At Labelexpo Americas in Rosemont, IL, USA, Durst and Omet announced their partnership for the industry’s latest hybrid solution. Durst has incorporated its Tau 330 digital UV inkjet narrow web label press with near-line pre- and post-press finishing solutions in cooperation.
The Omet integration provides the Tau 330 with a new primer station for increased material flexibility and a range of post-press finishing options for complete inline production. The Tau 330 features 13” printing widths at up to seven colors, as well as speeds up to 169 fpm. The digital system achieves nearly 90% of the Pantone color gamut.
Omet recently celebrated its 1,500th press installation. According to Durst, this deal makes them the first digital press manufacturer to launch a hybrid press. “The Tau 330 in combination with the Omet Xflex X6 is optimized to the needs of the customer and extends the production from short to medium, and in many cases even longer runs,” explains Emily Kroll, business director at Durst Image Technology US. “We see instances where the job length may not so much determine if a hybrid press is a viable option, but whether or not the label requires additional features such as double sided printing, layering, variable data or even types of embellishment.”
This solution features the latest servo technology of both systems, which requires minimal setup time and quick material changeover. This optimized press has the potential to make short to medium runs more economically viable. It also includes a wide range of features, including cold foil, hot foil, round or flatbeds with embossing, crossover systems for multilayer labels, and more.
Prospective converters are receiving proven technologies from leaders in the digital and flexo spaces. “Both Durst and Omet systems are represented and established in the market,” says Kroll. “Both printing systems have their advantages, so why not combine their strengths: the flexibility of inkjet technology combined with a variety of options for conventional print production. Hybrid systems offer customers the opportunity to tap new markets and optimize their current production. We are partnering with some of the industry's leading label producers who see the value in a streamlined workflow and are looking for versatility coupled with maximum throughput.”
Hybrid presses present an opportunity to converters that do not want to invest in multiple presses. The printing systems provide more options for daily production and greater flexibility. All of this is available in one workflow as well. “As more companies begin adopting these hybrid technologies, we believe the number of traditional flexo press installs will decline and companies will begin transitioning work to their hybrid presses, which would allow them to retire older equipment,” explains Kroll. “We will see more product decoration and embellishment features as a result of these flexible and versatile hybrid solutions.”
Kroll presented the benefits of the partnership between Durst and Omet at Labelexpo Americas, which can be seen below. The news generated a considerable amount of interest at the Durst booth. “Durst has received very positive feedback thus far, resulting in a number of ongoing projects designed to suit a whole range of customers specific production requirements,” she says. “We will be demoing our hybrid solution in our showroom in Brixen, Italy.”
According to Durst, users will benefit from customized solutions tailored to their specific needs. The flexibility of the hybrid press addresses this need, as well as other challenges. “The challenge is to develop the right solution for the customers’ needs at the right price,” adds Kroll. “Also, front end/software integration is crucial to the success of hybrid technologies because in most cases the digital module drives all the other ancillary equipment. Durst has developed it's own proprietary Workflow to allow us to integrate and control various types of pre- and post-finishing devices.”
Durst has also put a support system in place to guarantee the success of this hybrid solution. “Most hybrid solutions on the market are being sold and serviced by conventional flexo press manufacturers, who are still new to inkjet,” says Kroll. “We've been a pioneer in inkjet printing for decades and have partnered with an industry leading conventional press manufacturer to lead the sales, marketing and service of this hybrid technology. Also, we have experience in integrating third-party finishing systems inline, with nearly 20 units installed worldwide that have some form of conventional and/or digital finishing solution integrated inline.”