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Discussion Questions about Mimaki printers

Discussion in 'Mimaki' started by Jim Hill, Oct 27, 2020.

  1. Jim Hill

    Jim Hill Active Member

    I have used a Roland SP-300V for many years but I am interested in purchasing something different in the future.

    Are Mimaki printers better than a Roland or about the same?

    What are the pros and cons of owning a Mimaki printer?
    I do all of the tech work for my Roland including changing heads and just about everything else.

    Thanks for your advice. Jim
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 27, 2020
  2. iPrintStuff

    iPrintStuff Prints stuff

    Sep 3, 2018
    United Kingdom
    Honestly there’s probably not much of a difference between all the main brands other than user preference. Especially between mimaki and Roland. 9 times out of 10 if an engineer does rolands they also do mimaki’s.

    Obviously there’s the ink types, solvent, latex etc but at the end of the day they’re all just doing the same thing a different way.

    In your case it’s not any different as you’re going from solvent to solvent.

    If you’re used to Roland and want a new one, it might even be easier sticking with Roland, that way you don’t need to learn the quirks of a new brand and it’s associated software(s).

    Probably just eventually comes down to price and tech support but it looks like you’re your own tech support anyway lol
  3. SightLine

    SightLine Very Active Member

    Have to agree..... both use the same print head and tech. Just different interfaces and software along with slightly different engineering on the chassis. If you are used to Versaworks as your rip then the transition would be even more complex as you would be changing to a new rip as well. As far as I'm aware, properly maintained, both are workhorses that are great machines. I've always run Mimaki here and also am my own tech as well. There might be more flexibility in bulk and aftermarket inks for Mimaki but I'm not really sure on that either. We run Bordeaux inks and could not be happier. 2/3 cheaper and works great. We do however use Flexi as our rip and create our own profiles which helps though.
  4. Notarealsignguy

    Notarealsignguy Very Active Member

    Feb 20, 2020
    I switched, they are very similar and it was very easy. Even rasterlink to versaworks was simple. I think tubelite is your dealer? They were good to deal with
  5. Solventinkjet

    Solventinkjet DIY Printer Fixing Guide

    Aug 2, 2011
    Denver, CO
    This has been true up until the most recent models. Roland's TruVis series actually uses Ricoh heads where the Mimaki CJV150 still uses the Epson heads. The Mimaki will be faster and higher quality for that reason.

    The newer machines have more bells and whistles which complicate things more than working on an SP300 but it's not too big of a learning curve to overcome. Aligning a single head is much easier than multiple heads though!
    • Like Like x 1
  6. SightLine

    SightLine Very Active Member

    I did not know that Roland moved over to Ricoh heads.... but then I've not looked into the newest models in a couple of years now.
  7. Paul Hardy

    Paul Hardy New Member

    Oct 10, 2020
    I moved from Vp300 to Mimaki CJV150-130 & it does take some learning how to speak Mimakes as they say in the trade. Roland was 30% more expensive so the learning curve was worth it. Personally I think Roland build quality is better but 30% made it worthwhile & with a 2 year gold warranty:)
  8. Dangreenst

    Dangreenst New Member

    IMOP Mimaki's are very similar just a little less expensive! Using mostly the same technologies for the most part including heads pumps caps depending on the models. If your handy with Rolands you will be fine with Mimaki. I have several used Mimaki printers available, service in the LA area as well. PM me for more info.
  9. hybriddesign

    hybriddesign owner Hybrid Design

    Jul 31, 2012
    As other's mentioned, if you can work on your own Roland's you'll probably be fine working on a Mimaki.

    I've been in the same situation as I'm on my own on servicing and went from VP540s (on my third one now) and XC540s and have slowly moved over to Mimaki.

    In my experience Roland maintenance, problem solving and part replacement is easier than doing the same procedures on a Mimaki. The Rolands build quality and design just feels more robust and solid and I could tear down a Roland and put it back together without consulting a service manual. That being said Mimaki's are a lot simpler to own and operate. You're usually dealing with only one head so all those head alignments you're always doing on your Roland pretty much disappear. It's frustrating on the Mimaki in that you're often replacing an entire assembly versus a single small part but that also makes things simpler sometimes. I personally had a REALLY hard time following the assembly workflow and just overall workflow of how the Mimaki's operate after coming from the Rolands which were dead simple. It's fine now but I still miss how straightforward the Rolands were.

    I'm on my 3rd Mimaki now (JV series printers) and have sort of gotten the hang of it. The main complaints that I've had on the Mimaki's is that I've several issues of a single channel of ink dropping out and it's near impossible to get it back. On the Roland you could just pull ink through that channel but on the Mimaki's you're pulling ink through the whole print head at once (unless you isolate and close off the other color ink lines which is a weird way to do it) and you're going to feel like you're wasting a ton of ink fixing these issues. Both my JV160 and JV300 also had major issues within one week of the warranties expiring. JV300 dropped both heads and the JV160's motherboard died literally the day after my warranty expired.

    Mimaki print heads are also proprietary to Mimaki. Yes, it's the same head everyone else uses but there's a software lock that means that you have to buy the Mimaki version of the head so no more scouring the internet and ordering a cheap DX5 from China like you could do on the Rolands. That being said, as I mentioned earlier, it's REALLY nice not having to deal with so many alignments. Just be prepared for sticker shock when you have to replace a dual channel mimaki damper ($100 per damper for oem) or else a print head.
  10. PJ758

    PJ758 New Member

    Oct 5, 2017
    Saint Lucia
    Anyone got this error before

    Attached Files:


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