Describe your business
Eye Tonic is a signage and graphics company located in Balgowlah, Sydney. We’ve been operating for three years, have 10 staff and offer in-house design, production and installation capabilities. The core of our work is internal graphics designed for corporate office fit-outs.
What have you bought?
Roland VersaUV LEJ-640 hybrid UV printer.
What does it do?
The LEJ-640 is a CMYK plus white, plus gloss printer with a 1,600mm width. The new features include printed textured surfaces and the option of flatbed printing – hybrid. The downside to the added features is slightly slower printing speeds.
Why did you choose this product?
We use it for mostly translucent film or backlit products. We’ve found the vibrant colours and white ink have added an extra dimension to what we can produce.
Did you consider any other products?
After attending several trade shows and doing a bit of research, we narrowed it down to a couple of machines. The biggest reason for choosing the LEJ-640 was the good track record we’ve had with Roland printers and the strong support with the Roland products. With the other machines, we were looking at service support coming from overseas and significant downtime, if and when down. The other main reason came down to price. In my mind, the Roland machine was better value for the work it can produce.
What features do you particularly like?
What first got my attention was the gloss print feature and the textured surfaces. What’s ended up being the best thing for us is the vibrancy of the UV colours and the ability to print to clear film products.
Is there anything you wish it had that it doesn’t?
Faster print speed and inks less sensitive to temperature change.
How fast is it?
I’d say it’s OK for normal print runs, which are general signage. On high-quality settings or when using the white/clear heads, it’s a bit slow.
How reliable is it?
In general, it’s been good. Some problems pop up when it’s been running for extended periods of time, but for the most part, it’s been reliable. There have also been a couple of print head issues, but I’m not sure if that’s indicative of all LEJ-640s or just our machine.
How easy is it to use?
Very easy. It can get more complicated with the layers of ink and use of textures, but for the most part, it’s very user friendly.
Has it saved time and money?
Prior to owning the LEJ-640, we outsourced a fair amount of work requiring UV ink. The biggest savings in time and money would be the ability to control work in-house. It’s definitely saved us there.
Has it won you any new business?
Not really new business, but because we can produce more products in-house, it’s allowed us to increase the scope of what we offer to existing clients. That means things like more vibrant colours, flatbed printing and being able to produce white ink on translucent films.
Were there any difficulties surrounding the install?
The install went quite well. We actually installed the machine up on our first level floor, so there were a few tense moments getting the machine lifted into place. Once installed, the set-up was surprisingly easy.
How has the service been?
The information and demonstrations provided by Roland were excellent prior to purchasing the machine. Service and training since have also been good. Some issues have come up, but the service guys have always sorted things out fairly quickly.
Who do you think this product is right for?
In general, it seems to have a nice overlap between the print and signage industries. It’s handy for anyone in that range to expand in-house services.
Would you buy another one?
The LEJ-640 has been a great printer for what we do. There have been some hiccups, but nothing too bad considering it’s a new and innovative machine. All going well, I’ll look forward to an upgrade within the next few years.
Eye Tonic were looking to expand their offering and pull some work in-house. The Roland VersaUV LEJ-640 was the ideal candidate with its ability to print rigid substrates or roll-to-roll, and the special effects that can be achieved with the UV gloss was an added drawcard. Eye Tonic put the LEJ-640 through its paces and got some hands-on experience with the device at our Sydney Creative Centre before purchasing. After these demonstrations and testing, and based on good past experiences with Roland, they decided that the LEJ-640 was the clear choice for what they needed.
Simon Waters, product specialist, Roland DG
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