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Canon digital presses open new markets for Ambit Press

May 25, 2010 12:00 AM

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As the owner of Ambit Press / Minuteman Press (MMP) of Cambridge, MA, Peter Reed has steered his company through several periods of technological upheaval and economic challenges. Starting as a quick print shop nearly 20 years ago, the current operation is a multi-location, full-service design and print provider – including web to print. In 2009, the company moved production to a 16,000-sq.-ft. facility in Brighton, MA, and upgraded its digital presses through the purchase of Canon’s imagePRESS C6000 and C6000VP digital presses.

Following a review of several vendors’ digital presses, Reed determined, “The new [Canon] imagePRESS products deliver a lower cost point with direct costs down significantly by 10 to 15%. The imagePRESS units are more efficient with the C6000VP unit running at the same speed regardless of the media type being processed. And unlike our previous digital presses, they do not require fuser oil, which can sometimes lead to streaking and result in downtime for technical servicing of the units. Our floor manager is a big fan of these features because he only has to calculate one run speed, which makes planning much quicker and easier.”  

The imagePRESS features a combination of imaging, fusing and toner technologies that generate high print quality (1200 x 1200-dpi resolution) with the flexibility of digital.

“Our previous machines allowed us to enter the digital printing space and target customers requesting a certain level of specification, but the new imagePRESS machines have opened areas of the market that were previously off-limits,” says Reed. “With better-quality output, we can approach highly discerning customers like designers and print consultants, to show them that digital printing can deliver the high quality output they need for their customers. Previously, customers in these segments were not interested in digital printing or would look to competitors for digital printing, but the Canon quality has converted them and allows us to offer these customers a new level of service.”

Reed says uptime has been very high and the imagePRESS units’ energy efficiency assures him that the machines contribute to reduced operating costs.

“Hybrid printing has become a significant component of our business for which we depend on the imagePRESS units,” Reed adds. “To maximize the efficacy of marketing materials while controlling costs, customers seek full-color shells printed by the offset department, which are then combined by running the digitally printed insert with variable data through the Canon machines. This solution delivers better price points and quality, while also improving the tracking and targeting capability of each job.”

Looking to the future, Reed anticipates using the imagePRESS C6000 and C6000VP for more of the company’s high-end presentation work. “We’ve already started using the Canon devices in this manner as we developed a customized portfolio for an ultra-high-end home builder client,” he says. Previously, he ran this job offset in one run. “We’re pleased that we can now deliver a digitally produced, customized portfolio book offering more tailored, high-quality images and documents. In addition, there is still a strong connection to the local market and there are instances where a business needs a strategic partner on a print/design job versus a job that anyone can print.” Coupled with more web-to-print applications, Reed says the imagePRESS units will help him build business.