TAKING THE PLUNGE--Driven to Go Digital
The three then looked for a solution based on image quality, cost, local service and support, as well as expertise in digital imaging solutions.
Phoenix Press talked to four different vendors and examined output from several different printing systems. It decided that the Heidelberg Digimaster 9110 system offered the best image quality. Then it evaluated vendors on their service, customer support and equipment costs. Phoenix wanted comprehensive training and responsive support because this was its first digital system. Danka got the nod.
Although the situations are unique, stories such as this are nothing new. Commercial printers and prepress houses all around the country have reported catching the digital printing wave, and taking a ride to financial success.
In Milpitas, CA, K/P Corp. has been providing black-and-white digital printing since 1991 when the first high speed black-and-white production machines were introduced. It then dabbled in digital color in the early days of Indigo's e-Print machine, explains Nicole Olszewski, director of strategic operations for the Silicon Valley division. That was just the beginning.
"It wasn't until 1998 that the market really started to take off," she says. "Back then our business consisted mostly of black-and-white documentation printing and the turnkey services that went along with it. Our customers began to ask for smaller quantities and shorter lead times. The print-on-demand, just-in-time, zero-inventory models that we had been preaching were catching on."
In the past 12 months, however, K/P has upgraded its digital front-end systems and added a fourth Xerox DocuTech. Business now revolves around on-demand printing and fulfillment with proactive customer service and program management, enabling K/P to tie it all together and offer a comprehensive set of services, Olszewski notes.
But the big installation was announced in December—a Xeikon DCP 50D eXpert Plus digital press, a Canopy Internet-enabled print server and the PDF ProofStreamer on-demand proofing system.