While commercial printing was the primary focus of Drupa 2008, the show has also become a major event for debuting new digital printing products. This overview provides details about key innovations in inkjet technology that were unveiled there.
By Tom Frecska
Designed to support indoor and outdoor applications, such as signs, P-O-P displays, exhibition graphics, and backlit displays, the DS features a top resolution of 1200 dpi and prints in four (CMYK) or eight (CMYKLcLm) colors. The manufacturer expects to add varnish and white in the future. Ink is delivered through a continuous supply system with a secondary ink reservoir to allow for extended periods of operation. Automatic printhead maintenance further aids in keeping the machine running for long stretches. The machine is driven by the Vutek Print Manager, a combination RIP, job-management, and printer-management program.
Gandinnovations Jeti 1224 Nanojet
Gandinnovations identifies its Jeti 1224 Nanojet as a true flatbed for photorealistic printing. Designed to be compact, economical, and versatile, the machine features 24 Spectra high-performance printheads that provide resolutions up to 800 dpi (1600 dpi apparent). The Nanojet incorporates a silicone nozzle plate to deliver 15-pl ink droplets and achieve high print resolution. In photorealistic mode, the Nanojet delivers a print speed of 220 sq ft/hr.
With a print area of 48 x 96 in. and maximum substrate thickness of 2 in., the printer can be used to create displays on glass, acrylics, Dibond, aluminum, wood, steel, Coroplast, foamboard, styrene, and more. It uses Gandinnovations UV inks and prints in six colors (CMYKLcLm). Prints are said to be outdoor durable for one to two years.
Features of the machine include intuitive user interface, high/low vacuum system for the print bed, retractable register pins, automatic safety shutoff, and steel-frame construction. The machine uses a linear motion system to control bed movement and ensure tight registration on both rigid and flexible materials. The Nanojet features Gandi software to improve fine-detail printing and is offered with a choice of RIPs from Onyx, Wasatch, or Caldera.
HP Designjet L65500
The first inkjet ever to use water-based latex inks is the new HP Designjet L65500, a roll-fed, six-color printer for producing both indoor and outdoor graphics. The unit features HP Latex Inks, an environmentally friendly alternative to solvent inks, but formulated for similar or better performance characteristics. The inks are odorless and low in VOCs, and they are not labeled as hazardous, require no ventilation or permitting, and don’t create ozone when cured.
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