Hump Day Hardware: Semi Wide Format Printers

May 27, 2009

So far I’ve covered desktop inkjet printers, photo printers and laser printers. Today I’m going to talk about wide format printers. The range of printers in this category is truly wide and there is no way I can cover every variation in a single post. Thus I’m going to focus on a “starter” model that I have here in the office.

I was able to get a great deal on the Canon ipf5000 a while back and I absolutely love it. As wide format goes, it isn’t nearly as wide as many devices at only 17″. But it can accept rolls of media with a maximum width of 10 feet. I’ve printers posters on card stock, banners on vinyl and photos on canvas and have gotten excellent results in every case.

One of the reasons that the prints look so good is that the printer accepts 12 separate colors of ink. Two flavors of yellow, magenta and cyan. Three flavors of black. Plus red, green and blue. Keep in mind that sending CMYK data to a printer like this would not take advantage of all the extra inks. So it is important to send RGB data to the printer and allow the driver to get the best color possible.

Next week I’ll talk about some of the bigger printers available.

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