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‘Near-offset’ quality from latest web inkjet to open up commercial print market for Ricoh

Tuesday, 07 October 2014
By Patrick Howard
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Latest entrant into the high-speed digital printing market, the Pro VC60000, will be on show at next year’s Hunkeler Innovationdays in Switzerland in February.

Outputting over 100,000 A4 sheets per hour, the Ricoh Pro VC60000 is taking its place in the same market space as the Kodak Stream technology, the Screen Truepress, the Canon Océ ColorStream and the Fuji Xerox Impika. It catapults Ricoh to the forefront of the high-speed technology in terms of resolution and throughput.

"The paper industry has caught up with inkjet," Rene Kisselbach.

According to Rene Kisselbach, national product & marketing manager, the quality from the press is as ‘near offset’ as digital can get. He is targeting the Pro VC60000 at commercial printers who are making the transition to digital.

“It has great colour consistency at high speed and when I saw it working in Boulder, Colorado in May, I was very impressed by the quality. It is definitely capable of opening up new markets for printers and for Ricoh,’ he said.

Part of the appeal of high-speed inkjet to commercial printers is the wide variety of papers now available for the technology. Kisselbach makes the point that the Spicer’s product list alone runs to two pages.

“It’s very much different from when we first put in presses years ago. Now the paper industry has caught up with inkjet,” he said.

The quality advantage comes from the use of Ricoh high-density pigment inks, which are similar to offset inks. Next generation drop-on-demand print heads are capable of physical resolutions up to 1200 by 1200 dots per inch. An optional undercoat unit allows commercial printers to use a variety of offset coated gloss stocks with output quality comparable to what they expect from offset devices. An optional inline protector-coating unit provides scratch and scuff resistance to protect critical documents.

Given the size of the local market it is very unlikely that Ricoh will bring in a Pro VC60000 for the showroom. First launched at Graph Expo in Chicago last month, it was running live jobs but via video link to Colorado, a thousand miles away. The first time printers will be able to actually see it in action is at the Hunkeler Innovationdays at Lucerne early next year. Rene Kisselbach says he is likely to take some customers and prospects to see the Pro VC60000 in action.

"We were the first to deliver AFP, PostScript, and PDF native to the control unit," John Hall.

According to John Hall, managing director of Ricoh Australia, the company has a long history of innovation and development in digital inkjet. “With more than 70 billion impressions to date, Ricoh’s InfoPrint 5000 family, the first continuous feed drop-on-demand inkjet solution for high-volume production, has led the market for six years running. We were the first to deliver AFP, PostScript, and PDF native to the control unit and the first to provide customers a suite of ink management tools,” he said in a press release.

“The Ricoh Pro VC60000, developed by the industry’s most experienced inkjet production team, complements our current portfolio and leads the way into the future of production print in Australia. Ricoh’s ongoing commitment to innovation means that commercial print and corporate clients can confidently select from our broad and ever-expanding portfolio of products, services, and solutions to support the profitable growth of their businesses.”


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