Epson adds to this legacy of innovation with a capital “F” that stands for “Fashion Forward” as heralded by the Epson Fabric printers,” said Epson Philippines Corporation’s President/Country Manager, Toshimitsu Tanaka, who made the bold declaration at the recent launch of the global digital imaging leader’s new fabric printers at the Marco Polo hotel in Ortigas.
For over three years, Epson dedicated a team of engineers to create an all-new imaging technology solution dedicated for fabric printing.
With Epson, it means designing every component to work together flawlessly to ensure that the product exceeds expectations.
From the printhead and ink technology to the printer mechanism and software, the Epson F-series fabric printers were designed for extreme reliability for true industrial-level production.
Epson’s latest dye-sublimation printer, the F7170, is designed for the roll-to-roll digital textile market and integrates true roll-to-roll support for unprecedented levels of performance, reliability, and image quality for printing on fabrics and soft signage.
The Epson SureColor F7170 leverages Epson’s PrecisionCore TFP print head, and uses Epson’s UltraChrome DS ink system to provide high-quality printing, superior dot control, precise and repeatable performance, and excellent longevity for a range of dye-sublimation applications.
In addition, the Epson F7170 has a new, highly accurate take-up reel and substrate system to deliver winding accuracy between 0 and 0.19″ on transfer paper rolls for digital textile applications, including soft-signage products such as decorative table tops and runners, as well as point-of-purchase (POP) banners and exhibit displays.
Other roll-to-roll fabric applications that customers can create include home furnishings, fabric patterns, apparel manufacturing, and more.
Built for increased productivity, the SureColor F7170 also features a high-capacity ink tank system with refillable tanks to allow continuous printing through a full roll of media, as well as a new post-platen heater for faster drying times.
The printer also comes with a Wasatch SoftRIP TX that enables users to start printing output immediately out of the box with specialty features for textile printing. The F7170 is fully compatible with Epson’s line of dye-sublimation transfer papers, including DS Transfer Production paper, DS Transfer Adhesive Textile, and DS Transfer Multipurpose.
The SureColor F7170 is designed to work exclusively with Epson UltraChrome DS Ink and not with other brands of inks or cartridges.
“We are excited to bring the F7170 into the hands of digital textile producers, so they can increase productivity, minimize downtime and maximize profitability, and look forward to the new applications and innovative designs enabled by the technology,” explained Epson Philippines Commercial & Industrial Division Head Jino Alvarez.
“For Filipino designers we have collaborated with, the SureColor F7170 allowed them to produce full color images without having to compromise image quality by cutting colors.”
The Epson SureColor F7170 is engineered to print featured collections from top designers on the runway, trendy patterns and designs for home décor, the latest high-performance sportswear, and soft signage.
Another fabric printer that Epson Philippines recently launched is the Epson SureColor F2000 direct-to-garment printer. Engineered to meet the needs of garment printing businesses, the SC-F2000 can print a t-shirt in just 27 seconds*, because of its PrecisionCore TFP printhead.
PrecisionCore is thin film piezo printhead technology that merges advances in materials science and MEMS fabrication with Epson's deep portfolio of inkjet technologies. With the flexibility to deliver high-speed solutions for commercial, industrial, and office printing, the F2000 is capable of very high-production, with very little downtime for maintenance, ensuring that production lines will always be up.
The technology within the Epson F2000 is designed to draw out the best of all components. The printer uses Epson UltraChrome DG Ink -- a water-based pigment CMYK ink manufactured to deliver precise, repeatable performance, and superior image quality. Epson's UltraChrome DG ink works with the PrecisionCore printhead to deliver the ultimate in print quality with an extremely high resolution of 1440 x 1440 dpi.
To showcase these innovative fabric printers, Epson Philippines collaborated with some of the brightest Filipino designers in a fashion show entitled “Fashion Forward”. Creations by Philippine fashion brands including Avel Bacudio, Conspicuous Swimwear, Ziya, and Empire used Epson’s latest direct-to-garment and dye sublimation printers to create custom fabrics straight from their artistic vision to the fabric itself. The featured designers in “Fashion Forward” have expressed their excitement on how the Epson fabric printers shorten the grueling design process, and expanded possibilities in creating designs for cloth, garment and other fashion merchandise.
The verdict is in: “Super happy ako kasi kung ano yung print na pinagawa ko sa artist, yun ang lumabas (I am elated with how faithfully my design is rendered. What I asked the artist to do is exactly what came out of the printer). I am so excited to see the clothes on the runway,” remarked Asia’s Most Influential Designer of 2014, Avel Bacudio.
Avel leads the roster of prominent Filipino designers featured in the fashion show. “It's a must-have for designers like me because we can actually express our ideas not just through designs but at the same time, through fabric print. We have limited fabrics here in the Philippines and that's my struggle as a swimwear designer because I've always wanted to create swimwear out of printed fabrics. Digital textile printing provides diverse designs.
I can create outrageous swimwear out of it,” said Mairene Muñoz, Brand owner of Conspicuous swimwear. Mairene also swears by the efficiency of the Epson Surecolor F7170. “Designers like me who like working under pressure, like the efficiency of using the Epson Surecolor F7170.
It will save you a lot of time without sacrificing quality. In a matter of minutes, I now have my printed fabric with my chosen design. You only have to conceptualize, then, from there you can start printing your ideas -- uninterrupted production, astounding quality, and extremely fast drying,” she added. “At Ziya, our mantra is to provide designs as creatively and as freely as we want, which is very evident in our collection.
We like playing with patterns and colors, and digital textile printing is the means for us to be daring with our own and original fabric designs,” said Fashion Designer Fatima Benito Cali of Ziya. Ziya is a clothing line with a distinct bohemian theme. After using the Epson Surecolor F7170 in creating her designs, Fatima extolled the high quality prints delivered by the Epson printer.
“We compared some prints from other printers with that of the Epson Surecolor F7170 and the results are very different. Epson's colors are true to what we see in the computer's color registry. The colors are vibrant and real. The printing process doesn't require too much time to render. The sharpness and color of each detail in our fabric print is superb. We are very happy with the results!” said Fatima. When asked about the Epson F2000, Empire's Creative lead, Finney Santos, showed his enthusiasm. “We want our designs to dictate the aesthetics of our shirts. We can't let the limitations of a printer define what we do and how we do it.
This is why we enjoyed working with Epson's SureColor F2000,” he said. “It's a game changer as far as shirt printing goes. Since you're using direct-to-garment printing technology, you don't have to deal with the limitations that come with other printers or printing methods. It's easy to operate, even for us who don't have a lot of experience working with sophisticated printers. The quality is top-notch and consistent, so we never experienced printing aberrations.
Last, you get to see if the design works in an actual shirt. It becomes easier to experiment and play with the designs”, he explained. Empire is a shirt design company founded by dedicated sports fans. As far back as 2003, Epson has collaborated with Robustelli in Italy to make its first digital textile printer, the industry-changing Monna Lisa printer.
Printing images directly onto fabric is a big shift from a costly and labor-intensive method into a high-quality, less expensive, and faster process in rendering designs. In recent years, digital textile printing has transformed the global fashion industry and enabled designers to be more creative and productive.
Runways in Paris, Milan, London, New York and other fashion capitals have showcased intricate designs like never before, as high-end fashion designers embraced digital technology to add a new dimension to couture.