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Autumn 2019: its wide-format inkjet printer trade show time

Posted August 30, 2019

Sign Africa Expo 2019 is 11-13 September in Johannesburg, South Africa. Sign Africa Expo 2019 is co-located with FESPA Africa, Africa Print, and Africa LED.

We at FLAAR-REPORTS recommend this expo and Maria Renee Ayau will be there every day. In some countries there are too many different expo brands, so no one brand is the #1. Mexico has expos in so many cities that some expos just don’t attract the leading brands. Mexico is a country I know for over half a century (first visited there at age 16, in 1961, to learn Spanish; then spent about 30 years doing research on archaeology and especially Mayan architectural history in the southern half of the country). Sign Africa Expo is the leading brand of expos for their part of the world, and of course FESPA is a popular brand in EU especially. The cooperation is nice. The result is an event with pleasant and knowledgeable exhibitors, organizers, and attendees. I especially like the T-shirt area. It is also helpful that the expo and the leading international signage magazine are led by the same team: Practical Publishing.


Sign Istanbul is the week after, Sept 19-22. What I also like about Sign Istanbul is the hospitality and friendly nature of both the organizers, exhibitors, and attendees. Plus they cover a wide spectrum of applications related to visual communications, LED, and digital print, capably organized by the local team of TARSUS TURKEY; I have seen their team visiting at other expos around the world as well.

So September is a busy month for the team of FLAAR-REPORTS. Maria Renee Ayau and Pablo M. Lee will be attending Sign Istanbul.

Dr Nicholas will be at Printing United, an experiment that people are curious to know how it works out. Dallas is an atypical location for a printer expo, since most attendees and exhibitors say clearly and openly that they prefer Las Vegas. And families of course enjoy Orlando as a trade show destination.


Then for 2020, we will cover this in a separate report, but Dr Nicholas and FLAAR-REPORTS team managers will be at SGI, Sign Middle East, in friendly and comfortable Dubai, UAE. Capably organized by the experienced team of IEC, International Expo Consults LLC

Next for 2020, APPPEXPO 2020, in beautiful and impressive Shanghai, The exhibitor list for APPPEXPO 2020 will be impressive. It’s a huge expo, with more brands of printers, of printable material, and of inks, than any other expo in the world (tons more brands of everything than drupa).

FESPA 2020 in magnificent Madrid then awaits us, and then ISA 2020 in Orlando. I was a visiting research professor at Rollins College for several years, so know Winter Park nearby.

The FLAAR-REPORTS team look forward to seeing you this autumn and in 2020.



Posted February 25, 2019


FLAAR-REPORTS has been attending ISA for over sixteen years, since ISA is one of the major expos in wide-format digital printing. The main focus of this expo is wide-format printers, specifically UV-curing, textile, solvent, waterbased, latex, etc. Hence, lots of Inkjet inks, media and substrates and finishing equipment manufacturers and distributors will also be present at the show.

For 2019, four members of the FLAAR-REPORTS staff will be covering the expo.

April 24-26, 2018
Mandalay Bay Convention Center
Las Vegas, Nevada

To get more info:

After ISA 2019, we will be producing a series of reports on UV-curing and textile printers, inkjet inks, media and substrates, and finishing equipment. FLAAR-REPORTS will have a booth #3547, be sure to look for us there. We hope to see you at the show!


FLAAR-REPORTS team is preparing to APPPEXPO 2020

Most recently updated August 30, 2019
Posted February 20, 2019


Only a few months away from APPPEXPO 2020 in Shanghai, China (March 4 –7). We have been preparing for this trade show for a while, it is the largest exhibition in the Asian region.

FLAAR-REPORTS has been attending APPPEXPO for over a decade and we are the appointed media partner for this trade show. The expo has constantly grown and each year more members of the FLAAR-REPORTS team are flown to cover APPPEXPO.

For APPPEXPO 2020, six of us will be at the show covering many wide-format printing subjects:

  • UV-printing, desktop, mid-sized and wide-format printers
  • Textile printing, both transfer paper and direct to fabric
  • Solvent, eco, bio and mild solvent printing
  • Inkjet inks for UV, solvent, textile, waterbased and latex
  • Media and substrates, rigid and flexible
  • 3D printing, applications and printers
  • CNC routers, CO2, laser, engravers
  • Coaters and laminators

In order for you prepare for APPPEXPO before the show we have prepared a series of reports to help you understand what you can expect here based on recent years.


Join us at SIGN Istanbul 2018!

Posted September 04, 2018


It’s been over a decade since we first visited the beautiful city of Istanbul for SIGN Istanbul expo and been constantly attending this exhibition.

For 2018, two members of FLAAR REPORTS will attend SIGN Istanbul to cover the trade show. We will be reviewing wide-format printers, inkjet inks and media, finishing equipment, 3D printing, etc.


FLAAR-REPORTS staff, Nicholas and Maria Renée (at the center) will be attending SIGN Istanbul 2018.

SIGN Istanbul is great place to see wide-format printing equipment, many applications and visual communication samples. You will find many digitally printed objects other then signage, plus many 3D printers and applications; which are now trending on the market.

SIGN Istanbul will be held at the TÜYAP Beylikdüzü Fair & Congress Center in Istanbul, Turkey from September 20-23.

For more information visit:


Visit FLAAR-REPORTS at FESPA Mexico 2018 in booth #F60!

Posted September 03, 2018


Last May, FLAAR REPORTS exhibited at FESPA Hamburg trade show; next month you can find two members of the FLAAR REPORTS staff at FESPA Mexico 2018 from September 20-22.

Pablo-Marcelo FESPA Mexico 2018

Pablo M. Lee and Marcelo Girón will be at FESPA Mexico 2018.

We will also be exhibiting at this expo in stand #F60, in the Centro Citibanamex Convention Center in Ciudad de Mexico.

Mexico city is a beautiful and very convenient location not only for people from allover Mexico but also for people from other Latin American countries, especially Central America.

FESPA Mexico is the largest printing expo in Central America and Mexico. There you will find many distributors for wide-format printers, inkjet inks, media and substrates, finishing equipment, 3D, software, etc. There will also be conferences, textile workshops and wrap masters contest.

Be sure to visit our FLAAR REPORTS booth (#F60)!


Test prints from four brands of T-shirt printers

Posted January 22, 2018

SGI Dubai 2018
3rd Day Interview
T-shirt printers review
Read Now

Courtesy of the booth personnel of four different distributors, it was possible to make nice colorful test prints of four different brands of T-shirt printers:

  • OKI (plus their FOREVER partners), in the OKI booth plus FOREVER booth
  • MAGIC TOUCH (the totally new Ricoh R1 100 T-shirt printer); MAGIC TOUCH booth
  • Polyprint TexJet echo in the booth of Copatra Graphics
  • Brother GTX, in the booth of Signtrade

We will have full FLAAR Reports on all these shortly, but in the meantime, here is the initial summary. I apologize for the wrong spelling of GTX; on my computer keyboard the Z is too close and so I often hit Z instead of X: the proper name is GTX.


FLAAR Reports will be featured at SGI Dubai 2018
(Sign Middle East)

Posted January, 2018


Dr Nicholas Hellmuth will be on the Knowledge Series panel presentation, Jan 15, 2018 (Day 2 of SGI), Hall 4, DWTC, together with

  • Ayman Aly, Canon ME
  • Stephen Jomartz, Dynagraph
  • M Karthik, Emirates Computers
  • Philippe Husni, Heliozid Oce

Moderated by Prem Ramachandran, White Water PR.

The topics of discussion will be:

    1. Future of the printing and signage industry in the MENA (Middle East Northern Africa) region
    2. Impact of upcoming technologies such as artificial intelligence on the signage industry
    3. Challenges within the printing and signage industry and solutions to overcome it.
    4. 4 Impact of Expo 2020 on the printing and signage industry. Expo 2020 is a world class event that is a perfect fit for the energy and enthusiasm of the people and corporations of Dubai and the UAE.

Book Fairs show lots of potential for short-run digital press brands

Posted November 27, 2017

Three from FLAAR attended FIL 2017 in Guadalajara, Mexico. FIL is one of 5 best-attended book fairs worldwide. More publishers and many more thousands of books on display than you can imagine, but what is notable is that not one single printing press company has a booth.

No matter how many e-books, Kindles and iPads are sold, if you saw the crowds here (over 700,000 visitors during 9 days) you would realize that plenty of people still want books. The crowds here on a single day are more than any sign printer expo in the world (though DRUPA 2000 and DRUPA 2004 were definitely memorable).

So in addition to offset presses, etc, there sure is frankly unexpected potential for short-run digital presses, both toner and inkjet.

We look forward to seeing and evaluating both toner and inkjet short-run digital presses at SGI 2018 Dubai, ISA 2018, FESPA 2018, Africa Print aspect of Sign Africa, SGIA, Sign Istanbul, and APPPEXPO 2018.

Obviously GraphExpo is focused on traditional printing than book printing aspects of ISA and SGIA, but let’s hope GraphExpo co-locates before it ends up like Seybold, VISCOM Spain, VISCOM Paris, etc.

And we really enjoy short-run digital press booths at the expos we attend since we are in our fourth year of developing educational books on endangered species of plants and animals in Central America. We do scientific books plus a second series to help children (and their parents and grandparents) learn about the remarkable eco-systems of Mexico and Central America.

We look forward to interacting with short-run digital press companies to evaluate their printers and write about our experience in FLAAR (read by about 700,000 people worldwide, so comparable to the number of attendees at FIL here in Guadalajara).


SGI 2018, the first major signage expo of the new year:
Sign Middle East, Dubai, January 2018

Posted November 23, 2017

Marcelo-Nicholas-SGI-Dubai-2018 1153

We are just excited to start a great year in Dubai.

Two inkjet printer and signage production workflow equipment review editors from FLAAR Reports are preparing for SGI 2018 (Sign Middle East, Dubai, organized by IEC).

Dr Nicholas and Marcelo Giron look forward to seeing you in friendly Dubai, January 14, 15, and 16, 2018.

Marcelo has been two trade shows in Asia and looks forward to this international signage expo in Dubai.

Dr Hellmuth has been attending the Sign Middle East expo for many years. We stopped attending VISCOM several years ago (VISCOM Madrid collapsed and VISCOM Paris is now evidently no longer continuing).

This is why we prefer to focus on expos such as SGI Dubai: they are the best expo in the Middle East.

Plus, no matter what other expos you attend elsewhere in the world, to learn about the market trends in the Middle East and all the surrounding countries, it is useful to be at the Dubai expo every year.

Sharif Donna SGI Dubai APPPEXPO Thailand-2018-p

Sharif and Donna of IEC, as seen in their booth in the APPPEXPO Thailand area co-located with SIGN EXPO ASIA a few weeks ago in Bangkok. SGI 2018 also had a booth at KOSIGN where FLAAR Reports also attended.

In addition to traditional signage, we are interested in textile printers (for clothing and décor in addition to flags and soft signage). There are more than 15 graphic designers in the FLAAR Reports office, so we always like to see the diverse style of designs at large trade shows. So we look forward to seeing the SGI Wall of Fame showcase.

Plus Dr Hellmuth has initiated a T-shirt printer evaluation program. Our designers produce our own designs which we look forward to testing in the various booths at SGI 2018.

Plus we will test and evaluate toner printers. Toner printers and short-run digital presses are rarely present at sign expos. We have our own test files since FLAAR now has a separate division for making children’s books: you will be surprised what you see on our web site with even more information on our

We look forward to seeing our friends in the booths and in the aisles at SGI 2018 and hope to see you there as well.


d-gen printer produces remarkably bright colors in Media One booth at SGIA 2017

Posted late October 2017

D gen Teleios SGIA Media One textile sample FLAAR Reports staff Oct 19 2017 EF 1

Textile printing with inkjet printers continues to be more popular around the world. Ten years ago a basic retrofitted solvent printer, with entry-level printheads, were sold as “a textile printer.” But in recent years, print shop owners and managers have become more sophisticated and they prefer a better quality textile printer. So brand by brand the quality is improving.

It is well known that acid dye ink and reactive dye ink produce impressive colors on the kinds of fabrics appropriate for each kind of ink. But it takes a football field of space to hold the pre-print and post-printing machines for washing, drying, fixing, etc. So more and more attention is focused on printing direct-to-fabric. Downside is that most pigment inks are not yet bright enough, and disperse dye ink direct-to-fabric was considered not as bright as printing on transfer paper, passing the paper through a calendering machine onto the polyester (but again, that requires a sophisticated calendering machine in addition to the printer (and lots of paper, including the second kind of paper to keep the image from being soaked from the sublimated colors).

So it was a pleasant surprise for me to notice the impressive colors produced by the d-gen Teleios printer in the Media One booth, SGIA 2017. Bright yellow, colorful reds, great blues: and all colors better than I expected.

I flew two sets of print samples back to the main office of FLAAR. Here you too can see the bright deep colors.

Maria Renee Ayau and Dr Nicholas Hellmuth look forward to experiencing all the textile printer and textile ink experience of the d-gen team in Korea. We thank Kilhun Lee, CEO of d-gen for inviting us.

We will have more posts on some innovative new textile printer technology of d-gen later this month (and for sure after we are in their factory headquarters demo room).

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As of June 2019, Dr Nicholas and FLAAR had 3,662 contacts in LinkedIn (and over half a million readers worldwide on the FLAAR network).

Wide Format Inkjet printers, inks, trade shows, consulting.

Covers digital imaging, wide-format inkjet, inks, printable materials, digital photography, printer and/or signage trade shows around the world.

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