Sideshows Draw Crowds at drupa
I at first dismissed the new iGen 150 as just being faster. OK, speed is good, but I’m a fan of image quality. So I looked at some of the output. Call me crazy, but it doesn’t look like the iGen output I’m used to. The matte dry ink images really stunned me with their detail, crispness, clarity and depth of color. Even if the machine wasn’t any faster, like say the iGen 4 model that can use the same toner, this quality is just superb.
Other stands had outsized video screens, flashing lights and presenters who gave the same presentation several times a day, which in some cases came to feel a little like the movie “Groundhog Day.” In fact, after four or five days there, the whole trade fair begins to feel that way, an observation that at least half a dozen people shared with me at various times.
Other stands encouraged attendee interaction. At Xeikon you could walk across the company’s “Bridge of Innovation” that on one side had a wall with displays recounting Xeikon’s record of innovation in digital printing since it rolled out its first digital press in 1993. The other side featured iPads containing info on the current product line and offered an augmented reality experience. By pointing the iPad at various Xeikon presses on the floor below, you could get more information on each product and its applications before taking a first-hand look at the machine and its output.
Another regular presentation walked attendees through the stand and gave them a glimpse of Trillium, the new high viscosity liquid toner system Xeikon will be rolling out in about 18 months. The current specs are for 60 meters per minute printing with toner-level quality and inkjet like operating costs.
Over in its massive stand in Hall 4, HP made carnival-like announcements about its various presses, especially when showing off the speed, image quality and performance of flagships such as the T-410 inkjet web press or the new Indigo B-size machines (“Ladies and gentlemen, you are among the first to see…”).