Getting started in the printing industry can be intimidating. What inkjet printer should you buy? What media should you use in the printer? Not all inkjet printers are the same and choosing the right inkjet printer for you is just the beginning. It’s essential to understand the different ink sets and the applications for each type. Each ink set has its own strengths and advantages. There are six main ink sets that are used in wide format printing today.

 

Aqueous (Dye & Pigment)

Aqueous ink is a water-based.  It’s manufactured with a colored powder such as Pigment or Dye. Aqueous inks are ideal for indoor applications as they retain their color when they are not exposed to excessive UV rays or water. They are also safer to use because they do not contain any of the solvents typically used in other types of inks. Aqueous based printers work great on the following applications:

 

  • Fine Art Printing
  • Photography
  • Color Proofing
  • POP/Indoor Signage

The following manufacturers offer a variety of printers that use Aqueous inks: HP, Roland, Epson, Canon and Mutoh.

Solvent

Solvent ink are an oil-based solution that holds pigment and resin. When the solvent evaporates (typically with the heaters on the printer) pigment is left behind. Because solvent inks are high in volatile organic compounds (VOCs), it is important to have proper print room ventilation. Also, it is recommended to let the print out-gas before laminating. Solvent ink can last for up to five years, making it a great solution for long-term outdoor graphics. Here are some common Solvent applications.

 

  • POP/Banners (Indoor & Outdoor)
  • Light boxes (Backlit)
  • Textiles
  • Vehicle Wraps

 

These manufacturers offer a variety of printers that use Solvent inks: Konica Minolta and Mimaki.

Eco-Solvent

Eco-Solvent ink comes from ether extracts from refined mineral oil and have a relatively low VOC content, so it doesn’t always require ventilation. Eco-Solvent ink also uses heat to evaporate solvents and cure the ink. It can take about 24 hours for the media to out-gas after printing. It can take about two to three years before eco-solvent ink begins to fade. Here is a list of most common applications for Eco-Solvent ink.

 

  • POP/Banners (Indoor & Outdoor)
  • Light boxes (Backlit)
  • Trade Show Graphics
  • Vehicle Wraps

These manufacturers offer a variety of printers that use Eco-Solvent inks: Roland, Epson, Mimaki and Mutoh.

Latex

Latex is water-based ink that contains pigment and uses an aqueous-dispersed polymer. These printers typically have a drying unit allowing the ink to evaporate the latex polymers, leaving a continuous layer of latex protecting the pigment on the surface. There are some environmental advantages; the ink is not as corrosive as Solvent or Eco-Solvent and there no need to have the print out-gas before laminating. Latex works great for both indoor and outdoor print applications and we have listed the most common below.

 

  • POP/Banners (Indoor & Outdoor)
  • Light boxes (Backlit)
  • Textiles
  • Vehicle Wraps

These manufacturers offer a variety of printers that use Latex inks: HP and Ricoh.

UV

UV-curable ink can adhere to wide variety of non-coated substrates (both porous and non-porous). It is composed of colored pigments mixed into a synthetic resin containing photo initiators. UV exposure causes the compound to harden and dries the ink. It is not recommended to use UV on materials that will stretch because most UV ink will crack. UV-curable inks are ideal due to their instant curing and its printability on almost any substrate. Here are some common examples.

 

  • POP/Banners (Indoor & Outdoor)
  • Light boxes (Backlit)
  • Textiles
  • Rigid Boards: Glass, Metal, Wood, etc..

These manufacturers offer a variety of printers that use UV inks: Canon, AGFA and EFI.

Dye-Sublimation

Dye-Sublimation (or Dye-sub) is a fast-growing market! This ink type will adhere to materials such as fabric, paper and plastic. Dye-sub uses heat to transfer dyes into the substrate rather than onto the substrate surface. When using dye-sub on fabric it’s important to know the different types of disperse inks, there is low-energy and high-energy. Low-energy is usually printed onto a paper and then transferred to polyester using heat. High-energy is printed directly onto polyester and cured using a transfer press or oven. Here is a list of common applications.

 

  • POP/Banners (Indoor & Outdoor)
  • Light boxes (Backlit)
  • Textiles
  • Interior Decorations
  • Fashion

These manufacturers offer a variety of printers that use Dye-Sublimation inks: Mimaki, Epson, D-gen, Canon and HP.

Buying a wide format printer is a significant investment. When deciding what printer to buy, the most important aspect as a buyer is determining what ink set best suits your needs. Do your research! Don’t hesitate to ask questions! Check out our other blog post on other Inkjet Topics here.

Take a look at some #Inkjetprinters on Best Buy right here.

 

Which chemical is used in inkjet photo papers?

The answer varies from one Inkjet photo paper manufacturer to another paper manufacturer. All inkjet photo paper features a base coating that prevents the ink from wicking (penetrating) the paper fibers. Wicking leads to color distortion, dot gain, and image blur during the print process.

Once the base coating is applied, an overcoating may be applied that gives the paper its matte, satin, or glossy finish. The overcoating may be an emulsion polymer, resin, or refined clay that absorbs the ink and allows it to dry as quickly as possible. The composition of the overcoating also determines the color density  (Dmax) and the color gamut of printed images.

Coating formulations will generally contain a range of commercial or non-commercial coating chemicals. Titanium dioxide, silicates and specialty carbonates may be used to color the coating. Binders such as amorphous silica, polyvinyl alcohol, polyvinyl acetate or starches (oxidized potato starch) may be present. Some paper contains poly-DADMAC, ethyleneimine, or polyvinylamine to help ink bind to the coating.

Unfortunately, most paper manufacturers do not share the exact composition of their coatings on their paper. Sometimes the information may be found somewhere on their website, within a patent document, or listed in the material safety data sheet (MSDS). In the end, it’s up to the consumer to determine if knowledge of the chemical composition in the coating is more important than the quality of the final print.

Take a look at some of Magic Photo Paper selection here.

 

Inkjet Photo Paper

Hp Printers

Inkjet printers produces documents and photos by spraying thousands of tiny ink droplets through nozzles onto paper with remarkable precision. These printers usually mix three primary colors of ink (cyan, magenta, and yellow) from cartridges to produce the correct image colors during the print process. Most inkjet printers include a black ink cartridge to reduce printing costs when printing black and white documents. This improves the appearance of shadows within an image.

Paper is typically loaded in an inkjet printer in a drawer or tray. The paper is pulled from this storage system through a series of rollers until it reaches a flat platform in the printer called the platen. Once the paper reaches the platen, the print heads move back and forth, precisely spraying ink from nozzles onto the paper.

Officejet is a trademarked series of printers manufactured exclusively by HP. These printers are also inkjet printers. As the name suggests, Officejet printers were primarily created for use in an an office setting. All if not most printers may be used to print, scan, and fax any standard size document. Officejet printers usually feature larger ink cartridges that allow the printer to print more pages at greater speed.

Even though Officejet printers and inkjet printers utilize the same technology, there is a significant price difference between the cheapest inkjet and most expensive Officejet printer. This price difference is closely related to the functionality and capacity of each printer type. Typically, the most expensive inkjet printer will cost about the same as the cheapest Officejet printer. Take a look at a selection of Inkjet printers offered at Best Buy here.

If you need assistance understanding your Inkjet Compatibility with our Magic Portfolio head directly to our Resources page.

Hp Printers

 

There are many different types of Glossy Paper suitable for Inkjet printing. Glossy Paper is most commonly used for high-quality prints to make advertisements, flyers, posters and to print photographs. It gives your print that extra something you or your customer could be looking for. With inkjet printing it’s in determining when to use it and how – that many find challenging. Ultimately choosing the right media for your printer entails understanding the different types of Glossy Paper. And yes, there is more than one!

Glossy paper is a coated media with a shiny finish. There are different glossy papers that are suited for different uses (or applications). Most are created using different coating formulations. For that reason, it is important to choose the right media that is compatible with your print technology. There are three main types of paper sheens (or finishes); Gloss, Semi-Gloss (Satin/Luster) and Matte. In this post we are just going to cover High-Gloss and Semi-gloss.

Gloss

Gloss prints have a shiny coating that is highly reflective. While gloss media produces vibrant colors and crisp resolution, it can be difficult to view under bright lights due to glare. Gloss prints are perfect for promotional prints such as flyers or posters. It’s important to consider their viewing environment.

Semi-Gloss

This can be referred to by a few other names such as Satin or Luster, but they all commonly mean the same thing. Semi-Gloss is a softer sheen that is halfway between Gloss and Matte. While it produces vibrant prints, it can appear less sharp than the gloss. The advantage of semi-gloss is that it is easier to view under bright lights because it doesn’t have the same high reflective shine as gloss. Currently, semi-gloss is most popularly used for printing photographs.

Choosing the right media for your application is often a matter of preference and viewing conditions. Semi-gloss provides the most image flexibility allowing it to be displayed in various light environments. And while gloss is liked by many, it requires precise conditions for it to be viewed at its fullest potential.

Which media will work with your Inkjet printer?

Just like how there is more than one type of Glossy Paper, there is also more than one type of Inkjet printer, and they don’t all use the same type of ink. Each inkjet printer depending on their ink type, preforms differently on different medias due to the different types of coatings used. It’s important to know the ink type of the printer to be able to choose the right product that is compatible with your printer. The best way to find out a products ink type compatibility is to look at the products spec sheet.

Take a look at some of our products directly at my.dietzgen.com/magic-1

Need more help? Use our free Resources to assist you with your next print production.

 

Siena250G - Glossy Paper Siena 250G - Glossy Paper

1. Open Browser on PC connected to printer.
2. In the address bar type in the IP of the Printer.
3. Click on the Setup Tab.
4. Click Substrate Presets Management.
5. Click Choose File.
6. Browse to the .OMS profile you downloaded and select it (Note: if the OMS file is Zipped or compressed please extract before selecting).
7. Click Update.

Magic products are developed with OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) printers and printer settings as a key benchmark. Developing our products to this specification allows a wider range of compatibility and excellent results with generic OEM printer settings. We strive to have dedicated ICC profiles for every material / printer / ink / RIP combination. If Magic does not have a profile for your setup, you can use the following procedure.

  1. Search the OEM’s profile library for the closest media match. Use media type finish thickness.
  2. Print a small test image, approximately 8.5” x 11”, using the OEM profile.
  3. Evaluate the printed test image to determine if it is acceptable.

ISSUES?

  • Adjust printer temperature, adjust speed (pass count & delay) or switch to uni-directional mode. These adjustments will improve ink adhesion, coalescence and print quality.

A dedicated ICC profile is currently unavailable for HP latex printers. You can use the following procedure to ensure success when printing on Magic SCF7.

  1. Load the HP White Satin Poster Paper profile.
  2. Open the Color Correction tab. Increase the saturation levels by +10 for all the ink colors.
  3. Select Edit Printer Settings on the Print Page.
  4. Turn on High Ink Level by placing a checkmark in the box.
  5. Decrease the vacuum level to 5.
  6. Proceed with your print job.

ISSUES?

  • Print side is the smoother side. Rolls are wound print side out.
  • Increase the heat to facilitate ink cure if needed, but if the material ripples you’ll need to decrease the heat until they disappear. Suggested heater starting points: 77°F pre-heat, 95°F post-heat.
  • If the low heat settings cause curing issues, add a small inter-pass delay offset of about 0.5-1 second.
  • Scratches in the film are a result of HP’s excessive loading and print finishing sequence. The sequence will forward and reverse the film repeatedly until it starts the print. We recommend adding a 6”-12” border at the start and end of the print to prevent scratches in the graphic.

1. Click the resources tab on the homepage.
2. Click the pink “icc profile search” box.
3. Select Product, Printer Make, RIP or Printer Driver and Printer Model (all fields are not required) and click search.
4. Click on the blue link to download the appropriate file.
5. If the file is zipped, unzip it and read the “how to” PDF for instructions on how to import the profile into a RIP or use proper color management settings.

Four factors contribute to ink drying time during the printing process. Ink Compatibility, Print Speed, Time and ICC profiles determine how fast the ink dries. The time it takes the ink to properly dry affects the quality of the final print.

Ink Compatibility must be determined before purchasing a Magic product. Common signs of ink compatibility issues include ink bleeding, drying issues, saturation of colors and persistent banding. Refer to the compatibility bubbles which can be found on every product page to prevent compatibility issues.

Print Speed is often overlooked as the cause of an ink drying issue. Printing too fast may cause ink to be applied during a following head pass before the preceding head pass can dry. Try decreasing the speed of the printer by increasing the print quality dpi and/or increasing the number of printhead passes.

Time may be required to allow the ink to dry and properly cure. Ink may feel dry immediately after printing, but it’s best practice to allow prints to dry for 24 hours. This extended time allows the ink to cure properly on the media surface.

ICC Profiles contain settings for the printer to accurately reproduce an image. The profile controls printer speed, heater temperature, ink limits and color accuracy. Make sure that you are using the correct profile for the Magic product loaded in the printer. Instructions for downloading the correct ICC Profile can be found here.

MAGIC FAB6 is a 100% polyester woven fabric with our proprietary matte coating that creates vibrant, long-lasting prints. It can be used in applications such as wall décor, banners, roll-up banners and retail advertising. Here are some FAB6 tips to ensure your print project is a success.

  • Use minimum vacuum pressure during the printing process.
  • Cut the material with a hot fabric knife to eliminate fraying of the material.
  • Cut the material on a glass surface to prevent fraying of the material.
  • Standard high-tack banner tape can be used to hem the edge of the material.
  • FAB6 should not be folded, washed or ironed because the inks and coating are likely to crack.
  • Liquid laminates such as ClearShield Classic can be applied to FAB6 for additional protection. Use a paintbrush, short-nap or high-density foam roller to apply a thin coating of the laminate. Allow the first coat to dry completely for an hour before applying a second coat. Spray laminates are also suitable.