May 15
Epson Takes Large Format to the Next Level with Pro Series
7000, 9000 series print on variety of media

by David Nagel
Senior Producer

Epson is kicking off this year's DRUPA conference in Germany with a new line of large-format professional printers—the Stylus Pro 7500 and 9500. We had a chance to see some of the results prior to release, and they were impressive—large-format printing on a variety of media with the kind of quality we've come to expect from high-resolution inkjets.

The printers use a new kind of ink (called Epson Archival Ink) that's actually a solid milled down to the point that it's almost a liquid. The result is no drying time and the ability to print on a variety of media—not just papers designed to hold fine ink droplets. The print head itself offers a droplet size of 8 picoliters—remember that's a solid—and 1,440 x 720 DPI resolution. The six ink colors ship individually in 110 ML cartridges. The ink has a lightfastness of more than 100 years.

Supported media for the Archival Ink system include premium glossy, premium luster, glossy, presentation matte, backlight film, posterboard semi-gloss, Arches & Crane watercolor, canvas, Dupont Tyvek, vinyl, polycarbonite floor graphics, static cling, Dupont/Epson commercial matte proofing and Dupont/Epson publication proofing media.

The print engine itself also receives some improvements over older pro-series Epson printers, including a speed boost. The 7500 and 9500 can print on media up to 1.5 mm thickness at 71 square feet per hour at 360 x 360 DPI using bi-directional mode down to 13 square feet per hour at 1,440 x 720 DPI in bi-directional mode. The 7500 supports media up to 24" wide on a roll or sheet-fed. The 9500 prints on media up to 44" wide.

The new printers support USB, parallel and Epson Type-B expansion slots, with options for 10/100 Base-T and FireWire ports. The base 7500 unit with Archival Ink sells for $4,495. Another model, the 7000, which uses standard Epson Graphics Ink, sells for $3,995. The 7500 is also available in a Fiery X2 configuration, which sells for $9,495.

The Stylus Pro 9500 base model with Archival Ink sells for $8,995. The Stylus Pro 9000, which uses standard Epson Graphics Ink, sells for $7,995. The Stylus Pro 9500 in the Fiery X2 configuration sells for $13,995. For more information, visit http://prographics.epson.com/products.

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