Epson has announced a new wide format dye sublimation printer, the SureColor SC-F6300, which is a direct replacement for the existing 1.1m wide SC-F6200.
In truth, there’s little that’s really new about this printer – Epson described it to me as being more of a refresh of a proven product. And to be fair, Epson is generally fairly good at applying the Japanese Kaizen concept of making continuous small and announced improvements to its products throughout their manufacturing life.
Strangely, the most important improvement to the F6300, the new take-up roll, is only supplied as an optional extra and yet it’s the key to the whole printer. Phil McMullin, sales manager for Epson UK, says that this printer was designed to produce short runs and samples of garments as well as for dye sublimating graphics to objects such as mouse mats and mugs. However, he notes: “But we found that the commercial textile business in the UK and Europe is picking up and that more and more people are using banks of these machines for production.”
Thus the new take up roll is to facilitate this and improve overall productivity, which is a sensible move. Unfortunately, the new take up roll cannot be retrofitted to the existing F6200 as the firmware is not compatible.
McMullin says that Epson has also improved the feeding to make it more accurate and more robust, and made access to the printheads easier for maintenance. The F6300 comes with a range of software, including Epson Edge Print RIP, Epson Edge Dashboard Support (including EMX profiles), and Epson’s LFP Accounting Tool.
McMullin adds: “Epson’s printer heritage speaks for itself and we’re delighted to offer users the complete end-to-end production package, for their peace of mind and convenience. We’ve also made sure that installation and maintenance is simple; so simple, that no specialist knowledge, or tools, are required. We’re confident that we’ve designed a dye-sublimation printer that will keep businesses running at peak efficiency and requires little user intervention.”
The F6300 costs £4750, not including the take up roll, which does seem like remarkably good value given that the Epson machines are generally fairly robust. You can find further details on Epson’s dye sublimation printers here.