ONYX Thrive for Production Printing and Adobe Workflow Now Available

Print production workflow softwareONYX has introduced Thrive, an Adobe-based workflow product for production printing, and ONYX Advantage for Thrive. The big news here is the ability with Thrive to run on multiple computers with one license, and Thrive’s Adobe PDF Print Engine.

“One of our customers was trying to drive six printers with one ProductionHouse license, but now with Thrive they can spread it out to other computers without having to buy multiple licenses and they’ve been able to double their production,” explains Mark Maynard, ONYX general manager for the Americas. “With PDF files, sometimes you have to go into Illustrator and flatten the file or save it as a TIFF, so there’s an extra step involved in that case. Since Thrive is an Adobe-based workflow solution it RIPs the file the first time around without having to do additional work to the file.”

Maynard adds that Thrive offers print shops a cost-effective way to grow their business by spreading out the workflow across multiple computers and streamlining the Adobe print process. Therefore, Thrive is more easily scalable as the print shop adds more printers and grows their business.

Plus, you can drive production from a mobile device, like an iPad, with the new Thrive Production Manager. With Thrive Production Manager on a secure network you simply open a browser, point it to the RIP Queue, and away you go, wherever you are.

ONYX Thrive comes in three different configurations: 211 for $3,295 (two RIPs, one large-format or grand-format printer and one Job Editor, formerly known as Preflight), 642 for $6,995 (six RIPs, four printers, two Job Editors) and 862 for $8,995 (eight RIPs, six printers, two Job Editors).

With ONYX Thrive, you can also add ONYX Advantage, a service program that includes software maintenance and Live! Web-based training – where you choose any three of a variety of instructor-led online sessions for the training that best suits your needs – and personalized training – a  two-hour personalized and custom Web-based training session for your print shop that provides the confidence that operators are maximizing the performance and automation of your ONYX Thrive workflow.

For more information about ONYX Thrive and ONYX Advantage, and to help figure out which products will work best for your business, contact a LexJet customer specialist at 800-453-9538.

LexJet Offers Removable, Repositionable Inkjet Printable Vinyl

Applying removable vinyl to window for advertisingFor wide format inkjet printing projects where repositionability and removability is an important consideration, LexJet’s new Opaque AquaVinyl Removable PSA fits the bill.

The low-tack adhesive was formulated to make repositioning during installation a breeze and removes cleanly and easily when it’s time to take the graphic down. Applications include short-term window graphics, signs and point of sale displays.

The vinyl base is water resistant with aqueous dye and UV inks, as well as latex inks, and provides a bright white matte base for excellent image reproduction and minimal glare for optimum viewing in any lighting situation.

For more information about LexJet Opaque AquaVinyl Removable PSA and to order, contact a LexJet customer specialist at 800-453-9538. Like all LexJet products, it comes with a 30-Day Money-Back Guarantee and LexJet’s $9.99 flat rate shipping from a nationwide network of distribution centers.

Epson’s New Four-Color, 64-Inch Solvent Production Printer Due in April

Epson production solvent inkjet printerThe EPSON SureColor S30670 is scheduled to ship and ready for sale this month. The new 64-inch, four-color solvent printer turned heads at the recent International Sign Expo for its combination of production speed and output quality.

Epson’s product manager, Reed Hecht, says the new printer is not being sold as a replacement for the Epson Stylus Pro GS6000. “We’re keeping the printers in the market together because we see applications for those who require the wider color gamut that can hit very specific spot colors with the GS6000, and those who want more production while producing high-quality prints,” says Hecht.

“It’s the most cost-effective and reliable printer that utilizes the newest technology at an entry-level solvent printer price. It changes the way you look at an entry-level solvent printer,” adds Hecht.

That new technology is Epson’s MicroPiezo TFP printhead, designed to deliver droplet sizes as small as 4.2 picoliters while doubling the nozzle density of the GS6000. The inks are Epson’s new UltraChrome GS2 solvent-based inks in four colors (CMYK), including a newly formulated yellow ink that Epson says based on initial testing can produce prints with up to three years of outdoor durability without lamination.

Epson ink sets for solvent printing
The EPSON SureColor S30670's ink system is four colors, CMYK, that's delivered through Epson's MicroPiezo TFP printhead. It's a very cool and advanced technology, but what it ultimately means is faster printing and better quality prints.

Prints dry immediately, according to LexJet product manager Alex Ried, who notes a drying mechanism that takes the pain out of waiting for prints to dry. Ried says he’s excited about the opportunity to provide the new Epson solvent printer to the various wide format print markets served by LexJet.

Billed as low solvent, Epson says the inks provide virtually odorless printing without the need for external dryers, special ventilation or air purification systems, and do not contain Nickel compounds, thereby reducing the printer’s environmental impact.

Speaking of that impact, Epson has also engineered the printer to use less energy. Energy Star certified, the SureColor S30670 uses about 650 Watts or less energy when operating, which is almost a quarter of other comparable printers, says Epson. Moreover, it uses standard 110V power outlets so there’s no need to bring an electrician in to install 220V outlets.

Other important features to keep in mind when evaluating this printer include:

  • Print speed: Epson bills the print speed at 619 feet per hour in draft mode with a recommended production speed of 205 square feet per hour for normal signage production
  • Reel system: The take-up reel is designed for unattended production of large print runs, supporting both wind-in and wind-out; a standard motorized heavy roll support system in the rear that will support up to a 90-pound roll; and an optional high-capacity roll support available for rolls up to 150 pounds
  • Roll media loading: A new spindleless design with a manual EPSON LiftAssist allows for easy loading and unloading of heavy roll media
  • High capacity ink system: Individual cartridges up to 700 ml enable users to avoid production downtimes and maximize profitability
  • Media versatility: EPSON UltraChrome GS2 ink works on virtually all standard coated or uncoated solvent media, including adhesive-backed vinyl and banner media. It also prints on solvent-compatible canvas for fine art printing

The list price for the EPSON SureColor S30670 is $16,995, and is expected to be available for purchase at LexJet this month. For more information, and to pre-order your printer, contact a LexJet customer specialist at 800-453-9538.

Onyx SmartApps Sign & Banner Plug In in the Real World

Adding grommet marks to banners with design softwareEarlier this year at the LexJet Blog we featured a demonstration video about Onyx SmartApps Sign & Banner Pro. As a follow-up we recently spoke with a user of the Onyx plug-in to see if it was as helpful in production as advertised.

Eduardo Vega, production manager at Adage Graphics in El Segundo, Calif., verifies that the plug-in not only does what it’s supposed to do, “the software has been a life saver,” Vega says.

“We’ve had it for about a year and it’s been especially helpful for putting grommet marks on banners. What used to take hours when we had a lot of large banners to produce and mark for grommets now takes minutes,” Vega explains. “Also, for canvas wraps we were using Genuine Fractals to set up the mirrored borders on the wraps. That was also very time-consuming to go through all the steps in the software. Now with the Sign & Banner Pro it only takes like three seconds.”

Vega reports that they also use the plug-in to send files to the company’s Zund cutter. “This way we don’t have to create a different dialogue for files we’re sending to the cutter,” adds Vega.

Adage Graphics has a range of printers – including HP Z6100s, an HP solvent printer and an HP L25500 latex printer – so this useful tool has gotten quite a workout.

By the way, Onyx has extended its March promotions on trade-ins and upgrades to the latest version of Onyx PosterShop and ProductionHouse. To find out what those deals are, exactly, click here. The deadline for these deals has been extended until March 31.

Also, click here to see a demonstration video of PitStop Pro, a plug-in for Adobe Acrobat from Onyx that helps optimize productivity by identifying and eliminating PDF issues prior to production.

PitStop Pro corrects a variety of common problems like missing fonts, drop shadows and incorrect colors right from Acrobat. The end result is better time management and less waste.

A UV Boost to Production at the Coors Distribution Center’s Print Shop

Printing signs with a UV curable inkjet printerIn 2011 the Coors Distribution Center (CDC) in Denver printed more than 100,000 signs, plastering the city and the Front Range surrounding Denver with its brand. CDC print shop manager Chuck Black says sign production has increased at least 110 percent and up to 140 percent over the past six years.

Some of that can be attributed to the merging of the Miller and Coors brands, but Black says it all has to do with simple demand.

Inkjet printing point of sale signs“We offer the high quality printing that a lot of our competitors aren’t able to do, so it gives us an edge. We get opportunities to put up signage where not many others can, just because they want that quality,” says Black.

An important component of the quality produced by the CDC’s print shop is keeping up with the latest technology it gets from LexJet. That way the CDC adds versatility to quality, winning on all fronts in Denver’s beer wars.

The print shop recently added CET Color’s X-Press 500H UV Hybrid R-T-R/Flatbed printer as well as a Canon iPF9000S to its lineup, both of which have helped boost production and meet the demand in the field.

Coroplast cut outs printed for special promotions“The new CET UV-curable printer has updated heads and the passes are a lot smoother in the overlap, which means you don’t see the same banding you might usually see in a UV printer. It’s running at medium resolution and it’s running faster than our older UV printer at its lowest resolution, plus it was a lot less expensive than our original UV printer,” says Black.

Since the printer’s a hybrid, it can print directly to flat, rigid materials like Coroplast as well as roll material like banner stock. Black says the UV inks provide a matte finish regardless of whether the print surface is gloss, matte or luster, so when something needs the pop of gloss to make it shine indoors, the Canon printer takes over.

Printing banners with an inkjet printerThe added speed and quality of the two printers allows the CDC to offer its accounts a wider range of signs, including creative Coroplast cut-outs (pictured) for special promotions. Also, and most importantly, the CDC’s beverage brands are front and center, dominating the point of sale in its market.

“The newer technology, with both the CET UV printer and the Canon, helps us win advertising space. When our reps put out our signs they really impress the owners of the businesses we serve,” adds Black.

Loading a Substrate on the HP L26500 Latex Printer

How to load media onto HP latex printersWith the HP L26500, there are two main ways that a substrate can be loaded. When loading a typical substrate, the process is similar to other HP wide format inkjet printers and identical to the HP L25500.

However, a new way to load flexible substrates like fabric, mesh, or banner material is to use the media loading accessory that comes with the printer. This accessory makes loading these substrates much easier and helps to reduce misfeeding these materials.

In the videos embedded below, learn how to load a substrate into the L25500 using the traditional method and with the loading accessory. Stay tuned for more videos about the L26500 in the coming weeks…