PRINTING United Allilance Names Winners of 2020 Product of the Year Competition

PRINTING United Alliance has announced the winners of its 2020 Product of the Year competitions. More than 200 entries were submitted by PRINTING United Alliance member suppliers. Winners were named in 85 categories. To qualify, the entered products had to be available for sale in 2020.

Click here to view the complete list of winning entries.

Click here to visit the virtual gallery space in which all entries can be viewed.

“I’m proud to be part of this competition and to provide the opportunity for manufacturers to compete and show their products in this tough time,” said Ray Weiss, Director of Digital Print Programs, PRINTING United Alliance. “The competition was tight in many categories. Having a new judging format allowed the cream to rise to the top. Congratulations to all of the winners!”

For output devices, a printed target produced a scorecard that determine winners. Some of the output devices evaluated included: Direct to Garment Printers, Roll-to-Roll Dye-Sublimation Printers, Roll-to-Roll Solvent/Latex Printers, Tabletop Flatbed Printers, Hybrid Flatbed/Roll-to-Roll (UV/Latex), 3D Printers, Sceen Printing Manual Garment Presses, and Screen Printing Automatic Garment Presses.

Non-output categories included products such as inks, automation equipment, die cutting equipment, display hardware, laminates, laminators, and many types of media, incuding adhesive-backed, dye-sublimation transfer paper, dye-sublimation rigid material, heat transfer materials, rigid/synthetic media, and different types of textiles. These products were scored by a panel of judges who were experts within the category of products.

PRINTING United Alliance is the largest member-based printing and graphics association in the United States It was formed in 2020 by the merger of the Special Graphic Imaging Association (SGIA) and Printing Industries of America (PIA).

Epson SureColor F10070 Industrial Dye-Sublimation Printer Supports High-Speed Production of Sellable Goods

The Epson SureColor F10070 is a 76-inch roll-to-roll industrial dye-sublimation printer for producing bright, high-quality textiles for fashion, sports apparel, home decor, and soft signage. It was engineered to meet the evolving needs of today’s textile industry and support the expansion of textile sourcing and production in the U.S.

The 76-in. Epson SureColor F10070 dye-sublimation printer is built for demanding industrial environments.

“The high-performance SureColor F10070 provides an efficient and cost effective dye-sublimation solution for print shops looking to produce medium to large high-quality apparel runs and bid on incoming textile orders from businesses that sell direct to consumer,” said Tim Check, senior product manager, Professional Imaging, Epson America. He said the SureColor F10070 also supports onshoring production needs by shortening lead times, decreasing costs, and streamlining workflows.

Features

Four, user-replaceable 4.7 inch Epson PrecisionCore printheads deliver high productivity with extreme drop placement accuracy for sharp detail and bright colors.

The lower-cost high-capacity, replaceable ink pack system holds up to 20 liters of UltraChrome DS ink per color. This reduces ink costs up to 50 percent (compared to T46C dye-sub ink used in the SureColor F9470. The four colors of UltraChrome DS inks include cyan, magenta, and yellow plus a high-density black ink that produces exceptional color saturation and high contrast.

The hot-swappable ink system automatically switches from an empty ink pack to new ink pack without stopping the print job. The enables longer printer runs without user intervention.

A redesigned 9-inch touchscreen control panel lets operators see the image printing and monitor print, paper, and ink status. Users can also understand environmental conditions for optimized print performance.

An advanced auto paper tension control system and fabric head wiper system clean the media and remove dust before printing.

A compact media dryer includes a front heater that can reach temperatures up to 230 degrees Fahrenheit and an underside header that reaches temperatures of 122 degrees Fahrenheit. This helps supports full-speed performance in a space-saving design.

Epson Edge Print RIP software enables users to get the best possible quality output with Epson’s Precision Dot technology that chooses the optimum droplet sizes and screening patterns. It includes the Adobe PostScript 3 engine that enables users to process PostScript data for a variety of digital file formats. Epson Edge Print simplifies file management, color control, screening, nesting, and step-and-repeat patterns.

Cloud-based printer fleet reporting through Epson’s production-management Cloud Solution PORT.

Four types of performance-optimized transfer papers can be purchased from Epson:

  • Multipurpose
  • Rigid Photo Optimized
  • Adhesive Textile
  • Production

The Epson SureColor F10070 has an MSRP of $89,995 and ships directly from Epson America. Several Epson Preferred Plus service plans are available.

About Epson Professional Printers

Epson America, based in Long Beach, CA, is Epson’s regional headquarters for the U.S., Canada, and Latin America.

The Epson SureColor collection of professional and industrial printers includes:

  • the F series for apparel and textiles;,
  • the S series for signs and displays;
  • the P series for photographic imaging;
  • the T series for technical documents and drawings

Visit Epson Professional Imaging for more details.

Epson also makes ColorWorks desktop label printers and SurePress industrial digital label presses.

Epson America announced the Epson SureColor F10070 on August 20, 2020.

Multiple Print Industry Online Events Scheduled in October and November

Organizations that typically host live print industry conferences and trade shows in the spring and fall pivoted to a slew of online events in the fall of 2020. Below are some of the print industry online events planned in October and November to help printing, graphics, and visual communications professionals make new connections, learn about new products, and gear up for a better 2021.

Scroll down to learn about events planned by the following organizations:

  • FM Future
  • APTech
  • Smithers
  • PRINTING UNTIED Alliance
  • International Sign Association

FuturePrint Virtual Summit
October 12-16, 2020

Hosted by FM Future

Week-long event includes 120 speakers from 15 countries delivering more than 70 sessions. Each day will feature education and networking in a specific categegory:

October 12: Young Guns in Print
October 13: Industrial Print
October 14: Wide Format Print
October 15: Packaging and Labels
October 16: Commercial Print

John Mills, CEO of Xaar, will outline how Xaar’s new bulk printhead will enable equipment manufacturers to push the boundaries of what’s possible with powerful, reliable, and efficient inkjet technology.

Global retail innovation expert Steve Lister will provide up-to-the-minute insights of what is happening in retail and how it could affect companies that produce retail-related print.

Georgia Parker, Innovation Manager of Fashion for Good, will talk about how digital is accelerating sustainable innovation in the fashion industry,

Nick Landa of Landa Digital Printing will take you on a tour of a Nanographic printing press and explain why its different than any other print process.

Young print entrepreneurs and other young print-industry professionals will help business owners learn how to make print-related careers a more attractive and deliberate choice for the next generation.

Other sessions will provide

  • updates on ink developments
  • a 2040 forecast for the packaging industry,
  • high-speed inkjet printing
  • the mysteries of pricing
  • multi-material inkjet 3D printing
  • new opportunities with 3D sublimation printing

Leading PRINT Summit
October 13, 2020

Hosted by Association for PRINT Technologies (APTech)
Fee: Free for members, $79 for non-members

Four-hour program (11 am to 3 pm ET) on post-COVID-shutdown business operations focuses on four key areas impacted by 2020 disruptive events: Culture, Operations, Sales, Business Development, and Customer Dynamics.

In a headline session on Print 5.0, print-industry expert and author Frank Romano will discuss how printing is evolving in 2020 and beyond. APTech’s Ken Garner will discuss the quest for the elusive, sustainable competitive advantage. Consultant Leslie Groene will talk about sales management for the new reality.

Other speakers will discuss how to

  • recalibrate your business to thrive in challenging times
  • navigate customer dynamics to develop a competitive position
  • prepare for our next-generation industry leaders, and
  • nurture and convert leads to sales.


Digital Print for Packaging US
October 12-14, 2020

Hosted by Smithers
Fee: $399

Online event for brand owners, converters, printing equipment suppliers, and packaging designers. Content will focus on the market need for digital print from the brand’s perspective.

Stephen Kaufman, Chief Product Officer for Esko, will discuss how workflows and color management can solve real problems.
Rob Day, CEO of Tonejet, will discuss Tonejet’s first end-to-end beverage can printing system that went live at the end of 2019.
Alexis Tonneau, Project Manager of Kurz, will discuss how to combine attractive package design and sustainability.

Other sessions will cover topics such as:

  • the efficient production of digital preprint for corrugated packaging
  • special requirements for pigments used for package printing
  • designs for canabis packaging
  • emerging technologies such as NFC, ioT, and AR cam will enable greater efficiencies in strategic packaging management
  • leveraging digital print to create one-of-a-kind customer experiences
  • how artificial intelligence can automate design for digital print projects

Case studies look at some of the pros and cons of integrating digital printing capabilities into an analog flexographic printing line and digitl designs for folding cartons printed on high-speed inkjet presses.

In addition to attending live and recorded presentations, you can join live Q&A sessions and/or facilitated virtual networking rooms.

Digital Textile Printing US
October 15-16, 2020

Hosted by Smithers
Fee: $399

High-level insights from textile printers, end users, fashion designers, retail brands, and equipment manufacturers, suppliers, and technology providers. Live and recorded sessions will focus on how business models, technology , and collaboration can accelerate the commercial adoption of digital print for textiles.

Speakers include: Gart Davis, CEO & Co-founder of Spoonflower; Luca Zaconi, Director of Raw Materials Print, Lululemon Athletica; Jena Nesbitt, Product Strategy Director, Pine Crest Fabrics; Reid Lutter, CEO and Founder, PodiumWear Custom Sports Apparel; Francesca Rosella, Chief Creative Director and Co-Founder, CuteCircuit; and Jessica Schreiber, Founder & CEO at FABSCRAP; Scott Aitken, Managing Director, SPGPrints.

Sessions will cover topics such as:

  • how color and the chemical evolutions are affecting new-century printers
  • how digital textile printing is pushing the boundaries of conventional textile printing
  • using digital print and high-end fabrics for team uniforms
  • innovation to fast track the textile industry to a circular future
  • pretreatment and pigment inkjet ink for textile printing
  • sustainability through innovative textile printing solutions
  • the role of testing in evaluating print textiles
  • color and pattern trends for fashion and apparel
  • color lifecycle management in printed textiles

Attend live Q&A sessions and/or facilitated virtual networking rooms.

PRINTING UNITED Digital Experience
October 26-Nov. 12, 2020

Hosted by PRINTING United Alliance and NAPCO Media.

During 14 business days of no-fee programming, print business owners, operations managers, and employees can choose from 100 educational sessions and 40 product launches. Each day will feature a different focus for educational programming and product demonstrations from exhibitors:

October 26: Graphics/Wide-Format – Hardware and Consumables
October 27: Apparel – Screen Printing/Decorating
October 28: Commercial Printing – Digital Inkjet
October 29: Packaging – Labels and Flexible Packaging
October 30: Graphics/Wide-Format – Finishing and Workflow
November 2: In-Plant Forum
November 3: Commercial – Offset Printing
November 4: Packaging – Folding Carton and Corrugated
November 5: Mailing and Fulfillment
November 6: Workflow and Software – All segments
November 9: Apparel – Direct-to-Garment/Direct-to-Substate
November 10: Commercial Printing – Digital Dry and Liquid Toner
November 11: Industrial
November 12: Digital Textile

Some of the topics the program will cover include:

  • Building a manufacturing mindset for wide-format graphics
  • Opportunities post-COVID in production inkjet printing
  • Wide-format growth markets for 2020 and beyond
  • Thrive in a transformative marketplace with the sheetfed offset technology
  • Trends and opportunities in folding carton and corrugated packaging
  • Workflow and automation: from date night to marriage
  • Dazzling prints with digital embellishments
  • How to research new markets
  • Developing your sales team
  • Direct-to-consumer marketing leadership
  • Emerging direct mail trends for COVID 19 and beyond
  • Establishing today’s successful screen printing business
  • The rise of e-commerce in apparel printing
  • Driving profitability and efficiency in apparel decoration
  • Essential strategies for equipment purchases
  • Facing new competition in core markets
  • How a focus on finishing can help you finish first
  • How commercial offset printers are shrinking turn times to meet short-run demands
  • How high-speed digital production inkjet printing is redefining commercial printing
  • The digital future for labels and flexible packaging
  • By the numbers: KPIs. metrics, and ratios
  • Migrating into industrial printing
  • Modern strategies for stand-out package design
  • Industrial printing: What’s hot and where is it headed
  • In-plant printing trends in the midst of the pandemic
  • Production inkjet printing in the In-plant shop
  • The science and skill of graphics installation
  • Paperboard packaging: differentiation through digital
  • Effective selling through online portals
  • Managing client color expectations
  • How sustainability is driving the next generation of fashion
  • Finding success with digital toner vs. inkjet printing processes
  • Electrophotography-digital print of the past and future
  • Beyond wallpaper: industrial printing for home decor
  • How to build a digital textile business
  • Textiles and color assurance
  • The future of signs and graphics

To see the the full program and register, visit: https://digital.printingunited.com/

The Wrap Experience Digital
November 11-12, 2020

Hosted by the International Sign Association and the Wrap Institute

Networking, education, exhibits, and demonstrations will help wrap installers explore ways to expand into new products and use cutting-edge technologies.

Sessions will focus on design, visualization tools, and upsells such as architectural items, ceramic coatings, vehicle paint protection films (PPF), and more. In the after-hours Speakeasy Area, attendees can connect with some of the wrap industry’s top influencers and shop owners.

Dan Antonelli, of the KickCharge Creative small-business marketing agency, will discuss vehicle wrap design and related brand identity design topics.

The Wrap Institute, co-founded by installer/instructor Justin Pate, is regarded as the world’s top online wrap training program. For the past two years, the Institute brought hands-on instruction to ISA in-person events. In 2020, The Wrap Experience Digital will be part of ISA’s The Link series of virtual events to help sign, graphics and visual communications companies sustain and grow their businesses.

Canon Colorado UVgel Wallpaper Factory Automates Custom Wallpaper Printing

To serve the growing demand for digitally printed wallcoverings, Canon Solutions America has introduced the Canon UVgel Wallpaper Factory. The integrated system combines a 64 in. Colorado wide-format roll-to-roll UVgel printer with a motorized Fotoba Jumbo Roll media loader and Fotoba cutter and rewinder.

The UVgel Wallpaper Factory was designed for automated, unattended end-to-end production of customized wallpaper. Designs set up in prepress are printed on paper that is automatically fed into the Colorado printer. The fully dry printed wallpaper is then cut and rewound in the roll widths and lengths specified by the customer. An embedded device tapes each roll for immediate packing and shipping.

A motorized Fotoba Jumbo Roll media loader (JRL170) automatically feeds media into the 64-in. Canon Colorado 1650 UVgel printer. The inline Fotoba Cutter XLD170WP cuts the prints to the desired widths and lengths and feeds them to a Fotoba Rewinder REW162 for rolling and taping.

Advantages of UVgel Inks

To produce seamless, room-size designs from multiple rolls of wallpaper, the inkjet printing process must be exceptionally precise, with dimensionally stable materials and color consistency from roll to roll. The images must be accurately positioned on the paper for proper alignment. Plus, the substrate can’t stretch during production or the printed image could be distored and out of alignment when installed. Mismatches in color from one roll to the next would be obvious when the printed panels were hung on the wall side by side.

Canon believes the flexible, odorless UVgel technology developed for their Colorado 1650 wide-format printing system provide an ideal solution for wallpaper production.

UVgel technology is a form of UV-LED printing that uses a gel-like ink that is heated inside the printheads and jetted as a liquid onto a temperature-controlled platen. When the liquefied inks contact the media on the low-heat platen, the drops return to their gel state and are partially cured (“pinned”) by a low dose of UV light from LED lamps. Full LED curing occurs after all of the droplets required to form an image swath have been applied and gelled onto the media.

By controlling the spread of ink dots on the media (e.g. “dot gain”), the Colorado UVgel ink technology supports brilliant color consistency from print to print. Companies that use multiple Colorado printers for high-volume wallpaper production can expect consistent colors even a specific design is output on different printers at on various days and times.

Wallpapers printed with the UVgel 460 inks in the Colorado 1650 printer are odorless and have been independently tested to generate very low levels of chemicals. The inks have met the GREENGUARD Gold standards for safe use in sensitive indoor environments such as healthcare facilities and schools. Wallpaper printed with UVgel inks also meet ASTM F793 Type II classification, which means it is fit for use in commercial environments that have the potential for higher-than-average scuffing (e.g. waiting rooms, classrooms, and hallways).

The UVgel 460 ink technology in the Colorado 1650 features a FLXfinish system that enables users to produce wallpaper with either a standard gloss surface or a velvety matte finish without changing from one roll of paper to another.

This scalable, modular system can help wallpaper companies and decor firms expand into custom-printed wallpaper. Or print-service providers can use this system to diversify into high-volume digital wallpaper manufacturing.

The UVgel Wallpaper Factory is available as an end-to-end solution or as an upgrade to existing Colorado 1640 and 1650 wide-format printers. For more information about the Canon Colorado printers visit www.csa.canon.com/portal/csa/products/large-format/colorado-uvgel-printers.

“The UVgel Wallpaper Factory is a highly automated workflow solution that enables our customers to print exceptional quality wallpaper with quicker turnaround times,” said Peter P. Kowalczuk, president, Canon Solutions America, Inc.

To receive additional information about the UVgel Wallpaper Factory, contact a Canon Solutions America, Inc. representative or send your request through our website: csa.canon.com/internet/portal/us/csa/contactus

The Canon UVgel Wallpaper Factory won a 2020 Product of the Year award from PRINTING United Alliance in the category of
Automation Equipment (Print/Post Print)

About Canon Solutions America

Canon Solutions America, Inc. is a wholly owned subsidiary of Canon U.S.A., Inc. in Melville, New York. Canon Solutions America provides enterprise, production, and large-format printing solutions. They also and help companies of all sizes discover ways to improve sustainability, increase efficiency, and control costs in conjunction with high volume, continuous feed, digital and traditional printing, and document management operations. For more information, visit: https://csa.canon.com/

Canon Solutions American announced the UVgel Wallpaper Factory on May 14, 2020

Ricoh Ri 2000 Industrial Direct-to-Garment Printer Offers ‘Walk-Up’ Ready Ease of Use

The RICOH Ri 2000 industrial direct-to-garment (DTG) printer delivers fast print speeds at an affordable price for enterprises in the modern custom apparel market.

Capable of producing full-color graphics at 1200 x 1200 dpi, the RICOH Ri 2000 can print on a full range of garments as well as face masks, art canvas, and promotional products such as a wood, glass coasters, and mouse pads. The printer is designed for “walk-up ready” ease of use and simple maintenance.

“Everything about the RICOH Ri 2000 was created with an eye toward making high-volume DTG production faster, easier, and lower cost than it has beenin the past,” explained Yasu Takashima, head of the Direct-to-Garment Printing Division of Ricoh Printing Systems America, Inc. (RSPA). “Furthermore, we included robust network management solutions to ensure the smooth integration of direct-to-garment printing with the existing ecosystem of Ricoh industiral print solutions.”

He said Ricoh collected extensive feedback of existing and prospective enterprise customers: “The needs of these power users become clear: high-volume operators need a DTG printer that is fast, easy to use, and designed for business: “That is exactly what the RICOH Ri 2000 delivers.”

Features

8 Ricoh piezo-electric drop-on-demand inkjet printheads. Ricoh printheads are designed for speed, precision, and durability.

Dual carriages. One set of printheads lays down a white underbase. The printheads on the second carriage deposit the colors.

Automatic table height adjustments. Laser-assisted adjustments of the height of the printing table ensure that substrates of different thicknesses are optimally positioned for print quality. Operators can easily switch between printing T-shirts to plaques, hoodies, and items up to 1.2 inches thick.

Quick-change magnetic platens. Available in sizes up to 16 x 19.6 inches, the platens are designed to easily snap on and off the machine. This means that printing different garments of different sizes and styles requires practically no downtime.

7-inch touchscreen display. The full-color display panel provides intuitive controls for print jobs and workflow. The Interactive Operation Guide on the display provides alerts reminding operators to perform maintenance tasks that aren’t automated.

Automated weekly printhead cleanings and continuous monitoring. The RICOH Ri 2000 continuously monitors it ink supply, air level, and dampers and makes adjustments as needed so the printer will always be ready to print.

Printhead cleaning jig. Instead of using swabs and wipes to manually clean the printheads, operators simply attach the cleaning jig and add cleaning solution.

Inks. The printer uses five colors of Ricoh-approved DTG water-based pigmented inks: cyan, magenta, yellow, black, and white. Four channels of white ink in are loaded in a separate carriage to lay down white ink in single-pass.

Print Speeds. In the single-pass 600 x 300 dpi, a 10 x 8 inch graphic can be printed in 9 seconds on a light garment and 54 seconds on a dark garment. Printing the same graphic in the Super Fine 8-pass 1200 x 1200 dpi mode takes 58 seconds on a light garment and 97 seconds on a dark garment. Intermediate print speeds include a 2-pass 600 x 600 dpi Speed Mode and a 4-pass 600 dpi Fine mode.

Printable Substrates. The RICOH Ri2000 can print on garments made with 100% cotton and high-cotton blends; 100% light polyester; and up to 50/50 dark polyester. Canvas and wood can also be printed.

Software: The software included with the printer makes it fast and easy to set-up, preview, and print jobs and calculate ink usage and costs. Robust network-management solutions make it easy to integrate direct-to-garment printing on the RICOH Ri 2000 with other RIOCH printing systems used for documents or wide-format graphics.

Optional software packages enable you to manage networked machines more efficiently and enable next-level features such as campaign printing, automated workflows, and quality control.

About Ricoh Direct-to-Garment Printing

Ricoh Direct-to-Garment Printing (www.RicohDTG.com) is a division of Ricoh Printing Systems America (RPSA). Since 2016, Ricoh Direct-to-Garment Printing has been developing DTG solutions for every budget and skill level. Other products include the award-winning RICOH Ri 100 all-in-one DTG system and the RICOH Ri 1000.

Ricoh announced the Ricoh Ri 2000 on September 16, 2020

AJJ Enterprises Uses EFI Pro 30f Printer to Decorate Pre-Assembled Cornhole Boards

With so many UV-LED wide-format inkjet printer models on the market, it is becoming easier for companies to find a model that matches specific production requirements. For example, this case study about a user of the EFI Pro 30f printer shows that some buyers choose UV-LED flatbed printers in order to decorate manufactured products.

AJJ Enterprises Installs Second Flatbed

AJJ Enterprises is an online seller of custom-decorated cornhole game boards. Visitors to the AJJ Cornhole website can order pre-decorated boards or wraps in dozens of themes or styles, including weddings, military, patriotic, state flags, or NCAA-licensed sports team logos. Buyers can even have themed cornhole sets personalized with their names.

AJJ Enterprises in Cincinnati installed their second EFI™ Pro 30f flatbed UV-LED inkjet printer in June.

Because the EFI Pro 30f flatbed printer is engineered to accomodate materials up to 4 inches thick, AJJ Enterpises can print directly to pre-assembled cornhole boards. This saves considerable time, labor, and production costs.

With the pair of Pro 30f printers, AJJ Enterprises has achieved roughly a seven-fold increase in throughput compared with the roll-to-roll vinyl and UV inkjet flatbed printers the company used previously.

Cornhole (aka beanbag toss) is a popular game for summer picnics and backyard barbecues. To meet the inceased consumer demand for cornhole boards this summer, Cincinnati-based AJJ Enterprises installed a second EFI Pro 30f flatbed printer.

“EFI’s engineers worked really closely with us because we have such a unique application,” explained AJJ Enterprises co-owner Shane Back. Because AJJ Enterprises constantly prints at maximum thickness, EFI worked with the company to adjust the printer’s UV LED curing lamps and ensure consistent, high-quality output.

The first model AJJ Enterprises used was a beta version. “On the beta printer, we changed our jig to hold the boards on the table,” said Back. “We also made some structural changes that are now standard on all Pro 30f machines.”

This simplified, fast production the Pro 30f delivers is imperative for the company, which has seen an unprecedented increase in demand for its products. While a portion of the company’s sales come from the struggling promotional corporate sector, the other half of the business – direct-to-consumer ecommerce retail through the AJJcornole.com website – is booming.

“With everyone at home due to COVID-19, it’s really driven our direct-to-consumer market,” Back said. This demand drove the need for the second Pro 30f.

AJJ Enterprises says the ability to print white ink direct to its birch cornhole boards has been a game changer.

“Being able to print white at a high speed has been a huge help,” said Back. “It’s been a huge cost savings. Because of the white ink, we can move jobs that we would have first printed on vinyl and then transferred to the substrate.”

The printer’s six-zone, user-selectable vacuum system ensures efficient hold-down, no unintended media movement, and easy transitions between jobs, which is conducive to AJJ Enterprises’ high volume of work.

“What sets us apart from competitors is the wide breadth of designs that we have and the fact that we can print so quickly,” said Back.

“With the Pro 30f,” he added, “we can print a cornhole board in a minute and 40 seconds.” That translates to a significant increase in work completed per shift compared with the company’s previous process printing on vinyl and mounting those vinyl sheets to each cornhole board.

The EFI Fiery® proServer Core digital front end has also helped improve throughput and overall efficiency, providing simple job management for both new and existing designs. “Since we reprint a lot of the same designs, once we get the first print set up it’s an easy press-and-replay approach,” said Back. “Custom designs take a little bit of finesse, but it’s just a matter of testing, making any adjustments, and printing.”

About the EFI Pro 30f

According to EFI, the Pro 30f was designed for improved speed, quality and cost-savings for unique applications. It delivers customer-requested features such as a larger flatbed size, thicker media handling, wider application possibilities, and better price points.

The Pro 30f UV-LED flatbed printer has a maximum printable area of 120 inches x 80 inches (3.05 m x 2.04 m) with bleed printing. It features four colors plus dual channels of white standard, along with multi-layer printing. EFI’s white ink gives users the power to print superior color images on clear and colored media, as well as specialty media, such as wood, metal or glass. This short video shows the EFI Pro 30f in action:

The EFI Pro 30f was first shown at the FESPA Global Print Exo in May, 2019

About EFI

EFI™ (Electronics for Imaging, Inc.) is a global technology company, based in Silicon Valley. They develop breakthrough technologies for manufacturing signage, packaging, textiles, ceramic tiles, and personalized documents. EFI manufacturers a wide range of printers, inks, digital front ends. Plus, they develop business and production workflow software that transforms and streamlines the entire production process. (www.efi.com)

What Actions Are Groups Taking to Promote An Event Industry Rebound from COVID-19?

Graphics companies have been hit hard by the cancellation of events, trade shows, and conferences in 2020. Here are just three steps that event-industry thought leaders and organizations are taking to encourage an event-industry rebound.

Promoting the Economic Impact of Events to Legislators

The Go Live Together coalition is working to ensure that when the COVID-19 health crisis is over, the voices and concerns of the live event industry will be addressed in local, state, and federal recovery funding. Coalition members come from exposition management companies, associations, convention and visitors’ bureaus, event venues, and exhibiting companies.

The coalition contends that events are a massive incubator for innoavtion and economic growth. Recovery funding will not only help the events industry, but the recovery of the economy as a whole.

Go Live Together members are using press releases and infographics to help local, state, and federal lawmakers understand the economic impact of the trade show and events industry. For example, here are some statistics published by Go Live Together.

The trade show and events industry:

  • contributes nearly $1 trillion annually to the U.S. economy
  • employs 3 million workers,
  • pays $130 billion in federal, state, and local taxes.

Source: Go Live Together Infographic: Business Events Industry Impacts from COVID 19

For more information, visit: https://www.golivetogether.com/

Planning a Three-Phase Comeback

In a post How and When Will the Events Industry Get Out of This?” event industry strategist Howard Givner compares the comeback from COVID-19 to the event-industry’s comeback from 9/11: “Those of us old enough to have been of working age during the aftermath of 9/11 will attest to the fact that nobody can point to a date or even a period of time when the events industry started to feel ‘fully recovered’ from its effects.”

Givner suggests that the event-industry recovery will occur in three phases:

1) Pure Virtual;
2) Local Events that meet state guidelines for gatherings; and
3) Full-Steam Ahead (with instant on-site testing).

“One good thing to come out of all this is we finally – FINALLY! – have the entire world’s attention on the importance of live events,” writes Givner. Now that live events have been removed from our lives, “Everyone is pining away to attend their next music festival, industry conference, strategy meeting or trade show, to experience all those great things that events offer.”

Gathering Opinions from Corporate Exhibit Managers

An article by Travis Stanton in the June/July 2020 issue of Exhibitor magazine provides insight into when face-to-face marketing might resume.

Read the article about the impact on the Pandemic on the Trade Show Industry on page 50
in the digital edition of the June/July 2020 issue of Exhibitor magazine.

In Exhibitor magazine surveys of corporate exhibit managers and trade-show suppliers:

  • 52 percent predicted the industry won’t return to normal until the second quarter of 2021
  • 13 percent said they don’t expect normalcy until 2022
  • 5 percent questioned whether trade shows will ever return to business as usual.

One director of event marketing quoted in Exhibitor article pointed out that even if event ROI is difficult to measure, businesses were able to see the overwhelming value lost by event cancellations in 2020.

The full white paper “EXHIBITOR Insight Report: COVID-19’s Impact on the Trade Show Industry is available at www.ExhibitorOnline.com/COVID19.

Agfa Oberon RTR3300 Roll-to-Roll UV LED Printer Handles Flexible Materials 3.3 Meters Wide

The Agfa Oberon RTR3300 is a 3.3 meter roll-to-roll printer that uses UV-LED-curable inks to print higher-volume runs of flexible materials, including: reinforced vinyl, pressure-sensitive vinyl, static-cling, clear films, block-out banner, canvas, mesh (with and without liners), non-stretchy fabrics, paper, backlit films, and more.

Like other Agfa large-format printing systems, the Oberon uses a matched-component approach that aligns the print engine, inks, media, workflow, and color-management software to ensure high-quality prints and a consistent and reliable production process.

“The Oberon RTR3300 excels in printing solids over the entire media width,” says early adopter Hennie van Osch of the TVE company in The Netherlands.

Single or Dual-Roll

The Oberon can print on single rolls of materials from 24 to 130 inches or two rolls of materials from 24 to 63 inches. Engineered for long-run roll-to-roll jobs, the Oberon RTR3300 can also be used for roll-to-sheet projects.

Four or Six Colors of Ink

The printer can be operated with either six colors of ink (CMYKLcLm) or in a 4 color (CMYK + White) configuration.

The four-color model prints white ink in several different multi-layer modes to achieve different effects. For example, printing a “pre-white” layer on clear film or colored substrates ensures that the layer of color printed on top of the white is accurate. The five modes include:

  • Pre-White prints white beneath a color.
  • Post-White prints white on top of a color
  • Sandwich White prints a white layer between two colors layers
  • High-Density Color prints double or triple layers of color for vivid backlit graphics
  • Blockout White prints three color layers with white layers in between

The Oberon uses Agfa-made Anunvia inks, which have earned GREENGUARD GOLD certification. This means the inks meet some of the world’s most rigorous chemical emissions standards and can be used to print graphics that will be displayed in schools or heathcare facilities.

The inks dry instantly because they are immediately cured with UV-LED lamps. LED lamps don’t generate a lot of heat, so they can be used to print heat-sensitive materials (such as vinyls) without causing them to soften and stretch.

Agfa’s patented “Thin Ink Layer” technology creates eye-catching, color-vibrant prints with a low level of ink consumption per square meter. This not only reduces operating costs, but also ensure stable jetting without printhead clogs. The thin-ink-layer technology combines Agfa’s expertise in ink manufacturing and color-management software development.

Asanti Sign and Display Production Hub

Agfa’s Asanti software helps automate the workflows of sign and display companies that use Agfa printers. The Asanti dashboard provides operators with details about the status of the printer and print jobs, while ‘media recipes’ control color quality and other parameters for jobs that will be produced on a specific substrate. The smart-imaging algrorithms in Asanti help limit ink consumption.

Asanti software integrates seamlessly with Asanti StoreFront online-ordering software and PrintSphere data-exchange solution.

Customer Support

Agfa is committed to serving as a facilitator and counselor for its customers.

“Our customers can count on us to improve the balance of their business,” says Tom Vermeulen, Head of Sign & Display at Agfa. “We do not just sell printers, ink, and workflow software, we accompany print-service providers on their journey, by working out a growth path together. Our sales, application and support teams think along with printing companies. We help them identify their needs — and the needs of their customers — and the best possible way to answer them.”

Customer support can include hands-on applications support or in-depth, technology-independent advice on color consistency and overall process control. Print-service providers may also request a meticulous analysis of their business strategy.

For more information about the Oberon RTR3000, visit: www.agfa.com/printing/products/oberon-rtr3300/

About Agfa

Agfa develops, produces, and distributes an extensive range of imaging systems and workflow solutions for the printing industry, the health care sector, and specific high-tech industries such as printed electronics and renewable energy solutions. Visit: www.agfa.com

Agfa announced the Oberon RTR3300 on February 27, 2020

Roland IU-1000F UV-LED Flatbed Holds Thin, Thick, or Heavy Sign and Display Boards

The Roland IU-1000F UV-LED flatbed printer is designed for fast, efficient printing on a variety of substrates, including 4 ft. x 8 ft. rigid boards weighing up to 99 pounds. Created for sign and display professionals, the IU-1000F can print vibrant, detailed graphics directly onto thin or thick boards, including PETG, PVC board, foam board, wood, corrugated board, aluminum plate, and more.

It can also print directly onto sheets of leather, fabric, or canvas for custom decor or creative displays. Users can also print graphics onto tabletops, plywood, MDF, and other boards to create decorated furniture.

Roland IU-1000F can print materials up to 98.4 in. x 51.1 in.

With its heavy-duty flatbed chassis and vacuum bed, the IU-1000F was designed to handle heavy metal and wooden materials with ease.

Printheads and Inks

The printer uses 12 printheads in staggered three-row arrangement. To accommodate thicker materials, the printheads can be raised four inches above the heavy-duty flatbed chassis and vacuum bed.

Each printhead has a 1,280 nozzles along with banding and mottling prevention features that support high-resolution images up to 635 x 1800 dpi.

The IU-1000F uses high-density CYMYK, Gloss, and White inks that are GREENGAURD Gold certified for safe use in a variety of indoor environments, including healthcare facilities and schools.

The white ink is ideal for printing true-color graphics on clear or colored surfaces. Users can also use the gloss and white inks to create textural and dimensional effects on the surface of the print.

An optional primer ink can be applied to promote the ink’s adhesion to materials such as as acrylic, glass, and ceramics.

Other Features

The IUF-1000F offers multiple speed and performance options, including:

  • Media ionizer to ensure ink-firing accuracy on that generate a lot of static (such as corrugated board);
  • State-of-the-art UV-LED curing lamps save energy and extend lamp life;
  • Variable zone vacuum can be applied to four different sections of the flatbed, to maximize hold where it’s needed most;
  • Media alignment pins ensure consistent placement of multiple boards and double-sided panels;
  • Premium RIP software for tiling, scaling, cropping, and other functions;
  • Roland Print Control Center for easy management of machine’s movements, speeds, voltage, and head cleaning;
  • One-touch, automated daily printhead cleaning;
  • The ability to print on one board or multiple boards at the same time;
  • Two-Year Trouble-Free Warranty

The prnter can average about 35 4 ft. x 8 ft. rigid boards per hour in “Draft Mode, 15 boards per hour in “Standard” print mode, and about 10 boards in near-photographic “Quality” mode.

Roland DGA Corporation In Irvine, California provides marketing, sales, distribution, and service in North America for Roland DG Corporation of Hamamatsu, Japan. Roland DG’s inkjet printers, print/cutters and cutting machines are widely used to create promotional items such as banners, signs, vehicle graphics, stickers, and labels. The devices are also used to provide customization services for apparel and promotional and personal products such as smartphone cases.

For more information about Roland IU-1000F large-format UV-LED flatbed printer, visit: rolanddga.com/iu-1000f. For more information about Roland DGA and the complete Roland product line, visit: rolanddga.com

Roland DGA announced this printer on October 22, 2019

Canon ProStream 1800 Inkjet Press Balances Productivity, Quality, and Media Versatility for Higher-Volume Printing

The Canon ProStream 1800 continuous-feed inkjet press from Canon Solutions America can can help commercial printers boost production levels, reduce turnaround times, and increase profit margins on applications such as premium and high-volume direct mail, books, catalogs, and magazines. The press strikes a balance between high productivity, superior print quality, flexibility, and media versatility.

Canon ProStream 1800
Canon PROStream 1800 production inkjet press (Photo: Canon Solutions America)

Operating at speeds of up to 436 sq. ft./hr., The ProStream 1800 can produce up to 114,245 letter images or 11,300 B2 sheets per hour while maintaining high print quality. These speeds are 66% faster than Canon’s ProStream 1000 model which was introduced in 2017. The high-performance ProStream 1800 allows print service providers to migrate some higher volume jobs from offset printing presses to digital inkjet printing.

Features

Media Versatility: The ProStream 1800 can achieve high levels of print quality on a broad range of media, including standard offset coated, uncoated, and inkjet-optimized papers from 40 gsm to 300 gsm. Because the press can print documents up to 22 inches wide and 60 inches long, the ProStream 1800 can print calendars, posters, and point-of-sale signs with ease.

To ensure seamless changeovers between jobs, operators don’t need to strop production to switch between diffferent format lengths.

Inks and Printhead: The ProStream 1800 uses 1200 dpi piezo drop-on-demand printheads and proprietary polymer pigment inks with Canon ColorGrip conditioning fluid to ensure color consistency.

Air Floatation Drying System: To effectively print on a wide-range of paper without compromising the high standards of the finished output, the ProStream 1800 features a air floatation drying system. By not coming into contact with the paper, the system preserves the paper surface and gloss. Artificial intelligence linked to a sensor continuously makes adjustments to the drying system during the print run to ensure quality. It also maintains the optimal web temperature to minimize energy consumption.

Optional Inline Quality Control: A high-performance camera system automatically monitors print quality as the paper moves through the press, enabling press operators to focus more time on actions other than quality assurance.

Owners of ProStream 1000 Press Can Upgrade

The first model in the ProStream line, the Canon ProStream 1000, was installed in November, 2017. Since then, over 2 billion pages have been output on 30 ProStream 1000 presses worldwide. Current users of the Canon ProStream 1000 press can upgrade to the ProStream 1800 if they need more capacity to do higher volumes of jobs that require digital printing.

“At Canon Solutions America, we share our customers’ passion for print and understand that as their businesses must adapt to changing market requirements, our technology needs to evolve, too,” said Francis McMahon, Executive Vice President, Production Print Solutions, Canon Solutions America, Inc. “With the launch of the new ProStream 1800, we can support customers who are looking to grow their production volumes without compromising quality or speed.”

See the new Canon ProStream 1800 in action at Canon’s Customer Innovation Center in Boca Raton, Florida or by requesting a virtual demonstration. Call Canon Solutions America at 877-623-4969 for more information.

Press was announced by Canon Solutions America July 15, 2020