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What printer should I buy? Latex or UV?

Discussion in 'General Signmaking Topics' started by Micheal, Sep 10, 2019.

  1. Micheal

    Micheal Member

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    Ok so i was going to get an hp 113 or 315 but after hearing people complain about the loading of media it scares me.

    I was looking at the mimaki UV printer, it also looks pretty sweet.

    Can you recommend me any printers to look at ? 20k or less Canadian maybe a bit more if its real fancy.

    Need either a print and cut system or a bundle of 2 machines.
     
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  2. 2CT Media

    2CT Media Very Active Member

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    Do you plan on wrapping vehicles?
     
  3. BigfishDM

    BigfishDM Merchant Member

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    That is a horrible reason to not go with Latex! You want to spend thousands of dollars on print heads when you screw something up? I sell both FYI and I can tell you without a doubt that Latex is the right choice about 97% of the time.
     
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  4. particleman

    particleman Member

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    UV Roll to Roll machines have a narrow use case. For most normal sign shops and eco solvent or latex would be a better fit. As with any recommendation it would be helpful if you shared what you plan on printing on? Vinyl, banner, wall mural, fabric, etc?

    The HP latex printers load a little different depending on which series you are talking about and all of them have pros and cons over one another. The best thing you can do if you are looking at one of these is to go to a print show and get a hands on demo of one.
     
  5. Case

    Case Member

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    I would never pick the Latex.... I own one.... I have installed 500+ in shops and I have installed around 3,000 printers+..... The Epson S series blows any latex printer out of the water in most areas.... I own 3 of them........... As far as UV goes, I'd stick with that on the flatbed....

    CASE
     
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  6. equippaint

    equippaint Very Active Member

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    He said he only does stickers for 1 person. Sounds like nothing else but that. I suggested the ucjv because its can print and cut at the same time and the ink is durable enough to not worry about it in that application
     
  7. White Haus

    White Haus Formally known as RJPW..........

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    We're getting installed on Monday.....stand by for full review....
     
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  8. Micheal

    Micheal Member

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    You would never pick the latex , but you own three. Did you mean you would only pick latex?
     
  9. 2CT Media

    2CT Media Very Active Member

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    Let us know how you like it, we are looking at adding 1 also
     
  10. jmcnicoll

    jmcnicoll Member

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    Epson Solvent printer, haven't seen anything that comes close to the quality they produce. There is not one type of printer for everything, but solvent is a great if you only have one.
     
  11. BigfishDM

    BigfishDM Merchant Member

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    Even the 300 and 500 series? That is kinda bizarre. Epson makes a great machine, but I don't see how it would blow a latex out of the water. I can still do more applications with Latex and I can do them faster than someone who runs solvent pretty easily because there is no out gas time. What are the biggest problems you see with latex? Why does Latex dominate the market by such a gigantic number? HP Latex is the #1, #2, and #4 machine in the industry. Companies like Mimaki, Roland, and Epson COMBINED make up #3. For someone who is just getting into wide format printing, I do not know of an easier machine to do that with than something like an HP-115 w/cutter is a crazy economical investment to get into an industry. For decals, no lamination either. Full bleed without curling is also hard to do without Latex.

    I am hardcore latex advocate for way more reasons then what I talk about, I am not a fan of HP on so many levels its crazy, but Latex in my opinion is the only way to go in most situations. Inexpensive user changeable printheads is one of my favorite things about HP. No Banding is another one. No Fumes. No hazardous inks. Low cost of ownership. Lots of tech support available. Print on more materials. Output faster. No need to laminate most applications. Environmentally friendly is only getting bigger and bigger FYI, and HP dominates that space.
     
  12. 2CT Media

    2CT Media Very Active Member

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    I concur with Josh. I am constantly looking for alternatives to HP or Latex after my last few experiences with HP and it's unfortunate as we have had latex for nearly 10 years! There isn't anything yet, the new Ricoh Latex is awesome but doesn't have the scratch resistance of HP. The Mimaki UCJV is also something that holds promise but it is UV and that has inherent issues like lamination, but we have tested wrapping and other applications and it works well... The hold back is longevity being unknown.
     
  13. jmcnicoll

    jmcnicoll Member

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    I have experience with both a 126" wide HP latex and a 64" newer (gen 3) model. The new model with the optimizer was better, but their color and print quality are not as good as an epson. You spend a lot a money on disposable print heads. Sure, they say you can lam it right of way, but I saw problems with that was well, even when they sat overnight. The latex is great for some applications and media types but like I said there is not one printer that does everything great. If I started a shop my first printer would be an epson solvent, hands down. The quality out of the epson solvent is nearly as good as their aqueous printers but usable outside for longer term.
     
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  14. 2CT Media

    2CT Media Very Active Member

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    What do you mean by a lot of money? We have replaced heads on both of our 570s 3 times total (not ea) since 2017 and on one machine have over 200,000sqft. Our gamut is plenty wide with color management and we can hit most pantones.

    I would love for a testing house to pit latex vs ecosolv vs uv in a longevity test to put it to bed. Color gamut is nothing unless it lasts.
     
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  15. eahicks

    eahicks Magna Cum Laude - School of Hard Knocks

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    Huh....printheads are the smallest expense for us on the latex printers. Not sure what you're doing to consider them a great expense. How often do you change them?
     
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  16. White Haus

    White Haus Formally known as RJPW..........

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    Will do! We're really excited to get this thing up and running. Also upgraded everything in the shop over to Onyx Thrive 19 and finally got an i1, so lots of big changes. My brain hurts already but it's going to make for an interesting couple of weeks.
     
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  17. JBurton

    JBurton Signtologist

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    Wait, like I can run a 24" piece of vinyl through this thing while it's printing another job? I've heard print/cut on one machine as a selling point, but I've only ever seen that as a disadvantage, like starting an 8hr print and realizing you have a 12x18 parking sign you needed at noon...

    This is our greatest benefit of the latex, but oddly enough, I find my laminating goes smoother if I can take the material straight from the printer to the laminator. Waiting overnight appears to cause me more issues. Running a 560.

    As far as replacing printheads, I don't see it as a great cost to stock a set, where some solvent printheads cost several thousand. That and if I'm billing print time at $75/hr, then I'm putting $75/hr into whatever maintenance a solvent requires. Some around here are on top of their machines, keeping maint down to 30min a week, some let them go and spend hours pulling/pushing ink. Since I have somewhere between 0-none as far as time to d*ck with the internals on my printer, I'm very happy with the latex.
    HP 560
    Except I hate loading it vs my old 25500. But everyone says I'm wrong in that regard...
     
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  18. jmcnicoll

    jmcnicoll Member

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    There is very little to almost no maintenance time on a epson. At my last job with our small gen 3 HP latex we probably used about a dozen heads a year when busy and I could go many years without replacing a head on an epson solvent.

    Once again let me say that there is not one printer for everything. I will stand by the epson being the best quality print.
     
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  19. TomK

    TomK Member

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    How the hell do your heads last that long? They are only warrantied for 1000 ml through each head, and my tiny little business is lucky to get 1200-1500 ml through them before they start to go and I have to replace them.

    Funny story recently dealing with HP support...they had me replace most of my heads and my maintenance cartridge to chase another issue I was having, banding (which never happens on Latex lol), color problems, etc.

    Never solved the problem, and never offered to replace all the heads and maintenance cartridge that I had replaced. So I spent almost $1500 bucks for heads and maintenance cart, that never solved the problem.
     
    • Informative Informative x 1
  20. ddarlak

    ddarlak Trump Hater

    I'm going on my third year of my 315 and i have original heads, dont have it in front of me, but i have used at least 60 carts. i have a full set of heads with expiration of 2018 waiting to be put in, never had to yet.

    I can't say enough how great of an experience i've had with HP latex.
     
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