Epson has launched a new desktop proofing printer that can deliver near-perfect colour matching of up to 99% of Pantone Solid Coated Colours. The 17-inch, 10-colour SureColor SC-P5000 looks set to offer a pretty sweet deal (coming in at just £1,795) for anybody looking at either professional proofing, fine art or photography applications.
According to Phil McMullin, Sales manager, Professional Graphics, Epson UK: “Colours are so precise that you can print in complete confidence, knowing the exact colour you want will be perfectly reproduced in the finished print. And you don’t even need to be an expert to get these results – the SC-P5000 is extremely simple to set up and use, and offers outstanding reliability.”
By all accounts the new printer went down a storm at a recent dealer event too. Not surprising really, as I examined several samples of both proof and print and to be honest the colour matching was almost perfect when viewed with the naked eye, and I would have to agree with the 99% solid colour claim. For process colours we are probably talking around 95%, which is still brilliant, so it’s a fabulous little package that is not only near perfect for proofing applications, but is a great photo printer too. On first inspection the SureColor SC-P5000 seems like a very useful addition to anybody’s studio set-up.
A lot of the colour quality is down to Epson’s PrecisionCore TFP printhead and UltraChome HDX 10-colour pigment ink set (including Orange, Green and Violet or Light Light Black) to deliver 2880x1440dpi resolution output with an increased colour gamut, higher-density blacks and, says Epson, twice the print permanence.
The printer also features high-capacity 200 ml ink cartridges and supports two different ink configurations: one with Light Light Black (LLK) ink for smooth and neutral tonal transitions and support of the Epson Advanced Black and White print mode, ideal for photography, fine art and graphic design applications; the other replaces the LLK ink with Violet for an expanded colour gamut and near-perfect colour matching of up to 99% of Pantone Solid Coated Colours, ideal for commercial and flexographic proofing applications. The UltraChrome HDX inks are 1.5 times denser than the previous generation, delivering a wider contrast ratio and improved resin encapsulation technology for superior gloss uniformity and optically clearer, sharper images.
There is an optional inline SpectroProofer, incorporating the ILS30 colorimeter jointly developed with X-Rite, to provide automated colour management within a proofing workflow. Conforming to ISO lighting and measurement standards – including M1 - this solution ensures consistent, repeatable colour accuracy regardless of media. This will obviously cost you a bot more - £2,770 (€3,077) with the SpectroProofer - but this also enables you to calibrate using Epson’s new Colour Calibration Utility, an easy-to-use, fast calibration tool that can be used to ensure consistent colour across a fleet of local/remote printers. Because the calibration data is stored on the printer, support for multiple users is much simpler and the calibrated data can be used for all media types including third party.
Media handling features auto-switching between the high-capacity front paper cassette and roll media feeder. It includes a power-driven roll media spindle, ideal for producing panoramas and roll printing up to 30.5m, and an internal high-speed single pass rotary cutter. The high-capacity cassette can hold up to 100 sheets of premium paper (250 sheets standard) for high productivity printing on a range of sheet sizes (A2, A2+, A3+, A3, A4, and 17-inch (43.2 cm). In addition, the SureColor SC-P5000 features a front feed straight path for delicate fine art sheet media, including poster board, up to 1.5mm thick.