Manufacturers strut their stuff at Visual Impact

The Sydney Showgrounds are a hive of activity going into the last day of the Visual Impact trade show, with wide format manufacturers showcasing their latest technology.

Canon is launching its new Oce ColorWave 900, a super-fast Memjet-powered printer than can pump out display work on any substrate with an inkjet coating at 18 metres a minute.

The stand also displayed the recently launched Arizona 6100 series, Oce's biggest flatbed ever that Oce chief executive Attilio Mainoli says has brand new features that could be included in the next round of Arizona flatbed updates.

Mimaki made a splash on the first day, launching three new roll-to-roll printers – the JV150 and print and cut models CJV300, CJV150 – arriving in the Australian market in November.

National sales manager Brad Creighton says the printers all have variable dot size and the widest colour gamut in the outdoor market with 94 per cent of Pantone.

“In a saturated market for print and cut machines, you need a point of difference. We have found a good space at quality to speed,” he says.

[Related: Visual Impact opens in Sydney]

Digital Graphic Solutions (DGS) is promoting the new Handtop HT1600 hybrid roll-to-roll and flatbed six colour plus white UV printer, its first model with LED rather than metal halide which allows it to print onto most materials from film to acrylic and aluminium.

DGS technician Andrew Wright says a full spec model costs about $85,000 and would suit printers producing banners, signs, point-of-sale and exhibition work.

Epson’s towering stand showcases the company’s main wide format product areas – solvent, dis-sublimation, posters, and textiles – including the new T-series and T-shirt printer.

Business general manager Craig Heckenberg says Visual Impact is an opportunity to show the range of Epson products.

“Not only can we provide upgrades for wide format printers, our products can open up new revenue streams for others,” he says.

“Printers work backwards from the products their clients want and if they buy a SureColor to get into soft signage we can show them its many other applications to grow their revenue base.”

As a major sponsor, Roland occupies a prime position at the very front of the show and is making the most of it to promote its newest products, including the RF-640 launched just a few months ago.

Good for banners, packaging and point-of-sale work and compatible vinyl and self-adhesive substrates, it also comes with an iPad controller that allows operators to direct most of the printer’s features via wifi. Roland is giving away the iPads with printer purchase.

Roland Australia director John Wall says the RF-640 is the first to have this feature but it will be available with firmware upgrades in the future for the rest of its range, several of which are also on show at Visual Impact.

Paper merchant Spicers is using the expo to show off both its paper and printer range, showing how printers can use the two together in live demonstrations.

Sign and display national sales manager Chris Lewis-Williams says Spicers made millions selling Vutek printers last year, such as the huge GS LED UV hybrid on display, and recently added Mimaki to its reselling stable.

The company’s new soft signage range is also present, as well as 3M products it began distributing last month.

“We can show end-to-end services for printers here,” Lewis-Williams says.

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