Wide format printing is printing of designs or graphics on paper 18” or wider, either on rolls or precut sheets of paper or other types of materials. It requires the use of special equipment and much larger printers than standard printers or copiers.
Sometimes known as plotters, this name is used interchangeably within the industry. However, this was based on old technology when the actual devices had a pen in the system to draw the plans, which isn’t considered cost-effective by today standards for both speed and the environment. Now, there are both inkjet and laser wide format printers that can get the job done quickly and efficiently.
These advancements have also improved the environmental quality of these printers too. The ink used is also becoming eco-friendly as large manufacturers like Canon and KIP look at better ways to be part of the green movement.
When it comes to the types of printers available, there are printer only and multifunction configurations. Printer only models are designed to just print whatever file is sent either via a network or locally via USB drive. The other, which are multifunction devices include a scanner which can be used for copies, scanning to email, or scanning to file.
Canon devices are typically known for being inkjet-based and tend to be a lower priced to acquire, while KIP devices are toner-based and have a lower cost to run and cost less per page. When it comes to choosing the device needed for your business, it depends on the workflow and usage. If you need to print a lot of CAD drawings, then a toner-based product is right for you but if your prints are kept to a minimum or you need prints to be in color, an inkjet product could be the answer.
In-house wide format printers or multifunction devices are beneficial for small or medium sized office for many reasons. One of the largest benefits is that the wide format printer provides the ability for the user to make changes on the fly or review the plans quickly without paying additional change fee charges. Plus, when relying on other companies for the prints to be completed can be a costly and unreliable endeavor. In fact, by having the ability to print in house, you’re controlling the timing and output of the job, thereby eliminating bottlenecks and stressful situations.
The following includes a list of some jobs that require a wide format printer:
- Large-scale photography
- Large maps for malls, trails, or communities
- Banners, signs, and posters for marketing materials
- Trade show exhibits
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Ready to learn about the wide format solutions Docutrend offers? When you choose Docutrend, you are partnering with a top managed service and office technology company that will provide the most up-to-date Canon and KIP wide format, plus a big-picture strategy, consistent service, and support, creating a reliable technology infrastructure.