Graph Expo–A Show of Shows

The more than 44,000 show stompers were witness to an impressive array of sophisticated prepress software and hardware options, as well as the latest and greatest performers in digital and traditional printing press markets, and a score of workhorse finishing devices.

And then there were the exhibits. Getting more creative with each major show, booth themes were nothing short of remarkable.

PrimeSource, sporting an elaborate booth designed to look like a construction site, was itself constructed with meticulous detail, down to the wooden planks, yellow construction barriers, hard hats, flannel shirts and work boots—all surrounding an array of prepress and printing devices, including a Xeikon variable-data printing demonstration.

Upon visiting the decked-out booth, one wanted to both take part in the variable data demo to custom create, via Xeikon technology, a booklet on prepress, press and postpress tools—and swing a hammer.

WAM!NET backed up the impressive WAM!VAN—a purple semi that rivals the Titanic in grandeur—decked out with millions of dollars worth of digital prepress goodies, all under a big purple roof.

Scitex demonstrated some spectacular creativity with its technology ‘pods’ in its exhibit, one of five Scitex locations at the show. The pods each represented specific areas of prepress, from scanning to digital color proofing. Scitex also had a strong presence at booths featuring technologies including the Karat digital press and the British Telecom venture, Vio.

Heidelberg, as usual, caught attention with the largest booth at the show. A map was absolutely necessary to find any member of the Heidelberg team working in the 25,000-square-foot exhibit.

The massive Heidelberg booth contained all aspects of Heidelberg Prepress, Heidelberg USA and Heidelberg Web Press, as well as an array of Heidelberg saddle stitching and perfect binding systems, including cutters and folders of the Polar and Stahl persuasion.

As for major announcements at GRAPH EXPO 98, all tallied, it was a light news show, with a few interesting technological exceptions.

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