Mimaki UCJV300-160 Printer

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Description

Mimaki UCJV300-160

Mimaki UCJV300-160 is a UV-cure printer featuring 7-color combination printing.

The use of the large-format UV-LED print sign method became popular in 2017. Today, it seems like even small-scale print service providers are justifying the purchase of at least a low-end UV printer with a cutter to confront the future of sign graphics and UV innovation. Artists and operators love how efficient and eco-friendly UV printers are when compared to traditional printers. One of Mimaki’s latest entries to the game is the UCJV300-160 UV printer, which, for the sake of being concise, we’re going to call the 300-160.

The 300-160 UV is a high-end UV-cure printer that printing shops can use to draw graphics onto any surface with its newly developed, environmentally-friendly UV ink LUS. UV printers have come a long way since Mimaki gave the world its first eco-solvent ink printer. When business owners demand print utilizing UV characteristics, which will improve the work efficiency of a shop without sacrificing print resolution or cutting functions of a printer, the UCJV300-160 leads the way.

UV-LED ink printers first saw use in cosmopolitan day spas and nail salons. Today, most large-scale print shops have a UV printer replete with a cutter. UV ink printers give operators quicker turnaround times and higher-quality prints from a configuration image.

The Mimaki UCJV300 series are the great-great-grandchildren of the JV3 textile printer, the world’s first eco-solvent inkjet printer, which revolutionized image processing and sign applying. Its productive cutting functions made it suitable for creating wall paper and window graphics, unlike similarly-priced printers of its time. It could also efficiently produce half-cut signboards and ID-cut cards.

Mimaki UCJV300 Series Specs

The UCJV300-160 Mimaki is the top-of-the-line model in its UCJV300 series of printers, capable of achieving print speeds of 195.9 square feet or 25.8 square meters per hour. If you’re running a print shop, this is a vital print capability when customers request a massive wall paper or you’re designing a shoji sliding paper door. It will all be a breeze with UCJV300-160 UV-cure inks and its cutter.

It is a high spec model equipped with 4-color mode printing that will convert a high definition image into four-color combinations of cyan, magenta, yellow, black, or CMYK. You can see how these 4 layers print even on ID-cut images.

CMYK printing, which has been the gold standard in eco-solvent printers for years, helps improve print speeds, and all UV printers have it. The lowest-end model of the UCJV300 UV series has the CMYK 4 layers print function, and the colors come out magnificently no matter what post-processing and sign applying method you use.

Instead of sitting there and watching multiple layers print one by one, the 160’s 4 layers print function will improve the work efficiency of your print shop and cut your production time down to one-fourth. The 4 layers print method, along with variations of droplet size on nozzles and the CMYK color space invention, are three of the most significant innovations in the world of UV-LED print shops.

UCJV300 7-Color Printing vs. an Inkjet Printer

The 160 also features a 7-color combination printing mode that improves versatility and color accuracy. You can pick any seven colors and use them as a process set, which gives you more control over ink type, opacity, lithographic appearance, and substrate layering. If you run a printing business, your technicians might require additional training to use this feature. Many technicians currently only pick three extra colors in one ink type to throw behind CMYK tints, a standard practice in the days of inkjet printers.

Print Dimensions

The 160 has the largest maximum print area of all the UCJV300 series printers, featuring a 1610 mm or 63.4-inch range of operation, and it gives productive cutting functions a new meaning. Its blade has an ID-cut function that can produce hundreds of ID-cut PVC and cardboard cards in under an hour and can continue through the night with day-night printing modes. You can also take advantage of its ID-cut function for:

  • A temporary tattoo print cut
  • A custom label print cut
  • A gift tag print cut
  • A special party invitation print cut
  • A custom sticker print cut
  • Making your own apparel print cut
  • Other options, using function ID cut print resolution 300dpi, 600dpi, and 1200dpi

The UCJV300 series increases its maximum print area in 300 mm increments: the 75 has 800 mm, the 107 has 1090 mm, and the 130 has 1361 mm. The 160’s maximum media width is 1620 mm or 63.8 inches.

The 160’s maximum print area and width ensure that it can print even the largest labels on textiles that don’t exceed 1 mm in thickness.

Print Weight and Ink

You can rely on UCJV300 printers to pull through the toughest printing jobs as it supports a maximum media weight of 40 kilos or 88.2 pounds. It uses Mimaki’s proprietary eco-friendly ink, the LUS-170, and its more upscale counterpart, the  LUS-200, for its US and Canadian variants and the LUS-200 and LUS-175 when you buy it in Central America, South America, and Mexico.

Resolution

Because the 160 is a UV printer, you will spot a noticeable difference in print quality when going through its settings. It can print in four resolutions: 300dpi, 600dpi, 900dpi, 1200dpi. Ideally, you would want a higher dpi for smaller labels as people tend to look at them much closer.

UCJV300 Power and Operation

For the 160 to operate, it requires:

  • Power supply single-phase, with double 100 to 120V alternating current
  • At least 2.88 kilowatts on a double 100-volt alternating current
  • 3.84 kilowatts on two 200 volt currents

The UCJV300-160 uses double in-line Piezoelectric print heads, which will give you accurate colors down to the millimeter. It has an eccentric cutter, a ball-point pen, and four blades that you can use for various functions. A new function like cutting out glow-in-the-dark sticker paper and card stock is now within your reach, along with:

  • etching minor characters
  • reflective sheets
  • fluorescent sheets
  • PVCs

Physical Dimensions and Certifications

Among the 300 series printers, the 160 is the heaviest. It weighs 188 kilos, which exceeds the base model’s weight by 44 kilos. Each unit is 114.2 inches in length, 58.1 inches in height, and 30.6 inches in depth.

The printer has an Energy Star certification in the US and a REACH certification in Europe, meaning it consumes energy conservatively, which will help you save on your power bill.

UCJV300 Ink Certifications

The 160 uses Mimaki’s proprietary UV ink LUS-200 and LUS-175. With the lower-cost UV ink LUS 170, the three of them hold GREENGUARD Gold certifications from UL LLC, an OSHA-partnered third-party testing and certification company.

Inks like the LUS-170 and LUS-200 that have this certification have a unique UV ink property that produces minimal indoor pollution and no side effects for technicians even in day-night printing sessions. A GREENGUARD certificate, UL mark, and CB report are essential when using UV printers as volatile organic compounds, also known as VOCs, might fuse into the air from ink substrates that evaporate under strong lamps. You can buy a lot of UV-curable inks that are cheaper than the LUS-170 and LUS-175, but you might have to pay more for your workers’ healthcare coverage down the line.

The Mimaki LU, LH, and LUS lines have a unique UV ink property that not only matches the staying power and vibrancy of non-UV-curable printer inks but they surpass it. They have excellent adhesion and endurance on non-absorbent materials like metal, plastic, and glass, making them readily available for industrial and architectural graphic applications.

A UV-curable ink like the LUS-170 is decidedly low-VOC, meaning it won’t smell as much as the old ink types before the days of regulations when technicians could only work outside due to UV ink being so toxic.

UCJV300 Inks

Unlike old UV-curable ink LUS-170, LUS-175, and LUS-200 don’t produce ozone gases when they evaporate under LED wavelengths, which means your operators can print more than 60 square meters per hour without protective equipment or expensive in-house ventilation. It also maximizes the 160’s turnaround time and gives you the freedom to take on more jobs, which will result in more profits.

Compared to older metal halide exposure lamps, the LED lights on the 160 operate at lower temperatures and consume way less power. When you pair it with the budget-friendly UV ink LUS 170, you will be able to print on sensitive surfaces like PVC, PET, and acrylic boards, which will give your operation better versatility. The combination of low operating requirements and broad media compatibility makes the LUS, LU, and LH inks from Mimaki some of the industry’s bests.

UCJV300 Manual

The Mimaki UCJV300-160 manual comes with every purchase. If you misplace yours, you can download a PDF version from their website at mimaki.com. All you need to do is go to their Products page, select the UCJV300 model under Print and Cut, and download the PDF file to your computer.

Manufacturers will sometimes revise their manuals as customer concerns arise. The Mimaki 160’s manual has 194 pages covering a comprehensive range of topics.

Coverage

The manual starts with an introduction that covers the trademarks of the Mimaki Corporation. It then goes into a disclaimer that explains how you’re responsible for what the UCJV300 does while you operate.

Most importantly, the manual’s opening chapters instruct you only to use Mimaki Engineering inks and cleaning solutions to keep your printer working. 160 also has a unique power supply, so if you have multiple printers working in one room, you should be careful not to mix up their power supplies, or you might do irreparable damage to the 160.

The manual features a thorough explanation of what the Mimaki warranty covers. It also reminds you never to modify any of its components or risk thousands of dollars in repair charges. Some inks crack after applying due to UV-LED lights, and you will learn how to deal with that as well.

Because printers like the 160 emit a lot of vapor, you will see many reminders to operate in an open space or crack open a window. The manual has eight concise chapters covering everything, including troubleshooting, using the nozzle check unit, preventive maintenance, and printing defects.

Reviews

Pros

Mimaki printers are costly machines. They require a significant investment of both money and faith before purchase, no matter how big your budget gets. People looking for excellent LED printers usually only purchase one every 10 to 20 years, and if you’ve read any Mimaki UCJV300-160 review on the internet, you’d know why it’s an easy recommendation.

Every printer in the Mimaki UCJV300 series performs excellently. They get every detail correct on a microscopic level, even on large illumination signboard poster banners and vehicle markings when using resolution 300dpi, 600dpi, 900dpi, and 1200dpi. They’re ideal for tricky logos and textile prints with graphics like a hummingbird’s wings or distant constellations.

Many Mimaki 160 reviews describe a well-made printer with no parts that wiggle or shake during transport. The Piezoelectric heads have an in-line arrangement that’s bound to last many years of day-night printing without a hitch. The printer’s cutters are all replaceable should they go dull after years of use.

Cons

Even though Mimaki’s LUS inks are low-VOC and emit no harmful chemicals into the air, they are not odorless inks. Depending on your operating environment’s ventilation, the smell can be noticeable and become intolerable over time.

A few people had problems with Mimaki’s upgraded RIP software, RasterLink6Plus when they first used the printer some years ago. A few essential drivers were not available until early 2018 when the UCJV300 had launched in  Q3 of 2017. However, after a few updates, it has become faster and more responsive, offering quick access to next processing and sign making modes from whichever one you’re on.

Comparisons

The Mimaki UCJV300 has a comparable price range to the Roland XR-640 and Mutoh XpertJet 1682SR, along with the more expensive Canon Océ Colorado 1640. Many eco-solvent printers have a wide color gamut that UV printers couldn’t match, and the Roland XR-640 and Mutoh 1682SR rely on this to contest the 160.

Between the three, print quality is a wash. However, because of the 160’s quick-drying inks and UV-LED technology, it’s the better printer for people who want faster turnaround times and lower operating temperatures.

The Canon Océ Colorado 1640 occupies a weird middle ground in the market. It combines the low ink usage of eco-solvent printers, the odor-free indoor capabilities of latex printers, and UV printers’ high productivity. It can fit two rolls of 110-pound media by using heavy-duty drawers that it can switch between using an AI program.

The Océ Colorado 1640 also uses UV-curable quick-drying inks and UV-LED beams that put it neck-and-neck against the Mimaki UCJV300-160 in terms of productivity. However, with the current UCJV300-160 price point, the Canon 1640 is difficult to recommend because it’s close to a superwide printer’s price. The Mimaki UCJV300-160 is the more cost-effective and future-proof choice that will give you the same cost-effective and color-accurate prints.

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