TG Print & Design, a multi-service company based in Woolwich, south east London, has selected the :Anapurna Mw to develop its wide-format display business. The :Anapurna Mw is a professional hybrid UV-printer designed to produce high quality wide-format output on a wide range of rigid and roll-to-roll media.
From a small start-up some 15 years ago with second-hand equipment, TG has steadily progressed under the guidance of its managing director, David Duhig. The company now has a turnover approaching £4 million and staff of 18 of which almost a third are on various trainee schemes. Duhig has placed a great deal of faith in developing the skills of locally recruited young people and it seems to have paid off.
The display business was really started using an Epson proofer followed by a Roland roll-to-roll printer. Duhig then realized the company needed a machine which printed faster and it was suggested by Art Centre that he should look at an :Anapurna. This lead to Agfa inviting him to go on a VIP trip to its HQ in Belgium. “I was very impressed with what I saw. The :Anapurna prints on a much wider variety of substrates and can handle rigid material up to 40 mm thick so the possibilities of expanding our services were much enhanced,” explained Duhig.
TG Print & Design has built up a reputation for printing A5 and A6 promotional flyers, 4-colour both sides and laminated. By producing reliable quality print and keeping its customers informed of other services on order confirmations and other correspondence, the business has developed mostly by word of mouth. As many customers choose to collect their print, samples of work are left in the reception area which provides an opportunity for them to see other examples of what the company offers, such a display banners and folders.
The company has forged several alliances, for example TG uses the :Anapurna Mw to print on glass, mirrors, wood, metal and plastic for a number of local firms. “The :Anapurna is an extremely versatile machine and Agfa is a highly professional company. I am sure we will be working with them for many years to come,” Duhig concluded.
TG Print & Design is all about giving customers what they require at the best possible price. Customers keep on coming back and they even recommend TG to others. Jobs are either despatched via couriers or customers collect.
Over the past few years TG has re-invested almost 20% of its turnover in new equipment and services. The next step is to develop web-to-print business.
Polytype will launch its ground-breaking new wide-format digital ink-jet printing platform, the Virtu Quantum, which promises a blend of quality and speed hitherto unavailable in the marketplace, at drupa 2012. Now available in widths of 2.5m and 3.5m, the UV-curable machine incorporates high-definition 10pl print-heads, specially integrated by Polytype to produce 1,400dpi resolution for lush, rich images suited to a range of industrial and display applications.
The Virtu Quantum was vigorously tested over a period of months in a fully operational production environment after proof of concept was first demonstrated in 2011. Resultingly, the engine's speeds reach an impressive 300sq m/hour in production mode and 150-180sq m/hour in photographic mode, meaning that business owners no longer have to compromise between image quality and turnaround time when making large capital investments in wide-format machinery. Applicable to both roll-to-roll and flat-bed modes and across a range of both popular and unusual media, the versatility afforded owners is a distinct advantage in the current, extremely competitive climate.
Polytype's dedication to accuracy means that customers ordering at the show can have total confidence in the feasibility of the system, and be able to integrate it effortlessly to upgrade their current production processes. The new Quantum series will allow even more depth and colour gamut for the accurate reproduction of typically difficult images, such as skin tones and sought-after brand shades – but at productivity speeds that will challenge even billboard quality modes from rival manufacturers.
“Polytype does what other manufacturers dare not do: we will drive a new machine hard in an actual working situation to make sure that we are aware of all of its capabilities,” explains Sylvia Muhr, sales and marketing director for Polytype's Virtu Business Unit. “In doing so, we have fine-tuned the Virtu Quantum to deliver an unparalleled combination of speed and quality in its machine category, and visitors to our stand at drupa 2012 will be amongst the first to witness it match its full potential.”
Polytype's wide-format technologies are renowned in the marketplace for their exceptional build quality and ability to output with finesse of graduation and detail on innumerable substrates, and have won multiple awards from within the printing industry and in related sectors, such as design. The company's experience ranges from display applications to highly industrial work, with the Virtu Quantum able to sit as the core element in a glass production workflow; significantly, Polytype consults with each customer to ensure that every machine is tuned to their precise specifications, ensuring maximum return on investment for users.
Stewart Bell, Managing Director of Digital Print Innovations Ltd (DPI), UK distributor for Polytype Virtu Printers, will be at drupa and is looking forward to welcoming UK and Ireland customers to the Polytype stand for the launch. “The launch of the new Virtu Quantum is very exciting news for DPI and our customers and I am really looking forward to being at the launch and demonstrating the new machine at drupa in Dusseldorf this year. Polytype is renowned in the marketplace for its exceptional Swiss build quality and its ability to deliver outstanding and consistent results at speed. The new Virtu Quantum is perfectly positioned for companies wishing to invest in the latest technology and wanting a printer made to exact standards and specifications to suit their growing needs."
EFI has announced the commercial availability of the EFI VUTEk TX3250r fabric printer which enables customers to take advantage of the demands and requirements of the growing soft signage markets. The VUTEk TX3250r printer is a new 3.2-metre, production-level solution that evolved from the first EFI industrial inkjet textile system, the VUTEk FabriVu, introduced in 2002.
An early adopter for the VUTEk TX3250r, Indy Imaging of Indianapolis, already had two VUTEk GS3200 hybrid printers. According to Robbie Gordon, president, “In our market, it’s about reliability, quality and turnaround, and all of that must happen consistently. Our customers have noticed differences in all three areas. What used to take us hours now takes minutes, and the quality that was not there at 300 dpi with other printers, is abundantly there at 1080 dpi on the new VUTEk TX3250r. The speed and quality of this new printer outpaces the competition. We can now print 10-foot wide banners with no seams, opening up another market for larger sizes in flags and banners."
With the ability to print direct to textile and transfer paper, the VUTEk TX3250r is an ideal solution for users looking to grow their soft signage business with a production-level printer, or to diversify their offering by converting traditional vinyl signage to a product with lower shipping costs, a greener footprint, easier installation and higher margins.
“The introduction of the TX3250r should help eliminate the soft signage cost barrier for our customers and enable them to capture the market for soft signage, and flags” said Scott Schinlever, senior vice president and general manager of Inkjet Solutions at EFI. “One benefit is the ability to print on textiles, opening new markets for customers while expanding existing capabilities. EFI also focused on exceeding customer expectations for quality and reliability, as we did with the revolutionary FabriVu production quality textile printer that was launched nine years ago.”
The VUTEk TX3250r uses dye sublimation technology to dye, or sublimate, fabric fibres directly, so the fabric retains the same drape and soft hand customers prefer. This method achieves brighter colours than other textile printing methods and the final product is odourless. In addition, the TX3250r enables printing on polyester, which is a non-PVC material that is considered more eco-friendly than vinyl. Final printed images produced on the TX3250r can be washed, dried, folded without leaving marks and reused.
EFI VUTEk TX3250r features:
New, fast-drying inks for unparalleled speed up to 1800 ft2 / hour (167 m2 / hour)
High-resolution, 8-colour print capability for high-margin printed displays and high-density backlit signs
Fast-4 (CMYK) production speed for high-volume flag and banner jobs
Direct to textile or indirect via transfer printing process, so users can offer more materials.
For more information on the VUTEk TX3250r soft signage printer and EFI, please visit www.efi.com
FUJIFILM Dimatix is supplying its Q-Class inkjet printheads to a New Hampshire-based technology developer for what is believed to be the first implementation of grayscale technology used for grand-format 3.2 metre wide graphics reproduction.
The developer – Redwood Technologies of Moultonboro, New Hampshire – specialises in the design, development and integration of hardware and software for the private label digital Inkjet Industry. The company's Nemesis logic board is able to drive inkjet printheads in 3.2-metre (126-inch-wide) grand-format printers in true grayscale mode, in addition to the purely "on-off" binary operation characteristic of conventional grand-format printing.
"Production printing on media 10 feet wide is no small feat," remarked Redwood Technologies founder and president Mike Mills. "It requires precision-engineered electro-mechanical assemblies driving sophisticated inkjet delivery systems equipped with multiple printheads that must operate in concert quickly and flawlessly to achieve the desired visual effect. Adding grayscale to that list of requirements raises the level of complexity dramatically. It also opens the door to possibilities previously unattainable," Mills explained.
"We selected FUJIFILM Dimatix Q-Class printheads for their ability to deliver precision, speed and consistency. A critical component of that decision was Dimatix VersaDrop jetting technology, which makes it possible for us to apply all the Q-Class advantages to true grayscale printing," he continued.
"Although each of these Dimatix technologies is at the leading edge in its own right; the combination of VersaDrop flexibility and Q-Class technology is unbeatable both from a development perspective and for production performance," said Mills. "It's exactly what we needed to design a family of price-competitive printers and retrofit components able to deliver flawless photorealistic quality imaging."
The Dimatix Q-Class is FUJIFILM Dimatix' breakthrough piezoelectric drop-on-demand (Piezo DOD) inkjet platform around which it is building a new family of printheads and head arrays for high speed scanning and single pass printer architectures. The low crosstalk and excellent channel-to-channel uniformity allows Q-Class printheads to deliver unparalleled jetting straightness at unprecedented speed while supporting both binary and grayscale VersaDrop operation. Their high chemical resistance and precision also gives Q-Class printheads the ability to reliably jet UV-curable, organic solvent and aqueous ink formulations onto a broad range of substrates.
FUJIFILM Dimatix patented VersaDrop jetting technology takes advantage of the inherent high frequency response of Q-Class printheads, enabling each of several hundred nozzles in one or more piezoelectric printhead arrays to deliver a desired amount of fluid in each drop of ink. By varying the size of the drop fired, rather than the number of drops fired or the number of passes by the printhead to create each pixel, VersaDrop technology makes it possible for inkjet systems to satisfy a wide range of commercial print requirements, including applications demanding smooth tonal gradations and extremely fine features printed within the same job.
VersaDrop technology also offers a more robust solution compared to other grayscale methods for modulating drop size, by producing a single drop at high speed rather than a burst of drops at significantly slower speeds.
HP Scitex FB7600, XP5500 and XP2500 introduced at SGIA
Firstly, before you read this news, do yourself a favour and take a look at the video for the new HP Scitex FB7600 on YouTube - then you'll get an idea of where the title of this article came from.
Watched it? Impressed? Good, now read on...
HP today unveiled additions to its HP Scitex digital wide-format graphics portfolio, offering print service providers (PSPs) higher productivity, the versatility to handle more applications and the ability to meet the growing demand for short runs more quickly.
The new offerings include:
The HP Scitex FB7600 Industrial Press, with new HP FB225 Scitex Inks, workflow improvements for increased productivity and versatility and an optional multisheet loader.
The 16.6-foot (5-m) HP Scitex XP5500 Industrial Printer with new billboard print modes, industry-leading print speeds and unprecedented ink coverage.
The 10.5-foot (3.2-m) HP Scitex XP2500 Industrial Printer, which delivers up to 15 percent more throughput than its predecessor.
Enhanced HP Scitex Print Care offerings for the new printers to help customers maximise uptime and serviceability.
EskoArtwork i-cut Suite, a print-to-cut workflow solution enhanced for HP Scitex printers, from HP Solutions Business Partner ESKO.
"As the leader in industrial wide-format graphics, HP is helping customers transition from analogue to digital printing and take advantage of higher value pages to further grow their businesses," said Xavier Garcia, general manager, Scitex Wide-format Solutions, HP. "With today's introductions, our customers can go after these pages with the confidence that HP digital solutions will deliver the productivity, versatility and reliability they demand."
The HP Scitex FB7600 and XP5500 industrial presses will debut in HP booth 919 at the 2011 SGIA Expo in New Orleans, Oct. 19 - 21. At the show, HP also will kick off the first HP Print Excellence Awards for HP Scitex and HP Designjet customers to recognise best-in-class wide-format graphics applications. The contest will culminate at the drupa 2012 tradeshow, where HP will announce winning customers and applications.
HP Scitex FB7600 Industrial Press improves productivity and workflow
Delivering high productivity on a range of flexible and rigid media, the HP Scitex FB7600 Industrial Press offers a variety of productivity enhancements, including in-line saturation control for backlit applications, hot folders and job queue, to help PSPs expedite their workflow. The device can print up to 95 full boards an hour and has a new point-of-purchase (POP) print mode that produces 55 full boards an hour with indoor quality.
New HP FB225 Scitex Inks adhere better on plastics and improve flexibility on corrugated media, allowing customers to reduce the time required for finishing and expand their businesses with new applications. The inks also have reduced odour and the ink system is GREENGUARD Children & Schools CertifiedSM, offering reassurance that the prints produced are suitable for use in indoor environments
"The new features of the HP Scitex FB7600 Industrial Press make it possible for us to offer both speed and quality at a competitive price," said Tim Boore, head of Digital Technologies at United Kingdom-based Image Factory. "The edge-to-edge printing feature saves time and reduces material waste during the finishing process. We were pleased with the previous inks, but the new HP FB225 Scitex Inks offer increased flexibility and have expanded our application versatility."
The HP Scitex FB7600 Industrial Press is expected to be available worldwide on Nov. 1. Existing owners of the HP Scitex FB7500 Industrial Press who want improved versatility and efficiency can easily upgrade their existing technologies with the HP Scitex FB7500 Industrial Press Upgrade Kit.
HP Scitex XP5500 and XP2500 printers deliver quick return on investment
The HP Scitex XP5500 Industrial Printer is ideal for high-volume PSPs that require a reliable, 24/7 printing solution. Offering a combination of low-cost-per-square foot printing at industry-leading speeds, the device prints up to 325m2/hr (3,500 ft2/hr) in billboard mode using HP Specialty Billboard Scitex Ink. Additionally, PSPs can increase their return on investment through better ink coverage than comparable solvent and UV-ink printing systems, and with the ability to print on a wide range of media.
Designed for high-volume PSPs seeking a UV-curable alternative to solvent ink printing, the HP Scitex XP2500 Industrial Printer offers a low cost per square foot at print speeds up to 265m2/hr (2,850 ft2/hr). Customers can choose one of the new print modes that use HP Specialty Billboard Scitex Ink for high ink coverage, enabling PSPs to produce billboards or close-view applications without switching inks. This specially formulated ink provides media versatility and operational efficiency for a variety of outdoor and indoor applications.
The HP Scitex XP2500 and XP5500 printers are scheduled to be available worldwide on Nov. 1 and Dec. 15, respectively. HP also will offer HP Scitex XP5300 and XP2300 Upgrade Packages for existing customers who want improved versatility and a new level of service with HP Scitex Print Care.
New workflow solution for HP Scitex from ESKOArtwork
ESKOArtwork i-Cut Suite is a print-to-cut workflow solution that tackles bottlenecks in the manufacturing of wide-format graphics by simplifying the cutting process, including PDF preflight, editing and correction, nesting and layout and the production of printing and cutting files.
ESKOArtwork i-Cut Suite is compatible with all HP Scitex printers, Raster Image Processors (RIPs) and cutting devices. The enhanced solution exclusive to HP Scitex customers includes a library of optimised HP Scitex profiles. ESKOArtwork i-Cut Suite is available through ESKO distributors and resellers.
HP offers flexible financing solutions for customers deploying the latest HP digital printing technologies through HP Financial Services, the company's leasing and life cycle asset management services division. An HP Financial Services representative is onsite at SGIA to provide details of applicable offers.
McKenzie Clark has become the first UK company to install a five-metre UV-curable Virtu RR50 wide-format digital printer from Swiss manufacturer Polytype in a bid to increase its throughput and expand its product range. The award-winning platform will be instrumental in satisfying a range of anticipated projects in 2012 thanks to its excellent performance across several media, including the non-PVC alternatives the company provides.
"2012 is set to be the busiest year since the Millennium effect of 1999 and we are delighted to be installing the Virtu RR50 ahead of the increased sales activity that we anticipate next year," comments Graham Clark, managing director of McKenzie Clark. "The Virtu RR50 is an award-winning, high-capacity, flexible machine which produces output of the very highest quality, a combination which is crucial to our business model. It will enable us to take advantage of the exciting opportunities surrounding the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games and the Queen's Golden Jubilee, while continuing to satisfy our core clients with the great service they have come to expect."
The 24/7 set-up at McKenzie Clark will take advantage of the Virtu RR50's ability to produce 2,160sq m of print per day in high-quality mode, or double in billboard mode, increasing the company's actual capacity to a potential 6,500sq m/day. The company's sophisticated online workflow system incorporates Dalim ES, Dalim Twist, Xinet and Caldera, which will drive the machine, allowing file and colour management and pre-press demands to be managed efficiently. This integration offers clients a fast and efficient way of uploading files and providing approval, meaning that their high standards of reproduction can be accurately matched with the output from the Virtu RR50 and McKenzie Clark's other machines.
"McKenzie Clark has a fantastic reputation for producing innovative, high-quality print for an impressive customer base, and we are thrilled that they have chosen Virtu to fulfil and further that position," says Sylvia Muhr, sales director Europe for Polytype's Virtu business unit. "The company will produce many demanding, high-profile projects during the Olympic year and we are certain that the Virtu RR50 will stand up to the challenge."
Also important during the selection process was the ability of the Virtu to output on non-PVC materials with the same excellent quality. Environmental concern is enshrined within the company's operation, with McKenzie Clark offering a non-PVC alternative for almost every substrate, as well as a collection service to ensure that obsolete displays are reused or recycled. Adopting Polytype's Virtu technology allows the company to fulfil its commitment to reducing landfill and working with more sustainable materials.
The machine will be installed, serviced and maintained by exclusive UK Virtu distributor Digital Print Innovations (DPI). "McKenzie Clark is one of the biggest names in large-format digital printing and display production and was an early adopter of direct-to-print technology," comments Stewart Bell, managing director of DPI. "They knew the kind of quality, adhesion and speed they were looking for in a new machine and the Virtu RR50 meets these needs head on. We’re very excited about the high profile projects that the machine will be printing, especially with the glut of opportunities coming in 2012, and DPI is committed to helping McKenzie Clark get the best possible results from the Virtu for their customers."
The Virtu RR50 has won both the EDP Award for best machine over 3.2m wide and the International Forum Product Design Award, acknowledging the five-metre UV-curable engine's ability to print exceptional quality onto almost every substrate imaginable. Available with four- and six-colour ink sets, the machine can output to three 1.2m rolls simultaneously or a single flexible roll weighing up to 750kg. Unique to the system is the linear drive motor, which improves stability and helps the Virtu achieve its renowned accuracy of reproduction.
Large Format Review provides daily breaking news on digital printer technology as used for commercial production of print for wide-format sign and display, dye-sublimation textile and fabric printing, packaging and industrial applications. We also cover 3D print and additive manufacturing.