New 10 colour desktop Epson proofing printer offers 99% Pantone accuracy for £1,795

Written by Colin Gillman on Wednesday, 01 February 2017.

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Epson has launched a new desktop proofing printer that can deliver near-perfect colour matching of up to 99% of Pantone Solid Coated Colours. The 17-inch, 10-colour SureColor SC-P5000 looks set to offer a pretty sweet deal (coming in at just £1,795) for anybody looking at either professional proofing, fine art or photography applications.

According to Phil McMullin, Sales manager, Professional Graphics, Epson UK: “Colours are so precise that you can print in complete confidence, knowing the exact colour you want will be perfectly reproduced in the finished print. And you don’t even need to be an expert to get these results – the SC-P5000 is extremely simple to set up and use, and offers outstanding reliability.” 

By all accounts the new printer went down a storm at a recent dealer event too. Not surprising really, as I examined several samples of both proof and print and to be honest the colour matching was almost perfect when viewed with the naked eye, and I would have to agree with the 99% solid colour claim. For process colours we are probably talking around 95%, which is still brilliant, so it’s a fabulous little package that is not only near perfect for proofing applications, but is a great photo printer too. On first inspection the SureColor SC-P5000 seems like a very useful addition to anybody’s studio set-up. 

A lot of the colour quality is down to Epson’s PrecisionCore TFP printhead and UltraChome HDX 10-colour pigment ink set (including Orange, Green and Violet or Light Light Black) to deliver 2880x1440dpi resolution output with an increased colour gamut, higher-density blacks and, says Epson, twice the print permanence.

The printer also features high-capacity 200 ml ink cartridges and supports two different ink configurations: one with Light Light Black (LLK) ink for smooth and neutral tonal transitions and support of the Epson Advanced Black and White print mode, ideal for photography, fine art and graphic design applications; the other replaces the LLK ink with Violet for an expanded colour gamut and near-perfect colour matching of up to 99% of Pantone Solid Coated Colours, ideal for commercial and flexographic proofing applications. The UltraChrome HDX inks are 1.5 times denser than the previous generation, delivering a wider contrast ratio and improved resin encapsulation technology for superior gloss uniformity and optically clearer, sharper images.

There is an optional inline SpectroProofer, incorporating the ILS30 colorimeter jointly developed with X-Rite, to provide automated colour management within a proofing workflow. Conforming to ISO lighting and measurement standards – including M1 - this solution ensures consistent, repeatable colour accuracy regardless of media. This will obviously cost you a bot more - £2,770 (€3,077) with the SpectroProofer - but this also enables you to calibrate using Epson’s new Colour Calibration Utility, an easy-to-use, fast calibration tool that can be used to ensure consistent colour across a fleet of local/remote printers. Because the calibration data is stored on the printer, support for multiple users is much simpler and the calibrated data can be used for all media types including third party.

Media handling features auto-switching between the high-capacity front paper cassette and roll media feeder. It includes a power-driven roll media spindle, ideal for producing panoramas and roll printing up to 30.5m, and an internal high-speed single pass rotary cutter. The high-capacity cassette can hold up to 100 sheets of premium paper (250 sheets standard) for high productivity printing on a range of sheet sizes (A2, A2+, A3+, A3, A4, and 17-inch (43.2 cm). In addition, the SureColor SC-P5000 features a front feed straight path for delicate fine art sheet media, including poster board, up to 1.5mm thick.

This printer gets a strong thumbs up.


Cascade adds Konica Minolta bizhub C1085 colour production press

Written by Colin Gillman on Monday, 09 January 2017.

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Central London-based Cascade Group has purchased a Konica Minolta bizhub PRESS C1085 colour production press to enhance the flexibility and speed of its services. 

First established in 1982, Cascade Group has invested in and restructured its operations over the past five years, moving from a network of retail businesses to a hub and spoke model with local offices in key London business districts and centralised production units within central London. 

65aed15d83c68e98027a66b3f6581a36 resizedEach local office has equipment for quick turnaround jobs such as business cards, presentations and posters, and more complex jobs or large runs are now processed in its production units.

Production director, Richard Adler approached Konica Minolta to propose a solution that would seamlessly process a wide range of jobs from single page flyers to multi-page presentation documents, stickers, business cards and more.

“We needed volume colour production equipment and the C1085 met our requirements in terms of speed, quality and price.” Adler said.

Cascade chose Konica Minolta as it had already had a good first experience working with them. “We have another Konica Minolta digital production print system at one of our local offices and they score high on value for money, reliability and quality of output,” he added.    

“Relationship building is extremely important to Cascade Group both with clients and suppliers alike. Konica Minolta have worked with us to ensure an excellent working relationship and over the past couple of years, have been able to provide the right equipment at the right price, enabling us to give our clients the excellent service and quality that they are used to,” he said in conclusion.


HP PageWide XL 5000 goes into University College London

Written by Colin Gillman on Friday, 02 December 2016.

primi sui motori con e-max

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University College London (UCL), one of the world’s highest ranking universities, has installed an HP PageWide XL 5000 Multifunction Printer. The new printer has allowed students at The Bartlett School of Architecture, UCL's global faculty of the built environment, to benefit from radically faster printing speeds for their large format projects.

“Before we had the high-speed printer, students had to wait in front of the printer before they could collect their CAD projects,” says Yusah Hamuth, Faculty head of IT at the University College London. “During the hand-in period in May/June where the print volume typically increases significantly, we could observe the queues in front of the printers getting longer and longer. The need for a high-speed printer was evident.”

Aside from fast printing speeds, the ease of use and accessibility of the PageWide XL 5000 Printer were important factors in the School’s purchase decision. Its architectural students have access to the printer not only when IT staff are present, but during standard opening hours from 8:30 to 22:30, including during weekends. Two media drawers that allow for up to four media rolls, together with two sets of CMYK ink cartridges, allow for uninterrupted printing.

“The best solution is to make the printers available to the students so that they can help themselves. This is why we don’t have to provide any additional staff to oversee the printing process,” says Hamuth. “The dual set of ink cartridges is very convenient. If one cartridge runs out it automatically swaps to the other one.”

The HP PageWide XL 5000 printer provides fast and efficient monochrome and colour prints in a single device at speeds up to 14 D/A1-size prints per minute. HP PageWide Technology consists of more than 200,000 nozzles on a stationary print bar and spans the width of the page, enabling breakthrough printing speeds.


Grayson Design and Print opts for Konica Minolta colour and Vivid finishing package

Written by Colin Gillman on Tuesday, 22 November 2016.

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Cannock-based full-service digital printing company Grayson Design and Print Ltd has invested in a Konica Minolta bizhub PRESS C71hc digital colour production printer and Vivid Matrix Foiler/Laminator to boost its in-house finishing capabilities, removing the requirement to outsource.

The company offers a diverse range of print solutions from short-run digital print, signage, workwear and promotional items and has been very successful in cross selling services which has resulted in recent growth and development.

The company looked to replace its existing Konica Minolta C5501 printer with a machine that would achieve a wider colour gamut and in particular to meet the brand requirements for one of its biggest customers Palletforce. 

According to general manager Ashley Rogers the old printer had served the company well.

“With the C5501, we got outstanding results and we needed to ensure that with this new press we were able to hit the corporate orange. The C71hc did not disappoint, the build quality, colour reproduction, clarity and precision of images, are unparalleled,” he said.

Konica Minolta says its 71 colour pages per minute bizhub PRESS C71hc with its High Chroma toner technology produces vivid and natural colours, printed virtually as shown on the monitor.

The ongoing drive to streamline quality control and improve the bottom line were key factors in the decision to purchase the Vivid Matrix Foiler/Laminator. Rogers explained that the firm outsourced laminating and that in a bid to reduce costs, particularly as there was a minimum order value, which for short-runs wasn’t always cost-effective, they wanted to bring it in-house. “In addition, quality control is integral to all we do, by laminating jobs in-house we have better control and are better equipped to remove any potential issues, which ensures high levels of customer satisfaction,” he said.

The company has had a rolling investment strategy in place which has seen it grow exponentially over the past six years, headcount has increased from five to fourteen people in the last five years and unit space increased from 4,000 to 8,000 sq. ft. in December 2014.

Grayson’s has invested over £150,000 this year alone to ensure it is able to service new and existing customers. In addition to the Konica Minolta C71hc and Vivid Foiler/Laminator, other recent investments include a new Arizona flatbed printer, Iecho BK3 flatbed cutter and Tajima 8 head embroidery machine, giving the whole production process a refresh in anticipation for the New Year.

“The new Konica Minolta bizhub PRESS C71hc, delivers outstanding colour quality and this, along with the investments we have made in other areas of the business, will enable us to offer a first class digital colour printing service to customers who use us for signage projects or workwear for example, as well as securing new customers who we can then offer other services to,” Rogers said in conclusion.


EFI launch two new Fiery digital front ends for the Xerox Colour C60/C70 Printer

Written by Colin Gillman on Monday, 07 November 2016.

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EFI has announced the availability of two new EFI Fiery digital front ends for the updated Xerox Colour C60/C70 Printer that the company says boost colour, performance, and productivity. 

"Xerox customers are successful when they can leverage technology improvements to increase throughput, reduce costs and produce more high-quality colour documents in less time," says Terry Antinora, vice president, Office and Solutions Business Group, Xerox. "The new Xerox print servers provide advanced Fiery digital production workflow advantages that customers can use to take their digital printing to the next level."

Photo144559 resizedThe new Xerox EX C60/C70 Print Server is the first worldwide to utilise the new Fiery NX Pro hardware platform previewed at Drupa 2016. The new NX Pro server features a sleek, modern design and updated hardware. In addition, the newest-version EX C60/C70 Print Server on the NX Pro platform delivers a 33% performance increase compared to its predecessor.

Operators can use new Fiery QuickTouch software through a built-in 7-inch touchscreen display to get faster views of job status information and easily perform certain device management functions. With just a tap, the touchscreen display gives operators easy access to intuitive system installation, backup and restore functions as well as to system diagnostics information. Plus, users can gain even greater efficiencies by integrating their Fiery Driven printer and digital production data into their broader management operations thanks to the print server's seamless connectivity with productivity-enhancing EFI MIS platforms such as the EFI Quick Print Suite.

"EFI is committed to helping Xerox customers make the most of the new production capabilities they have with the upgraded Xerox Colour C60/C70 Printers," says John Henze, vice president, Fiery marketing, EFI. "The Fiery digital front ends, along with our innovative NX hardware platform and NX Station, bring a new level of functionality, production power and ease-of-use that Xerox users will appreciate as they advance their digital colour print capabilities."


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How can you win more customers for your printing business

How can you win more customers for your printing business

Anybody who has run a printing business for any time will at some stage ask themselves the question “How do I get more customers?” The trouble with this is it’s a perennial question that has no right or wrong answer. You could always start by learning to think differently and...

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