In a later session on ink-jet printing developments, Stream color printing samples were passed around, including side-by-side comparisons to versions of the same pieces printed via offset. Most were image intensive, rather than heavy on text or featuring color screens. It took some degree of inspection to identify which was which, although the text was a give away in Stream samples. Those pieces only gave an indication of the potential quality since development is ongoing, and Kodak has said it doesn’t expect to commercialize a four-color press version of the technology until 2010.
The company planned to introduce the first Stream product at Drupa in the form of a 4˝ print head capable of printing with black ink at a 600 dpi resolution. Also set for launch was the Versamark VL2000 color ink-jet (drop-on-demand) printing system capable of printing 250 fpm at 600 dpi.
Attendees clearly came to the GUA conference to learn, even given the temptations of Vegas. A session on Prinergy 5.0 was standing room only and the hot ticket (for an additional fee) was to the “Rules-based Automation” class sessions. More than 50 presentations and roundtable discussions were offered over the course of four days, covering topics such as workflow, color management, digital printing, sustainability, MIS and transitioning from a printer to marketing services provider. There was also a lab area where hands-on product demonstrations were offered.
During a special breakfast briefing, Clifford and other members discussed the board’s goal of increasing user participation in the association. In her column this month (page 72), Cary Sherburne highlights a marketing campaign GUA did this year to that end.
While the conference can stand on the merits of its content, several board members pointed out that the incentive offered by Kodak ensures a return on attending the conference. In 2008, North American attendees received a $3,000 credit toward the purchase of select software solutions within six months. Users from the same company site or sister sites may combine up to three credit offers for a total value of $9,000.