By Melissa Donovan
Part 2 of 2
The inks used in direct to garment (DTG) printers are generally water-based pigment inks. In the first article in these two-part series, we examined why water-based pigment inks were the preferred choice, looked at the number of cartridge sizes available, ink refill requirements, and the popularity of white ink. Here, we focus on vendors offering ink sets for DTG printers.
All American Manufacturing & Supply distributes Epson UltraChrome DG ink for the Epson SureColor F2000 DTG and DuPont Artistri P5000+ for the NeoFlex, Fast T-Jet, Veloci-Jet, TexJet, FreeJet, and IDot DTG systems. DuPont Artistri ink can print to certain polyesters, expanding possibilities as many water-based inks have difficulty adhering to synthetic fibers. Both DuPont and Epson are water-based pigment inks available in CMYK plus white in 220 to 600ml bulk feed replaceable cartridges or 250ml bags and up to ten liter amounts. The DuPont Artistri ink pricing varies, its $50 for a 220ml cartridge and $47 for a 220ml bag; bottles can also be purchased—250ml for $45, 500ml for $80, and one liter for $148. Epson UltraChrome DG ink is available in 600ml cartridges for $207. The company’s ink sets perform best with 100 percent cotton and 50/50 cotton/polyester blends.
AnaJet, Inc. offers Spectrum and PowerBright Plus inks for its mPower DTG printers. Water-based, they are available in CMYK and white options in cartridges. Pricing is $55 to $70 for standard size cartridges and $105 to $135 for XL cartridges. AnaJet printers utilize Ricoh printheads, and its ink sets are fully tested and certified by Ricoh. The inks are recommended for use with 100 percent cotton, but can be used on up to 100 percent polyester for light garments.
BelQuette, Inc.’s PrintsRite inks are water-based pigment inks designed for the company’s Genesis DTG printer in addition to others. CMYK and white are available in bags of 250ml for $85, 500ml for $160, 750ml for $225, and one liter for $280. The PrintsRite Bagged Ink System is ideal for any digital DTG printer that uses the PrintsRite Ink Delivery System. PrintsRite inks are also available in 125ml, 250ml, 500ml, and one liter bottles.
Brother International Corporation sells ink for its existing and legacy models. Current inks are only compatible with Brother GT-3 series DTG printers, but inks are also available for older models like the GT-541 and GT-782. All offer a higher viscosity of ink designed specifically for industrial printheads developed for Brother. Water-based and pigment inks are available as CMYK plus white in cartridges. Pricing depends on the printer model, size of the ink cartridge, and the quantity of ink purchased at one time.
Epson UltraChrome DG ink is used with the Epson SureColor F2000 DTG printer. The ink is pigment water-based and offered in CMYK and white. Supplied in 250ml and 600ml cartridges, the MSRP is $230 for 600ml. The ink is Oeko-Tex 100 certified and features a two year shelf life. It can be cured with a heat press or with many conveyor dryers. When used in combination with an Epson pre-treatment solution, the finished print obtains an industry high AATCC rating of five. The ink set is optimized for printing on 100 percent cotton, but according the company can achieve good results when printing on certain 50/50 and tri-blended fabrics.
Kornit Digital offers NeoPigment Pure ink for its Avalanche 1000, Avalanche Hexa, Avalanche DC, Storm II, Paradigm, and Breeze DTG printers. The water-based pigmented ink is available in CMYK, RG, and white. Bottles are available in 150ml, 1.5 liters, and four liters—pricing varies and there is a volume discount. The ink set requires offers a large gamut range, excellent durability, and ideal elongation performance. It works on cotton, polyester, cotton/polyester blends, lycra, viscose, silk, leather, denim, linen, and wool.
Lawson Screen & Digital Products, Inc. distributes Epson UltraChrome DG ink for the Epson SureColor F2000 DTG printer. The water-based inks are available in CMYK and white and offered in cartridges. The ink is optimized specifically to work with Epson printheads. 100 percent cotton is the best type of shirt to print on, but a 50/50 blend can also work if certain settings are adjusted accordingly.
MESA Supplies recommends Image Armor E-Series inks and DuPont Artistri inks for all of its Epson-based DTG printers like the Summit XT. These are water-based CMYK inks and titanium oxide pigment white inks. Bulk bottles from 125ml to one liter are available. Pricing varies, but starts as low as $118 for one liter of CMYK or $125 for one liter of white. All of the company’s water-based DTG CMYK inks work well with 50 percent or more cotton.
Mutoh America, Inc. offers textile pigment ink for its ValueJet 405GT DTG printer. It is available in CMYK and white in 200ml cartridges. 100 percent cotton shirts work best with Mutoh’s textile pigment ink.
OmniPrint International’s bulk ink is based on DuPont Artistri inks and used in its FreeJet series of DTG printers. Water-based, it is available in CMYK and white in one liter bottles, which cost $145 per liter. The ink works best with natural fibers like cotton, bamboo, canvas, and help, but can also print on poly blends up to 50/50.
A Little Ink
There are a number of options when it comes to ink sets for DTG printers. It’s important to pick the correct product for your printer and go from there. All of the solutions available on the market today offer great quality and commitment.
Jul2016, Digital Output DODTG1607