Canon VarioPrint 6000 Ultra line

With speed, strength and green credentials, this black and white machine is one of the quickest cut-sheet digital press with perfecting abilities.So says Noel D’cunha who invested time on the press at Drupa.

13 Sep 2012 | By Noel D'Cunha

The name of the game now in cut-sheet mono digital printing is speed – pure and simple. The various arguments over quality and range of substrates are far from settled, but they take a definite back seat to the question of how many sheets can be produced in how short a space of time.

To this end, Océ’s VarioPrint 6000 Ultra range, which is targetted at the print-on-demand book sector, hit the market with the aim of fulfilling printers’ growing need for speed, is an immediate contender for fastest model in its class.
In 2010, Océ joined the Canon Group of companies with headquarters in Tokyo, Japan, to create the global leader in the printing industry. Prior to that, in 2007, Océ created a revolution in the mono production printing space. It introduced the Océ VarioPrint 6000 family and Océ Gemini instant duplex technology. Two years later in September 2009, it unveiled the new Océ VarioPrint 6000 Ultra which set new productivity and functionality standards, further fuelling growth and competitiveness of the product.
Black-and-white presses may not be the sexiest beasts in the press hall – or the corporate print room for that matter, but the VarioPrint features Océ engine and controller – and a technology that unlike other electrophotographic systems in the market allows printing on both sides of a sheet of paper in a single pass. 
The VarioPrint Ultra line, available in four different configurations: VP 6160 Ultra, VP 6200 Ultra, VP 6250 Ultra and VP 6320 Ultra at different print speeds of 171, 200, 250 and 314 A4 impressions per minute, are high-production machines, targeted at book printers and publishers to meet the requirements of short-run book printing, print-on-demand (POD) and just-in-time (JIT) printing 
Dual engine for offset quality
Canon is clear about its claim that the VP 6320 in the Ultra line, at 314 A4 impressions per minute, is the fastest cut-sheet perfecting digital press on the market, and is keen to explain the technology behind the claim.  
“It’s known as Gemini, and refers to the placement of two digital engines, side by side to each other, enabling simultaneous imaging of both front and back of the sheet, meaning that the press doesn’t slow down,” says Puneet Datta, assistant director – production printing division of Canon India. This is in contrast to many other digital presses, which either flip the sheet or carry it on a transport belt between two engines, both of which slow down the imaging process and hence, the press’s final output speed. 
According to reports, Océ did some careful analysis of the print-on-demand market before coming up with the architecture of the machine. It is reported that it found over 95% of the mono volume is duplex. No manufacturer, including Océ, had ever designed a machine specifically for duplex print. “It was a market-changing innovation that delivers true perfecting power at production speed,” says Datta. 
And regardless of how long the machine has been in operation, the presses are incredibly durable and reliable. “These machines are guaranteed for billion of impressions, even if they’ve been completely hammered, they will probably only have a couple of million impressions on the clock,” says Datta.
“The VP 6320 Ultra printers have guaranteed life of 120 crore A4 impression, which is maximum in its class and certificate is provided to customers by Océ.”
At the core of the Océ System is the Océ CopyPress technology. “This is a patented dual-belt and transfer system, which produces offset-like images without the inherent problems associated with xerography. CopyPress technology presses the image into paper,” says Puneet Datta, assistant director – production printing division of Canon India. “This technological difference makes Océ the reliability leader in the world of high and very high volume digital printing.”
The other important technologies are the Océ Gemini technology and the ScreenPoint technology. “The Gemini technology uses a single engine to drive two imaging belts at once,enabling two-sided jobs to be printed faster and more reliably because each sheet only passes through the engine once, while the Océ ScreenPoint technology delivers dazzling image resolution of 1,200x600dpi for halftones and photographs, with the near-perfect sheet positioning and 100% accurate registration that duplex jobs like books require,” says Datta.
Easy interoperability and upgrade
Canon says that the Océ VarioPrint 6000 Ultra systems are built for interoperability. “With the Océ Prisma sync controller, customers can run jobs from Kodak’s Smartboard and Xerox Freeflow makeready workflows without losing job ticket settings or media attributes,” says Datta. The Prisma sync in addition supports PS, PDF, PCL and IPDS print environments. “Plus the Océ VarioPrint 6000 Ultra line is design for full integration with Océ’s own Prisma workflow solutions.” 
In a bid to take pressure off customers in the financial and higher education market, who experience peak production volumes, Océ offers a unique Temporary Speed License, which will upgrade the print speed of Océ VarioPrint Ultra printers. Datta explains “Without a significant long-term investment, customers can turnaround peak production workloads faster. For example, users of the 6160 can buy an upgrade to print at 250ppm rather than 171ppm for a month at busier times of the year and keep their clients satisfied,” says Datta.
Green efforts
Unique to its ability to print both sides of the page in a single pass, is the VarioPrint Ultra’s green credential. “The Océ VarioPrint 6000 Ultra Line consumes an estimated 45% less energy than conventional dual-pass systems and up to 35% less than minimum Energy Star requirements,” says Datta.  
Canon claims that the highly efficient energy consumption delivers another key benefit — lower heat emissions and cooling and air conditioning requirements are well below those of competitive products. Add to it the lower noise level, and the machine becomes a silent force. “For customers, this translates to major savings in both initial and ongoing operating costs and for operators a comfortable print environment,” says Datta.
Customer satisfaction
The VarioPrint features including the customer service has struck a chord with customers. Canon India provides a week-long training to its customer of Océ VP 6000 Ultra lines. “Training comprises hand-on with Prisma Sync controller and key operator training to handle machine,” says Datta. 
There are four VarioPrint 6000 Ultra lines installed in India, with New Delhi’s Avantika Printers having one of them. M N Pandey, director, Avantika Printers said that our increased production shows that the decision for the Océ machine was correct. “An increment of around four-lakh A3 within just ten months is impressive for us. And this speed will help to us to achieve our target of doubling our  production (around 18-lakh A3 sheets per month) before our targeted time.”

Maximum Speed  171-314 A4 sheets per minute
Max sheet size 320x488mm
Max resolution  1,200x600dpi
Max paper range  50-300 gsm (Océ-approved media)
Standard Media capacity  4,600 sheets
Contact Canon India 
+91 124 4160000/
The Alternatives

Xerox Nuvera 288
The 288 achieves its speed by printing each side using a separate engine. These are arranged one after the other, similar to a sheetfed perfector, with the first engine printing the first side and the second the second side. It has a range of feed options, including additional high-capacity units and third-party roll feed. 
Speed 288 A4 images per minute (144 duplex sheets)
Resolution 4,800x600dpi (156lpi)
Max sheet size 320x470mm
Stock weight Coated 90-250gsm uncoated: 56-250gsm
Contact Xerox India +91 124 39400400/ Pankaj.Kalra@
Kodak Digimaster EX300
Enabled by dual print engines,the EX300 is another high capacity printer, which is the closest match to the Oce Varioprint VP 6320, one in the 6000 Ultra series with a maximum recommended monthly volume of five million impressions. It offers 600dpi resolution and six paper supply drawers with a total capacity for 8000 sheets. 
Speed 288 A4 images per minute (144 duplex sheets)
Resolution 600 x 600dpi
Max sheet size 364 x 470mm
Stock weight 60-200gsm; 60 gsm to 266gsm with enhanced feed mode option
Contact Kodak India +91 22 66416300/6380