|HP Designjet 10000s solvent inkjet printer for outdoor signage|
The Seiko ColorPainter 64S was very popular. We did a site-visit case study of one that a colleague had in Guatemala. Then the “100” inch version Seiko printer came out, but we were so busy studying UV-cured printers and we have not yet found any installations of the 104-inch version, so at first did not yet have any recommendation, neither pro nor con, for the HP Designjet 10000s model. Until we can inspect printer in its factory, or visit the demo center, and have a budget for site-visit case studies, we will list the HP 10000s, but not pass any judgment on it. There are already too many other 100-104 inch printers already established (see next paragraph).
But recently, and increasingly, I hear references to feeding inadequacies of both the HP 9000s and the HP 10000s. We are gradually updating the FLAAR Reports on these HP lite-solvent printers as a result. Besides, they have all been replaced by the significantly better and more modern technology of the Seiko ColorPainter H-104s.
Mild-solvent vs Eco-solvent vs full Solvent-based ink comparisons
The Seiko and HP Designjet 10000s use a mild-solvent ink, also called light solvent. This is more dependable than eco-solvent used primarily by Roland and by many Mutoh and some Mimaki printers. Mild-solvent inks are considered less hazardous to the environment and to your health than full-solvent (what most Chinese and Korean printers use, and what almost all grand format (superwide) billboard printers utilize.
HP Designjet 10000s Price and Cost Comparisons with other 104-inch solvent printers
The 100-104 inch market is relatively new since 2004-2005 and continues strong during 2006 into 2008. These solvent inkjet printers tend to be extended 64” and 72” printers, what I call “stretch models.” These solvent ink printers are increasingly popular for printing billboards, building wrap, vehicle wrap, vinyl banners.
The marketing intent is to provide franchise sign shops and other print shops an option before they move up to a true superwide (grand format) printer such as the Gandinnovations Jeti 3.3 solvent ink printer. FLAAR offers a site-visit case study of this Gandy solvent ink printer, now being updated based on inspecting three more print shops, one in Greece, one in Turkey, and one in Lisbon.
At FESPA Digital 2008 a few people in the aisles were already talking about the HP latex ink and were guessing that any new HP Scitex printer for latex ink would be in the 100-104 inch range. The details of any HP Scitex printer for latex ink, and whether 100 or 104 inches, or wider, will be revealed at DRUPA.
Seiko ColorPainter 100S = HP Designjet 10000s
The Seiko ColorPainter 100S was launched in the US at ISA 2005 trade show.
I first saw this Seiko rebadged as a Blaze Nilejet II printer at the Dubai Mideast trade show, 2006. Blaze rebadged Scitex Vision products for sale in the active Middle East market. This was before Scitex Vision was purchased by Hewlett Packard. The Blaze brand name seems to have disappeared after the acquisition, indeed the entire Internet is silent on its previous existence. Today this HP Designjet 100S is largely an HP Designjet product, albeit still rebranded from Seiko. This was not really a Scitex Vision product.
Optional IR infrared heaters to dry solvent prints
Most solvent printers don't provide enough post-print dryers, so you usually need an external electrical IF dryer. HP offers an HP Designjet High Speed Dryer, but this may not work adequately. Most printshop owners prefer a Black Body IR Digi Dry infrared dryer from BBC Industries.
Wide Format Printers