Production Inkjet

Xerox today introduced its new roll-to-cut-sheet, narrow-web inkjet press called the Rialto 900, which the company describes as a machine that will carve out a new space within the production inkjet segment. The Rialto 900 is the first product jointly developed and launched by Xerox and Impika, two years after the former purchased the latter.

The full-colour Rialto 900 is designed for producing 1.5- to 5-million impressions per month. Xerox also states the Rialto 900 has the smallest footprint of any inkjet press on the market, measuring 11.9 x 5.1 feet (3.58 x 1.55 metres), including the press tower. Rialto 900 features what Xerox describes as an all-in-one design, meaning the front-end controller, paper roll and finishing components are housed within the machine.

In addition to duplex printing, the company also explains Rialto has the smallest, narrow web on the market, measuring 9.84 inches (250 millimeters). These smaller-scale production factors for an inkjet web press provide for a lower cost of entry into inkjet web printing.

“We are creating a new, disruptive inkjet market segment with the Rialto 900 and there’s room for everyone,” said Paul Morgavi, COO, Inkjet Division, Xerox, and general manager, Impika. “The Rialto 900 changes the playing field by merging the cut sheet, inkjet and offset worlds...”  

Running Xerox’ water-based pigment HD ink, the Rialto 900 is rated to produce a 1,000 x 1,000-dpi apparent resolution. The Xerox Rialto 900 press is now available.

 

Domino Printing Sciences states it has entered into the transactional, direct mail and book printing markets with the launch of the K630i monochrome printing press. The machine is being introduced at Hunkeler Innovation Days, running from February 23 to 26 in Lucerne, Switzerland.

“The K630i is a natural progression in digital printing for Domino after launching the K600i digital module in 2010, and the four colour N600i digital label press in 2012, now available as the N610i in up to seven colours,” said Philip Easton, Director of Domino’s Digital Printing Solutions Division. “The K630i is based on the same proven technology that has seen both these products take leadership positions in their respective markets.”

A continuous-feed production printer, the K630i is configured to run at 75 metres per minute (246 feet) or 150 metres per minute (492 feet) with three print widths of 333, 445 or 558 mm and with simplex or duplex options in the same frame.

The K630i is evolution of the Graph Tech AG MonoCube product that was first released in 2012, just before Domino, already a shareholder, acquired the remaining shares of the company. There are currently four installations in Europe and North America, each running between 2- to 12-million A4 impressions per month. Domino states a further five K630i presses are now on order.



HP is launching its new High Definition Nozzle Architecture for print heads to be held within its T Series of inkjet web presses. The new technology doubles the native print resolution of current HP inkjet print heads from 10,560 to 21,120 nozzles, delivering 2,400 nozzles per inch.

The HD Nozzle Architecture, with built-in redundancy, also supports dual drop weight per colour for what HP describes as sharp text, fine lines, accurate skin tones, smooth gray and colour transitions, and enhanced highlight and shadow detail. It also allows HP to offer a new quality mode on the T Series machines. The high-end HP T400 press, with a web width of up to 42 inches, can run with a printing speed of up to 800 feet (244 metres) per minute in monochrome or at up to 400 feet (122 metres) per minute in colour.
 
High Definition Nozzle Architecture technology will be incorporated into all HP Inkjet Web Press platforms, including the HP T200, T300 and T400 systems. Current customers can upgrade to the new technology. HP reports that its T200, T300 and T400 series customers have printed more than 90 billion A4 equivalent pages since 2009.
 
“High Definition Nozzle Architecture technology enables our HP Inkjet Web Press customers to address a broader range of applications from general commercial printing to production mail to publishing by resetting the bar for inkjet quality and performance,” said Aurelio Maruggi, VP and GM, Inkjet High-speed Production Solutions, HP.

HP also introduced a cloud-based inventory management system designed to help HP Inkjet Web Press customers to improve uptime and productivity. The HP Smart Uptime Kit for HP Inkjet Web Presses enables customers to manage parts, track usage and extract reports.



AccuWeb announced a technology partnership for integrating its EVO 150 controller on the new Colordyne Technologies’ 3600 series of printing systems, primarily aimed at tag or label runs.

The Colordyne Technologies’ 3600 series reaches a resolution of 1,600 x 1,375-dpi running at 225 feet per minute, which the company explains as requiring precise web guiding to maintain registration for both its CMYK plus spot colour printing and integrated laser die cutting.

AccuWeb web guides are positioned before the print engine and the laser die cutter for consistent web travel. The AccuWeb EVO 150 controller allows press operators to fine-tune web guide performance using a switch-pad or touch-screen interface. The EVO 150 web guide controller combines 150 watts of power and 24 VDC with the ability to control brushed and brushless actuator motors.

“The modular CDT 3600 press can be configured with multiple processes, many of which may require a web guide,” said Ron Brown, Technical Director at CDT. “The new EVO 150 web guide controller elegantly integrates a single user interface system capable of controlling multiple web guides with consistent accuracy and reliability.”

At SGIA this week in Las Vegas, Screen will make the North American launch of its Truepress Jet W3200UV HS (standing for High Speed), which nearly doubles the throughput of the company’s existing W3200UV flatbed inkjet machine.

The moving-table printer reaches a top speed of 1,614 square feet per hour. Launched in 2013, the Truepress Jet W3200UV reached a top speed of 914 square feet per hour. Users of the older system can upgrade to the HS model in the field. The 14-picoliter print heads on the HS model feature silicon nozzle plates that are liquid cooled.

The new machine, like its predecessor, features pop-up register pins, auto-cleaning heads, and a head-crash detection system. The 62.9 x 125.9-inch-wide flatbed table is driven by magnetically encoded linear motors and, according to Screen, is capable of printing directly to lenticular lenses. The Truepress Jet W3200UV HS features six colours (cyan, magenta, yellow, black, light cyan and light magenta) plus two white ink channels. It has 48 colour heads and 16 white heads. Image quality and colour management are controlled via the Wasatch SoftRIP.

In September, Screen announced the arrival of a new generation TruePress Jet 520 HD sheetfed inkjet press for transactional, direct mail and book printing markets. The redesigned Truepress Jet520HD features a new paper transport, new drying techniques, new print heads and new screening technologies that make the most of new wide-gamut inks. Truepress Jet520HD reaches speeds of up to 50 metres per minute with a resolution of 1,200 x 1,200 dpi, while the fastest speed is 120 metres per min at a resolution of 600 x 600 dpi. The system’s new Ricoh print heads provide variable size droplets. It also uses new high-density ink that, according to Screen is very close to the standards used in offset printing.

The new Truepress Jet520HD can print on material from 40 gsm to 250 gsm. Truepress Jet520HD can also include an optional inspection unit based on Screen's JetInspection system that checks the entire page and compares the printed result to the RIP data. The new press is driven by a new version of Equios software with new features like In-RIP Smart Imposition, ICC Profile Editor and Spot Colour Editor.



INX International and Komori, as co-exhibitors at the recent Labelexpo Americas trade show in Chicago, showcased the new Komori NW210-E inkjet UV narrow web press.

Komori is the exclusive national dealer for INX in the United States. K-North Services, a Komori dealer, will be the distributor for NW210-E press in Ontario and Western Canada.

The NW210’s first buyer is Diversified Labeling Solutions of Itasca, Illinois, owned by Bob Hakman, who plans to install the press by the end of the year. Owner Bob Hakman indicated that when the company purchased the NW140 press from INX last year, they were planning to upgrade when the next generation press reached the market.

The NW210-E press was built in collaboration with Spartanics and is powered by the JetINX print head drive and ink recirculation system. It incorporates a low-heat UV-LED pinning and curing system for single pass output at up to 80 feet per minute on a range of label materials.

At Labelexpo, the press was shown with the he HMJ-200 ink dispenser from HMJtech Dispensing. Designed for small-to-medium sized batches with single point dispense, the company explains the dispenser takes 90 seconds to deliver four ingredients in a one-gallon jug. Available for water based or UV curable ink, the HMJ-200 is configurable up to 14 base ingredients from kits, drums, totes or bulk.

KBA North America plans to unveil its newest RotaJET L Series inkjet press at Graph Expo 14. Specifications on modular press platform are to be released at the Chicago trade show, running from September 28 to October 1 in Chicago.

The RotaJET platform was first unveiled at drupa 2012. In early 2013, KBA introduced a new pigment ink called RotaColor, designed to extend the printable range of untreated papers.

KBA describes the RotaJET L-Series as being well suited for segments like the books, direct mail, magazines, newspapers and packaging, among other industrial printing markets.

“The new RotaJET L Series represents the ultimate high-end system in high-volume inkjet printing,” stated Mark Hischar, President and CEO of KBA North America. “The high-performance RotaJET can be optimally configured to suit the respective market and industry environment due to its modular design that can be retrofitted with future print head generations. This gives users of the new RotaJET platform a huge advantage allowing them to react quickly and economically to changing market conditions and customer demands.”



With its renewed focus on the printing industry, Eastman Kodak this morning introduced what the company is calling two next-generation presses within its unique Prosper inkjet platform, including the Prosper 6000C and Prosper 6000P.

The Prosper 6000C (with “C” standing for colour) press is aimed at commercial printing applications that require high ink laydowns. The Prosper 6000P is specifically designed for publishing applications likes books and newspapers that require the use of lightweight paper and low-to-medium ink laydowns. Both presses are scheduled to be made available later this year.

The Prosper 6000 presses, handling rolls widths of between eight to 25.5 inches, are driven by what Kodak calls the Intelligent Print System (IPS), which continuously monitors, evaluates and adjusts operations toward high-quality output. Both of the new Prosper presses print at speeds of up to 1,000 feet per minute (300 meters pre minute) on matted and uncoated papers with a duty cycle of 90 million A4 pages per month. This equates to a speed that is up to 2.5 times faster than the existing Prosper 5000XLi press. An enhanced drying capability allows heavyweight glossy and silk stock to be printed on the Prosper 6000C at 650 (200 meters) feet per minute.

Kodak states the Prosper 6000 presses produce saleable prints at a cost per page that approaches $0.005/A4 in colour consumable costs, while high-gloss targeted direct mail pieces can be produced at a cost that is around 30 percent less than using electrophotographic (toner-based) systems.

“The Prosper 6000 presses deliver the highest industry performance coupled with quality approaching 200 lpi,” stated Doug Edwards, President, Digital Printing & Enterprise, Eastman Kodak, “allowing customers to increase agility so they can adapt to the changing demands of the business and better respond to their customers.”

The writing system of the new Prosper presses run Kodak’s newly formulated nanotechnology inks, which the company indicates as playing a significant role in reaching the larger colour gamut required in commercial printing, as well as printing on a range of uncoated, coated and glossy papers. Kodak explains the ink technology, coupled with new transport and drying systems, allows the Prosper 6000 presses to lay down more ink than in the past.

The Prosper 6000 series leverages advances to Kodak’s 700 Print Manager digital front-end, which the company has been developing for several years based on its software history.



Epson sold its hundredth SurePress, engineered for primary label production, to Kanae Co. Ltd. of Nagano, Japan. The inkjet-based printing platform was first launched in October 2010 with the SurePress L-4033A.

In December 2012, Epson then launched the SurePress L-4033AW with white ink, using its Micro Piezo and soluble ink technology, which marked significant progress based on market needs to run white ink at high speeds. Epson states that as many as 20 percent of SurePress customers have purchased two or more units.

“We will launch a new model that includes a print-head using our cutting-edge PrecisionCore technology,” said Eisuke Shimoyama, General Manager responsible for sales and marketing of industrial solutions at Epson. "Going forward, our aim is to expand our market share and lead the digitalization of the printing industry."

Epson introduced its PrecisionCore print-head technology in September 2013, during Labelexpo, in its new SureColor F2000 Series garment printer. At Labelexpo 2013, Epson also presented PrecisionCore within tech demonstrations of the SurePress L-6034V and L-6034VW presses (the latter including white ink), with a planned release date for summer 2014.


PrecisionCore print-heads are produced in a Micro-Electromechanical Systems (MEMS) industrial facility and will eventually be deployed across a range of sectors from industrial and commercial printing to office products.

“PrecisionCore represents a leap forward in printing performance,” said Minoru Usui, Epson’s global President at last year's Labelexpo exhibition. “We continue to deliver outstanding quality thanks to superior dot control, and have introduced a new system to ensure reliability. At the same time, scalability allows us to fully leverage our historical strengths of ink flexibility and print-head durability.” 


 

The SurePress L-6034VW includes six array lineheads which are comprised of 11 PrecisionCore print chip modules (totaling 52,800 nozzles) with multi-size dot control and high native resolution. The linehead is designed to work with Epson’s new low-energy LED-cured UV ink and in-line digital varnish technology, which can ultimately image at a 600 x 600-dpi resolution at up to 49.2 feet per minute. The press works with standard film and paper label substrates between 3.15 to 13-inches wide up to 0.013-inches (0.32 mm) thick. In addition, it enables printing onto heat-sensitive substrates like polyethylene.



HP last week introduced two new technologies within its Inkjet Web Press portfolio, including the T260, which is a monochrome inkjet web press, and the HP Priming Solution, allowing its inkjet presses to print on a broader range of media, including coated substrates. HP also announced its new SmartStream Solutions Partner Program for finishing.

The T260, aimed at both long- and short-run monochrome work, was introduced as a 26-inch-wide (66-cm-wide) press with the ability to run at speeds of up to 800 feet (244 meters) per minute, employing 1,200 nozzles per inch. The HP T260 is rated for a per-month duty cycle of 111 million mono landscape letter-sized, or 87 million portrait letter-sized (123 million A4 sized) and 211 million 6-inch by 9-inch (152.6-mm by 228.6-mm) equivalent images.
 
The first incarnation of the HP Priming Solution, available for the company’s full line of inkjet web presses, offers a matte finish. Components of the HP Priming Solution include an aqueous-based priming agent for HP A51 Inks, engineered to work with HP Inkjet Web Presses, and the Epic PrimeCoat priming system from Epic Products International. In addition to this new solution for working with coated stock, the company also provides HP Bonding Agent for production on uncoated offset papers.

HP’s inkjet web presses also leverage inkjet-optimized papers with ColorPRO technology and the HP Media Certification Program to identify compatible substrates.

HP’s new SmartStream Solutions Partner Program is designed to help customers with high productivity finishing options. This includes the FlexCut digital sheeter/stacker solution developed by Magnum Digital Solution exclusively for the HP T410 press.

The FlexCut, which will be sold directly by HP, offers automated make-ready and on-the-fly stack changes, among other features. It allows users to produce 42-inch by 39.4-inch sheets at speeds up to 14,440 sheets per hour.
 
The HP SmartStream Solutions Partner Program also includes the Sprint Variable Data Finishing System by VITS International, KOLBUS systems, and a moisturizer that uses electrostatic dispensing technology developed by Eltex-Elektrostatik GmbH.

The HP Priming Solution and the T260 Mono Inkjet Web Press are expected to be available before the end of 2014.



Canon introduced the new Océ ImageStream 3500 as its first full-colour press from its Océ inkjet product range that can print on offset coated paper stocks. The new press will be available from the beginning of 2015. In conjunction with the arrival of the 3500, Canon also recently unveiled a range of monochrome and colour presses.

The company explains the imaging system of the Océ ImageStream 3500, using pigment inks, allows for the elimination of treated paper or special add-ons such as bonding agents or primers to produce high-quality inkjet printing. The new pigment inks are engineered to create finer edge sharpness, less fray and dot gain and increased optical density for a stronger contrast. Canon continues to explain that the perceived colour gamut on low cost standard papers is higher on pigment inks than on dye inks.

The Océ ImageStream 3500 reaches speeds of up to 160 metres per minute  (525 feet per minute) at 1200 x 600 dpi, using flexible droplet modulation for higher apparent image resolution. The press also carries a compact footprint for its class, which Canon describes as a design that is 10 to 50 percent smaller than other similar production systems.

The Océ ImageStream 3500 is driven by Océ PRISMA workflow software with the scalable Océ SRA MP controller and the embedded Adobe APPEengine for the support of a native PDF formats.

“With the development of the Océ ImageStream 3500, there has never been a more enticing and attractive proposition for commercial printers using offset technology to enter the digital printing market,” stated Craig Nethercott, Commercial Print Group Director, Canon UK. “The Océ ImageStream rivals the speed and image quality of offset technologies, such as conventional B2 presses, while harnessing the capabilities of digital printing technology for shorter runs, print-on-demand and variable data for personalization.”

Canon also introduced other colour and monochrome printers last week, including the Océ VarioStream 4000 monochrome simplex/duplex continuous-feed press, with a speed range between 180 to 1,200 pages per minute (ppm). The new Océ VarioStream 7110 continuous-feed toner printer runs at 108 ppm simplex, for entry-level transactional printing. The light production imagePRESS C800 Series cutsheet press, which prints 80 ppm on paper up to 220 gsm, uses the company’s new CV (Consistently Vivid) toner.

Late last year, Canon also unveiled plans for a cut-sheet colour inkjet printer, called Project Niagara, which is still under development.

EFI and Landa Corporation entered into a partnership agreement for the development of a Digital Front End (DFE) for Landa’s Nanographic printing technology. The announcement was made today during the opening session of Connect, EFI’s annual users conference in Las Vegas.

The new DFE, scheduled to enter beta testing in the fourth quarter of 2014, is to be based exclusively on EFI Fiery technology, which the companies state will provide new functions for the sheetfed and web-fed Nanographic machines. When they reach market, these 4- to 8-colour presses are to be aimed at commercial, folding-carton, point-of-sale, publishing, and flexible-packaging work.


“Benny Landa is a legend in our industry, and we are excited to work with his company as its exclusive DFE technology provider,” stated Guy Gecht, CEO of EFI. “Landa Nanographic printing presses have potential to accelerate the migration of mainstream commercial printing and packaging to digital printing. The Landa DFE provides a proven, ultra-high-speed and well-integrated front-end platform that Landa customers will require.”

Landa states the 4- to 8-colour presses are being designed to print short-to-medium job lengths up to five times faster than existing digital (toner) presses. The Landa DFE is to support both static and variable-data printing when using what the companies describe as off-the-shelf B1 format substrates (41 inches/1,050 mm).

“Our unique Nanographic Printing process enables us to offer offset-quality digital printing and a combination of format size and throughput speeds unprecedented in the graphic arts industry,” stated Benny Landa, Chairman and CEO of Landa Corporation. “Reaching this remarkable and exciting goal requires partnering with best-in-class providers. That is the reason we chose Fiery technology and EFI as our development partner.”

 

In 2013, Landa reached an agreement to have Komori provide all sheetfed platforms for the Nanographic printing presses, which were first shown in Germany at the quadrennial drupa tradeshow in May 2012.

 


Domino Printing Sciences is presenting an inkjet head system designed integrate into existing sheetfed and webfed presses at speeds of between 50 and 75 metres (246 feet) per minute.

The K600i piezo inkjet system can integrate variable data printing at 600 dpi. At Labelexpo in Brussels last week, the company demonstrated a double printhead bar for the first time, which allowed the system to print at up to 150 metres per minute.

“Today, printing companies are looking for solutions that offer new revenue streams and competitive advantage within their existing businesses,” said Philip Easton, Director of Domino’s Digital Printing Business. “The K600i with its native 600-dpi print resolution, selectable drop size, superior linear speeds and productivity features really sets new standards for integrating variable data print into existing print lines and onto a wide range of substrates.”
 
 
The K600i can be configured for different print widths ranging from 108 mm (4.26 inches) to 557 mm (21.96 inches), which is achieved by mounting a series of stitched print heads across a bar to cover the full width of the press or finishing line.

The K600i is the latest edition to Domino’s K-Series range, which the company says accounts for an estimated 30 percent of worldwide market share in its target sectors. In common with all K-Series models, the K600i has a compact modular design to facilitate integration with a range of host machines.


Landa Corporation, after making a big splash at drupa last year, has been relatively quiet about its progress in commercializing its Nanographic Printing presses. Today, the company announced new developments in its first production machines, the S10FC and S10C, as well as a timeline to release.

Landa says it plans on shipping beta units of its S10FC press, aimed at the folding carton marke,t by Q4 2014 and will ship the S10C press, aimed at the commercial and publishing markets, shortly after.

The design of the press has also altered substantially since it was shown last. The large touchscreen display, previously mounted to the front of the press, has been moved to the delivery area, forming what the company calls an Operator Cockpit. This redesign stems from feedback the company received from its prospective buyers, of which there are 400 who have signed letters of intent to purchase, and supplied a reported $10,000 for the opportunity.

Landa also announced other enhancements, including new ink ejectors which increase print quality that “match offset resolution and grey levels.” The press also features an advanced paper handling system that supports both paper and plastic substrates and a continuous paper feeding and delivery capability to load and unload without stopping operations. Landa has also announced an optional conventional inline coating unit that will support flexo rollers and plates, as well as UV and aqueous coatings.

“We have been working closely with our customers to ensure that our Nanographic Printing presses will provide the performance, print quality and feature set for high-speed production,” announced Benny Landa, Chairman and CEO of Landa Corporation. “In addition, the new Landa Operator Cockpit will set a new standard for operating any production press, whether digital or offset.”

Canon at PRINT 13 this week showed a concept of a B3 format inkjet device code-named Niagara. The device has an anticipated production speed of 3,800 duplex B3 sheets per hour and up to 8,500 duplex letter-sized sheets per hour, with a monthly volume of up to 10 million letter sheets per month.

The device, which was not on hand at the show, was demonstrated through a virtual experience to show goers. A presentation by Canon claimed that the press will be available to beta testers starting next year.

“Offset run lengths are rapidly decreasing while job frequencies are increasing. To achieve the flexibility, speed and control over operational costs required to compete effectively, professional printers need solutions capable of meeting a wider array of applications,” said Sam Yoshida, vice president and general manager, Marketing, Business Imaging Solutions Group, Canon U.S.A. “Over the last few years, Canon has achieved several breakthroughs in scaling inkjet technology to enable new levels of productivity, quality, reliability and cost effectiveness in its offerings, leading to the development of the Niagara digital press.”

The Niagara press has a four-colour ink system, but there are plans to expand it to up to six ink stations. Also on the Canon booth was the Oce ColorWave 900, making its North American debut. It is a high-speed wide format production printer with print speeds of up to 12 inches per second and productivity of more than 800 B2 or 500 B1 sheets per hour. Delivering 3.4 billion, 1.2 picolitre drops of aqueous ink per second, the machine is able to produce resolutions of 1,600 x 1,600 dpi.
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