By Cassandra Balentine
Part 2 of 2
Wide format technical printers are designed to support the document needs of the modern Architecture, Engineering, and Construction (AEC) professional. These devices come in B&W and color to support a varied range of technical documents including blueprints, maps, schematic drawings, and product plans.
In addition to print capabilities, many AEC professionals seek a device that supports printing and scanning functions to ensure easy collaboration when necessary.
Here we highlight some of the latest wide format technical printing operations from marketshare leaders in the space.
Canon Solutions America offers the ColorWave large format color printers, scanners, copiers, and plotters, designed for applications in the graphic arts, AEC, Geographic Information Systems (GIS), and retail markets for poster printing. The ColorWave lineup of large format color inkjet printers, plotters, copiers, scanners, and multifunction systems enable a variety of color printing applications or productive B&W—often in the same unit.
The ColorWave utilizes Canon’s CrystalPoint technology, which delivers high-quality color and B&W prints on plain and recycled paper. Using patented TonerPearls toner it is ideal for a wide range of printing, scanning, plotting, and copying applications including CAD plots, GIS documents, and business graphics.
Canon Solutions America also offers the PlotWave series of monochrome multifunction wide format printers, including the PlotWave 345/365, PlotWave 450/550, and the PltoWave 750.
PlotWave 750 is a mid-volume B&W large format printer designed to help users meet the complex document challenges faced in a departmental print setting or a productive, central print room environment.
The company plans to add to the ColorWave and PlotWave portfolios in the second half of 2020.
The new Epson SureColor T5470M offers AEC professionals a versatile multifunction product, which features a 36-inch width and produces a standard A1/D size print in as fast as 22 seconds. With its integrated scanner, customers produce or digitize documents up to 36 inches wide and is designed to maximize collaboration, productivity, and streamline workflow for innovative industry segments.
The SureColor T5470M is ideal for digitizing documents as well as providing the printing functionality need by users. While maintaining the Epson quality and speed customers have come to expect the SureColor T5470M includes an integrated scanner that can scan up to 36 inches wide, at speeds of up to 4.3 IPS and 7.5 IPS. With the integrated scanner customers are able to quickly digitize documents—scanning directly to a computer or external USB. With advanced PDF support and multi-page file scanning at the SureColor T5470M helps move the AEC industry forward.
The new SureColor T3170x offers unique features for AEC professionals as well. “This sleek and compact printer features our new, refillable ink tank design that provides greater flexibility, productivity, and ease of mind for customers who don’t want to worry about changing ink cartridges,” says Reed Hecht, senior product manager, professional imaging, Epson America, Inc.
The SureColor T5470M 36-inch wide format printer combines and leverages an integrated scanner in a sleek, space-saving design, the T5470M offers a multifunction solution for printer, sharing, and saving your business documents. The innovative print/copy/scan combo produces accurate A1/D-size printer in as fast as 22 seconds, making it an ideal choice for managing blueprints, charts, and posters. It is equipped with a variety of usability features, including an intuitive 4.3-inch LCD touchscreen and is designed for use with high-capacity replacement ink cartridges. Plus the T5470M offers versatile print options such as easy printing from tablets and smartphones for enhanced flexibility and productivity.
Engineered to enhance workflow, the SureColor T3170x 24-inch wide format wireless printer offers fast, precise, and reliable printing in a clean, space-saving design. Ideal for low-cost point of purchase and posters as well as blueprints and line drawings up to 24 inches, the SureColor T3170x produces accurate, A1/D-sized prints in 34 seconds. New, easy-to-fill, reliable ink tanks eliminate time spent purchasing and changing ink cartridges. Whether printer from a roll or the automatic sheet feeder, the 4.3-inch color LCD touchscreen makes tasks simple and intuitive, and integrated wireless and WiFi direct connectivity allows users to easily print from virtually anywhere in the office using a tablet or smartphone.
Epson is constantly looking to advance its technology to provide some of the most interesting features on the market. For example, PrecisionCore printheads, Epson Ink Technology, 43-inch touchscreen, WiFi direct printing, and scanning/enlarging from DOC scanners.
HP Inc. offers the Z6 and Z9+ wide format technical printers. These devices features offer a major overhaul from the predecessor with significant technology advancements including built in vertical knife trimmers, advanced security features, Adobe PDF print engine, dual drop nozzle, HDNA nozzle architecture, HP Pixel Control, and software solutions.
With built-in vertical trimmers, the Z6 and Z9+ are unique in that they offer up to a 44-inch wide solution to complete jobs from the printer with machine-accurate trims on all four sides of a poster print.
For security, the latest HP technical printers allow IT departments to lockdown and control access. Additionally, Secure Boost technology tells the printer to shut down if the software is compromised.
The advancement of the available Adobe PDF print engine enables users to send complex PDF files to the the printer. It features a 500GB HDD and 4 core processor PDF engine.
The Dual Drop Nozzle takes advantage of the Z6 and Z9+ processing power and enables a dual size ink drop nozzle plate on the printhead so that users can do more with less by using magenta to make magenta and magenta light by shooting out half the size and volume of that ink. Its nine ink system competes well with its 12 ink competition without having to overstock the customers’ supply shelves.
The HP HDNA nozzle architecture enables the printer to get the nozzles in the printhead very close together to create a true 2,400 dpi output.
The printing rasterizing software is also overhauled to enable dot placement with pinpoint accuracy.
Finally, HP offers a large selection of software solutions to set it apart, including mobile application printing with settings, HP Click—a free-to-use driverless print workflow, and HP Wall Art Suite, a free web-based poster making software.
The RICOH MP CW2201SP wide format color inkjet printer provides AEC professionals with a “smart” way to produce and share work. Collaborate easier with full multifunction capabilities, mobile support, and precise color technologies, all packed into a single compact footprint. Powered by an innovative Smart Operation Panel and intuitive user interface, the MP CW2201SP delivers the flexibility needed for how—and where—business happens today—on the network, in the cloud and on the go.
For a monochrome option, Ricoh offers the RICOH MP W6700SP Wide Format B&W printer. The device is designed to enable users to easily collaborate with full multifunction capabilities and print, copy, scan, and share from a single device. Compact and ergonomically designed, the MP W6700SP is easy to operate. Ideal for low to mid-volume workflows, this large-format plotter offers 600 dpi print quality, simplified document sharing, built in security features, and remote management capabilities.
Just a few vendors make up the market for technical printers. Today, these devices are primarily multifunction and support the evolving needs of AEC and GIS professionals.
Mar2020, DPS Magazine