Afinia Label has developed a wide range of compact digital solutions, which can be used in an office setting. Most of the company’s digital printers are powered by Memjet technology and utilize two different types of dye ink. Some of the company’s smaller printers use HP technology with options for dye- and pigment-based ink.
The L901 combines industrial design, enhanced image quality, and high production speeds, with the ability to service and maintain the printhead “on-the-fly.” The printer is suitable for long roll-to-roll print jobs or inline integration with label finishers, applicators, dispensers and more, while producing vibrant, full-color prints in high resolution. For finishing, Afinia Label offers a semi-rotary die and various digital knife cutting solutions that all include lamination as standard.
“Our product range has evolved dramatically over the past few years,” says Kevin McHale, marketing manager at Afinia Label. “More recently, we are innovating with the L901’s ability to work inline with other machines such as label dispensers, applicators, and finishing equipment like the DLP-2100. The L901 also has the ability to print on flexible packaging films, which we believe will be a huge area of growth.”
According to McHale, Afinia Label will soon unveil the new LT5C, a CYMK + white printer using LED toner technology. There are other new products on the horizon, scheduled for release in January 2020.
Afinia Label also offers the L501 color label printer for durable applications. The L501’s DuraPrime Duo Ink Technology enables an easy transition from dye-based to pigment-based ink, offering a high level of versatility. This ability to use both pigment and dye inks provides companies the flexibility to produce high-quality, low-cost labels for almost any application.
With a sleek, compact design, the L501 color label printer fits into virtually all production spaces. The value of the L501 is most notable for small- to mid-sized label applications, with low per label ink costs due to separate CMYK cartridges. An optional rewinder is available for companies experiencing higher usage and longer runs, or for those who need rewound labels for use with a label applicator or dispenser.
“The biggest differentiation for Afinia Label is our broad product offering,” adds McHale. “We have the widest range of printers and finishers in the digital desktop labeling space. We realize no one solution fits every company, and our goal is to continue to provide the best tailored solution to help companies print their own labels.”
Arrow Systems, Inc., has launched the compact Memjet-powered Anyjet into the North American market. Anyjet allows users to digitally print, laminate, cut and remove matrix all in one pass. The Anyjet uses a Memjet engine that has been integrated with the Anycut, a tabletop laser finishing system that has been on the market for over six years. The Anyjet is a turnkey digital press that can be combined with any flexographic or digital operation. It prints in 1600 x 1600 dpi using aqueous inks, and the laser diecutter uses an 80W system that allows users to cut even the most complex shapes in seconds.
Last year, Abeilles Busy Bees, a packaging company in Montreal, Canada, decided to bring its label printing in-house with the installation of the Anycut III laser finishing system and Any-002 roll-to-roll, color printer. Both machines are available from Arrow Systems.
Rather than buy only a label printer and pre-cut labels, Abeilles Busy Bees decided to take advantage of the cost savings associated with printing and diecutting their own labels, in-house. The Anycut III laser finisher paired with the Any-002 from Arrow Systems was the ideal solution to meet their requirements.
Thse two systems, combined, allow Busy Bees to produce hundreds of thousands of labels per month and drastically reduce their label costs, while increasing productivity and versatility.
AstroNova, Inc. has announced the global launch of the TrojanLabel T5, a larger version of the company’s popular TrojanLabel T4 professional label press and finishing system with the addition of UV flexo varnish capabilities.The T5 all-in-one digital printing and inline finishing label solution was demonstrated for the first time in September at Labelexpo Europe 2019 in Brussels, Belgium. The T5 is already up and running at customer sites in Europe and the United States.The TrojanLabel T5 is built on AstroNova’s TrojanLabel T3 digital inkjet label press platform integrated with a smart, compact converter unit featuring UV flexo varnish, lamination, rotary diecutting, slitting and waste removal. Following the introduction of the T4 two years ago, the T5 is the company’s latest high-production label printing and converting product for the professional printing market. The T5 adds several additional enhancements such as spot and SUPERgloss varnish, lamination, slit and rewind, and cold foil application for silver, gold, and metallic decorative accents, all in a single compact platform.“The T5 is a great step up in our offerings, providing professional printers and large brand owners with a high-performance system that delivers great results from start to finish,” says Greg Woods, AstroNova president and CEO. “We are excited about the addition of this unique, versatile solution to our TrojanLabel family of professional digital color label presses and specialty printers.”With the addition of the T5 to its ever-expanding product lineup, AstroNova continues to offer a broad range of products to suit a variety of labeling and production needs. From QuickLabel tabletop, on-demand printers to TrojanLabel full-print finishing systems, and a wide range of complementary solutions, including software, label materials, accessories and global technical support, AstroNova strives to provide peace of mind to customers and channel partners alike.
Bobst has launched a hybrid machine that combines digital and DigiFlexo printing in a single press. The Master DM5 – which has “Mouvent Inkjet Digital Technology Inside” – is associated with total flexibility for high added value labels, with extremely short job setup and fast return on investment.
“The Master DM5 is our first ever fully digitally integrated hybrid press and represents a new era in the production of self-adhesive labels, with totally new standards of productivity and profitability,” says Jean-Pascal Bobst, CEO of Bobst. “Bobst can now offer the full range of digital, hybrid and DigiFlexo solutions, which are perfectly integrated, interchangeable and scalable to all present and future needs.”
The Master DM5 provides convenient digital integration to go along with a small footprint. It offers easy and user-friendly access to digital printheads and the automated setup of multi-process operations. The digital print engine inside the Master DM5 is made up of Mouvent’s proprietary Cluster Technology – integrating Fujifilm Dimatix Samba printheads – which is the basis of the entire range of digital printing machines developed by Mouvent, Bobst’s digital printing competence center. The Mouvent Cluster heads are compact and simple to change for easy and accessible maintenance, and they have all-in-one fully integrated inking, conditioning and electronic circuits for high printhead reliability.
“Two of the greatest benefits of the Master DM5 are its productivity and reliability,” notes Federico D’Annunzio, Bobst program manager, hybrid printing. “It represents a total flexo-digital-converting integration, with non-stop productivity, and the highest press uptime in the industry. It prints at speeds of up to 100 m/m at the highest quality, 1200 x 1200 dpi. Full digital automation means that only one press operator is needed to print high added value label jobs, in short and medium runs. Job changes on-the-fly, without stopping the press, are possible for flexo, digital, diecutting and stripping processes. All analog tools (print cylinders, flexible dies) are changed automatically. Waste stripping is also fully automated. Eliminating traditional analog bottlenecks, the Master DM5 is the very first digitized ‘non-stop’ label press.”
Importantly, in an era when color fidelity and consistency are more important than ever, the Master DM5 boasts a wide digital color gamut, as well as an accurate and easy way to achieve digital color matching. It has an exclusive screening and digital front end (DFE) solution.
Ink-on-Demand (IoD) is an optional extra for DigiFlexo print units, a revolutionary solution that replaces conventional inking reservoirs with a single rubber pipe that dispenses 30 grams of ink to the print unit. The system eliminates ink trays and chambered doctor blades and performs fully automated washing of the print unit in less than one minute.
It also has a full range of added value capabilities, including coatings, varnishes, tactile effects, 3D effects, hot stamping, cold foil, embossing, diecutting, punching, silk screen, flexo and digital variable data printing (VDP).”
Colordyne’s portfolio of fully scalable products for digital label printing range from digital inkjet benchtop printers to production-level inkjet presses. At the production-level, Colordyne offers aqueous dye, aqueous pigment and UV LED inkjet solutions as retrofits and standalone systems. Colordyne also boasts experience retrofitting digital print engines onto new and existing flexo presses, providing users the capabilities to print digital, flexo and hybrid all on the same piece of equipment.
In 2019, Colordyne launched a new benchtop platform, the 1800 Series C, to offer enhanced features like an unobstructed printing path and on-press touch screen interface to users of all skill levels. Colordyne also unveiled the 3600 Series AP – Retrofit to market at the beginning of 2019. This new print engine offers 10 times longer printhead life, enhanced durability and excellent print resolution by using aqueous pigment inkjet technology. This technology recently advanced further by offering a more robust printhead option, custom print widths and an expanded color gamut.
“Our customers are looking for ways to be more efficient and cost-effective as label production becomes more versioned and customized,” explains Katelyn Bohr, director of marketing at Colordyne. “Versatile digital solutions, like our retrofits, help users reduce setup and changeover times on short-run jobs while expanding the types of applications they can produce.
“Many of our customers come to us looking for an affordable digital label printing solution,” she adds. “They typically start with an entry-level benchtop system for prototyping and short-run custom work. Then as their demands for variable data and versioning increase, they grow within our product offering to a production-level solution. The scalability of our digital label solutions separates our technology by providing a seamless growth path for customers, no matter their volumes or business needs.”
Colordyne’s print products are driven by Memjet printhead technologies. “Memjet’s DuraLink and DuraFlex printheads have allowed us to expand our product portfolio and enter new markets,” notes Bohr. “Additionally, Memjet’s technology is modular, which allows us to get products to market faster and offer differentiated solutions.”
Colordyne also recently partnered with MPS on a hybrid press. For more information, read the MPS entry in this article.
Dantex has developed several press solutions that leverage inkjet technology. The PicoColour is a high-quality mid-range press that is available with five colors (CMYK + white), running at 82 fpm. The PicoColour includes inter-color pinning, which results in higher quality print with enhanced ink adhesion onto a wider range of substrates.
The press has a small footprint of 130" in length and a depth of 67". The standalone reel to finish UV inkjet press includes full rotary diecutting and additional finishing options such as lamination and edge trimming.
The new PicoJet 14" 350RF, reel-to-finish, produces high quality and up to 7-color printing at 600 dpi, 2.5pl running at 250 fpm. The press utilizes standard flexo substrates, including unsupported films.
“Thanks to Dantex Advance Engineering development, the screening software, combined with the head technology running at 2.5pL drop size, offers superior print quality,” explains Michelle Garza, VP of operations at Dantex. “PicoJet also uses an energy-efficient LED final cure with temperature-controlled backup roller for temperature-sensitive substrates.”
Dantex offers a costing model where users are only required to pay for the ink they use rather than a toner-based click charge. According to Dantex, this model shows a savings of more than 60% per job, which yields a faster return on investment.
“Dantex has been at the forefront of introducing new technologies within the labels and packaging environment for over 50 years,” says Garza. “This history is important, as it shows a deep understanding of our customers’ needs shaping our products’ direction. Dantex also has earned a proven reputation for service and support, which is critical for all products, especially digital. We manufacture our own presses in-house, owning the process from start to finish. From our welders to our customer success team, we’re always working to develop innovative ways to create solutions for our customers and for the industry as a whole.”
Additionally, Adflex Corporation installed the first PicoColour in the United States. Their story and experiences with Dantex can be found on page 42.
Domino, a UV inkjet specialist, offers solutions to cover black or white monochrome in a single or dual bar, all the way up to 7-color CMYK+OV+W, which covers 92% of the Pantone range. Domino also has 5-color (CMYK+W) available.
Domino got its start with single-color monochrome in the form of the Domino K600i digital UV inkjet printer, which is used for printing variable data, sequential numbering, bar codes, QR codes and more. The same printhead technology has been behind the development of the 5-color (CMYK+W) roll-to-roll Domino N610i digital UV inkjet label press, with the company expanding to 7-color roll-to-roll. Domino promotes a wide range of choices for the customer, including roll-to-roll, roll-to-inline, roll-to-nearline, and hybrid (flexo + digital) with flexo and finishing options from several OEM partners.
The N610i provides print speeds up to 246 fpm and high-resolution print quality of 600 x 600 native dpi, with the ability to print 600 x 1200 dpi. Common applications for converters investing in this press include food and beverage, pharmaceutical, industrial, security, automotive, health and safety, consumer goods and personal care. Similar to the K600i, the N610i features the iTech attributes of CleanCap, ActiFlow, and StitchLink.
In addition, no stoppage is required for image changes, and the press is driven by EskoArtwork to make prepress fast and efficient.
“Domino provides a proven, reliable technology and offers choice,” says Bill Myers, marketing manager at Domino. “For example, Domino doesn’t have only one solution, we have multiple solutions. That means that Domino is not trying to fit a square peg in a round hole. Domino offers customers the best-fit solution for their book of business today and into the future by offering a choice of press configurations, and we provide superior print quality, color consistency and repeatability, and high opacity white that rivals screen printing.
“First and foremost, customers want to know that the company they do business with is going to be around for the long haul,” says Myers. “Domino is a financially strong and stable company. Acquired by Brother Group in June 2015, Domino has the financial backing of a very powerful organization.”
Durst has found success in the digital label printing market with its Tau platform. Designed with flexo-like quality and industrial scalability in mind, the Tau 330 RSC operates at 1200 dpi and prints at speeds up to 80 m/m at full resolution. This digital UV inkjet label printing system was first introduced at Labelexpo Europe 2017.
Meanwhile, the Tau 330 RSC E is an economical version of the RSC while also offering full upgradeability to an 8-color Tau 330 RSC. The press provides press speeds up to 52 m/m with all colors, including white, as well as variable data printing at full speeds.
“Introduced two years ago, the Tau 330 RSC and Tau 330 RSC E set a new benchmark in label printing, and we now have more than 50 installations around the world,” says Helmuth Munter, Durst’s segment manager, Labels and Package Printing. “We are confident that our updated Tau RSC platform will once again set the base for the future of industrial digital inkjet printing in the label industry.”
The newest member of the Tau RSC platform is the Tau RSCi. Available in printing widths of 330, 420 or 510 mm, the printer uses the Tau RSC UV inks. The press is designed to take over mid-to long run jobs but is also able to produce short-run jobs in an economical way. The press design features jumbo winders and roll lifts, allowing fast roll changes and good accessibility to printheads, UV lamps and transport rollers. The integrated large inspection table provides space for visual inspection. The Tau RSCi is equipped by default with a chill roller to guarantee maximum material and application flexibility.
“Over the past decade, we at Durst have gained a good understanding of this highly competitive and fragmented marketplace,” adds Munter. “Our 200-plus Tau installations globally and our very close contact with our valued customers help us to continue future-oriented innovations.”
Epson provides digital tabletop printers and full scale production presses, utilizing all of its own technology. Epson digital label printers range from the desktop ColorWorks models for on-demand color label printing to the production-level SurePress digital label presses. All of the company’s inkjet printers feature proprietary Epson printheads and ink.
“Unique among manufacturers of digital inkjet printing equipment, Epson designs and produces all of its own critical components, such as the printheads, ink, media transport,” says Victor Gomez, director, Industrial Label Products, Epson America. “ColorWorks ink is water-based pigment in CMYK. SurePress models include a water-based resin ink that comes in CMYK, white and the extended gamut colors orange and green for a greatly expanded color gamut. This water-based resin ink adheres to a surprisingly wide variety of media types, from paper-based porous media for demanding, high-end applications, such as wine labels, to unsupported flexible packaging films for thermo sealed bags, pouches or shrink film.”
The ColorWorks line of desktop color label printers has benefited from Epson’s development of ESC Label command software, an offshoot of the Epson Standard Code for Printers. It’s a printer control language developed by Epson that allows the company to work seamlessly with all major ISVs in the enterprise label space. Also important has been the development of remote fleet management tools to install, configure, maintain and monitor a fleet of printers – whether they are installed in one location or spread around the world.
Epson’s SurePress has seen a significant uptick in print speeds while maintaining strict quality standards. The original SurePress had a print speed of 16 fpm, while today’s technology now runs at 164 fpm with full resolution. The SurePress line also includes a low-temperature LED UV curable ink model, with CMYK, white and digital varnish inks.
“Customers view Epson as a technology leader – a steady, proven company that acts ethically and cares about the success of its customers,” adds Gomez. “What separates our technology from the rest is the sheer depth. The economies of scale involved in Epson’s business lines allow us a luxury of choosing from an array of technologies our competitors can only envy.”
Fujifilm North America Corporation, Graphic Systems Division, offers label printers and converters the Graphium UV digital hybrid inkjet press for labels, packaging and specialty print applications. Graphium, the result of a partnership between Fujifilm and FFEI, makes converting short to medium print jobs profitable, as the press streamlines workflow, requires less setup material, less ink/varnish/laminate, provides lower running waste and eliminates overruns. Furthermore, Graphium is a modular digital inkjet press offering the option to integrate true flexo and finishing stations for hybrid production and conversion, in a single pass, thus greatly expanding the opportunities that can be converted.
Graphium ensures excellent print quality and color gamut on a wide range of standard materials, with 39" (1,000mm), 400kg capacity. This capability comes from the integration of a web guide with ultra-sonic edge sensor, web cleaning and corona treatment being fitted as standard.
Graphium’s Xaar printheads and ink systems provide industrial grade reliability and optimal uptime, ensuring continuous trouble-free converting. Graphium’s wide web width of 420mm and fast print speeds allow productivity of up to 1,134 square meters per hour with up to six different inks. LED inter-color pinning across all six channels provides precise ink laydown and cure control. Graphium’s print engine is capable of printing with up to six ink color combinations. Printers have a choice of four, five or six types of UV-curable inks, including a varnish and under or over whites. Graphium’s color management system allows accurate ISO 12647-2 compliant CMYK printing and wide gamut spot color emulation.
Gallus offers two digital presses: the hybrid Labelfire and the Gallus Smartfire. The Gallus Labelfire features full variable data printing (fVDP) with all possibilities – using digital inkjet printing in combination with conventional printing, as well as the Digital Embellishment Unit (DEU). The Gallus Labelfire hybrid system gives label printers the flexibility to combine additional conventional printing and embellishing processes such as flexo, screen printing, and cold-foil embellishment with the possibilities of digital printing.
At Labelexpo Europe, Gallus used the “Your Smoothie” campaign to demonstrate fVDP with the Gallus Labelfire. The possibilities of the Gallus Labelfire’s digital unit, combined with the fully variable data printing option, are designed to cover every possible requirement. Industrial variable data printing (iVDP) with the Gallus Labelfire allows the converter to use this digital label press to print very small batch sizes, as well as items including bar codes, 2D codes, and serialized or personalized labels, which are in ever greater demand.
Also, the Gallus Smartfire, designed for entry level digital printing with ultra-short runs, is available to printers. The inkjet label printing machine, equipped with a 4-color printhead (CMYK), makes printing of ultra-short runs starting from one single unit possible while printing with water-based inks and a native resolution of 1600 dpi. The integrated inline converting module includes lamination, a cutting plotter for individual diecutting contours and a semi-rotary diecutter. With this equipment, the Gallus philosophy “from print file to finished diecut label in a single pass” also applies to the Gallus Smartfire.
The Gallus Smartfire is powered by Memjet, which is a proven printhead that uses water-based inks, allowing the labels to be eco-sensitive for a minimal ecological footprint. The Smartfire uses an ordinary power outlet, needs no exhaust equipment, is compact, and emits no VOC (Volatile Organic Compounds), thus making it suitable for any work environment.
With this digital press, only a few prepress skills are required to create professional CMYK 4-color inkjet labels. Just as easy are the replacements of the ink-containers and the exchange of the printhead. This machine also delivers finished diecut labels, all produced in one pass and ready for shipping on the reel. For this purpose, a finishing unit is attached, on which the labels are laminated and cut. This can be either done individually by the integrated cutting plotter or by fast and cost-effective punching with the semi-rotary diecutter at the end of the inline finishing unit.
HP has an extensive product portfolio, spanning label and packaging presses to software suites. According to Eli Mahal, head of marketing, labels and packaging, at HP Indigo, HP can deliver virtually any label or package to a brand. HP is seeing success with the HP Indigo 6900 and the HP Indigo 20000. The 6900 is a narrow web press, while the mid-web 20000 helps answer customer demand for shrink sleeves and flexible packaging.
“The primary goal of the HP Indigo 6900 is to help converters exceed brand needs for agility and engaging packaging. Even small customers can offer nearly any application imaginable and meet the needs of the world’s most creative brands,” says Mahal. “They can add high-value features from brand protection to embellishments with greater production efficiencies and fast delivery time.
“With the growing desire of label converters to find new revenue sources, we also see growing interest in delivering applications, such as shrink sleeves and pouches, that usually require larger format,” he adds. “These customers choose to install our mid-web digital press, the HP Indigo 20000.With the HP Indigo 20000, converters can capture share of the rapid growth in need for on-demand, eco-friendly short-run sleeves and pouches.”
For customers seeking high quality at faster print speeds and larger orders, HP has seen increased adoption of the HP Indigo 8000 digital label press, as well. Designed to optimize the digital label printing process with flexo productivity, the 8000 runs up to 80 m/m.
“Customers choose HP Indigo because they understand that we have the best solution to exceed brand demand,” states Mahal. “They want a technology that has the highest print quality in the market, and they want to use a single ink that is safe for food packaging. Many label converters are small-to-medium sized businesses, and they need one or two digital assets to be able to deliver nearly any application and serve any brand today and in the years to come. No other technology brings this application versatility, and no other company invests in value packages to protect its customers’ investment like HP does.”
INX International Ink Co.
INX International Ink Co. covers the gamut in its product offerings for digital printing. The company offers everything from digital inks to the NW210/340 UV digital label presses. The popular INX NW210 delivers a single-pass output up to 80 fpm on any labelstock. In addition, the NW210 press is capable of producing vivid color labels at a maximum printing width of 8.25" (210mm). The product comes equipped with a Spartanics laser diecutting station and Xaar patented technology, with multiple drop sizes and color ink channels.
“INX is one of the few companies that engineer both the ink and the digital inkjet print engine. This combination allows INX to develop unique solutions for printing on a variety of materials or objects with the required adhesion, durability and quality required by the customer,” explains Jay Larsen, general manager and director of R&D, digital hardware. “We are constantly working with customers to push the envelope of what digital inkjet printing is capable of, and creating real printers that open the doors to new markets or increased profitability.”
The NW210’s finishing capabilities have created increased demand in the product. “Much of the interest in the NW210 comes from the unique aspects of the unit, which combines a laser diecutter with a digital inkjet printer in a compact and productive package,” says Larsen. “The workflow to create infinitely variable labels is easy. It allows customers to take the design to printed and cut labels in less than two minutes. As a result, many NW210 customers have taken their label production in-house, saving their corporations money through the on-demand production of labels. The NW210 also can be configured with many finishing options that further customize the printer for specific needs.”
From an ink perspective, INX International has developed the INX EB, UV, Solvent or Water-based digital inks and combined them with the JetINX print engines to create enhanced solutions.
“From a 100 m/m label press with an integrated laser diecutter to the world’s first baseball bat printer, INX technological building blocks have been used to create a one-off printer that solves a particular customer problem, or to create a low-cost printer sold into thousands of locations worldwide,” adds Larsen.
Historically a leader in the flexographic printing sector, Mark Andy has developed multiple products for the digital and hybrid printing markets. The Digital Pro is Mark Andy’s entry-level digital press for smaller and mid-market companies, delivering more speed and a lower cost to print. This small format digital product prints at 77 fpm (23.4 m/m) at an affordable price point.
The Digital Series HD is a true hybrid solution, printing at speeds up to 240 fpm (73 m/m), including white, and combined with single pass inline converting, producing a higher throughput. Digital Series HD is now available in 5 through 8 color configurations and can support integrated inline or future-proof near line converting options.
“Now that our digital program is at a level of maturity with second generation products, we’ve evolved in a couple of ways,” explains Chandler Davis, market manager, digital, Mark Andy. “The biggest being the flexibility we offer customers to have digital machines that match how they operate. We aren’t one size fits all with our Digital Series HD and Digital Pro line. You can configure from a base roll-to-roll up to an advanced inline hybrid. Our digital presses aren’t just for short runs anymore. The productivity of our inline machines extends profitability to the runs that are medium and even long that would have always been run on flexo.”
The Digital Series HD was recently adopted by Cypress Multigraphics, a L&NW Company to Watch in 2019.
“I just felt comfortable with my history of doing business with Mark Andy,” says Brad Weber, president of Cypress Multigraphics. “They already had their first-generation hybrid press out, and when they upped the speed and got the image quality to 1200 x 1200 dpi – that was as good as it got. Mark Andy made huge leaps from the gen 1 to the gen 2, so I was comfortable enough to jump in and be the first adopter of their hybrid press.”
“The main reason I see people partner with Mark Andy on their digital journey boils down to two things: our platform flexibility and support infrastructure,” adds Davis.
MPS recently unveiled a new, wider version of the hybrid EF Symjet, an inkjet/flexo platform built with an exclusive partnership with Domino. The MPS EF Symjet press is now available in 13"/340 mm and 17"/430 mm widths and can be equipped with multiple flexo units, lamination and embellishing units, diecutting and many more converting options. During live demonstrations at the recently concluded Labelexpo Europe, a combination of nine labels were printed with various embellishments including digital cold foil, hologram- and lenticular 3D effects, de-lam re-lam and micro texts.
Atze Bosma, CEO of MPS, says, “Productivity is one of our focus processes that extends ‘Beyond the Machine.’ With the new 17" width, we are offering our customers higher productivity, more flexibility and the possibility to open new markets and even more options for applications. This is a great addition to our portfolio of flexo, hybrid and offset presses for labeling and packaging.”
In addition to its hybrid press partnership with Domino, MPS has also joined forces with Colorydyne to develop a hybrid solution. The companies have teamed up to combine UV LED or water-based flexo technology with digital aqueous pigment inkjet technology. The new developments incorporate Colordyne’s digital print engine using Memjet’s DuraLink printhead technology integrated in the MPS EXL-Packaging product line. Thanks to the modular design, it can be configured with any combination of flexo and inkjet technology, and additional machine functionalities tailored to the individual customer.
“After the successful experience of offering hybrid systems for the narrow web market, we strongly believe that the hybrid technology will also be part of the future for the mid web packaging market,” says Bosma. “We are very much focused on the total process. We believe in the combination of aqueous inkjet technology and flexo for the flexible packaging market. Working with Colordyne on the new aqueous pigment inkjet technology provides an additional way for us to deliver the best technologies to our customers.”
“Both of our companies see an opportunity to expand beyond the narrow web label and tag market,” states Andy Matter, president of Colordyne Technologies. “Working with MPS allows us to deliver complete hybrid systems featuring wider web widths and the capabilities to expand into packaging applications beyond pressure sensitive labels. We look forward to providing customers in new markets the technologies they need to enhance their production capabilities at an affordable price point.”
Mouvent has launched its LB702-WB, a high net output digital label printer using 100% water-based inks, and LB701-UV, a small, high flexibility, high productivity digital label printer.
Mouvent digital inkjet technology also drives a hybrid label press from Bobst, the Master DM5.
“Attendees at Labelexpo had the opportunity to see the full potential of digital label printing for themselves,” says Thierry Martin, CEO of Mouvent. “The LB702-WB is a really remarkable advance in digital label production as it uses only water-based inks, while the LB701-UV is extremely compact and ergonomic and enables highly flexible label production. These machines are the future of digital label printing.”
LB702-WB uses only 100% water-based, in-house developed Mouvent inks, making it 100% free of VOCs (volatile organic compounds) and 100% indirect food contact compliant. The machine can run with up to 100 m/m on a broad range of substrates of up to 360 mm wide, from self-adhesive to wet-glue labelstock, especially targeting applications where migration and recyclability could be an issue, washable labels being just one example.
The LB702-WB’s high print quality of 1200 x 1200 dpi leads to enhanced results on complex substrates such as textured natural wine label papers and many others. And thanks to its all-new coating station applying the proprietary Mouvent primer, even cheaper and more standard substrates can be used, without compromising the printing quality.
Being configured with six colors, the Mouvent water-based press allows for excellent ECG printing and Pantone matching. Paired with the in-house developed Mouvent DFE, customers benefit from easy file preparation, enhanced color consistency and variable data printing for real-time customization.
The LB701-UV is the smallest label printer within the Mouvent range, matching the well-known letterpress format. This mini label machine has a compact design, but neither compromises on print resolution nor on productivity at excellent production costs. Its size and ease of use mean that even the smallest print shops are able to take high quality, fast and flexible label production for any type of application on board. This latest version of the LB701-UV, which was on display at Labelexpo Europe, is equipped with six colors and for the first time with white Mouvent UV ink.
At the heart of all of Mouvent’s digital printer range is the Mouvent Cluster, a new approach that uses clusters instead of fixed size print bars by color, arranging them in a modular, scalable matrix. The result is one system that can be simply adapted for all substrates, of all widths, for all markets.
In March 2019, mprint delivered its first mlabel compact 4-color hybrid inkjet label printing machine. While this particular press will print UV inks, the label printing system – just as the entire product line - is also available for printing with aqueous inks.The mlabel compact is a combination of mprint’s previous mlabel 2 generation and the new mlabel Gen3 flagship and is designed as an entry level digital printing machine, which includes mprint’s latest print engine technology, as well as proven converting modules. At 10" wide, the system uses the Kyocera KJ4A (or B) printheads with a native resolution of 600 x 600 dpi and print speeds of up to 246 fpm (330 fpm for aqueous inks).
The standard configuration includes web guide, web cleaner and a corona treater, CMYK print engine with ink reclaiming, laminating, and rotary diecutting. The user interface is the same intuitive HMI as used for all other products mprint has to offer. The small footprint, combined with the capabilities of finishing a label in one pass, makes this small hybrid press a production powerhouse, the company says.
Omet is offering the XFlex X7, which it says is ready to amaze. The press’ performance and special effects in shrink sleeve and flexible packaging printing were a few of the key takeaways for Omet at Labelexpo Europe. In addition to the X7, Omet has also released a new version of the hybrid XJet powered by Durst and the full LED iFlex.
Omet’s latest offering, the X7, offers a new way for achieving special print effects on shrink sleeves and flexible packaging materials. It is a 26″ (670 mm) flexo line equipped with multiple enhanced features, which integrate several printing and converting technologies inline with a modular design.
Thanks to the new High Value Rotogravure printing unit (HVR) and the new flexo station designed with Zero Gears Solution, it allows the maximum level of precision, automation, quick setup and near zero waste.The XJet powered by Durst was a focus of the company’s Labelexpo Europe stand, with the ability to produce high-quality labels and shrink sleeves with combined printing: from its launch to date, it has registered increasing number of installations and level of appreciation, notes Omet. The third machine on demo was an iFlex with an 8-color flexo UV LED configuration, which allows considerable energy savings and optimal drying at high speeds, maintaining the high quality standard of Omet printing.
In response to the growing demand for digital, Nilpeter has teamed with Screen to offer the Panorama hybrid. The Panorama product line consists of Nilpeter flexo units, Screen digital inkjet presses and Nilpeter converting solutions that can be configured to fit customer needs. The solution is all inline and benefits from the Nilpeter and Screen coalition.
“The Panorama offering has continued to evolve as our partnerships grow,” says Paul Teachout, vice president of sales and marketing for Nilpeter USA. “The innovative nature of Nilpeter and Screen has brought new vision and solutions. We have been able to design and deliver custom solutions that allow our converters to grow their brand, capture new markets and streamline their operations.”
Panorama can operate as a standalone digital press solution, as a combined digital press and converting solution, and as a hybrid that integrates flexo units, the digital press and converting solutions. The 5-color inkjet print engine, with 14" flexo printing units with quick-change CleanInking chambers. Converters can also integrate Nilpeter’s value-adding units such as the FP-4 for hot foil and embossing.
“Screen has had a long reputation of providing the most reliable digital UV inkjet solution in the market,” says Teachout. “That was a key element in our alliance. We wanted to ensure our customers that the solution that we provide will be the most sophisticated and innovative technology on both sides: conventional and digital. We think we have achieved this, and our customers have seen that bringing these two teams together has strengthened our offerings, sales representation, service and overall support in a seamless transaction.”
In order to meet growing global demand, Primera has added a new model to its lineup of desktop label printers. The LX610, with a built-in X/Y cutter, will be available in January 2020 and produces short runs of high-quality labels in any size or shape without custom dies – all in a low-cost, desktop sized machine.
“The first of its kind, the LX610 combines full-color inkjet label printing at up to 4800 dpi with its built-in digital diecutting mechanism,” explains Mark Strobel, vice president of sales and marketing at Primera. “The desktop-sized printer comes complete with intuitive, easy-to-use software for laying out print and cut files, allowing users to quickly produce custom labels of virtually any size or shape. In addition, standard pre-diecut labels and tags can also be fed through the machine just like any other desktop color label printer.”
According to Primera, professional print businesses, ad agencies and graphic design shops can benefit from this new product by producing samples, prototypes and short runs for client approval before ordering expensive hard-tooled or flexible dies. In addition, small businesses can print their own short runs of custom labels without incurring delays and die costs, while continuing to send their longer runs to label production shops.
Both dye and pigment inks are available for the LX610, as well. The printer can also accommodate a host of substrates, including gloss and matter papers, PVC, polyester and polypropylene.
“Primera has always been known for innovative products and LX610 is no exception,” says Strobel. “It’s the only full-color, desktop printer/cutter in the world that delivers photo-quality labels in any size and shape in just seconds each. LX610 will prove to be an invaluable tool for label converters and other print providers to provide customers with accurate label samples before full production begins. Short runs of hundreds or a few thousand custom-shaped or sized labels at a time are also possible with LX610, providing even more value and flexibility to our customers.”
Screen’s Truepress Jet L350UV is a versatile digital inkjet press with a wide range of capabilities and capable of printing on a broad selection of labelstock, achieving excellent output on transparent film, polyethylene, polypropylene, paper substrates and metallic foil. Accurate reproduction of images and logos improves product appeal, and with a peak printing speed of 164 fpm, the L350 delivers cost-effective short to medium run production for versioning and custom legends.
Since the initial release in 2013, wide ranging, continuous improvements have seen the L350UV series ship a total of more than 150 presses to date. Adoption has also been accelerating in Europe, where short runs are particularly beneficial for language localization, as well as the Americas and Asia.
The new Truepress Jet L350UV+ offers speeds for a digital label system of up to 60 m/m. Most recently, Screen Americas finalized the development of its new Truepress Jet L350UV SAI inkjet system for label printing. The press, which made its debut at Labelexpo Europe 2019, features improved color reproduction, as well as excellent scalability, enabling it to meet a wide variety of market needs. Screen plans to launch the system worldwide in January 2020.
The company has equipped the Truepress Jet L350UV SAI with additional slots for mounting inkjet printheads. Along with CMYK, it can be loaded with white, orange and blue inks for a total of seven colors. The system also features proprietary color management technologies developed in collaboration with CGS Publishing Technologies International GmbH of Germany.
Valloy offers its BizPress 13R, a 13" single-pass LED roll-to-roll label printer. The BizPress 13R reaches a printing speed of 7.26 m/m and can handle 1,000 m2 jobs easily by changing rolls 3-4 times with up to 1200 × 2400 dpi. BizPress 13R can print on 60 to 300 micron thick papers, PET, BOPP, PE and PVC films. Embedded high-voltage ionizer prevents from static problem with enabling easy printing on metallic coated foils. It uses 18K high-capacity toner (26K for black) and a 100K high-capacity drum. In addition to an inherent low-temperature fusing system, an embedded cooling system and instant fusing mechanism help a wider range of media compatibility. The pneumatic auto-tension control system drives 1km length rolls in a stable way, with an intuitive touch panel where GUI helps promote a comfortable operation. A web guide system is optionally available, as well.
BizPress 13R is positioned as an ideal solution for conventional label converters looking to step into digital short run production service. It’s also an ideal fit for converters in customized flexible package markets. Valloy says the machine costs less than half of its competitors’ product prices and occupies minimal space of installation and operation.
“Operation cost can be reduced significantly by our reasonable price of consumables. This printer brings synergic benefit together with the DuoBlade S finishing machine, which is the fastest digital multi-blade label finisher in the market,” says Valloy CEO Juan Kim.
Xeikon, the digital printing division of Flint Group, offers a wide breadth of products, which includes dry toner and inkjet. The Xeikon CX3 digital label press is based on Xeikon’s Cheetah technology, printing at a maximum speed of 30 m/m. Its fast printing speed for every type of material, without the need for pre-printing, along with its stability, reliability and minimal maintenance, make the Cheetah series, both 330 and 520 mm widths, the ideal Xeikon units for operations with higher printing volumes.
Meanwhile, Xeikon has continued to develop Panther technology, a UV inkjet platform designed to complement the company’s dry toner digital label press portfolio. The first UV inkjet press based on this technology, the Xeikon PX3000 was launched at Xeikon Café Packaging Innovations 2017.
“We have put a lot of resources into dry toner and UV inkjet,” says Jeroen Van Bauwel, director of product management at Xeikon. “It has resulted in new functionality, first with the High Capacity Panther. It’s based on feedback we’ve gotten from our customers and their desire for reduced substrate costs. We have an answer and we can raise OEE (overall equipment efficiency) by 20%, and it’s available now.”
In order to boost its digital print offerings, Xeikon has developed a specific solution for printers looking to enhance and increase their range of labels. A combination of the Xeikon X-800 workflow and the PantherCure UV ink generates a tactile layer responsible for a so-called “haptic effect” in print, enabling printers to easily create designer labels with enhanced tactility, textures and a luxury feel, according to the company. Xeikon’s new haptic printing process not only boosts and expands the range of possible applications for high-end label markets, it helps make significant time savings by avoiding any modifications to the prepress files.