Bishops Printers has returned to Heidelberg for its second Speedmaster XL 75-10-P with Inpress Control in less than 12 months as part of a £1.6m equipment upgrade.
The Portsmouth-based printer has also ordered a Stahlfolder TH 82 with stacklift, which managing director Gareth Roberts said was "testimony to the productivity of the latest generation of Speedmaster presses, forcing us to invest in postpress kit to keep pace".
Both the folder and the press, which is a replacement for Bishops' first XL 75 – a 10 colour that clocked up 310m impressions in its seven years' service – will be installed at the end of the month.
The Speedmaster XL 75-10-P is Bishops' second in less than a year, after it installed the same model in July 2014, which was its first press with Inpress Control automated colour and register control.
At the time Roberts said that the highly automated set-up could form part of Bishops' standard specification for future upgrades and replacements, adding: "We tend to replace a press at least every year and therefore Inpress would roll out throughout the business over the next five years."
True to his word, the firm has now replaced its oldest Speedmaster XL 75 with a new machine, fully equipped with Autoplate XL and Inpress Control.
"When we installed a press with Autoplate XL but not inpress Control it made some difference but when we added Autoplate XL and Inpress Control to the 10-colour we put in last year we saw a complete step change," said Roberts.
"Inpress Control has increased productivity, reduced makeready times, given us better quality control and reduced our start up waste by over a third."
Bishops handles sports programmes, commercial work and magazines across nine presses, including six 10-colours, an eight-colour, a six-colour and a five-colour. The 10-colour configuration is said to be ideal for uncoated stocks and silks as well as house colours.
Bishops' turnover has risen 12% to £24m in the last 12 months.