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DIGITAL digest

October 2010

HP Offers a Photo Op

NEW YORK—An overflow crowd recently jammed Manhattan's Hotel Eventi to get a look at several new imaging technologies HP is rolling out this fall for the consumer, small- and medium-business, large enterprise and graphics sectors. Vyomesh "VJ" Joshi, executive vice president of HP's Imaging and Printing Group, welcomed the 100 or so media representatives who attended the "HP Innovation Summit" in person, while others watched a live Webcast.

HP highlighted the relationships it has forged with leading tech brands, including Yahoo!, Apple and Quickbooks, as well as major clients such as Pearson PLC, but it called on one of Gotham's best-known daughters—to add "star power." The audience was clearly taken off guard by the emergence of Ivanka Trump, daughter of casino hotel and reality TV maven Donald Trump and herself a successful small business owner.

Trump attested to HP's value to small businesses, which along with consumers are the primary target market for the "print anywhere, anytime" Web-connected products that accounted for the bulk of the announcements. One exception was the HP Designjet Z6200 wide-format, thermal inkjet photo printer for photo labs, print shops, advertising agencies and design firms, available in 42˝ and 60˝ widths.

The eight-color device uses HP Vivid inks, including chromatic red, which enable reproduction of up to 88 percent of the Pantone Matching System (PMS) colors and provide greater ink efficiency. Company representatives stressed the ease of use and color accuracy of the printer, in addition to its 50 percent printing speed increase (up to 1,500 square ft./hr.) compared to its predecessor. Intended for indoor applications such as backlit signs and POP displays, the Designjet Z6200 features a 2,400x1,200 dpi resolution.

Also launched were the HP Designjet T2300 eMFP, offering Web-ready, large-format scan, print and copy functionality, and the HP Designjet T7100 printer, for high-speed monochrome and color reprographics printing.

Kodak Returns to Its Roots

ROCHESTER, NY—Kodak opted to go completely virtual for its media briefing prior to Graph Expo. With the commercial launch of the Kodak Prosper 5000XL inkjet web press expected to dominate its presence in Chicago, the company took this opportunity to also focus on another new development—a return to its photographic roots.

As part of its next-generation toner-based platform, Kodak is introducing the NexPress Photo press as a companion to the NexPress SX production press. Both models feature new dry inks with a small particle size and optional Long Sheet capability for printing sheets up to 26˝ long. They also include the second-generation Intelligent Calibration System (ICS) for closed-loop quality control using LED imaging heads, in-line scanner and software based on Kodak's proprietary image science.

What distinguishes the photo model are hardware and software enhancements for photo-quality imaging that are offered as options on the production press. These include a fifth imaging unit with light black ink to optimize grain, "E-surface" simulation with Dimensional Clear dry ink and specialized photo front end, color management and screens software. A swappable matte fuser roller for producing a matte finish with smoother tones and less gloss is offered as an option.

The digital color presses are set for release in mid-2011.

Canon Shows The Future Of Imaging

NEW YORK—Canon, again this year, held its own exhibition ahead of Graph Expo, but this one went beyond the usual Digital Solutions Forum. Canon Expo 2010 was its once-every-five-year event focusing on the company's full range of imaging and output products, along with featuring an "Imaging for Tomorrow" exhibit of new technologies that Canon said offered a preview of its vision for the future of imaging.

"We Speak Image" was the theme of the two-day event that occupied more than 150,000 square feet of exhibition space at the Jacob K. Javits Center. Industry observer Noel Ward wrote about the company's broader imaging offerings in an on-site report he did for his "Real World Digital" blog.

The most dramatic of its future technologies was the Canon Mixed Reality system, which uses a head-mounted display with built-in cameras and a computer that processes video to blend the real and virtual worlds in real-time. The company also claims to have developed the world's largest (202x205mm) CMOS image sensor that is capable of capturing images in approximately 1/100th the amount of light required by its current digital SLR cameras.

As for production printing solutions, the new imagePRESS C7010VP/C6010VP/C6010 color digital press line made its debut in the Big Apple before being featured prominently in the Windy City at McCormick Place. Canon said it invested three years of R&D into the platform update, "incorporating significant customer input and feedback to deliver greater performance across a range of categories," noted Sam Yoshida, vice president and general manager, Imaging Systems Group, Canon U.S.A. The new models are expected to be available for delivery in the fourth quarter of 2010. PI



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