Why DI? 

Aug 01, 2003

Direct-imaging (DI) presses take advantage of two of the biggest trends in the graphic-arts market: short runs and digital workflows. Because DI presses feature on-press imaging rather than plates being made on a CTP device and then mounted on press they are said to boast automatic register and speedy makeready, key factors in a short-run printing environment. Current makeready times on these presses

Next-generation networking 

Jul 01, 2003

Networking in the pressroom

Small-format presses 

Jul 01, 2003

Small-format presses

UV cures all 

Jun 01, 2003

UV print applications

Innovative perfectors 

May 01, 2003

Fullsize perfectors are known for their voracious appetite, their ability to consume massive quantities of jobs and turn them around with print efficiencies and savings to boot. Often considered to be twice as productive as the average press, some printers contend that they are three times the machine as a straight press, since they turn over the sheets themselves and eliminate a great deal of drying

April cover story: So long, moiré, hello, stochastic 

Apr 15, 2003

Stochastic screening is all about print quality. Conventional screens can sometimes cause unwanted effects in the printed image, such as moiré, which are largely eliminated with stochastic screening. Stochastic screens also produce a more detailed image and, many say, a larger color gamut. On uncoated stock in particular, the technology

Real-world variable-data printing 

Mar 01, 2003

Printers know that variable-data printing (VDP) can be a lucrative business, and a useful technology for customers who know how to take advantage of it. But what was once heralded as The Next Big Thing hasn't yet lived up to expectations. In the January Digital Printing Report, RIT (Rochester, NY) professor Frank Romano laments that despite a steady increase in digital-press installations since the

Avoiding on-demand paper pitfalls 

Mar 01, 2003

Tips to minimize or solve paper problems related to digital printing

Controllers for digital printers 

Mar 01, 2003

A digital printing system, whether it's a desktop unit, a black-and-white copier/printer, a production color copier or a digital press, has two main components: the print engine and the print controller. The engine and the controller are often developed and manufactured separately, and later integrated into the final product. The print controller is responsible for interfacing with a host system and

DIGITAL WIDE FORMAT: A GROWTH OPPORTUNITY 

Feb 01, 2003

In an attempt to better understand and define the markets for digital color wide-format (24 inches and above), the Graphic Arts Marketing Information Service (GAMIS) (Alexandria, VA) undertook a study and analysis of this opportunity. The information contained in Study and Analysis of Digital Color Wide Format is the basis for this article. A LOOK AT TECHNOLOGY The wide-format market has been on a

BUYING A NEW SHEETFED PRESS 

Jan 01, 2003

Prior to buying a new sheetfed press, printers must ask themselves questions about what size press they need, its features and the supplier itself. Perhaps the most important questions that should be asked, however, have to do with whether the purchase makes business sense. We spoke to industry consultants, a financial advisor and sheetfed-press vendors on how printers can determine whether a new

WEB OFFSET REPORT 2003 

Dec 01, 2002

AMERICAN PRINTER publishes an annual outlook for the web offset market. This special report is prepared in conjunction with the Web Offset Assn. (WOA) (Alexandria, VA), which conducts a survey of its market segments each year. The results provide unique information about the current state of the web-printing industry, as well as forecasts for the coming year and historical data to use as a baseline for future planning.

Printing on plastic 

Nov 01, 2002

Mr. McGuire's career advice to a young Dustin Hoffman in The Graduate plastics could apply just as well to commercial printers seeking to differentiate themselves. Formerly the realm of specialty and packaging printers, printing on plastic is beckoning conventional shops, with innovations in ink and equipment easing the way. Plastics are, however, an entirely different animal from paper-based substrates.

Inserts made simple 

Nov 01, 2002

Magazine inserts are an effective way for companies to distribute information to a wide array of customers. They can be used to introduce a new product, publicize a special promotion or even kick off an advertising campaign. For printers taking on that kind of work, however, inserts can make the print-production process complex. Many insert programs are scheduled for placement in a variety of publications,

Hybrid printing: the best of both worlds 

Oct 01, 2002

We've always been leading edge, says Ron Ward, CEO of commercial printer Miller Johnson Inc. (Meriden, CT). Since its founding in 1936, the 70-employee company has moved from letterpress to offset to digital printing. Its entry into the digital market about eight years ago was precipitated by the desire to satisfy client needs. With the turnarounds being so tight, it's difficult to accomplish all

Automatic color control arrives 

Sep 01, 2002

What's new? For most of us, this is a casual greeting. At Japs-Olson Co. (St. Louis Park, MN), however, it's more of a mission statement. The 700-employee, $120 million printer specializes in multicolor commercial and direct-mail work. The company takes a proactive approach to new technology, investing millions annually to give its customers a competitive edge. We try to adopt the technology that

Getting to color faster 

Sep 01, 2002

With shrinking run lengths becoming the norm, a fast press makeready is key to making money on a job. And technology, say vendors, is key to making presses ready fast. New presses come with a bevy of bells and whistles, from on-press automation to press-console software that allows job data to be electronically transmitted between prepress and the pressroom, la the CIP3 ideal. With the added help

Halfsize presses: one size fits many 

Aug 01, 2002

The halfsize-sheetfed-press market has shown more growth potential than that of the larger iron, and it's no wonder: Pressroom efficiencies and cost savings make the four- and six-up formats ideal for the industry's burgeoning short-run, fast-turnaround jobs. But although these applications may share common run lengths, they can differ greatly in production terms. The halfsize press has risen to the

CLUSTER PRINTING: one controller, many engines 

Jul 01, 2002

Until recently, some desktop and workgroup printers were rejected for production work because they lacked the necessary speed and print quality. But even as these barriers fell monochrome printers have broken the 100-ppm mark another obstacle remained. Few devices offered extensive production tools and utilities. Today, cluster-printing products are filling that void. A clustered printing system consists

Sheetfed-ink update 

Jul 01, 2002

The past few years have seen a flurry of development in sheetfed-ink technologies, all aiming to meet the challenge of changing pressroom trends. We're seeing shorter runs requiring quicker turnaround. Printers are influenced on how soon they have to get a job printed and out the door. They need a product that will dry quicker and not give them issues in finishing, says John Vogel, vice president,

Inline coating on 40-inch sheetfed presses 

May 01, 2002

Printers today rarely purchase 40-inch sheetfed presses without coaters. They've learned the extra investment can yield big payoffs in terms of production efficiency, output quality and customer satisfaction. To get a close-up look at the role of coating systems in printers' workflows and sales strategies, AMERICAN PRINTER spoke with four printers about their fullsize presses, coating systems and

Small-format presses: AN IPEX PREVIEW 

Apr 01, 2002

Most quick and commercial printers' pressrooms have changed radically from just a few years ago, says Paris Walker, a 25-year quick-print veteran. Walker retired several years ago, but the former owner of Crown Graphics (Chattanooga, TN) still enjoys staying in touch with his fellow printers via the popular e-mail listserv at www.PrintWeb.org. Few printers are buying one-color presses, which may speak

Closed-loop color-control update 

Apr 01, 2002

The first new generation closed-loop color-control system was introduced at Drupa 95. Since then, an estimated 332 systems have been sold for web presses. About 62 percent are retrofits; the remaining 38 percent are installed on new presses. Publication printers account for 49 percent of the total installations, followed by commercial printers (29 percent). (See Closed-loop color today, on p. 36.)

UV web presses bridge the gap 

Apr 01, 2002

In the web-printing market, UV curing is often about narrowing gaps: between sheetfed quality and web speed, low-cost production and high-volume output, coldset economics and heatset brilliance. Web printers utilizing UV run the gamut. Direct-mail printers are the primary users, although commercial printers are installing UV systems for printing inserts or promotional graphics. Facing a shrinking

DI presses: Where are they now? 

Feb 01, 2002

At Drupa 2000, 13 direct-imaging (DI) presses were announced. Two years later, a few of these presses haven't made it off the drawing board. Nonetheless, most major press vendors do have their DI ducks in a row. This article presents an overview of current sheetfed DI options and a glimpse into future press developments. HEIDELBERG Heidelberg (Kennesaw, GA) has approximately 700 DI press installations