Mtex NS and SPG Prints have entered into a strategic agreement, starting from earlier this year and extending into 2022, which will lead to SPG Prints selling a new updated version of the Mtex NS Dragon sublimation printer.
However, this is more than a simple OEM agreement as it also includes sharing technology for sublimation and pigment printing, which the two companies have identified as offering further growth opportunities.
The Dragon was first launched at Fespa 2017 and the new version of it appears to be the first fruit of this collaboration. SPG says that it has contributed to the design of various elements including the ink system, printing beam and web tension though all the manufacturing will be done by Mtex NS. The Dragon itself is a rollfed scanning textile printer with a print width of 1.9m. It’s said to be able to print to very thin transfer papers from 20 to 140gsm.
The basic configuration is for four colours but it can also be fitted with eight colours – CMYK plus Orange, blue and two fluorescents. There’s a choice of disperse or pigment inks.
It uses Konica Minolta printheads with resolution ranging from 360 to 1440dpi and drop sizes of 3, 11 and 16 picolitres. Interestingly, the head height can be varied between 1.5 to 7.5mm. The standard machine is fitted with eight heads but this can be doubled to 16 for faster production. Print speeds range from 68 to 550 sqm/hr with a reasonable production speed being around 274sqm/hr at 720dpi.
The new Dragon is not yet available as it is still waiting for beta testing. SPG says that it is planning for two beta sites and that pricing and availability won’t be announced until this test phase is complete.
Eloi Ferreira, CEO of Mtex NS, explained: “The current generation Mtex printers, which today is a reality in the Iberian market, already has the stamp of a development cooperation between the Mtex and SPGPrints R&D team. Through this strategic cooperation between Mtex and SPGPrints we will be able to offer unique printing solutions to the digital textile printing industry worldwide, based on both companies know-how and commercial channels.”
This kind of technology partnership appears to be at the heart of Mtex’s operations, with the company having previously worked with Mimaki to produce a range of textile printers. Mtex NS currently has an OEM arrangement with Gallus regarding the Smartfire label press, which started off as the NS Lion.
Dick Joustra, CEO of SPGPrints, adds: “This new partnership offers SPGPrints an enhanced portfolio of products and applications to serve its growing client base and to open up new channels. Furthermore, this agreement enables SPGPrints to expand its offering in some of the largest and fastest growing textile printing markets across the world and it will expand the offerings of both companies into new markets.”
You can find further details at mtexns.com.