drupa 2012: Revving Up for the Big Show

Kodak’s Prosper 5000XL color inkjet web press with Image Optimizer Station.

Xeikon 8800 digital press.

Esko is introducing Suite 12, the latest version of its software for the packaging, label, sign making and display industries. The new version accelerates design processes while enhancing workflow and color management across offset, flexographic and digital presses. An intriguing 3D visualization feature can show packaging designers how designs will look on a retail shelf. This brought out some ooohs and aaahs from the audience in Lisbon.

On the hardware side, Esko is introducing Kongsberg XN, a high-performance finishing table with a variety of tools for cutting all kinds of shapes in foam core and other materials, even wood. The MultiCUT-HP milling tool—think of it as a computer-
controlled router—can even cut shapes out of solid wood.

The Kongsberg XN will be shown in a variety of configurations at drupa. Also from Esko, I-Cut Automate 12 increases productivity with optimal sheet layout, waste reduction and faster turnaround times.

“Yellow Changes Everything,” claims Kodak, rolling out a new tag line that is envisioned to leverage the color of the billions of boxes of Kodak film sold over the years. Kodak will come to drupa decked out in yellow to unveil 10 new digital solutions in the commercial and consumer spaces. For production inkjet fans, this starts with the 1,000 fpm Prosper 6000XL that will offer lower running costs through ink savings and higher uptimes. More interesting is improved substrate flexibility with the help of an in-line paper treatment station that flood coats incoming paper to make it more receptive to ink.

Kodak says the process increases substrate flexibility by letting customers run less expensive papers, saving 10 percent to 60 percent on paper costs. But the real advantage is more likely that it helps ensure that coated, and even glossy, stocks will work as promised. No firm word on costs for the “Image Optimizer Station” or the added flood coating.

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