Texas AlphaGraphics Facility Captures Rigid-Substrate Growth Opportunity with EFI H1625 LED Printer
Monday, March 07, 2016
FREMONT, California – Rob Chatwin, Signs Manager of the Denton, Texas, AlphaGraphics franchise, took the growth trajectory he saw in wide-format inkjet printing and shifted it into a higher gear by installing an EFI™ H1625 LED hybrid roll/flatbed wide-format printer.
Chatwin’s print franchise location had seen significant growth in wide-format services, and he recognized a need to expand beyond the roll-fed latex printer it has on site. Chatwin contacted one of his trusted suppliers, Konica Minolta® Business Solutions (KMBS), to inquire about the H1625 printer and its capabilities.
“It was obvious to us that we needed to expand, so we contacted KMBS, which already supplies us with cut-sheet digital printing equipment,” he said. “We also knew that KMBS’s staff had training on the EFI product line. And we were comfortable knowing that, between KMBS’s and EFI’s capabilities, there would be quick turnaround for support.”
While the company also considered a dedicated flatbed inkjet device, the H1625 LED printer, which has collapsible tables for rigid substrate print work, proved a better option in terms of preserving space and ease of installation. “The dedicated flatbed printers we looked at would have presented additional challenges in terms of even getting the printer through our doors to install it,” said Chatwin, “so the hybrid format of the H1625 printer worked better for us in that regard.”
AlphaGraphics Denton’s new production inkjet system includes four-color imaging plus white and single-pass, multi-layer printing, as well as eight-level, variable-drop grayscale printheads for superior-quality imaging. A combination of quality and affordability also sets this model apart from other wide-format inkjet devices: Last year, the H1625 LED printer’s high-quality results printing a complex test file earned it SGIA’s Product of the Year Award for UV flatbed printers with white ink in the $100,000-$200,000 price range.
Greater versatility with ‘cool cure’ LED imaging
For Chatwin, the printer’s mix of versatility, affordability and high-quality imaging drives greater profits and an expanding range of new product offerings. Its long-lasting, consistent LED lamp cures prints at low temperatures, and this “cool cure” capability gives Chatwin’s business the opportunity to print on a broader range of substrates, including thin or specialty media that cannot withstand other curing or drying methods.
The lower-temperature curing also translates into reduced energy costs. And, unlike solvent printers used in wide-format graphics printing, the printer’s inks have virtually no VOCs.
“This has been a great machine for us,” said Chatwin. “The lack of heat with the curing system is a benefit in terms of growing the types of products we offer. We are doing work on foamcore board and corrugated plastic that we used to outsource, and we have even started printing some special projects on wood and glass.”
AlphaGraphics Denton also uses EFI Fiery® software for inkjet printers, a leading platform for managing color and efficiently processing wide-format imaging files. And, the company uses EFI MIS software for day-to-day business management.