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Any real life users of the HP Latex R series have their thoughts on it?

Discussion in 'Hewlett Packard' started by flyplainsdrifta, Aug 24, 2018.

  1. flyplainsdrifta

    flyplainsdrifta Active Member

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    Any current users have any feedback on using the machine in a working production environment? I hear sales people and HP reps talk it up as awesome. But no end user feed back makes me worry.
     
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  2. clarizeyale

    clarizeyale Member

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    Went to the demo, printed something that took FOREVER on our FB... it printed it in like.. 40 mins (makes sense, lots of details).. Colors came out opaque (with white behind it), more vivid, and scratch resistant on the ink (not so much on the acrylic hehehe)

    We printed our other samples that took like.. 5-8 mins per board, normally 25-30 mins per board with the requested quality. We have issues with hand prints and weird static lightning bolts despite cleaning so for the demo we didn't clean the boards, rubbed our hands all over it and I stuck my forehead to the board. This was using a file that my coworkers had issues with while I was gone (colors were too light/pastel)… THEY CAME OUT PRETTY PERFECT. of course, my forehead mark showed only a little BUT how likely are we going to handle a board that way? The lowest passes came out so nice too.

    the dual screens are running using windows and definitely a big jump from the FB550... It was just amazing how much faster, vivid, and crisp images turned out. Another shop was there and had issues printing gradients during the demo but I'm not sure what the resolve was. Hopefully we figure this part out.

    I wanted to see how well printing on vinyl was but they only had clear and we didn't get a chance to try it as we had to leave.
     
  3. nate

    nate Active Member

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    It's not fully released yet. The one they have at the local distributor is still missing standard features. They are out there in beta sites but not in end users yet as far as I know.

    And yes, just like other latex machines they have to warm up and cool down. Not good for a one off piece!
     
  4. Bly

    Bly Very Active Member

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    Don't believe the HP marketing hype especially on their first gen machines would be my advice.
     
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  5. nate

    nate Active Member

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    This isn't a first generation machine ink wise. It's taken the first 3 generations of latex ink to get to this point. It prints and it prints well. I've personally tested it on many common flatbed materials and find it to be a great machine. That being said, however, a one off print is going to take forever. It's just like any other latex machine-- it has to warm up and it has to cool down. Not a problem for doing several prints. Kind of annoying to get one 24x18 out of it.
     
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  6. Bly

    Bly Very Active Member

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    It's their first latex flatbed so in that sense it's first generation.
    I'm sure the inks are great. I own a couple of their little rollfed machines and love the scratch resistance and instant cure.
     
  7. jasonx

    jasonx Very Active Member

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    Anyone got any details on the service costs out of warranty? Are they anything like the Latex 1500, 3000 service contracts?
     
  8. glue_ru

    glue_ru Technician

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    not cheap, better off to pay T&M rates to a in state Tech. HP will fly techs around the country to service if needed, at your expense BTW.
    With phone support from HP, any large machine tech should be able to handle repairs, manuals are obtainable.
     
  9. jasonx

    jasonx Very Active Member

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    Maybe in the states that is the case but here in Australia the service contracts even for parts is very expensive. Labour is charged out at $300 an hour. Don't really want to get into a small flatbed and then come out of warranty and basically have half the machine payment in a service contract.
     
  10. glue_ru

    glue_ru Technician

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    I'm a field tech here working on Oce' and Canon wide format, we are $150/hour, which is pretty low. Oce' Direct is above $400/hour I believe.
    I adopted the 250GT Arizona to get it producing again, was over-heating and terrible prints, looking real good now.
    I like the registry has the settings, since a SDS key is now impossible to get from Oce'. At least we can still get GENUINE fresh ink from Oce' Direct, (the secret to it all BTW cheap printing people.) Those magic chips that makes 3-4 yr old ink work will kill your machine, and then you'll pay me several thousand to clean it out and $2000 more for real ink, there is no other way.
     
  11. Pauly

    Pauly Colour Guru

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    I bet if you calibrated your machine with the media you use, or pay someone to do it, it will print just as "vivid" as the machine you where getting a demo from.
     
  12. clarizeyale

    clarizeyale Member

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    So we are good with the color we get now. What sold us on this was moreso the speed... and a big plus to the whole cleaning factor. Despite our good efforts such as wiping down using different solutions, drying, and even using an ionized air gun, we have issues with wipe marks, hand/finger prints, weird lightning bolts coming up due to static (with the ionizing air gun AND the ionized bar built in with the printer and all the other settings AND cleaning with a water/alcohol/green cleaner solution)… This has cost us money, time, and headaches.

    With what we need the flatbed to produce, the speed was the winning factor. We print what feels like 100 boards of all kinds for several events a good amount of times throughout the year and don't have the time to do it all without working 10-15 hour days (also due to late artwork and the above mentioned issues) a week leading up to the event. Sometimes the events will be back to back. Sometimes we'll need to reprint a board and to do that single board can range from 1 hour to 3 hours depending on what new issue comes up... and of course, they'll need that board ASAP.

    The color is good on the FB550, but on the R, it definitely is just a plus on top of what our needs are.
     
  13. clarizeyale

    clarizeyale Member

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    I've also had issues printing small objects for another client even when using photo and photo plus. Tiny details are needed to be clear and the material chosen just did not do the job. The crispness of the R came out as the quality the client is looking for.... soooo yea. sorry, not sorry :(
     
  14. Pauly

    Pauly Colour Guru

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    I see where you're coming from. Latex will print more crisp than UV. I wipe my media down with isopropyl and prints come out good. But yeah i wouldn't just want to be sold on the colour.
    I think the latex flatbed is cool, but im no fan of a "hybrid" system. if HP had a "true" latex flatbed with an RMO i'd consider getting one.
     
  15. chafro

    chafro Member

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    I wouldn’t judge UV vs latex rígids quality using the FBs print quality. FBs print quality is many many years behind the rest of the modern UV printers.

    OCE
    Vutek
    Swissqprint
    Durst

    These brands using 6 inks will give you way better details than FBs. And that is the real comparative you need to do to see what to upgrade to.
     
  16. KevSign

    KevSign Member

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    I had chance to work with beta machine R2000 for decision to buy one. Too slow and too many button to prevent head strike and cannot cross training all staff like other printer. I end up cancel and buy EFI vutek GS3250LX Pro with UltraDrop. Also I just convert our OCE 660XT with LED (YES LED) and print amazing quality.
     
  17. SignMeUpGraphics

    SignMeUpGraphics Moderator

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    Care you share how you did the LED conversion? What inks are you using now?
     
  18. HulkSmash

    HulkSmash Major Contributor

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    Honestly, i rather just get 2 Fb700's for the price of 1 of the R's.
     
  19. flyplainsdrifta

    flyplainsdrifta Active Member

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    Yeah 750s are flipping workhorses if you treat them right and have the work to keep them constantly running.
     
  20. chafro

    chafro Member

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    FB print quality is many many years behind. They haven’t upgraded their print heads on purpose so people buys Latex R’s. It has been their strategy all along.

    It’s the only reason that makes sense of why HP FB are still using those old outdated print heads. There are some amazing print heads on the market today.
     
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