Star product: Durst P5 500

Simon Eccles
Wednesday, August 31, 2022

A high-throughput and versatile roll-to-roll inkjet.

Durst P5 500: targeted "wherever fast, industrial-scale production is required"
Durst P5 500: targeted "wherever fast, industrial-scale production is required"

This 5.2m ‘superwide’ roll-to-roll LED-UV-cured inkjet is the latest and widest of the Durst P5 family, originally introduced in 2018 with the 2.5m P5 250 HS. This new model can handle unattended double-sided printing of two or three rolls side-by-side, or a single roll up to the maximum width. It can slit rolls after printing, as well as trimming them into sheets as an alternative to re-rolling. There’s integral support for fabric media. 

When was it launched and what’s the target market?

It was launched at Fespa in Berlin in May. According to Peter Bray, managing director of Durst UK & Ireland, “The P5 500 is a volume production press that will appeal to users requiring high volumes with the ability for dual and triple production. These include customers in areas such as exhibitions, museums, and retail – wherever fast, industrial scale production is required.”

How does it work?

Previous P5 models in 2.5m and 3.2m widths have been hybrid designs, with wheel-away roller tables front and back to handle rigid sheets as well as roll-to-roll operations. These are generally not needed for 5m-class printers, but emphasis is put on the flexibility of roll handling. Registration for double-sided printing is optional.

As an optional extra, if two rolls are loaded, they can be different widths. With three rolls each has to be the same width. 

Another option gives up to nine lengthways slits made in the rolls as they come off the printer using V-Cut knives. Horizontal cuts can be made using roller blades to produce any length required.

The P5 500 uses arrays of Ricoh Gen5 printheads (indeed this is the major difference over the outgoing 5m Rho 512R model), with 7-picolitre drops, giving a resolution range of 700x1,200dpi to 900x1,200dpi. 

There are eight ink channels, which can be configured as dual CMYK for speed, or CMYK plus combinations of light CMK, white and clear varnish. If white is required it can be configured as underprint or overprint, or both, in combination with other colours and varnish.

There’s a choice of inks to give different hardness/flexibility characteristics after curing. The curing lamps are UV-LED, for long life and low heat transmission, so thinner plastics can be used to keep costs down. 

Some of the options on the existing 3.5m P5 350 hybrid will be standard on the 500 model – for instance there is no need for the 350’s heavy roll option as the 500 handles rolls up to 270kg. Relief printing (for raised effects) is standard. The HS option with dual heads will be introduced for the 500 in Q4.

A back-printer can add relevant job data and QR/barcode printing in combination with H-Cut, which Durst says allows length and width cutting with no loss of speed.

The optional integral provision for mesh printing is a motorised, auto-cleaning belt with pneumatic movement for fast media change. The P5 500 comes with the Durst Workflow RIP as standard. 

What’s the USP?

According to Bray, these include the option to have dual CMYK, increased productivity and the ability to print and cut finished rolls with no reduction of speed. Also the optional automated Integrated Mesh Kit, the back printer for data, and tools for quick media loading.

What’s the throughput?

Typical production-quality throughput is quoted as 180sqm at 700x1,200dpi with two passes. According to Bray, “Four passes are used for backlit and double-strike application. But generally two passes are acceptable for production requirements.”

What are the training options?

Durst provides on-site training, as well as at its headquarters in Brixen, Italy, where it has a new training centre.

What does it cost?

Starting from just under £400,000. 

What’s the availability?

Bray says: “Field testing has been extremely successful. Deliveries of the first printing systems start in Q4. There is significant interest in the UK and Ireland, and we hope to be able to make an announcement as soon as practically possible.” 


Process Piezo inkjet with LED-UV curing

Resolution 700x1,200dpi, or 900x1,200dpi

Drop size 7pl

Colours Up to eight – dual CMYK or CMYK plus optional light CMK – white, clear

Max printing width 5,240mm

Max roll diameter 350mm

Max roll weight 270kg (carbon axle) or 245kg (aluminium axle), 280kg for dual/triple rolls

Throughput 180sqm/hr with 700x1,200dpi, two passes

Price From around £400,000

Contact Durst UK 01372 388540


EFI Vutek Q5r

EFI has the widest range of 5.2m printers, with a choice of the Vutek Q5r, Vutek 5r+ , D5r and Matan, with price points reflecting different performances. They all support CMYK-plus-four additional inks including clear and white. 

Process Piezo with LED-UV curing and EFI-3M inks

Drop size 7pl

Colours Up to nine 

Max resolution 1,200dpi

Max media width 5.2m

Contact EFI 01246 298000

Flora XTRA5000

This Chinese 5m printer is said to conform to EU standards. It uses Epson high-res greyscale heads and can be driven by popular RIPs including Caldera and Onyx as well as Flora’s own Photoprint. There’s a backlight for live viewing of print on transparent media. 

Process piezo inkjet with UV-LED curing

Drop size 6-18pl

Colours Six: CMYK, white and clear

Resolution range 540x720dpi to 726x1,440dpi

Max print width 5m

Throughput 62, 80, 122sqm/hr (two row heads); 82, 120, 158sqm/hr (three row heads)

Contact Shenzhen Runtianzhi Digital Equipment Co +86 0755 2752 1623

Fujifilm Acuity Ultra R2 5000 series

The new R2 offers high quality and productivity. Fuji says it’s suitable for both OOH applications as well as high-end indoor displays thanks to small drop size and high-impact inks.

Process Piezoelectric drop-on-demand inkjet

Resolution Up to 1,200x1,200dpi

Drop size 3.5-14 pl

Colours Up to eight (CMYK light cyan, light magenta, white clear or dual CMYK)

Max throughput 400sqm/hr

Max media width 5.13 m

Max printing width 5m

Contact Fujifilm UK 01234 572 000

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