Océ Throttles Up Inkjet Market
It was November in Japan the last time I had a close look at the latest in Océ’s inkjet technology, then the new ColorStream 3500. It’s a two-engine system designed to fill the gap in the company’s inkjet lineup by addressing the need for a fast inkjet system that can be placed on the raised floors of data centers and some service bureaus.
The ColorStream filled that role, but it was apparent that Océ has a serious focus on continuous-feed inkjet applications, especially books, direct mail and the transactional/transpromo work that has long been the company’s home ground and where its toner-based VarioStream systems hold a commanding market share.
This time the venue was Poing, a small town a ways east of Munich, Germany, home to Océ’s continuous-feed systems and where, on a clear day, you see the Alps rising from the plains a few dozen kilometers to the south. It was here that Océ rolled out two new systems—the JetStream 1400 and 3000.
The JetStream 1400 is a big, duplex-in-a-box system, essentially a faster version (100 meters/min.) of the JetStream 1000, while the 3000 is a faster edition (200 m/min.) of the duplex-engined JetStream 2200. Thanks to 40 Khz Kyocera heads, a bigger drying system and other new components, both run some 33 percent faster than the models on which they are based. Best of all, the speed uptick is achieved with no reduction in the machines’ 600-dpi image quality.
The existing JetStream 1000 and 2200 models will remain available and the current versions can be field-upgraded to 1400 and 3000 models. While it is possible for earlier versions of the 1000 and 2200 to be upgraded without the use of a forklift and an 18-wheeler, according to Océ it is usually more cost-effective to replace an older system with a new one. There have been enough production changes that upgrading the earliest models is usually not practical.