The SC-S80600 was installed on 23 April and cost around £20,000. It was chosen because of its speed, efficiency and the 99.9% Pantone matching of its 10-colour process.
Signs Express Southampton said the machine opens up new avenues due to reduced turnaround times on applications such as two-layer window graphics, which would have needed at least two more days to complete on its other machines. The 10-colour inkset comprises CMYK plus red, orange, light cyan, light magenta, white and silver.
Operations manager Simon Adams said: “This changes the level of quality we can offer – it prints much better at close-range rather than the standard with wide-format which is from 1m away. It is beautiful and the Pantone match is huge.
“We would have had to allow several days to print, say, a window graphic with two layers of colour and white sandwiched between, but the SureColor can do the lot and shave days off our turnaround time for our clients. It is three times faster than the other printers we run onsite and, even on its lowest six-pass quality setting it is far superior.
“Our plan this year is based around reinventing everything, trying to drive things digitally by automating processes and running from touchscreens. We want to be the number one Signs Express in the South and are aiming for third nationwide.”
The 1.6m-wide Epson SureColor SC-S80600 is a solvent roll-to-roll system that can print at speeds up to 91.5sqm/hr with a maximum resolution of 1,440dpi.
Currently turning over around £700,000, Adams said his branch of the franchise could attain this goal if it hits a turnover around the £1m mark. Alongside its new Epson, the outfit also runs two Mimaki printers and serves a mixture of blue chip and local clients.