Drupa Preview: digital presses

PrintWeek India's pick of the new digital presses at Drupa

03 Apr 2012 | By PrintWeek India

Hall 8a, Stand B64
Agfa will be making some late-breaking decisions about which digital kit it takes to Drupa. Keep an eye on our Drupa news in the run-up to the show and printweek.com for updates nearer the show.

Atlantic Zeiser
Hall 11, Stand C56
The Atlantic Zeiser Group will be using its 240m2 area to showcase three systems for the pharmaceutical, cosmetic and packaging sectors along with security printing for ID card personalisation. On show will be the Digiline Web 300 with integrated high-speed digital inkjet printers Delta 105i and Omega 36i for label production of security seals and customs labels; Digiline Sheet 300 with the Omega 36i in combination with Smartcure Air, an environmentally friendly, air-cooled UV LED curing system, for individual coding and serialising of folded cartons; and the Persoline modular system, demonstrated with plasma pre-treatment, the 4C-Gamma inkjet digital printer and a varnishing UV coating module for high-quality four-colour printing and personalisation of plastic cards.

Beijing Founder Electronics Co
Hall 5, Stand A25
The Chinese manufacturer will be highlighting its EagleJet L1400 label press and EagleJet P5200 inkjet digital printing system. The company says the latter is the first inkjet digital printing system made in China. It boasts high-performance, low-cost features, according the company, with an output of 2,000 A4 pages per minute.

Hall 13, Stand A71
Buskro will be displaying its label and barcode printers, including the new 2500/5100 series array printheads featuring on the stand, alongside the entry-level BK705 or high-end BK1710 inkjet controllers. Printheads can be combined for bespoke print systems.

Hall 8a, Stand 6
Drupa will be the first major outing for Canon since it acquired Océ, and its 3,750m2 stand in Hall 8 is Canon’s biggest yet. It will be entirely Canon-branded, with Océ products featuring across the exhibit as a fully integrated display, rather than one company at one end and one at the other. The recently announced Océ Colorstream 3700 high-speed inkjet will be on show, alongside Canon machines including the Canon imagePress C7010VP and the Canon imageRunner Advance 8000 and a plethora of industry research and business advice through the new Essential Business Builder Mentoring Program. "We plan to highlight what we see as a bigger picture that’s unique to Canon, and how print fits in with other technologies. We want to talk about opportunities," says Canon Europe professional print director David Preskett. "We are committed to this industry and building to be number one in production printing. We want people to be inspired – to see confidence and success and a route forward for their businesses." Canon also has some interesting inkjet technology of its own in its Japanese R&D labs so it’s worth looking out for any signs of developments in that area, too.

Hall 8b, Stand C10
Delphax, best known for its high-speed digital printing solutions, sprang something of a surprise when it announced it would show a new sheetfed colour digital press at Drupa targeted at commercial and industrial applications. Alongside the Elan, Delphax will be showcasing its CR series, Pro MICR Series and Immagia digital printers in Dusseldorf. The company says the ranges offer a broad selection of applications including DM, books and transactional print.

Hall 13, Stand D89
Domino Printing Sciences has added what it describes as "intelligent technology" to a selection of its products, which all receive an ‘i’ suffix as a result. It will be expanding its L-Series range of thermal ink jet (TIJ) printers with the launch of the L100i imprinting unit at Drupa 2012. Packaged with a range of new i-Tech ‘smart features’ to maximise productivity, and with the added flexibility of its single printhead design, the company says the new L100i integrates easily with web presses, mail bases, envelope inserters and folders for simple variable data print applications. "If you are a printer and want a low-cost way of adding variable data, this is the way to do it," says marketing director Philip Easton. The company will also demonstrate its four-colour N600i digital inkjet label press, first shown at Ipex and poised to be commercialised this year. A beta test is currently underway at an as-yet unnamed site in northern Europe. "We have been given a lot of feedback from the market over the past 18 months and have implemented a number of enhancements to improve the overall performance of the machine," says Domino managing director Nigel Bond. "We didn’t want to release it until it was completely right. We want customers to have a good experience from the beginning. We got that with the K600, we believe we will have that with the N600i too," adds Easton. Domino believes the N600i combines print speed approaching that of flexo with the flexibility of digital printing to deliver improved profitability and a reduction in production costs. Also look out for its StitchLink technology which uses micro motors to stitch images together "seamlessly". "The feedback from the market is we are quite unique in this area," says Bond.

Hall 16, Stand A63
There will be a strong focus on the packaging and folding carton market on stand, according to Edale. The company is not taking any presses to the show, but will be bringing an array of information, samples and footage of developments the UK-based manufacturer of narrow web printing and converting presses says many people will not have seen before.

Hall 5, Stand C1
EFI will be unveiling a raft of new products at Drupa, but details are subject to a press embargo until the beginning of next month. Keep an eye on PrintWeek and printweek.com for breaking news about the launches. Definitely on show will be the Jetrion UV digital inkjet label printing press. 

Hall 5, Stand A1-1 & A1-2
Prior to Drupa Epson outlined ambitious goals to double its revenues in large-format, and quadruple its revenues from industrial printing. To this end it intends to more than double its product range in the coming years, and Drupa will provide the ideal platform for Epson to persuade potential customers that it can deliver on these ambitions. President Minoru Usui believes Epson’s micro-piezo inkjet is virtually unlimited in its potential applications. "It has the potential to print extremely large media, and extremely fast. There are almost no restrictions, it just needs different types of ink," he states. "We are confident that we are fully capable of not only being the price but the quality leader as well." Epson’s new SurePress X single-pass digital label press, Epson’s first UV ink product, will be shown as a technology demonstration. This is described as offering a "step change" in digital label printing. It has a white ink option and small footprint almost half the size of the current SurePress L-4033A model, and uses Epson’s thin film micro piezo inkjet technology. Exact specifications for the SurePress X haven’t been revealed as yet, more details are expected at Drupa. Epson has also entered the digital dry lab sector with SureLab SL-D3000 for on-demand photo and card printing.

Hall 5, Stand C18
Taking centre stage will be FFEI’s new end-to-end digital labels solution, which includes a Caslon digital inkjet press incorporating a new digital spot colour unit printing white ink, and FFEI’s latest RealPro Workflow software. The company says this enables label converters and digital print houses to partner with one technology supplier where all components are designed to work together. The system is sold through partner Nilpeter.

Hall 8B, Stand A25-1 & A25-3
Fujifilm’s 2,020m2 stand in Hall 8b will be the largest in the company’s history. Expect specialist zones focusing on packaging, commercial and wide-format printing with an overarching workflow theme integrating all of it. Among eight major announcements is a carton version of the Jet Press 720, its B2 sheetfed inkjet press. Using some of the core components pioneered within the Jet Press 720 inkjet digital press for commercial print applications, this new press is aimed at the production of short-run packaging print and can print onto substrates up to 0.4-0.5mm thick. It uses a new technology to hold the thicker stock down on the imaging drum. The press utilises the Samba printhead from the Jet Press 720 but also boasts a new UV inkjet ink called Vividia, specifically developed for high-performance applications. Fujifilm also points to its Rapic rapid coagulation technology as being very important for high quality inkjet production. The Jet Press 720 for commercial printing will also be "running continuously" with the company explaining that the press has been gathering pace in terms of installations as it reaches full commercialisation. A technology zone will highlight clever applications for the printheads made by subsidiary Dimatix. Fujifilm has also pledged that all the other new products shown on its booth will be commercialised in two years or less.

Graph-Tech AG
Hall 9, Stand C6
The Swiss company will be highlighting its range of label and barcode printers, including the GT-Jet series of overprinters.

Hall 1

At Drupa Heidelberg will unveil its new Linoprint branding for all its digital print solutions. So the Ricoh models will become the Linoprint C models for commercial printing, and Linoprint L range for packaging and labels will encompass the CSAT and Linoprint inkjet devices. Applications for these devices include marking and coding and the addition of decorations and symbols. Also look out for clever hybrid applications, such as the use of inkjet heads on a sheetfed packaging press to create a novel automated quality control system. Also new is support for variable data print in Prinect Digital Print Manager.

Hall 6, Stand C24
The French manufacturer promises five new print solutions alongside its iEngine, iPress and iPrint digital printing systems. The modular products are aimed at industrial, commercial and security printing, and the label and packaging markets.

Hall 4, Stand  D60
Drupa’s second-biggest exhibitor will have more than 50 presses running on its 4,952m2 stand in Hall 4, including three models of the just-announced – and eagerly anticipated – B2-format Indigo 10000 (see Must-see, p24). Expect a crush around this much-speculated about press, which weighs 11 tonnes and prints in up to seven colours at a maximum speed of 3,450sph.  Alon Bar-Shany, vice-president and general manager at HP’s Indigo division, says it will propel Indigo into the heart of the offset market. "It’s everything you would expect from Indigo, but in a larger format," he says. The carton version, the 30000, is likely to be just as big a crowd-puller. It can handle boards up to 600mic. HP is launching eight new presses for the printing and publishing industry, including the aforementioned 10000, as well as enhancements to the existing Indigo platform that include higher output speeds, and new special effects such as invisible inks and digital embossing. The web-fed Indigo 7250, aimed at direct mail applications, is now 33% faster for high-volume applications.  And printers will no doubt be poring over samples of HP’s new print option – Enhanced Production Mode – which simulates CMYK, but just using consolidated CMY, thus allowing higher print speeds and increased productivity. Three new inkjet web presses will also be shown, with higher speeds than the existing models. The T230 at 400fpm, and T360 and T410 at 800fpm. A new MICR option for banking and transactional work will be available on inkjet presses, too. HP is also expanding its digital printing reach in the Kodak-dominated overprinting market. Its new HP Print Module can produce variable text and graphics in black, spot or full-colour at up to 800fpm on web or sheetfed presses. It can also print halftone images. Up to five 108mm heads can be stitched together to create larger print widths. The Print Module will be shown overprinting onto preprinted sheets.

Hall 16, Stands C47-1 & C47-2
An undoubted highlight of KBA’s stand will be the new RotaJET 76, the first fruit of its collaboration with print giant RR Donnelley on inkjet (see Must-see, p33). 

Hall 5, Stand F9-1
Kodak’s next-generation Prosper high-speed inkjet web press, the 6000XL, will be one of 10 new or upgraded products shown on the manufacturer’s stand.  The 6000XL, a 305m/min four-colour press that delivers monthly print volumes of up to 160m A4 pages, marks the continued evolution of the Prosper press. A new pre-coating unit means the 6000XL can print onto standard offset stocks without drying issues. Kodak claims a saving of 10%-60% compared with mill-treated inkjet grades. Meanwhile, the company has also finally gone public on its partnership with UK book press manufacturer Timsons on the T-Press, which uses Kodak’s Stream technology. Nexpress users will now also have the option of using an external, inline third-party coater, which will run at speed with the press, after Kodak announced a partnership with finishing equipment manufacturer TEC Lighting for its Trucoat UV coater. Also new on the Nexpress is an option to print metallic gold, pearlescents and neon pink.

Hall 15 , Stand D4-1 & D4-2
Just a few weeks ago Komori created a buzz by revealing it had teamed up with Konica Minolta to create a digital printing joint-venture, and no less than three digital presses will be on show on Komori’s stand under the DigitalOnDemand banner. None of the digital presses had official names at the time of writing, but the models include a four-colour digital inkjet web press, with a web width of 508mm. The web press has a maximum resolution of 1,200dpi and a maximum print speed of 150m/min. Komori is also entering the suddenly crowded B2 digital market with a 29in sheetfed press. This is also an inkjet device, and it promises 3,300sph, also at 1,200dpi. For print-on-demand applications Komori looks to be going head-to-head with the Heidelberg/Ricoh offering by incorporating Konica Minolta’s BizHub Press C8000, and promising "a completely integrated solution" that uses Komori know-how to "match the Konica Minolta output to offset".

Konica Minolta
Hall 8b, Stand B78
The entire current Konica Minolta production printing range will be demonstrated at the stand, from entry-level to mid-level production printing as well as colour and mono devices. The company says systems will be demonstrated in ‘real-world’ production print applications using Konica Minoltas software solutions and third-party "best of breed" applications. Look out for a new high-speed inkjet product from associate company Industrial Inkjet, using KM’s new ‘i’ series printheads. This promises a thick ink layer akin to screen printing, combined a much faster 70m/min speed. IIJ describes it as "small and compact, but very fast". There’s also a whisper that we may see a new colour inkjet machine from Konica Minolta itself, too. It’s not clear whether this is one of the products that Konica Minolta has teamed up with Komori on, all we know is that it’s described by an insider as "big, fast, colourful and with very impressive quality".

Matti Technology
Hall 3, Stand F35
Swiss developer Matti hadn’t finalised precisely what it would be showing at Drupa as this issue went to press, but if
past performance is anything to go by the company will have some clever developments around high-speed inkjet production on show.

MGI Digital Graphic Technology
Hall 4, Stand B24
MGI will be highlighting its Meteor range of digital machines, which includes the Meteor DP8700 X. The latter prints at up to 4,260 A4 pages/hr or 2,280 A3 pages/hr.

Pitney Bowes
Hall 4, Stand C4
Pitney Bowes will be showing what it describes as "the transpromo evolution" at Drupa. "Forward-looking business are now viewing any white space on customer communications as marketing real estate," says Gareth Stoten, vice-president of sales. On its stand it will be demonstrating its white paper factory, an end-to-end customer communications management solution based around the HP-engined Intellijet 20 inkjet system. "HP’s T-series, plus our print manager is the benchmark for this transaction space," adds Stoten. Look out for a new paper wrapping technology that eliminates the need for envelopes. 

Hall 4, Stand B3
Presstek will feature its 75DI digital offset press, which prints in up to 10 colours at 300lpi or with stochastic screening. The company will also highlight the press’ six-minute job-to-job turnover on a five-colour model with in-line aqueous coating.

Hall 8, Stand B46-1 & B46-3
Incredibly, this will be only the second time Ricoh has exhibited at Drupa, and its 2,000m2 booth is somewhat bigger than last time around. Visitors to the Ricoh stand will be able to see the Ricoh Pro C901 Graphic Arts Edition, Pro C751 digital colour cut sheet presses, and the InfoPrint 5000 VP full-colour continuous-feed platform. The company says the InfoPrint 5000 VP full-colour continuous form platform is ideal for companies with extremely high volumes and tight print windows.  From a standing start in production printing four years ago, Ricoh now claims market leadership in cut-sheet production devices – and unit sales are increasing through its partnership with Heidelberg. At Drupa it will unveil the next generation of its Business Driver Programme – Ricoh says registrations are up 50% in line with its colour press growth. The group will also be promoting its new Carbon Balanced Printing certification, which will be rolled out first in Europe. Also look out for a ‘next generation’ QR code product, Ricoh Visual Search, which will also feature as part of its exhibit.

Hall 8b, Stand C8
Way back at Drupa 2004 PrintWeek spotted Riso’s new high-speed, low-cost inkjet printer and immediately spotted its potential, dubbing the device "an unexpected star of Drupa". Its inkjet offering has developed since with the Comcolor range, and has found favour with savvy printers as a flexible, affordable option to high-end digital presses. We’re told the company plans "another surprise" for Drupa this time around with "an exciting new concept" in inkjet printing. Details are under wraps until the show but we’re expecting something that will further appeal for professional printers. Tatsuo Murakami, Riso’s European marketing manager, says the launch "will help bring Riso’s full-colour, cut-sheet, inkjet print engine’s capabilities more fully into play" in the production print arena. One to watch.

Hall 9, Stand A40
Screen expects half of its turnover to come from digital printing products by 2014, and unsurprisingly there will a host of digital printing launches on its stand, where the firm is exhibiting under the theme of "take a closer look" as it highlights its offerings beyond areas such as CTP and workflow, in which some customers may have pigeonholed the company. Screen will demonstrate the latest options for its Truepress Jet520 high-speed inkjet web press, where enhancements include a new camera inspection system, the JetInspection JI-500. This is aimed at applications where data integrity is of paramount importance, as it checks every page and every pixel against the ripped data.  A new easy-to-use cloud-based system for variable data printing, paid for on a usage basis, will also be unveiled. In the increasingly crowded B2 sheetfed digital area Screen’s Truepress JetSX, shown as a technology demonstration up until now, receives its commercial launch at the event along with several enhancements. New features include the ability to print onto 0.6mm board for personalised and prototyping applications in packaging. Screen will make much of the potential savings that come from energy-efficient products, too. "We’re inviting customers to look at all costs, not just ink but power usage and uptime too," says Tim Taylor, vice-president of solutions and technology. New presses for the labels and wide-format industry are also promised, these will be launched on the first day of the show.

Hall 16, Stand D22-2
Head to Hall 16 where Timsons will unveil the T-Press, which uses Kodak’s Stream inkjet technology, and at Drupa will be shown linked inline to a Kolbus sequential feeder and perfect binder. The T-Press is targeted at digital production of between 5m and 14m books annually and has a maximum web width of 1,350mm and max print speed 650ft/min (200m/min). It is a fully digital duplex, monochrome book printing system that can run multiple book formats on a single press through a variety of Timsons-manufactured finishing solutions (T-Book/T-Fold). The wider web width could provide some key advantages over narrower competing products. Timsons managing director Jeff Ward says: "It’s not for books on demand, it’s mass manufacturing using digital printing."

TKS (Tokyo Kikai Seisakusho)
Hall 15, Stand B55
The company will be highlighting its Jetleader 1500 digital press for newspaper printing at Drupa. The machine uses drop-on-demand inkjet technology, has a maximum print speed of 150m/min and prints at 600dpi with a maximum web width of 546mm.  The company says: "it will open the way for the next generation digital printing of newspapers."

Hall 8a, Stand B44-1 & B44-2
Xeikon will unveil a potentially revolutionary new toner-based print platform at Drupa that it claims will combine the quality of its 1,200dpi colour printers with "inkjet-like speed" and cost of production. The Quantum will offer the same 1,200dpi quality of Xeikon’s 8000 Series LED array-based, electrophotographic printers, but at a running cost and print speed similar to high-speed inkjet presses (see Must-see, p37). The digital colour press manufacturer will also use Drupa to launch the 8000 Series, which standardises all three of Xeikon’s current duplex presses, the 5000, 6000 and 8000, onto the 8000 platform.

Hall 8b, Stand A62-1 & A62-5
Xerox will showcase the full range of colour digital presses ranging from the Xerox Color 550/560 Printer to the Xerox CiPress 500 Production Inkjet System. In addition, it will showcase its new series of mono digital printers designed for educational establishments and commercial print businesses. The new platform is available in five configurations: the D95, D110 and D125 models, which combine copying and printing functionality; and the D110 and D125, which solely offer light production print output. Xerox will also be highlighting its Xerox Confident Color system, which includes a suite of colour management tools, as well as consulting services, to ensure consistent colour quality. The firm believes it has the only offering for digital presses whereby calibration, colour profiling and spot colour management are all automated. Users include Real Digital International, which describes the results as "superlative".

Updates on Drupa 2012

This article was published on 2 February 2012 and received 282 views