PDI Large Format Solutions adds three EFI VUTEk printers

PrintAction Staff
February 28, 2019
By PrintAction Staff
PDI Large Format Solutions, a subsidiary of Montreal, Quebec-based PDI Group Inc., is the first business in Canada to install both the next-generation, high-end flatbed/roll-fed EFI VUTEk h3 superwide-format LED printer and the new EFI VUTEk 3r+ roll-to-roll LED printer. The company has also purchased and installed an EFI VUTEk FabriVU 340i soft signage printer.

The company purchased all three printers at the 2018 SGIA Expo tradeshow. According to Jamie Barbieri, President of PDI Group Inc., the purchase will help the company consistently deliver high-quality work as volume needs expand. With its new LED and soft signage printing capabilities, PDI Large Format can recapture jobs it had outsourced in the past.

“The new EFI devices take us to a new level of capacity, quality and efficiency,” Francis Tellier, President of PDI Large Format Solutions, says. “We’ve increased our production capacity by 40 percent, and we have aggressive plans to double our annual growth for the next few years. In addition, the new devices feature significantly lower costs for ink, electricity and maintenance, which helps us maintain our competitiveness in a large market.

With production facilities in Laval, a suburb of Montreal, PDI Large Format’s clients include a range of brand owners in the Canadian retail space.

The need for faster, high-end rigid-substrate work made the VUTEk h3 installation particularly important. EFI’s VUTEk h series, which includes the h3 model and h5 model available as a field upgrade or as a direct purchase, offers high-end imaging at resolutions up to 1,200 dpi. A new, high-velocity 7-picoliter UltraDrop Technology grayscale printhead technology on PDI Large Format’s VUTEk h3 printer boasts precision dot placement and consistency with eight- and optional four-colour printing modes plus white, as well as nine-layer print capability.

PDI Large Format plans to complete the upgrade to the h5 model by the end of the first quarter this year, which will increase production up to 109 boards per hour.

The company’s new, 3.5-metre-wide VUTEk 3r+ roll-to-roll LED device delivers print speeds of up to 390 square metres per hour. The model features 7-picoliter UltraDrop Technology imaging, a 1,200-dpi maximum resolution, and up to eight-colour (including optional white) output. It also offers several new options, including a motorized air shaft for precise media advancement.

In addition to pushing organic growth, PDI Large Format is reclaiming dye-sublimation fabric soft signage work it had been outsourcing using the VUTEk FabriVU 340i. The four-colour printer is a 3.4-metre-wide, aqueous dye sublimation platform that offers 2,400-dpi imaging.

“Dye sublimation work is one of our fastest-growing products,” Tellier says. “With the FabriVU 340i, we can bring that business back and continue to grow the portfolio. In addition to the quality and speed, one big benefit of the printer is the integrated calendering system, which reduces two steps to one, and generates time savings for us.”

All three of the printers at PDI Large Format use EFI Fiery proServer digital front ends (DFEs), which boasts advanced colour management, workflow and production tools. The DFEs installed at the company also eliminate idle printer time using EFI’s Fiery Accelerated System Technology (FAST RIP) technology, which speeds up file processing by an average of five times compared to previous proServer versions, EFI explains.

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