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On-Demand Printers Sourcelist

(May 2007) posted on Sat May 12, 2007

High-speed presses for 4-color, variable-data output.

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By Peggy Middendorf

What follows is a sampling of the high-speed digital presses currently on the market. Each offers at least 4-color output, can handle complex variable-data printing, and is no smaller than 12-in. wide.

Agfa's latest entry in the high-speed, on-demand market is its new Dotrix Transcolor. Utilizing inkjet technology and its CMYK x2 UV-curable Agorix Nova inks, this press offers resolutions that reach 300-dpi grayscale (900-dpi apparent). The rollfed Transcolor offers a maximum print width of 24.8-in.; compatible substrates vary from 48 to 380 gsm for paper, and plastic thicknesses range from 50 to 400 microns.

Like the original Dotrix unit, the Transcolor features the single-pass color engine (SPICE). The machine's printheads span the printing width, and the substrate passes underneath, allowing for printing on both sides (duplex) in a single pass. Its intelligent printer data stream (IPDS) controller processes variable-data pages in real time for speeds up to 24 mpm or 484 ppm or 29,000 pph.

Transcolor's standard configuration is roll-to-roll with a jumbo reel unwinder and rewinder. Options include an in-line slitter bar and an inspection table; other compatible in-line and off-line finishing equipment is also available.

Agfa also offers its original Dotrix Modular unit. Like the Transcolor, it offers 300-dpi resolution, grayscale printing with Agorix UV-curable inks (CMYK), 24.8-in. print width, and is armed with the 24 mpm SPICE engine. The Dotrix prints single-sided and accommodates substrates from 25 to 600 microns thick. It comes standard with a jumbo unwinder/rewinder, and offers flexographic printing stations, slitting, and die-cutting converting options.

Canon offers several high-speed, variable-data color presses, including the imagePress C7000VP; the imageRunner C4080, C4580, and C5180 series; and the CLC4000 and CLC5100.