17 May 2021

HP Announces UK Success for its new Latex Printers

HP Designjet L65500

HP has announced the success of its new wide-format printer using HP Latex Inks in the United Kingdom; with seven HP Designjet L65500 printers installed since its launch at drupa 2008 last May.

Over 120 units of the HP Designjet L65500 Printer have been installed in Europe, Middle East and Africa and the worldwide response has also been strong.

The HP Designjet L65500 Printer was specifically designed with the environment in mind and is the first printer to feature HP Latex Printing Technologies, including HP Latex Inks and HP Wide Scan Printing Technology. To support the ‘printing with the environment in mind' program, a range of recyclable substrates is also available, providing additional environmental benefits. The HP Designjet L65500 Printer enables print service providers (PSPs) to increase their print capacity and grow their business whilst also reducing environmental impact. Compliant with industry-leading certification, Nordic Swan, HP Latex Inks do not produce ozone emissions during printing and contain no hazardous air pollutants. This means improved working environments for PSPs and a greater range of places—especially indoor locations—where graphics can be used.

In the UK, JKN Digital, of Preston; Kingfisher Graphics, of Stockport; Raccoon, of Edenbridge, Kent; and Stylo, of Watford, are amongst customers who have all installed HP Designjet L65500 Printers to cater to different markets, reduce turnaround times, and improve print quality.

"Like us, many of our clients have become increasingly aware of environmental issues and have a desire to reduce their carbon footprint," said Simon Wheeler, operations director at Stylo. "To help us achieve this, Stylo is launching an eco-friendly print package. This is the major reason for choosing the HP Designjet L65500 Printer. It will give our clients the real choice of eco-friendly printing for all situations—exterior or interior and on a wide variety of recycled or recyclable materials. The speed of the printer helps us to continue to provide fast turn-arounds at a high quality."

Raccoon, part of the Raccoon Group, specialises in vehicle graphics, which are printed at its Edenbridge, Kent, facility for installation at sites around the country.

"We installed the HP Designjet L65500 Printer because we wanted to get rid of solvents," said Richard Clark, managing director, Raccoon. "Not only does the elimination of solvents improve working conditions, but over time, solvents can affect the performance quality of vehicle graphics. We've also found other benefits. We save between 36 - 48 hours on jobs because the need for off gassing is eliminated; we can laminate as soon as printing has finished, which makes us more productive, and we're using some of the time saved to improve quality control."

Further installations of HP Designjet L65500 printers are underway in the UK.

"HP Latex Ink technology offers revolutionary new choices to sign and display PSPs," said Nancy Janes, sign and display country manager, UK and Ireland, HP. "The HP Designjet L65500 Printer has found a market very quickly, in the UK and around the world. New technologies can take a long time to become accepted, but the many benefits of this printer are clearly responding to market demands."

Among other dealers, the HP Designjet L65500 Printer is now also available from i-Sub Digital, of Lutterworth, Leicestershire. The company recently added the printer to its portfolio of large-format printers.

"As dealers, we've been keen to add a more environmentally acceptable solution for our customers and their customers who share our concerns about the environment," said Andy Spreag, director, i-Sub Digital. "We believe that HP Latex Inks have a great future, and that the HP Designjet L65500 Printer is a productive and versatile machine capable of printing on both water and solvent based media at high speeds. It is therefore suitable for both indoor and outdoor applications achieving the quality required for both and with the durability and abrasion resistance normally only achievable with solvent inks. We believe it will receive great interest from customers looking for an alternative to solvent inks."

Gerber Forms New Graphics Solutions Group

Gerber Solara ION V

Gerber Scientific Products has announced the formation of the Graphics Solutions Business team comprised of Gerber professionals that will focus on Gerber's Matched Technology System, the Gerber EDGE, OMEGA software package, and Gerber's line of plotters, routers and high performance films and foils.

The Graphics Solutions Business team composed of Jay Dorman, global director of graphics business solutions, Dana Goodale, director of software solutions, and Cindy Miller, product specialist, are committed to a global effort to ensure these products take advantage of Gerber's mindshare and all the considerable resources Gerber Scientific Products has to offer in an effort to better serve its customers.

"There is an awareness in marketplace that Gerber has great digital products like the Gerber Solara ion and the M Series cutters, but we want to make sure customers also remember the fantastic line of products Gerber has had for some time. We want customers to know that we are adding new features and new consumables to these tried and true products so we can better address their changing needs and increase their profitability," said Dorman.

The efforts will begin with communicating the new features available in Gerber's OMEGA 3.0 software upgrade, like the ability for OMEGA users to print one- and two-dimensional bar codes. Gerber's Omega 3.0 is one of the key components of our Matched Technology System. "The core team we've put together has a tremendous amount of industry knowledge and can act as a resource both within Gerber and for our distributors and customers," said Dorman

Inca Onset S20 UV Flatbed Printer debuts in North America at Print 09

Inca Onset S20

As the Inca Onset S20 appears publicly for the first time in North America at the Fujifilm Corporation booth 6919 during Print 09, Inca Digital reports healthy orders booked for its new UV flatbed printer in Europe - along with a number of orders that were received for North America, even before the machine has its US debut.  In fact, the first machine in the U.S. has already been delivered to Concept Imaging in Miamisburg, Ohio.

The Inca Onset S20 delivers POP quality production at speeds up to 2690 sq.ft/hr (250 sq.m/hr) or 50 full bed sheets/hr (123.6 inches x 63 inches / 3.14m x 1.6m) on substrates up to 2 inches (50mm) thick.  Aimed at companies with high-volume production needs, the high-speed printer produces superb quality display graphics economically.

"The roll-out of the Inca Onset S20 has gone very well with healthy initial sales and there has been a steady stream of demos.  At the moment, we are already taking Onset S20 orders for delivery in late 2009 and into 2010", remarks Linda Bell, Inca Digital CEO.  "Along with its obvious speed, we have been very pleased with the machine's print quality, and the feedback from our customers supports our observation.  They say quality has been exceptional."

The Inca Onset S20 features automation options, user replaceable printheads, expanded color gamut and new gloss levels.  Inca-configured printheads on a full print width color bar deliver a 28-picolitre drop size which, along with Inca's high standard for delivery of precision ink drop placement, produce excellent print quality.  Inca's know-how and capability with printhead electronics controls pulse width and voltage to printheads to exceptional levels of accuracy.

While the standard color set of the Inca Onset S20 is Fujifilm Sericol's Uvijet four-color process CMYK, Ultratone inks (lights, orange, violet) or white are also available. This, as well as a choice of satin, semi-gloss and gloss finishes, delivers enormous versatility in the range of graphics that can be printed, from display POP and exhibition graphics to backlit/frontlit displays and outdoor sign printing. The choice of Wasatch or ColorGATE RIP offers the customer easy file set-up and in-depth color management control for a variety of applications.
"Customers report that the combination of gloss modes along with the six-color option creates outstanding, vibrant prints," comments Heather Kendle, Inca Digital Director of Marketing. "Other customers have shown interest in the ability to print with white along with CMYK. The machine's versatility means they are also able to create special effects, such as spot varnish finishes, to increase impact. The combination of speed and unique print capabilities has attracted the interest of a good number of printers who are able to offer a differentiated print product along with competitive, yet profitable, pricing."

Inca Onset S20 UV inkjet printers are available exclusively in the U.S. and Canada through the Fujifilm organisation.

Screen launches Truepress Jet1600UV-F: Its latest tool for Sign and Display Printing

Screen Truepress Jet 1600

Screen's Truepress family of sophisticated digital printing systems continues to add new members with innovative capabilities to address different opportunities for printers in a changing marketplace. Today Screen launches the Truepress Jet1600UV-F, a high-quality inkjet printing system developed for the sign and display business. It makes its debut at Print 09.

"The Truepress Jet1600UV-F delivers high precision and high flexibility," said Rob Hageman, European Product Manager, Screen Europe. "This easy-to-use flatbed device is built around the latest technology for inkjet printing and UV-LED curing."

The Truepress Jet1600UV-F is a welcome addition to the printing landscape not only because it enables vivid, full-colour printing of signs and displays. Its advanced functionalities also provide printers with significant advantages in the production of backlit graphics, wide-format posters, point-of-purchase displays, commercial furniture and construction signage.

The Truepress Jet1600UV-F prints images up to 1,602mm (63in) wide and up to 3,100mm (122in) long. It is capable of printing 13 sqm (140 sqft) per hour on a diverse array of substrates up to 50mm (1.96in) thick.

Several unique features make the Truepress Jet1600UV-F ideal for printing operations that require high performance. The inks are hard-dried using ultraviolet rays produced by dedicated light emitting diodes (LEDs). The UV-LED light source used by the Truepress Jet1600UV-F generates very low heat during imaging, increasing the range of media that it can handle efficiently. As a result, the Truepress Jet1600UV-F accommodates such heat-sensitive materials as foam and channel boards, PVC, acrylic and styrene panels without warping or distortion. The UV-LED light source also lasts longer and draws less electricity than conventional UV lamps so its impact on the environment is minimized.

"The UV-LED technology helps achieve low energy consumption and a work environment mostly free of volatile organic compounds," Hageman pointed out.

A newly created imaging system features eight individual printing heads that support rapid printing. The enhanced productivity allows the Truepress Jet1600UV-F to take on fast-turnaround jobs in quick succession.

The new head positioning system incorporates a high-resolution linear scale. The extremely precise dot placement translates into legible type on large-size prints, even when outputting sizes down to 3-point text. The reproduction is exceptionally sharp and the tints and gradations exceedingly smooth thanks to the maximum resolution of 1,200 dpi x 1,200 dpi, coupled with the piezo variable-drop printhead that emits up to seven dot sizes.

Two types of UV ink, one for flexible media and the other for rigid media, give operators a great deal of choice in printing applications. Available in four process colours, the flexible UV ink can be stretched by up to 200 percent, as well as cast or bent. It exhibits excellent performance on white media, including substrates employed for packaging, POP displays and life-size panels.

The rigid ink resists friction and exposure to damaging chemicals. This ink series is particularly well suited to printing on aluminum composite panels and decorative illuminated film. It is offered with cyan, magenta, yellow, black and white inks. The addition of white ink ensures high-quality colour output on transparent, metallic and coloured media.


Midlands design & print company puts their new HP Scitex FB950 through its paces

HP Scitex FB950

It's not very often that a wide format, flatbed printer can boast that its first job was for a Peep-show now is it? Although this is exactly the claim to fame by the newly installed HP Scitex FB950 for Midlands -based design and marketing agency R J Design Associates (RJDA) when they used it to print the latest promotional window graphic for footwear giants Schuh.

RJDA's needs for this large format printer wasn't entirely down to the initial demands of the customers however, but of their production manager. Managing Director Rob Walker says, "Originally it was pressure from our Production Manager, Julian Oldham-Kitchener to put this flatbed in.  Always looking for a way to get things done on time but faster, Julian had researched into the amount of time and money we were spending mounting and laminating jobs that had been printed on the Seiko's, for example."

Large format specialist reseller City & West End Solutions are a long time supplier of printer hardware to RJDA and after conducting a quality demonstration at this year's Sign & Digital UK Show, sealed the deal with RJDA.  Installation went ahead in July and it has not been out of production since.  The recent acquisition also proves to strengthen RJDA's position as the leading provider of large format print solutions in the East Midlands as well as offering the ability to lower the environmental impact of their own in-house printing.

The sales and design teams at RJDA seized upon the opportunities this printer offered their business and in no time the window graphic for the shoe retail giant 'Schuh' was the first to be printed.  The 'Peep-Schuh' refit was for the flagship Liverpool store and RJ Design were able to print and apply die-cut self-cling window vinyl's in just 2 days, complete with Amsterdam style peep-holes!  The new graphics succeeded the 15x2.5m board style hoardings that were printed directly onto substrate, also on the HP Scitex.

Since then similar innovative POS campaigns for the Livingston based footwear retailer have seen the production of a die cut, freestanding 'Adam-Ant' and 1m square Post-It notes for the Dublin store.

Another striking deal came in the form of wrapping Derby College's new Joseph Wright campus building - a true eye-catching landmark for the College measuring 9.7m x 9.5m utilising mesh banner vinyl.   With speed being of the essence the job was completed and fitted in just over half a day, something of an achievement for a tricky City Centre location!

The HP Scitex FB950 is capable of printing flatbed, sheetfed and rollfed at up to 80 m2/hr in fast mode the 2.5m UV printer will also print double-sided and edge-to-edge, utilising 6 colour UV-curable inks (C, M, Y, K, Lc, Lm).  Consistent print results are achieved thanks to 12 printheads with variable sized drops printing up to 1200 x 600 optimised dpi continually monitored by an onboard camera and spectrophotometer.  It can print directly on to a wide variety of rigid media that include corrugated or compressed carton; foam board; plastics; or specialty material like glass, wood and aluminium as well as more traditional signage and graphic applications.

Walker explains, "The HP Scitex has not only given us the opportunity to up sell to our existing clients, but to diversify our services into new markets. The key factor here is superb quality printing in addition to how much money per square metre everyone is saving with its no fuss, high production speed."

Production Manager at RJDA, Julian Oldham-Kitchener found that comparing the production print speeds of the Scitex flatbed to their Seiko printers, brought a huge difference in running time.  He says, "Where the production speed is quoted at 20m2 per hour we found that the Scitex actually does about three times the amount of work.  Printers like the Seiko need a fair amount of maintenance to keep running consistently and after all the stopping and staring in order to do this, you are in fact looking at about half the production speed. The HP Scitex however prints a 50m roll at 20m2 per hour- no stopping - brilliant."

Like many new installations and first runs RJDA were not without the odd problem, but in turn they have had no problem with the service received by both their supplier City & West End Solutions and distributor ArtSystems.   Response times to their teething troubles were met within the hour ensuring loss of production was virtually non-existent.

Walker concludes, "Our sustained growth and investment in people and cutting edge technology enables us to continually meet our clients needs.  Investment in the HP Scitex FB950 has meant we can significantly reduce the fulfilment time on jobs and drive down the cost of wide format signage and display graphics."

Gardners gets more than expected from HP Scitex XP2300

HP Scitex XP2300

At Gardners, located in Cardiff, U.K., being on the cutting edge of printing technology has become almost routine. Recently, Gardners became one of the first companies worldwide to install an HP Scitex XP2300 Printer, a 3.2 m-wide (10.5 ft) UV roll-to-roll printer designed for high-speed production environments. The new printer is dedicated to outdoor signage and it offers several major advantages, including an unmatched combination of high speed and low ink consumption, particularly in billboard mode printing.

Among the first major jobs that Gardners printed on the new machine was a huge order for a special safety mesh wrap. The company received an urgent order to print 18 rolls of material to be used to clad scaffolding on a development in Bristol, UK.

The material was supplied by the customer with each roll being 45 meters long with a printable area of 43 x 2 meters. Timely delivery was critical and Gardners only had 20 hours to produce and deliver the job. The HP Scitex XP2300 Printer produced it in less than 11 hours, using Billboard print mode.

“In the past, the same job would have taken around 23 hours to print,” says Kristel Moncarey, digital manager, Gardners. “Our customer actually preferred the extra smooth print quality of the HP Scitex XP2300 Printer, in particular the strength and brilliance of the colors. More and more customers are choosing the glossy look on this printer for their work.”

Richard Gardner, chairman, adds: “The customer was extremely happy with the fast turnaround and the higher gloss quality finish. The safety mesh is a very complicated material to run on. But the HP Scitex XP2300 printed it extremely quickly and it looked absolutely fantastic.”

In the few months that the HP Scitex XP2300 Printer has been onsite at Gardners, it has proven itself as an excellent solution not just for billboards, but also for other types of applications that require high-quality printing.

“I knew this machine was built for billboards but I didn’t realize how good the print quality would be,” says Gardner. “You wouldn’t expect to have very fine resolution and quality, especially on things where you are reversing lettering out. But you actually get quite high quality, so in practice, we are able to use it for other types of applications in a smaller format, such as banners and some fine interior signage, in addition to billboards.”

Gardner adds: “The machine is built for speed. In essence it’s more than double the speed of a common UV roll to roll printer, so having one of these new machines is the equivalent of having two of the others. The low ink consumption of the new printer is another major benefit to Gardners, saving up to approximately 30 percent. “The situation is that the cost saving is very significant.” Following the successful evaluation of its first HP Scitex XP2300 Printer, Gardners is planning to invest in at least five more machines.

Founded in 1976 primarily as a screen printer, Gardners is now one of the world’s largest digital printing companies, serving many different industries and applications. It has a large and diverse portfolio of products and processes with numerous patents and copyrights, covering the building industry, outdoor advertising media, backlit printing, dye sublimation onto fabrics, metal and aluminum and specialized adhesive technology for use in the financial sector.

The company’s growth has been shaped by a keen sense of market trends, such as the fast-growing demand for printing solutions that reduce environmental impact, in terms of the printing systems themselves and the media they print on. It has been fueled by its near-total adoption of digital printing technologies and its willingness to work with printing equipment vendors to test and refine new technologies and systems. With HP’s growing array of solutions for the large format printing market, Gardners is increasingly adopting HP technologies as a key part of its production floor.

“A lot of what we do is late sold,” says Gardner. “All the ads around the country change every two weeks, so theoretically you have two weeks to print the product. But, quite often a campaign will be instigated in reaction to a competitor, and the customer wants to react very quickly, within two or three days. So digital is perfect for that. And the HP Scitex XP2300 Printer is even more perfect because it allows you to put a lot of material through in 24 hours.”

In general, Gardner sees three key trends shaping the printing market: speed, cost and environmental responsibility. “We need faster machines and lower cost inks,” says Gardner. “The only way to expand the market is to take more work from analogue.”

“At the same time, going green is absolutely critical. We have been looking for environmental solutions for the past five or six years. We believed in it and now all the really big customers are demanding it. The world has changed. Now the majority of work we do is on environmentally responsible materials, like woven polyethylene. In fact, we are trying to phase out PVC.”