Another stated: “It is nice to not have to worry about waiting before laminating or prints sticking together face to face.” This helps to increase productivity of the print shop, and less floor space is required. The fast dry-time is due to a combination of ink chemistry attributes and pre- and post-heaters used by latex printers. One of the trade-offs in North America is that these heaters require 220-volt electricity, or what some call “heavy electrical”. Not all shops have this capability. However, as one user commented: “What is ‘heavy electrical’, don’t you use laminators with 220-volts?” A more pertinent trade-off in using high-voltage curing (translate high temperature; 200° F range) may actually be electricity consumption. But as it is difficult to pinpoint where increased electrical costs are coming from without having a meter tied to each major electrical device (is it the hotter than normal outside temperatures, is it the spike in laminating volume, etc.), this is not likely to be considered a concern in daily usage of latex printers.
The heat required to cure the inks does have some implications on substrates, particularly thinner ones. Until one comes up the learning curve of finding the right heat settings, some print-for-pay shops have found it challenging to print on static film, for example.
The bottom line is that latex printers are rejuvenating the demand in the now 20-year-old wide-format inkjet graphics printer business. Their manageable acquisition cost (between $20,000 to $100,000, typically) and ability to print on a broad range of outdoor and indoor applications on a single device are providing an attractive return on investment for most users.