The best printing plotters

best printing plotters

If you are looking for a good printing plotter for your studio, print shop, company, or to set up a print job at home, then this guide will help you choose between the best printing plotters, in addition to identifying which are the technical characteristics that most influence when choosing one so that it best suits your needs.

The best printing plotters

If you do not have technical knowledge or have doubts about which printing plotter to choose, here you go. some recommendations with good quality and features, as well as a varied price range to suit all needs:

How to choose a printing plotter

what is a plotter

For choose a good printing plotter, you should take into account some parameters that it is important that you observe, among which the following stand out:

  • Trademarks: Many of the manufacturers are well-known, since they also make conventional printers. That is, to name some of the best brands of printing plotters we have HP, Epson, Brother, Canon, Silhouette, etc.
  • plotter price: another factor to take into account, since it must be adjusted to your budget. Determining a price range that you can afford will also serve as a filter to help you choose specific models. These teams can cost from a few hundred euros for the cheapest, up to thousands of euros in the case of the most professional.
  • plotter type: It is important to know the advantages and disadvantages or the possibilities of each type of plotter to know which is the one that best suits your purpose.
  • Paper size and maximum width: depending on the jobs you need to print, you should buy a more or less large plotter. If it is a little larger than the format you usually use, you can avoid that, if you occasionally need to do a larger job, you cannot.
  • Print quality or DPI resolution: Like printers, a plotter is also measured in dots per inch. The more dots you can fit into a square inch, the better image quality. It is measured in DPI (Dots per Inch) or PPP (Dots per Inch).
  • Print speed: It is also a parameter common to printers. The faster, the sooner the print will be finished, which can be a positive for improving productivity in work environments. This parameter is measured in number of pages per second or per minute.
  • Max blade pressure: in case of being a combo, capable of printing and also cutting, it is important to know what is the pressure that the blade can exert on the material to be cut. The higher it is, the easier it will cut thicker or harder materials.
  • Printing technology: In previous articles we saw that there are laser, inkjet, pen plotters, etc. In general, the ink ones are the most popular because of their lower cost and because they have somewhat cheaper consumables. However, lasers are more precise, but also more expensive.
  • Connectivity or port type: they exist from USB to FireWire, and even with network connectivity via RJ-45 cable or wireless (WiFi). If you are going to use a plotter away from the PC with which you design, it is better to choose the network option, being able to send whatever you want to the print queue without having to move.
  • Consumable cost: generally the inks are quite affordable, and that means that the refills do not involve too much outlay. However, given the advantages of the laser, it may be the best option for professional use, although it is also more expensive. As with the brands of plotters, the cartridges for them can also be obtained from the usual brands.
  • Number of inks: It is important to determine this other parameter, since some could reach up to 12 inks.
  • Internal RAM memory: it is the memory that the plotter has in which the design or format to be printed/cut is saved. The larger it is, the more jobs you can have stored for the print queue, or the larger those jobs can be.
  • Roll alignment system: Some include a roller to install rolls of continuous paper of several meters, something that comes in handy when printing large quantities or printing for surface coatings such as decoration.
  • Integrated paper cutter or guillotine: Not all printing plotters can cut, although some can already do both. You need to determine if you need those two functions or just one.
  • integrated scanner: They can sometimes come with a built-in scanner so you can get ready-made models, although this feature is not very common.
  • printing stand: they are structures in the form of legs to raise the plotter and not place it on a table. This makes the paper fall to the floor more, so you can eject the paper through your output tray without it hitting the floor as quickly.
  • Compatibility: not only the accepted formats, it is also about ports, drivers or controllers and supported operating system.

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