As a follow-up to last week’s announcement, Printing Industries of America released today detailed descriptions of the ten recipients of the 2019 InterTech™ Technology Awards. The independent panel of judges deliberated over technology nominations, which showcased the dynamic and innovative nature of the industry. The judges singled out the following technologies as meeting the award criteria of being truly innovative and expected to have a major impact on the graphic communications industry.
The recipient technologies are listed below alphabetically by company:
(Listed alphabetically by company, with the technology named first)
Océ ProStream™ 1000, Canon Solutions America
The combination of 1200 x 1200 dpi, a new polymer pigment ink, inline pretreatment, and a flotation dryer makes Canon’s inkjet web press capable of producing premium direct mail and high-quality commercial products. The judges were won over by its print quality and ability to print on commodity grade papers, including coated, at high speeds. The ProStream 1000 is sure to take volume from both offset and toner-based digital presses.
Print Control Wizard, Esko USA
Esko developed Print Control Wizard to be a non-technical tool that simplifies the process of defining screens and curves for a flexo press. The software considers the many parameters within the platemaking and print process and selects output tailored for the user’s specific conditions. Printing standards are more easily met and makeready time and waste are reduced, outcomes that the judges couldn’t overlook.
PrintFlat™, Global Graphics Software
Ridding inkjet presses of banding issues is a huge accomplishment. PrintFlat from Global Graphics Software creates a customized calibration based on measurements taken from the press. The calibrations are installed into the ScreenPro screening engine and PrintFlat adjusts the density to produce uniformity across a print bar. It expands the range of jobs that can be profitably printed by inkjet.
HP PageWide True Water-Based Inks, HP Inc.
These water-based inks result in vibrant images on coated and uncoated corrugated boards, can be safely used for sensitive products and for primary packaging with no need for any additional barrier, and have proven recyclability. They lack any UV reactive component, contain no heavy metals, and have no perceptible odor. The innovation is expected to increase the use of inkjet-printed corrugated packaging for such products as food, pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, and infant care.
HP PrintOS Color Beat, HP Indigo and Vistaprint
HP PrintOS Color Beat is a cloud-connected solution that monitors and captures the color status of HP Indigo presses in an automated way. Color Beat was refined and perfected through a collaboration with Vistaprint. It allows multiple Internet-enabled HP Indigo presses to print in a similar color-controlled way, make automatic corrections, and provide regular reports to mobile devices. The judges recognized that Color Beat enabled the same file to be printed in different locations with consistent color.
HYBRID VDP, Hybrid Software Inc.
HYBRID VDP gives package and label printers a variable data print preparation solution, overcoming existing output limitations. The optional module to HYBRID’s PACKZ PDF editor can quickly add dynamic elements to a PDF package or label design and then prepare an optimized step & repeat file without creating a template. The judges noted the solution eliminates presses sitting idle while files are processed, significantly improving the workflow for personalized packaging.
VRCut Ready Triumph™ Cutter Line, MBM Corporation
VRCut™ is innovative cutting technology that integrates prepress PDF creation software with a visual guidance system that also automatically controls the back gauge. By providing full visual, audio, and text-based instructions, operators of any experience level can use the VRCut Ready Triumph cutters accurately and efficiently. The judges noted VRCut’s ability to limit cutting errors even with inexperienced operators.
KODAK FLEXCEL NX Ultra Solution, Miraclon
FLEXCEL NX Ultra Solution offers solvent-free, VOC-free, water-based processing that allows printers to create a press-ready plate in less than an hour. FLEXCEL NX Ultra Solution removes the disadvantages and challenges that has plagued aqueous platemaking solutions for the last 25 years. The innovative Ultra Clean technology avoids the rapid buildup of photopolymer debris that causes frequent processor cleaning and has made aqueous platemaking solutions inconsistent and uncompetitive in the past. The judges agreed that the technology will be the catalyst for more printers and pre-press providers to convert to aqueous platemaking.
Ricoh Pro VC 70000, Ricoh USA, Inc.
The Ricoh Pro VC 70000 is a 20.5-inch-wide production inkjet web press that gives commercial printers lowered paper costs and the productivity to accelerate the transfer of offset print volumes to digital. This Ricoh-developed technology, featuring a new ink set and special dryer, can print up to 1,200 x 1,200 dpi on offset coated or uncoated stock. The award recognizes the VC 70000’s print quality and its ability to print a wide range of commodity grades with no pre-treatment.
tilia Phoenix 7.0, Tilia Labs Inc.
tilia Phoenix 7.0 is a modular, open-API planning and imposition application that uses artificial intelligence to improve production efficiencies across all print sectors. Rather than being template-driven, it analyzes machine and production requirements to generate print-ready layouts or die instructions on the fly. The judges were impressed with its use of AI to solve complex planning problems.
The awards will be presented to companies before an audience of industry leaders during the 2019 Premier Print Awards and InterTech Technology Awards Reception & Ceremony, Wednesday, October 2 in Chicago, Illinois.