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Wide format latex printer from Ricoh

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Ricoh SA has brought the Pro L4100 latex, large format printer series to South Africa.

The roll-to-roll format printer is available in 1361mm or 1610mm widths, supports up to seven colours in various configurations, and prints 18m2 per hour.

“The new latex device also supports orange, green and white inks in addition to the usual CMYK,” says Jacques van Wyk, COO of Ricoh SA. “This device is aimed at the display and specialist signage market as well as print service providers looking to grow their business lines and develop new revenue streams. It helps them to develop their expertise in production printing and help their customers be ready for the future as they integrate a wider set of services.”

The Pro L4160 and L4130 are eco-friendly, using only 50% of the energy of competitor products, and versatile for both indoor and outdoor applications, deliver high print productivity and quality as a result of technological innovations that include the Ricoh piezo electric print heads. They also meet market needs for products that reduce the environmental impact of printing through aqueous latex ink and the ability to operate with low power consumption.

“The series has been through our rigorous quality assurance process, and incorporate a great deal of customer feedback, particularly from Europe where the equipment has been available and in use since January,” says Van Wyk.

The L4100’s latex ink is an aqueous (water-based) ink which contains a low level of volatile organic compounds (VOCs). It has no odour and the low curing temperature of 60°C ink enables both quick drying, for fast job turnaround, and the ability to print on many heat-sensitive substrates without damaging them.
The extensive array of media includes PVC, tarpaulin, synthetic paper, coated-paper, uncoated paper, film, textiles and more. In addition, it allows the use of lighter weight substrates, thus reducing overall costs, including shipping. Ricoh is expanding the range of compatible substrates through its continuing media profiling and testing programme in partnership with Color Concepts, an industry standard for media validation.

“The latex ink will endure between one and two years outdoors,” says Van Wyk, “and two to thee years when laminated. The white ink gives the print service provider’s customers brilliant colour on all substrates, including transparent and dark material, for signage, branded materials, and window displays. Orange and green inks extend the vibrancy of the colour range for indoor and outdoor materials and means the printers can reproduce corporate colours accurately.”

Ultra-small droplets for ultra-high quality
Piezo inkjet heads are high quality, stainless steel and produce three different drop sizes at once, one as small as four picolitres. “The result is smooth and lifelike images,” says Van Wyk. The small drops also mean printers can produce smooth gradation and fine detail, such as fine lines and small fonts.

The Uninterrupted Ink Supply System (UISS) improves productivity. “When one CMYK ink cartridge runs out of ink, the system switches automatically to the second cartridge of the same colour for uninterrupted printing,” says Van Wyk. “It ensures smooth operations and higher productivity with minimal operator intervention in busy print production environments.”

Intuitive ColorGATE RIP for more productivity
The new machines are available with the ColorGATE RIP. “We are providing ColorGATE as a bespoke menu-driven RIP that allows users to choose the exact feature set they need,” says Van Wyk. “It is intuitive, reducing the learning curve and improving productivity. And it includes excellent colour management tools ideal for demanding commercial print environments.”

“We think the commercial printers will appreciate the quality and environmental responsibility of a Pro L4100 series printer coupled with the power and colour management capability of the ColorGATE RIP.