The Jeti 3324 Aquajet is also an eco-friendly print solution. It uses non-toxic, VOC-free, water-based inks and includes a venting system and air-filtration unit to eliminate emissions. The Aquajet can print direct to recyclable fabric, manufactured from recycled polyester, and polyester banner and flag fabrics are much lighter then vinyl, so less material is used to manufacture it. The lightweight fabric saves on shipping cost and fuel consumption.
"Our customer can now offer any soft-signage solution fast and affordable with the added value of being a 100 percent eco friendly," states Reilly.
The Aquajet has already proven to be a huge success for Gandinnovations. "We have won awards in both Europe with the EDP best textile product 2008 and SGIA for Best New Product 2008," says Reilly. "We will continue to develop new products that will set the standard for others to follow. We are innovations first and foremost."
Canon USA's Rich Reamer points out that there have also been software advancements to make the aqueous wide-format printing experience easier. "When you go back a few years, large-format printing could be intimidating, but now with improvements in user interface, it is similar to using a home printer," says Reamer, senior manager, Product Marketing, Large Format Printer Division, Canon USA.
Canon has recently upgraded their aqueous printers to include such enhancements as an improved driver with one-touch buttons for features such as borderless printing, a new preview function to help ensure proper layouts on media and nesting functionality. "The PosterArtist Poster Creation software offers more than 200 templates and 1,000 clipart images," says Reamer. "This allows the user to create professionally looking posters in minutes, without being a graphic artist."
The recently introduced Microsoft Office Plug-in from Canon allows users to print from applications such as Word and Excel through a plug-in, according to Reamer.
"This makes it easier when printing posters and banners from those applications that are used to sizes from letter to 12x18 inches," he says.
Reamer adds that aqueous printers have also become much more user friendly to operate, noting that media loading has been simplified, maintenance has been automated and Canon has added a roll media detection system. "This tracks how much media is left on a roll and will print this information on the roll when changing media types," he explains.
In addition, wide-format aqueous printing offers an opportunity to expand services that are offered by print providers. "With a difficult economy, large-format is one of the few services that can easily and inexpensively be added, due to many of these software advancements, which have a quick and profitable impact," says Reamer.
He also notes that digital photography continues to grow and aqueous inkjet printers are playing a big role. "Aqueous offers a way to quickly and affordably print out art with very high quality and with archival characteristics," Reamer explains. "This technology offers flexibility for shops who can now offer in-house signage, tradeshow graphics, photographic output, fine art, maps, posters, technical drawings and more."
While aqueous was the first technology, Reamer sees no sign of it slowing down. "The aqueous printing market will continue to grow as the technology advances offering higher quality and faster speeds," he says.