By Wayne Robinson | 14 October 2020
EFI is launching two new printers for the high-end, high-productivity soft signage market, which it says will help display graphics producers reach new heights in productivity and extend their capabilities.
The EFI Colors 340 printer announced prints at up to 850 sqm per hour (in a four-colour x four configuration), while providing what EFI claims are “unmatched colour capabilities for premium-quality soft signage”. For even higher-volume production environments, the EFI Power 340 prints up to 1565 sqm per hour.
The printers were developed by leveraging technology from EFI Reggiani’s 70-year legacy of fabric printing. EFI claims both new offerings have the ability to print with higher quality on a wider range of materials than other soft signage inkjet devices, with 100 per cent penetration on both sides of the material.
In addition, EFI says the printers offer added versatility and economical ink capabilities with their ability to print either direct to fabric, or to transfer paper, using the same inkset, eliminating the significant cost and downtime related to switching over inks.
Scott Schinlever, COO, EFI Inkjet said: “EFI, through our Reggiani division, has decades of experience bringing to market the highest quality in fabric printing in the industry. These two new printers are specifically designed to meet the most stringent quality and productivity needs in soft signage for companies that want to differentiate themselves in a highly competitive marketplace. With their speed and reliability, the EFI Power and EFI Colors printers can often replace multiple soft signage printers, producing more premium signage work with a single footprint.”
The new printers follow the proven market successes EFI customers have achieved with Vutek FabriVU soft signage printers, which EFI claims are among the most productive in their class for premium dispersed dye sublimation graphics. There are more than 250 FabriVU printers installed worldwide, many of them installations of FabriVU 340 and 340i models that EFI says give display graphics producers a higher-profit opportunity to enter the soft signage space. Building on that progress, EFI’s newest soft signage printers address the next level of production demand with higher throughput, more robust operation and even greater efficiency.
The EFI Colors 340 printer is aimed at for many applications, from table throws and pop-up promotional tents to SEG backlits, flags and retail fixtures. EFI says that at 3.35 metres wide with the ability to handle different fabrics up to 450 gsm, “this printer delivers results that exceed the expectations of even the most demanding clients”.
The company says that using genuine EFI water-based CMYK dispersed dye inks, the printer gives users entrée into an ultra-premium point-of-purchase category for soft signage, producing smoother colour transitions “and ultra-realistic skin tones, unlike any other soft signage printer in the market”.
Available with up to 24 printheads, EFI says the Colors 340 offers greater versatility in colour capabilities to print in four-colour x 2, four-colour x 4 or six-colour x 4 configurations, as well as an eight-colour configuration featuring standard CMYK and light CMK colour inks, plus a penetrating agent.
Signage providers can print in production, point-of-purchase, or very high quality at speeds up to 850sqm per hour, with a wide colour gamut and rich, deep colour saturation.
The printer’s 2400 dots per inch (dpi) resolution with four level grayscale printing and drop sizes from 4 to 18 picolitres can deliver 100 per cent penetration on both sides of the material, making it ideal for the production of national flags. Its precision sticky belt feeding mechanism ensures near-perfect, continuous tone image quality at high speeds with no wrinkle artefacts on a wide range of materials. And, EFI’s continuous ink recirculation system for textile printing improves ink yield, reducing the need to purge while eliminating downtime associated with printhead maintenance.
The new EFI Power 340 digital soft signage printer has most of the capabilities of the Colors 340 but at a blazingly fast speed of up to 1565 sqm per hour.
The Power 340 is also capable of printing direct-to-fabric, or onto transfer paper, using genuine EFI water-based CMYK dispersed dye inks. And, like the Colors 340 model, it employs the proven, reliable sticky belt feeding mechanism.
The Power 340 features up to four colours, in either four-colour x 4 or four-colour x 8 configurations. EFI says with its speeds, users can profit from producing the appropriate quality at the highest speed with a lower total cost of ownership for high-volume demands.
Both printers employ an EFI Fiery proServer Premium digital front end, which according to EFI means operators can take advantage of the ultimate in colour management, job management, and powerful tools for nesting, step and repeat, scaling, cropping, barcode creation and tiling.