AMS Spring 2023

Mimaki’s New Full Color 3D Printer: Smaller in Size, Still 10 Million Colors

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3D Printer manufacturer Mimaki has announced the latest in its full-color inkjet 3D printers, the 3DUJ-2207 UV Inkjet 3D Printer. The system is meant to be a more compact version of its larger industrial counterpart, the 3DUJ-553. The printer is being distributed across the U.K. and Ireland by Hybrid Services, the printer manufacturer’s exclusive distributor for the region.

The new 3DUJ-2207 features many of the same capabilities as its predecessor, including 10 million color possibilities, water-soluble support, and clear resin that can be used to print transparent parts or mixed with colors to create items with varying levels of opacity. The big difference is that the machine is compact. How compact? Small enough to “fit in an office elevator.”

The new 3DUJ-2207 from Mimaki.

The print volume of the system is comparatively petite at 203 x 203 x 76mm (roughly 8” x 8” x 3”). This compares to Stratasys’s smallest inkjet printer, the J55, which has a build volume of 140 x 200 x 190 mm, and the J826, which has a build volume of 255 x 252 x 200 mm. Featuring under and over 500,000 colors respectively, neither of these Stratasys machines reach the 10 million colors boasted by Mimaki. This is perhaps a testament to Mimaki’s capabilities as a manufacturer of industrial 2D printers first and 3D printers second.

Mimaki claims that it is able to achieve color expression that is “twice that of powder bed manufacturing methods,” which would either be full-color Multi Jet Fusion from HP or full-color binder jetting from companies like 3D Systems. In turn, Mimaki suggests that this “enables the accurate reproduction of subtle color differences which are critical for many industrial design applications such as medical and architectural modelling.”

Danna Drion, Senior Marketing Manager at Mimaki Europe, said of the new release:

“Here at Mimaki, we do not stop at developing disruptive technologies – we make it our business to look even further beyond this, continually striving to find ways in which we can then accelerate the adoption of these technologies and drive the wider industry forward. Our new 3DUJ-2207 3D Printer is a prime example of this. We had already raised the bar in 3D printing by delivering the world’s first 3D printer with over 10 million colours – but now, with the introduction of our new 3DUJ-2207 3D Printer, we are bringing these 10 million colours to a host of new customers, which in turn means new applications and an even quicker uptake of 3D printing technologies as a whole.”

The new machine will be available starting January 2021 and seems to be yet another strong showing from the 2D printer manufacturer. The company has already expanded into fused filament fabrication with Sindoh and large-format gel dispensing technology similar to that of Massivit.

Years ago, when HP began teasing its entrance into 3D printing with its own system, speculation arose over the possibilities of other 2D printer manufacturers moving into additive manufacturing. While we have yet to see much from Epson, despite some initial discussion from the company, Canon has explored 3D printing via its distribution partnerships with 3D Systems and Materialise and has developed its own resin 3D printer concept. Perhaps, outside of HP, the biggest competition from fellow 2D printer manufacturers comes from XYZprinting, subsidiary to the contract manufacturer New Kinpo Group.

(Images courtesy of Mimaki.)

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