In addition to my birthday and my anniversary, I can count on one thing happening once every 12 months or so: Color digital printing will have completely changed over the course of a single year. Every major manufacturer is releasing innovative new products across the printing industry, including sheet-cut, continuous, books, and packaging. It would be fair to say that we are witnessing a revolution in printing that has removed the barrier of static content and turned a white piece of paper into a digital canvas.
With new innovations in equipment, inks, and workflow, it’s more important than ever to keep a finger on the pulse of this industry. That’s why IWCO Direct experts are in constant conversation with equipment and software providers to ensure that our customers have access to the best-in-class technology the color digital printing world can offer.
What’s Going On In Color Digital Printing?
In 2017, we will see the release of many new products that were unveiled at last year’s Drupa. Canon recently launched their new ProStream inkjet press. Instead of using water-based inks, the ProStream employs a new polymer-based ink set which relies on a drying tunnel to allow the ink to set. It also uses a full-page precoat to ensure ink compatibility with multiple substrates.
In the second quarter, we will also see a new and improved ink set for our Screen Truepress Jet 520HD (more on this new bit of tech in a minute). These new inks will expand the range of papers on which we can print as well as continue to expand our color gamut.
How We’re Staying On Top
Last September, IWCO Direct began testing a Screen Truepress Jet520HD. We chose this press because of its flexibility to manage many different print situations. Print quality, substrate versatility, and ability to run treated, untreated, and heavier stock papers were very important factors when seeking out the Jet520HD. The press runs up to a 20-inch roll at 492 feet per minute at 600 x 600 dpi or 246 feet per minute at 1200 x 600 dpi. The Jet520HD press rounds out our color digital printing offering with the heavier stock capability.
In a previous blog, I mentioned we were waiting for a new ink set for our Canon ColorStream 3900 presses. Last August, IWCO Direct was given the opportunity to beta test that new ink set, and we completed installation on all presses across the platform at the end of September. These new ‘Chromera’ inks have led to a 20 percent increase in our color gamut and allowed us to improve device-to-device color consistency across our conventional and digital print platform.
Creativity is the Cornerstone of Creating Customers
As the rate of adoption for color digital print continues to accelerate, so does the imagination of our customers and our Creative team. The focus of our clients’ creativity has changed from the physical format of the piece to the possibilities of creating customers through more engaging content and images. The ability to use real micro-segmentation comes alive in this digital print environment, as we are no longer constrained by the number of preprinted shells, which drove up costs. At the same time, dynamic content allows more seamless testing, drives higher response rates, and improves return on marketing investment.
What a time to be marketing with direct mail! You can find out more about how IWCO Direct’s sophisticated color digital printing platform can Power your Marketing™ by getting in touch with me.
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