Mimaki’s JV33-260 and JFX-1631 Inkjet Printers
The popular, Mimaki JV33 family of inkjet printers is indigenous in the sign- and fabric-imaging industry. Previously, the JV33 printer lines’ media widths ranged from 53.9 to 63.9 in. However, as digital-print market acceptance and applications have expanded, printmakers receive more requests for larger prints. To meet this demand, Mimaki has introduced two, grand-format printers; the JV33-260 roll-to-roll and the JFX-1631, UV-cure, flatbed printer.
At 990 lbs. and dimensions that reach 143.7 in. wide x 51.3 in. deep x 56.1 in. high, the JV33-260 has become the big brother of the JV33 line of printers. The printer includes a newly developed, high-speed, printhead that comprises 180 nozzles and eight ink lines, which allows for easy compilation and calibration.
The new bi-directional-printhead system also increases the print speed by 30%, compared to previous JV3 series systems. Media tension control and stabilization via a weight take-up device (engineered for printing on heavy substrates or long media rolls) ensures high print quality. The printer also features a triple-stage, intelligent heater.
Opt for one of two solvent-based inks if your customer-base prefers outdoor signs. The SS21 is a durable, scratch-resistant, solvent-based ink that requires a separate vent system. For milder environments, choose the odorless, ES3 eco-solvent ink. If your shop specializes in textile prints, choose the Sb52 dye-sublimation ink. For indoor work, Mimaki offers an aqueous, pigment-based ink. Choosing the ink type is a onetime shot, at the time of purchase, so choose wisely.
The ink system
An added bonus is the uninterrupted, ink-supply system (UISS). The printer has slots for eight, 440ml ink cartridges and, in its four-color configuration, you load two cartridges, each, of cyan, magenta, yellow and black. The second cartridge automatically kicks in as the first one runs out of ink.
Mimaki also offers its Mimaki Bulk Ink System (MBIS) which will hold eight, two-liter ink bags.
The printer’s ink-receiving slots house a set of permanent, bag-fed cartridges, and, when necessary, you can combine the cartridge/bag feed systems. For example, you can feed a rarely used color via the 440-ml cartridge system as standard colors enter via the bulk bags.
Print quality and speed
The JV33-260 printheads can produce three different dot sizes, which allows smooth transitions, even in four-color work. Mimaki says the 1,440-dpi resolution and variable-dot sizes create excellent image quality at the full, 103-in.-wide print width. The entire JV33 line can produce print resolutions ranging from 540 x 720 dpi to 1,400 x 1,400 dpi. Mimaki also says to expect crisp edges on type as small as four-point (when printed at 1,400 x 1,400 dpi).
At its lowest speed/quality setting, (four-color, four- pass, bi-directional, 540 x 720 dpi), the JV33-260 will print at speeds up to 197 sq. ft./hr. A six-color, six-pass, bi-directional run (at 540 x 720 dpi) will print approximately 104 sq. ft./hr. Increase the resolution to 720 x 1,440 dpi to see an eight-pass run at speeds of just under 88 sq. ft./hr. in four-color mode and 38.75 sq. ft./hr. in the six-color mode.
The media-handling system will accommodate roll weights up to 220 lbs. and accepts media up to 3mm thick. The take-up system includes a tensioning bar. Mimaki’s print-assist function allows you to produce double-sided prints.
The JV33-260, which ships with a high-speed USB 2 connection, includes Mimaki’s RasterLink Pro 4 SG RIP. The software supports 16-bit rendering that helps produce smooth gradients. It also manages white layers, should you choose to add the white ink option.
The JFX-1631 UV flatbed printer
The JFX-1631’s dimensions are 133.1 in. wide x 166.6 in. deep x 53.2 in. high; it weighs 3,527 lbs. and can easily accommodate a 5 x 10-ft. media sheet. The media, hold-down system comprises a six-zone, reversible (to float up to 441 lbs. of media and aid handling) vacuum table. A flexible, media-roll hanger is also included. The electronically adjustable head-height system will accommodate smooth, non-smooth or warped media up to 2 in. thick.
As we said, the printer contains slots for eight, 440ml ink cartridges, but it’s not an eight-color system. At the time of purchase, you can select a double set of CMYK cartridges or a CMYKLcLm configuration. In the CMYKLcLm mode, the extra two slots will hold a white-ink cartridge and a clear overcoat cartridge. You’ll use the white ink for transparent and non-white media. The clearcoat adds gloss to (and brightens) colors; it also helps protect the print.
Print quality and speed
The JFX series of printers produces stunning output. This comes courtesy of a printhead that produces 600 x 600 to 1,200 x 1,200 dpi in seven, variable-dot sizes. The variable-dot system virtually eliminates graininess.
To maximize printing speeds, Mimaki’s engineers installed the UV-curing lamps on both sides of the printheads.
In the six-color configuration, the fastest speed is 62 sq. ft./hr. In the six-color, 1,200 x 1,200-dpi, 16-pass, unidirectional mode, it prints at 29 sq. ft./hr. Numerous, alternative configurations allow you to balance print speed and image quality.
The JFX-1631 printer uses a high-speed, USB 2 connection and comes with a RasterLink IP III software RIP. It also supports 16-bit rendering.
Finally, we’re impressed with both products. If your shop’s print orders include grand format, we suggest you examine one or both of Mimaki’s grand-format printers.
Mimaki USA Inc.
140 Satellite Blvd. NE, Ste. D
Suwanee, GA 30024
Contact: Steve Urmano
Company Profile: Incorporated in 1999, Mimaki USA Inc. is the U.S. subsidiary of Mimaki Engineering Co. Ltd. (Nagano, Japan). Mimaki develops and markets inkjet printers and cutting plotters for professional use. Mimaki develops a complete product range for each group: hardware, software and the associated consumable items. In its core, sign-graphics market, it has developed high-speed, high-image-quality machines and inks. Mimaki’s other markets include industrial and textile apparel.
At a Glance: The grand-format, production-rated, 103-in.-wide Mimaki JV33-260, equipped with Mimaki’s Auto Media Feeder system that handles media rolls up to 220 lbs., also ships with Mimaki’s bulk ink-supply system. The 260 can produce print resolutions that range from 540 x 720 dpi to 1,400 x 1,400 dpi.
The Mimaki JFX-1631, UV-cure, flatbed printer uses LED-curing lamps and prints on media measuring up to 63 x 122 in. The 3,527-lb. machine can easily accommodate 5 x 10-ft. media. It has an electronically adjustable, head/gantry-height system and can accommodate smooth, non-smooth or warped media up to 2 in. thick on its six-zone, reversible (to help float media up to 441 lb.) vacuum table.