Roland d’Vinci Hi-Fi JET Pro II FJ-540 with ErgoSoft RIP and 12 colors
Several years ago we used the ColorSpan DisplayMaker XII with 12 colors and ColorSpan DisplayMaker Mach 12 with 11 colors. But HP printheads for large format sizes have not been updated in the last five years so piezo systems developed an edge for image quality (yes, there are new developments in HP thermal printheads, for the HP 8750, HP 30, that surpass the quality of an Epson 4000 or Epson 7600, but these new heads are not available for any size printer over 24-inches).
Roland d’Vinci Hi-Fi JET Pro II Front View
During 2005 ErgoSoft RIP came out with their StudioPrint RIP software to run a special 12-color ink set for the Roland. ErgoSoft RIP company also developed a special RIP software to run an 8-color ink set for the Mimaki JV22-160.
The 12-color ink set consists of
Four different light blacks
Officially this is not really a Roland printer, since it uses inks from another company that does not pass through Epson. Epson tries to collect a tithe on any ink that flows through their printheads in a Mimaki, Mutoh, or Roland.
So you tend to see this impressive printer in the ErgoSoft RIP booth, and not in Roland’s own booth. But when this impressive system won a DIMI award, Roland DGA did put a mention of it on their website.
We still have the two multi-color ColorSpan DisplayMaker printers and can comment on their capabilities. Indeed we see giclee ateliers still today that use even the ColorSpan 8-color systems. Remember, on the rough surface of canvas and watercolor paper you don’t need 1440 dpi. So a ColorSpan Displaymaker XII and Mach 12, or the newer X12, are viable solutions for fine art on canvas or watercolor paper.
If we had a Roland d’Vinci then we could show how it compared to both ColorSpans, but since we lack any Roland and have 23 other brands, we tend to write about the printers we have daily experience with. So we are writing mostly about the Epson Stylus Pro 9800, since this is the printer we know (because we have access to one).
If you are shopping around for your next giclee printer, also consider the Mimaki JV22-160 with eight inks. The 8-color inkset we know the best is Symphonic Ink. You can obtain this special ink from Scott Saltman, American Imaging Corp, fax 201 263-9533. Scott Saltman is a highly regarded ink chemist and RIP software person who has dedicated his life to achieving the ultimate ink-software combination.
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