colors are virtually eliminated.
This means users can produce decorative fabrics with strong, brilliant colors and exact reproduction of details. The two-step print-and-transfer process isn’t required to produce flags that show bold colors on both sides of the material.
Other features include an integrated finishing unit that can be used to sew and stitch the printed fabric and an optional Dual Roll system that allow two 1.6 meter-wide rolls to be printed simultaneously.
The maximum print speed is 383 m2/hour when the 330 cm print format is fully utilized.
Field Tested at ABS Group
The Durst P5 TEX iSUB is being field testing at the ABS Group in Treviso, Italy. The ABS Group has a long-standing partnership with Durst and has worked with Durst Rhotex 500 and Durst Rhotex 325 textile-printing systems years.
At the ABS Group, “The Durst P5 TEX iSUB is proving its reliability in 24/7 operation,” said Andrea Riccardi.
With the Durst Analytics tool, ABS Group managers can flow production data from the P5 TEX iSUB into their company’s ERP software to optimize production planning and individual processes.
About the P5 Series
Introduced in 2018, Durst’s P5 generation of printers are engineered for high-speed, high-volume offset-quality production with ultra-precise drop placement and industrial-level reliability. P5-series printers share five core attributes: productivity, reliability, workflow, versatility and print quality.
The Durst P5 printers include: Durst-developed software and workflow solutions; state-of-the-art, touchscreen user-interfaces, and leading-edge remote service capabilities. Everything is designed to maximize performance and uptime of the printer and giver users high levels of flexibility in media and job handling.
Durst is a manufacturer of advanced digital printing and production technologies. Durst is a family company with an 80-year history, where values are focused on innovation, customer orientation, sustainability, and quality. For more information about the Durst Group visit: www.durst-group.com
Durst announced the P5 TEX iSUB printer on April 29, 2021
The Epson SureColor F10070 is a 76-inch roll-to-roll industrial dye-sublimation printer for producing bright, high-quality textiles for fashion, sports apparel, home decor, and soft signage. It was engineered to meet the evolving needs of today’s textile industry and support the expansion of textile sourcing and production in the U.S.
“The high-performance SureColor F10070 provides an efficient and cost effective dye-sublimation solution for print shops looking to produce medium to large high-quality apparel runs and bid on incoming textile orders from businesses that sell direct to consumer,” said Tim Check, senior product manager, Professional Imaging, Epson America. He said the SureColor F10070 also supports onshoring production needs by shortening lead times, decreasing costs, and streamlining workflows.
Four, user-replaceable 4.7 inch Epson PrecisionCore printheads deliver high productivity with extreme drop placement accuracy for sharp detail and bright colors.
The lower-cost high-capacity, replaceable ink pack system holds up to 20 liters of UltraChrome DS ink per color. This reduces ink costs up to 50 percent (compared to T46C dye-sub ink used in the SureColor F9470. The four colors of UltraChrome DS inks include cyan, magenta, and yellow plus a high-density black ink that produces exceptional color saturation and high contrast.
The hot-swappable ink system automatically switches from an empty ink pack to new ink pack without stopping the print job. The enables longer printer runs without user intervention.
A redesigned 9-inch touchscreen control panel lets operators see the image printing and monitor print, paper, and ink status. Users can also understand environmental conditions for optimized print performance.
An advanced auto paper tension control system and fabric head wiper system clean the media and remove dust before printing.
A compact media dryer includes a front heater that can reach temperatures up to 230 degrees Fahrenheit and an underside header that reaches temperatures of 122 degrees Fahrenheit. This helps supports full-speed performance in a space-saving design.
Epson Edge Print RIP software enables users to get the best possible quality output with Epson’s Precision Dot technology that chooses the optimum droplet sizes and screening patterns. It includes the Adobe PostScript 3 engine that enables users to process PostScript data for a variety of digital file formats. Epson Edge Print simplifies file management, color control, screening, nesting, and step-and-repeat patterns.
Cloud-based printer fleet reporting through Epson’s production-management Cloud Solution PORT.
Four types of performance-optimized transfer papers can be purchased from Epson:
Rigid Photo Optimized
The Epson SureColor F10070has an MSRP of $89,995 and ships directly from Epson America. Several Epson Preferred Plus service plans are available.
About Epson Professional Printers
Epson America, based in Long Beach, CA, is Epson’s regional headquarters for the U.S., Canada, and Latin America.
The Epson SureColor collection of professional and industrial printers includes:
Epson’s new SureColor® F6370 44-in. dye-sublimation printer quickly and efficiently produces high-quality images on dye-sublimation transfer papers that can be used with a heat transfer press to make promotional products, soft signage, cut-and-sew fabrics, and more.
Like all of Epson’s dye-sublimation printers, the SureColor F6370 is a turnkey solution that includes Epson printhead technology, Epson dye-sublimation inks, Epson DS transfer media, Epson ICC profiles, and Epson service and support.
The SureColor F6370 also comes with Epson’s new Epson Edge® layout and print-management workflow software with an Adobe® PostScript® 3™ engine.
Other features include a built-in cutter for roll-to-sheet convenience and an optional take-up reel system for unattended printing.
The SureColor F6370 replaces the 44-in. SureColor F6200 in Epson’s line-up of SureColor F-Series printers. Other models include the 64-in. SureColor F9370 and 60-in. SureColor F7200.
“The award-winning SureColor F-Series product line is the number-one selling large format dye-sublimation printer,” said Tim Check, senior product manager, Professional Imaging, Epson America, Inc. “We are thrilled to continue expanding the series and providing new features customers have requested.”
Epson Edge Print Software
The new Epson Edge Print layout and printer management software features an Adobe Postscript 3 engine and includes job nesting and textile-printing tools such as step-and-repeat patterns, custom spot color matching, and support for project color libraries,. Users can import new media settings when available, edit media settings and manage projects remotely.
The Epson Edge dashboard, a remote-printing management software, gives operators detailed views on current printer activity, ink supply levels, and error messages. The software can also remotely perform cleaning cycles and various maintenance cycles and update printer firmware.
Dashboard users can check the status of up to 10 printers, including all SureColor F-Series, SureColor F-Series Direct-to-Garment, and SureColor S-Series wide-format printers.
Epson printers are also compatible with leading RIP workflow software.
Epson Printhead and Accessories
The Epson PrecisionCore® TFP® printhead supports fast print speeds (up to 680 sq. ft./hr.), precision dot control for print quality and sharpness, and resolutions up to 1440 x 720 dpi.
The PrecisionCore print chip is ideal for dye-sublimation ink chemistry and was co-developed with Epson UltraChrome DS inks for extreme reliability.
The new roll media adapters lock into place to prevent unwanted roll movement and the built-in cutter makes it easy to trim sheets of printed paper for use in the counter-top heat transfer presses used with promotional products and smaller photo gifts.
The optional take-up reel streamlines the process of using a rotary calendar heat press to transfer images from rolls of printed paper to rolls of polyester textiles for soft signage or cut-and-sew fashions.
The user-accessible maintenance panel provides easy access to the printhead, wiper and wiper cleaner, and features simple instructions to complete routine maintenance checks.
The SureColor F6370 printer uses four colors (CMYK) of Epson UltraChrome® DS inks, including a High Density Black.* The inks produce vibrant color saturation and contrast and are sold in 1.1 liter, easy-to-change pouches. This pouch capacity provides about 10-percent more ink than the ink supplies for previous models.
The UltraChrome DS inks are Eco Passport by Oeko-Tex. This textile industry safety standard ensures that chemicals and colorants used in the textile production are safe for clothing worn by adults, children, and babies.
Epson offers four high-performance transfer papers optimal printing with Epson UltraChrome DS inks on the SureColor F series printers:
Multi-purpose paper can be used to transfer images to a variety of products, including mouse pads, T-shirts, and ceramics.
Photo paper is optimized to transfer images to hard surfaces with minimal grain.
Textile-adhesive paper is recommended for producing fabrics and apparel.
Production is a lightweight paper for roll-to-roll sublimation transfer printing.
All four papers have a unique chemical coating that allows for heavy ink loads with low cockling, superior clarity, and sharpness.
Support and Availability
The Epson SureColor F6370 Standard Edition is available now through authorized Epson Professional Imaging resellers for $8,495 MSRP. The optional take up reel will be available in Fall 2019.
The SureColor F6370 offers a standard Epson Preferred Limited Warranty, a one-year program that includes toll-free advanced telephone access Monday through Friday and usually next business-day on-site service in the unlikely event of any hardware failure.
For additional information about Epson’s complete line of wide-format printing solutions, visit www.proimaging.epson.com.
Roland DGA Corporation describes their newest wide-format dye-sub printer as an intelligent multi-function dye-sublimation printer. That’s because the Texart RT-640M uses specially formulated Texart SBL3 sublimation inks that enable you to print directly onto coated polyester fabrics or on different types of sublimation transfer papers.
The direct-to-textile print option on the Texart RT-640M simplifies the production of dye-sublimation fabrics for soft signage and trade show graphics. The ability to print to different types of transfer paper lets you create a range of products, including sublimated hard goods and rigid signs to apparel and decor fabrics.
Roland’s Texart SBL3 inks are available in 4-color (CMYK), 8-color (CMYKLcLmOrVi), and 8-color fluorescent (CMYKOrViFyFp) configurations.
The RT-640M includes several advanced features:
The media take-up incorporates adjustable front rollers for no-skew printing, as well as magnet weights for improved tensioning and performance.
State-of-the-art 8-channel printheads deliver unmatched color and image results on a wide range of materials. The heads also optimize ink coverage for lower operating costs.
The Roland Bulk Ink Switch System features 1000 cc pouches and automatically switches to a back-up pouch for non-stop printing in a 4-color configuration.
An ink collection channel within the platen facilitates direct printing onto mesh, flag, voile and other thin textiles.
The Texart RT-640M comes with ErgoSoft Roland Edition 2 software. This software offers unique tools for textile dye-sublimation and allows users to RIP up to eight jobs simultaneously.
ErgoSoft Roland Edition 2 boasts an Aurelon PDF engine with 64-bit native support, plus unlimited hot folders and job cost estimation. Other features include a new smart fill function, rectangular image nesting, variable data, and a huge range of color profiles, and more.
“The RT-640M is an unbeatable investment for anyone looking to get into the dye-sublimation market,” said Lily Hunter, Roland DGA Product Manager, Textiles and Consumable Supplies. “This value-packed inkjet offers the most flexibility you can get in an entry-level sublimation printer. Its multi-function capabilities allow users to easily and cost-effectively produce everything from flags, soft signage and backlit signage to ChromaLuxe photo panels, apparel, and décor.”
At spring trade shows in Las Vegas and Munich, HP introduced their new HP Stitch line of wide-format and grand-format inkjet dye-sublimation printers.
The new HP Stitch S series of digital textile printers includes the 64-inch HP Stitch S300, the 64-inch HP Stitch S400, and the 126-inch HP Stitch S1000. The printers are built for easy maintenance and fast, precise color-matching, made possible by a built-in color-measuring device called a spectrophotometer.
Inkjet dye-sublimation has become a wildly popular process for printing fabrics for trade-show banners, backlit signs, stage backdrops, sportswear, and fashions. Because the ink colors are fused into the molecules of different types of polyester textiles, the printed fabrics retain their soft feel, vivid colors, and draping characteristics. (In other words, the fabrics don’t “feel” printed.)
Unlike existing wide-format dye-sublimation printers that use piezo printheads, the HP Stitch printers uses thermal printheads heat to eject tiny droplets of ink onto a transfer paper. The printed transfer paper is then fed through a heat press, which uses carefully controlled amounts of heat and pressure to transfer the colors from printed paper to a wide range of dye-sub-compatible polyester fabrics from companies such as Fisher Textiles, Berger Textiles, and Top Value Fabrics.
Even though HP isn’t the first company to introduce wide-format and grand-format dye-sublimation printers, the market for digitally printed textiles is growing quickly.
“Décor and fashion application trends, on demand production and personalization are boosting digital print growth,” says Santi Morera, Head of Graphics Solutions Business at HP. “The digitally printed textiles market is experiencing double-digit annual growth, forecast to reach $5.5 billion by 2023, according to Smithers Pira. We look forward to more digital print transformations being realized with the arrival of the new HP Stitch S series.”
The HP Stitch S300 Printer was designed for newcomers to dye-sublimation printing who will be using it to create short runs of fabrics for soft signage, interior decor, or prototypes of fashion or sportswear designs.
The S300 uses one set of 775-mil cartridges of cyan, yellow, magenta, and black HP Dye-Sublimation Ink cartridges.
Unlike dye-sublimation printers that use piezo inkjet printheads, you don’t have to call a service technician to replace a faulty printhead on HP Stitch printers. Because a printer operator can easily replace the thermal inkjet printheads as needed, users will experience less downtime and lower service costs.
“Our experience with HP Stitch S300 has been much easier and faster than other dye sub printers we’ve previously used,” says Teunis Roos of the Color Concepts independent profiling and testing lab for the digital wide-format printing industry. “Most printers require manual action in terms of head maintenance and alignment, but the HP Stitch S300 is more proactive and automated when it comes to performance.”
The HP Stitch S500 Printer for high production sites enables predictable dye sublimation color and less media waste. The symmetrical 2xCMYK printhead configuration and Optical Media Advance Sensor allow you to achieve saturated colors even in the fastest print mode. Inks are available in either 775-mil cartridges or 3-liter cartridges for lower ink costs and unattended print jobs.
The HP Stitch S500 also can hold larger rolls and is equipped for a Tension-Sensing Winder that reduces the risk of errors during overnight operations. The Stitch S500 includes HP Services and cloud-management tools.
With HP SmartColor tools, you can distribute print jobs across a fleet of printers and get consistent color from printer to printer.
The front-loading printer is designed to save floor space and the HP Smart Nozzle Compensation system Help avoid reprints and media waste with 1200 native dpi printheads and HP Smart Nozzle Compensation system, saving up to 50 percent floor space with frontal media loading and a spindle-less system.
TheHP Stitch S1000 Superwide Printeris designed for shops that require high levels of productivity when printing textiles for sportswear, fast fashion, backlit and frontlit signage, curtains, and upholstered chairs and sofas.
Designed for simplified operation, high uptime, and unattended printing, the 126-inch printer enables high-production shops to handle short deadlines and seasonal peaks. The HP Stitch S1000 can achieve production speeds up to 2,370 sq. ft./hr.
The printer delivers continuous high-quality prints on both transfer paper and fabric. Fully automatic maintenance ensures optimal image quality without user intervention. The HP Drop & Dry print zone dryer helps ensure sharp prints even when printing high-density jobs direct to fabric.
The printer holds 10-liter ink supplies and rolls up to 600 lbs. so jobs can run overnight when necessary.
The HP Stitch S1000 includes a built-in spectrophotometer and HP SmartColor tools that make it possible to achieve consistent colors even when jobs are printed on a fleet of HP Stitch printers.
New HP Dye Sublimation Paper
HP has also launched a set of new dye sublimation papers for the new
HP Stitch S Printer series. These papers are designed and tested as a system
with HP dye sublimation inks and the HP Stitch S Printer series to achieve
excellent image quality and color consistency.
The HP Stitch S300 and S500 printers and HP dye-sublimation paper were showcased at the 2019 ISA Sign Expo in April. The HP Stitch S1000 Printer made its debut at the FESPA Global Print Show on May 13.
Why Digital Textile Printing Is Growing
HP sees plenty of
room for growth in the printed textiles market. For one thing, in a world of
7.8 billion citizens, everyone is surrounded with textiles from birth. Of
course, only a small fraction of the portion of textiles are printed. Only 10%
of the $308 billion worth of printed textiles are printed digitally. But this
percentage is accelerating because the growth of e-commerce and digital
marketing are transforming how fashions, apparel, and home goods are sold.
Not long ago, only big brands and retailers could afford to create and sell apparel. Before digital printing and e-commerce, it took about 100 days for mass-produced garments to go from the design stage to the selling floor of the brick-and-mortar retailers. Designers and buyers had no way of knowing how many copies of a specific design consumers would buy. So unsold excess merchandise was either sold at clearance prices or destroyed. And the manufacturer of the goods didn’t receive payment until the products were sold.
With digital printing and e-commerce technologies, garments don’t have to be printed, sewn, and delivered until the customers has actually ordered and paid for the garment. Consumers can shop a marketplace of designs to have printed on whatever type of garment or accessory they choose. So with these new types of business models give consumers more choices, manufacturers a better cash flow, and the ability to reduce waste.
HP envisions the textile business of the future to be on-demand, personalized, intelligent, and circular. Print-on-demand garments can include new types of inks that change the functionality of the apparel. They believe “Textile printing should be accessible to everyone, sustainable, smart, and limitless.”
HP officials said they chose to enter the textile printing market because 60% of the square meters of fabric consumed in the $3.6 billion digital textile printing market is polyester.
Chromaluxe is backing up the certification with an outdoor-life warranty of two years for photography-based prints and three years of signs.
“The ChromaLuxe certification and warranties provide assurance to Texart series users that their graphics sublimated to ChromaLuxe EXT panels will stand up to powerful UV rays and the elements,” said Lily Hunter, Roland DGA Product Manager, Textiles and Consumables. “They get the best of both worlds – colorful, vibrant graphics and the very best outdoor durability possible.”
This ChromaLuxe certification applies to all standard Texart SBL3 inks. The inks are available in 4-color CMYK configurations or 8-color configurations that add Light Cyan, Light Magenta, Orange, and Violet inks to the CMYK inks.
Designed to bring out the best in Roland’s advanced Texart RT-640 and XT-640 dye-sublimation printers, SBL3 inks are ideal for creating vibrant sublimated signage, apparel, accessories and hard goods. In addition to producing rich, durable graphics, these water-based, fast-drying inks contain a high concentration of dyes. This allows for reduced ink usage while retaining maximum vibrancy.
ChomaLuxe is a global manufacturer of premium print media for applications that require superb image quality and durability. In addition to sublimatable aluminum panels, they offer sublimation-ready tempered hardboard, tabletops, wood/MDF panels, and flooring panels.
All coatings and substrates are made in the USA with manufacturing and fabrication done in Louisville, KY. With additional locations in Belgium and Australia, ChromaLuxe provides products to more than 80 countries.
ChromaLuxe is an extension of Universal Woods, the world’s leading manufacturer of hard surface sublimatable products and mezzanine decking. It is also a sister brand to Unisub, which provides the highest quality custom sublimatable products. To learn more about ChromaLuxe, visit https://www.chromaluxe.com.
Epson America has introduced its latest SureColor dye sublimation inkjet printer for polyester textiles and apparel. The new 64-inch Epson SureColor® F9370 delivers industrial-level production with speeds of up to 1,169 square feet/hour. It is designed to support high-speed, economical medium- to large-volume dye-sublimation transfer printing for applications such as fabric production, customized promotional products, soft signage, cut-and-sew sports apparel, and home decor applications.
“The dye-sublimation industry is rapidly expanding into new verticals and Epson is dedicated to being at the forefront of our client’s production needs,” said Tim Check, product manager, Professional Imaging, Epson America. “When developing the SureColor F9370, our engineers aimed to increase performance, efficiency, and reliability. Their efforts resulted in a production print speed increase of up to 75 percent, making it one of the fastest printers on the market in this category.”
The SureColor F9370 received a 2017 SGIA Product of the Year Award in the Roll-to-Roll Daye Sublimation on Textile category was will be displayed at the 2017 SGIA Expo October 10-12 in New Orleans.
Features for Performance and Reliability
The roll-to-roll printer features dual Epson PrecisionCore® TFP® printheads and Epson’s UtraChrome® DS dye-sublimation ink with High-Density Black ink for exceptional color saturation and high-contrast.
A new integrated fabric wiping system cleans the printheads to ensure reliable output quality and continuous production.
The highly accurate roll-to-roll media support system features advanced auto paper-tension control to ensure the consistent movement of the paper through the printer, regardless of the weight of the paper or the shape or diameter of the core of the paper roll. The new media-feed system supports heavier media rolls and transfer paper as thin as 40 gsm.
The high-capacity ink tanks hold up to 3 liters of ink per color to ensure longer print runs without operator intervention.
The high accuracy take-up reel supports efficient transfer to the calendar heat press that will be used to transfer the dye-sublimation inks on the transfer papers onto the textiles.
The Epson SureColor F9370 is sold as a turnkey solution, with Wasatch SoftRIP TX and ICC profiles for use with Epson DS transfer papers.
Wasatch SoftRIP TX is a complete layout and print management program with features specifically for textile production. It includes powerful color-management technology as features such as step-and-repeat layout, a color atlas and color neighorhood spot-color matching, and color database CxF support.
Epson Dye-Sublimation Transfer Papers have a unique coating technology that allows for heavy ink loads with low cockling and superior clarity and sharpness. The papers are available three types:
Multipurpose is optimized for transferring designs onto multiple substrates, including mouse pads, T-shirts, ceramics, etc.
Textile-Adhesive is designed for high-end fabric and apparel production
Production is a lightweight paper for roll-to-roll printing
With the Epson Control Dashboard, you can remotely run cleanings, check ink levels, update firmware, and download new media profiles for your computer.
The Epson SureColor F9370 replaces the SureColor F9200 to join Epson’s complete line of SureColor F-Series printers, including the entry-level 44-inch SureColor F6200 and the 64-inch SureColor 7200 for short- to medium-volume dye-sublimation transfer printing.
The Epson SureColor F9370 is now available through Epson Professional Imaging resellers. For more information, visit www.proimaging.epson.com
Printing firms and photo labs that use dye-sublimation printing to produce “metal photo prints” for professional photographers and home decor should be aware that all pre-coated metal panels may not be equally durable.
According to Henry Wilhelm, Director of Research at Wilhelm Imaging Research (WIR), “Very complex interactions take place between sublimation inks and the ink-receptive polymer coatings of dye sublimation prints.” He said some interactions occur during the short, high-heat image transfer step involved in making metal photo prints. Other interactions occur very gradually over time, during the long-term display and storage of the prints.
“What a metal photo print looks like when it emerges from the heat press tells you nothing at all about how long it will last,” said Wilhelm. He notes that “Sublimation on metal photo panels is a new and rapidly advancing technology, and all aluminum panels — frequently referred to in the marketplace as ‘metal prints’ — are by no means the same. If your lab is using untested products, both you and your customers are flying blind.”
WIR is widely recognized as the world’s leading independent print permanence testing laboratory.
ChromaLuxe Panels Pass Tests with Flying Colors
One of the first companies to promote sublimation printing on high-quality metal photo panels was ChomaLuxe. The Louisville, Kentucky-based company supplies high-quality blank metal, wood, and other rigid substrates for applications that require superb image quality and durability.
Comprehensive, multi-factor print permanence tests at Wilhelm Imaging Research have confirmed the durability of ChromaLuxe sublimatable aluminum photo panels.
Although the 4-color Epson and 8-color Sawgrass inks have different dye formulations, and distinctly different individual ink fade patterns, both brands of inks proved to be well matched to the latest ChromaLuxe sublimation coating formulations.
What makes the WIR Display Permanence Ratings for ChromaLuxe panels most impressive is the fact that the prints can be safely displayed without being laminated, displayed behind glass or acrylic, or face-mounted to acrylic sheets.
ChromaLuxe prints have unprecedented resistance to surface abrasion, high humidity, atmospheric ozone, and contact with water.
Wilhelm Imaging Research found that unframed, displayed prints made with the latest generation of ChromaLuxe aluminum photo panels are far more stable and longer lasting than Kodak Endura or other current silver-halide papers, including silver-halide prints framed under UV-absorbing acrylic or glass or when face-mounted to UV-absorbing acrylic.
About Dye Sublimation
Dye-sublimation printing is an attractive process for creating durable photographs because it uses heat to infuse the inks directly into a specialized coating on the surface of metal panels, tabletops, or wood.
ChromaLuxe has committed substantial R&D resources to constantly improve the image quality, permanence, Dmax, and printing consistency of sublimatable photo panels.
“Genuine ChromaLuxe prints now offer photographers an unmatched combination of display permanence, physical surface durability, and color brilliance,” said Kristina Lowe, director of marketing for ChromaLuxe.
You can see ChromaLuxe photo and art panels at the PDN PhotoPlus International Conference + Expo, October 27-29, 2016 at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center in New York. The PDN PhotoPlus International Conference + Expo is the largest photography and imaging show in North America. It is attended by over 21,000 professional photographers, photography enthusiasts, videographers, students and educators from around the world.