Star product: Epson SureColor SC-S30600

Tim Sheahan
Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Epson hopes this eco-solvent unit will win it more business in the sector

What is it?

Epson’s new wide-format printer, the SureColor SC-S30600, is the start of a new dawn, according to the manufacturer, with the machine aimed at companies producing signage and point-of-sale (POS) applications.

What does it do?
The 1,626mm model can print at speeds from 7.3m2/hr in high-quality mode and up to 29.4sqm/hr in production operation.

Epson said its SC-S30600, which offers resolutions of up to 1,440dpi, enables companies to print a range of applications, including posters, signs, banners, back-lit panels, vehicle wraps, interior decorations and exhibition displays. The machine supports a range of substrates, including PVC, vinyl, photo paper and banner materials.

When was it launched?
Epson unveiled its latest wide-format printer at Fespa Digital in Barcelona in February. It then brought the machine to Sign & Digital UK in March and enjoyed what it calls "brisk business" during the three-day event.

How does it work?
The SureColor SC-S30600 employs the company’s latest piezo TFP printheads and uses Epson’s new inkset, UltraChrome GS2. According to Martin Johns, business manager at Epson UK, UltraChrome GS2 builds on the strengths of the original UltraChrome GS set and features a new yellow formulation that, he says, is lightfast for longer. It is an odourless, nickel-free range that Epson says requires no special ventilation, which permits the SC-S30600 to be used in an office environment.

What markets is it aimed at?
The manufacturer is pitching the four-colour printer at commercial printers, sign businesses and copyshops wanting to expand their wide-format offering.

According to Johns, the machine is "designed from the ground up", but despite succeeding the company’s established GS6000 platform, that older model will still be on sale to customers.

"Previously, Epson had a strong name in the market, but perhaps not an end-product to fulfil that. With the SureColor, we have addressed that and will continue to do so by growing this product range," he adds.

How easy is it to use?
Epson Europe senior product manager Richard Barrow says: "Setting up the SC-S30600 is fast and easy. Loading heavy media rolls, usually a two-person job, can be handled by one operator with ease thanks to our unique jack.

"Media tensioning, traditionally only accessible from the front of the printer, is controllable from both front and rear, so operators don’t waste time going back and forth. This reduces set-up time and maximises productivity."

How much does it cost?
The Epson SureColor SC-S30600 is available for £11,995. An additional paper handling module increases this cost, but potential customers should get in touch to get the full picture.

What are its sales targets?
Johns would not be drawn on the manufacturer’s sales projections, but claimed that Epson had enjoyed a positive response from the market since its launch earlier this year. The company has received orders for 30 models so far with units being installed at present.

According to recent figures, Epson currently holds a 32% market share of the eco-solvent sector. Johns adds that the new family of SureColor machines will hopefully grow that presence and enable the manufacturer to obtain a 45% stake in the sign market overall by 2013.


Max print width 1,626mm (64in)
Max speed 29.4sqm/hour
Resolution 1,440dpi
Printheads MicroPiezo Advanced TFP
Weight 219kg
Price £11,995
Contact Epson 01442 227275


Mimaki CJV30-160
For customers looking to Mimaki, the 1.6m variant of the award-winning Mimaki CJV30 Series, the CJV30-160, would be a suitable choice. Although a more expensive alternative, it comes with an extended
warranty, built-in cutting plotter, the ability to print eight colours and is capable of printing at 17.5sqm/hr at 540x720dpi.
Max print width 1,620mm (63.3in)
Max speed 17.5sqm/hr
Resolution 1,440dpi
Printheads Piezoelectric inkjet
Weight 160kg
Price £17,995
Contact Hybrid Services 01270 501900

Roland DG RS-640
The Roland DG RS-640 has been something of a success story for the wide-format manufacturer and is capable of reaching top output speeds of 21sqm/hr. The entry-level wide-format machine, capable of printing at 1,440dpi resolution, supports a range of substrates for both indoor and outdoor applications. According to Roland DG, the RS-640 print quality "reflects the highest image quality" thanks to its Eco-Sol Max ink and Roland Intelligent Pass Control technology, which is claimed to guarantee exceptionally smooth results every time, even at high print speeds.
Max print width 1,626mm (64in)
Max speed 21sqm/hr
Resolution 1,440dpi
Printheads Piezoelectric inkjet
Weight 133kg
Price £9,999
Contact Roland DG 0845 230 9060


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