Epson India launches 24-inch dye-sub ink-tank printer

Low volume dye-sub with fluorescent inks

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The Epson SC-F531 is suitable for photo labs, photo studios, textile screen printers Photo Epson India
The Epson SC-F531 is suitable for photo labs, photo studios, textile screen printers Photo Epson India

Epson India has announced the launch of its desktop 24-inch wide sublimation InkTank printer SC-F531, the newest addition to its flagship SureColor line of printers. Designed for producing custom T-shirts, mugs, personalized awards, and more, the SC-F531 is suitable for photo labs, photo studios, textile screen printers, and corporate gifting suppliers for an ad-hoc workflow and low production volumes.

The SC-F531 is also equipped with unique fluorescent yellow and pink inks for the user to create color gamut or special effects that are not possible with just standard inks. The fluorescent inks also illuminate when under UV light.

Dye sublimation workflow Epson India
Dye sublimation workflow for textile printing Epson India

The new printer has a convenient InkTank for larger volume printing. Customers can refill the ink even while printing, thereby significantly reducing downtime. Its engine supports production speeds up to 21 square meters an hour while an integrated auto-cutter enables sheet-based output and can print on both sheet and roll media.

Entry-level digital textile printing

Commenting on the launch, Vasudevan LK, general manager – LFP/IE, Epson India, said, “This printer meets a market need for small size businesses wanting to enter the textile printer business with low investment, with an easy-to-use dye-sublimation printer that will allow them to create personalized promotional products, fashion apparel, and home décor and furnishing. The SC-F531 delivers these small businesses high image quality in one of the most compact, feature-rich dye-sublimation printers in the market that will even easily fit on a desktop for convenient use. Moreover, the fluorescent pink and yellow inks is another added benefit of this printer.”

Extremely compact with print modes & lightfast safe inks

The SureColor F531 is extremely compact with a footprint that is just 0.5 square meters and can even be placed on a desk. It can also be floor mounted via an optional stand that incorporates a media basket for multi-page work. It supports both sheet and roll media with a convenient A4/A3 multi-sheet feeder and auto-switching. The printer is equipped with a spindle that supports roll media up to 24-inch (610 mm) wide and can print on a host of media including specialized transfer paper for both rigid and soft media.

Various items that can be produced using the new Epson SureColor F531 Photo Epson India
Various items that can be produced using the new Epson SureColor F531 Photo Epson India

The new printer has a range of print modes to suit different quality levels, production speeds, and sublimation media types. It suits a wide range of applications including art and photography, hard and soft signage, short-run merchandise and décor, custom fabric, and clothing using a simple 4-color imaging system. The advanced UltraChrome Dye Sub ink works in conjunction with the print head to produce superior output with a lower production cost and enhanced mechanical reliability. When sublimated, the printer produces a wider color gamut, resulting in images with outstanding light and wash fastness that is resistant to damage through abrasion and perspiration. When applied to polyester fabrics, the material conforms to the latest Oeko-Tex Eco Passport standard, certified safe for use by adults, children, and babies.

2023 promises an interesting ride for print in India

Indian Printer and Publisher founded in 1979 is the oldest B2B trade publication in the multi-platform and multi-channel IPPGroup. While the print and packaging industries have been resilient in the past 33 months since the pandemic lockdown of 25 March 2020, the commercial printing and newspaper industries have yet to recover their pre-Covid trajectory.

The fragmented commercial printing industry faces substantial challenges as does the newspaper industry. While digital short-run printing and the signage industry seem to be recovering a bit faster, ultimately their growth will also be moderated by the progress of the overall economy. On the other hand book printing exports are doing well but they too face several supply-chain and logistics challenges.

The price of publication papers including newsprint has been high in the past year while availability is diminished by several mills shutting down their publication paper and newsprint machines in the past four years. Indian paper mills are also exporting many types of paper and have raised prices for Indian printers. To some extent, this has helped in the recovery of the digital printing industry with its on-demand short-run and low-wastage paradigm.

Ultimately digital print and other digital channels will help print grow in a country where we are still far behind in our paper and print consumption and where digital is a leapfrog technology that will only increase the demand for print in the foreseeable future. For instance, there is no alternative to a rise in textbook consumption but this segment will only reach normality in the next financial year beginning on 1 April 2023.

Thus while the new normal is a moving target and many commercial printers look to diversification, we believe that our target audiences may shift and change. Like them, we will also have to adapt with agility to keep up with their business and technical information needs.

Our 2023 media kit is ready, and it is the right time to take stock and reconnect with your potential markets and customers. Print is the glue for the growth of liberal education, new industry, and an emerging economy. We seek your participation in what promises to be an interesting ride.

– Naresh Khanna

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