What's new on the stands at this year's wide-format expo.
Barbieri 6, Q103
Barbieri will be showing for the first time a special edition of its SpectroPad spectrophotometer tailored to meet the specific needs of digital textiles printing. It features an electrostatic sample holder to ensure the fabric sample is held securely in place and the SpectorPad DOC (Digital Output Control) system for process control. Barbieri says the large measuring aperture enables measurements of a large area and ensures highly accurate results. The SpectroPad uses three LED light sources to illuminate the fabric from different angles, which ensures reflections from the textile structure are appropriately handled to achieve as accurate a reading as possible. The benefit of LED light sources is that they produce real M1 measuring conditions (rather than a calculation) and D50 illumination.
Colorgate 6, S96
Colorgate will be showing the new version of its Productionserver package for the first time. Productionserver version 9.0 was launched in January and incorporates a range of new features and modules. It now comes with Adobe PDF Print Engine 3.5 for processing PDF and Postscript files. APPE 3.5 uses the same rendering technology as Adobe Acrobat XI. Colorgate says APPE 3.5 rendering performance has been enhanced through integration with Productionserver and that workflow stability has been improved. The new version includes two new modules: Access Control Module (ACM), which Colorgate says improves workflow security, and Multichannel PSD Module (MPSDM) for colour management, which enables the system to work with multi-channel files, such as native Adobe Photoshop files.
EFI 6, P10
EFI will be launching its Productivity Suite software, which was first announced at the EFI Connect user group event in January. According to EFI, Productivity Suite is a comprehensive portfolio of software packages for print and packaging. It is intended to address customers’ automation and efficiency needs by moving the workflow emphasis away from individual EFI software packages and modules to a complete offering that uses ‘best-of-suite’, end-to-end workflows, certified integrations and synchronised development.
Fujifilm 6, S9
Fujifilm will be demonstrating XMF Producer, part of the XMF production suite that enables printers to centralise, automate and pre-flight job layouts for production on flatbed platforms such as Onset or Acuity. XMF Producer uses a template approach to manage variable data, automatically arranging jobs over multiple beds once they have been pre-flight checked. The software outputs hundreds of bed-sized layouts that can be printed via any RIP in the production environment. In addition to the automation and speed benefits that XMF Producer delivers, its centralised function within a mixed device environment ensures production consistency.
Optimus 6, P2
MIS developer Optimus is unveiling its Dash Sales Manager module for the first time in Europe. The new module is intended to help staff organise sales activities, pursue new leads and respond to customer enquiries immediately. Sales Manager is designed to cover both active and prospective customers and includes a dashboard showing the user key alerts of information about customers and prospects assigned to them. Alerts are colour coded to ensure the priority is clear and correct action is taken. For existing customers additional information is available, including: Pending enquiries (Estimates); Active Jobs; Proofs outstanding; Deliveries scheduled; Invoices issued; and Customer owned stock levels. The information displayed can be drilled down into; for example, if the user chooses an active job, they are able to view the job and where it is in production instantly. For prospective customers, all organisations, contacts within the organisations and locations are available. If Enquiries (Estimates) have been sent and not yet ordered, these are displayed to trigger action and follow up. All activities raised in the Dash Sales Manager Calendar automatically updates the Optimus Cloud Mobile Calendar ensuring that reps on the road are kept up to date on activities required.
SA International 9, W30
SA International (SAI) will showcase the latest version of its Flexi signmaking software alongside the rest of its software software portfolio. Visitors to the company’s stand will be able to see live workflow demonstrations, which SAI says will demonstrate how Flexi offers the “easiest print-and-cut workflow on the market”. Some of the new Flexi features to be demonstrated at the show include the new Finishing Tools and the QR Code Creator. The Finishing Tools enable the user to quickly add grommet, fold and stitch marks as well as bleeds to banners. By handling this operation in the RIP, the design step in the workflow is eliminated, making it much faster and more cost-effective to produce pop-up signs that require bleeds or pole-hanging banners needing fold areas. The QR code Creator enables fast and easy QR code creation by automatically converting text into a QR code. Codes for web-links, email addresses, phone numbers and SMS messages are generated without the need for designers to download QR code images and add to designs. Visitors will also be able to see how the Textile Step-and-Repeat Tool enables quick set-up and production of patterned graphics. This visual tool helps to line up patterns quickly for seamless repeats and, as patterns only RIP once, printing begins quickly and the job size is small regardless of output length. SAI software will also be demonstrated on the HP stand as Flexi is bundled with HP Latex 310 and 330 Printers and provides the interface for HP WallArt 3.0, the custom wallcovering application. Fespa visitors can also hear directly from SAI’s senior product director, Dean Derhak, participating in the Sign Hub panel debate. The panel will address the challenges faced by traditional signmakers, while exploring how such companies are finding growth, and how they are incorporating creativity into their existing computerised and manual techniques.
Sign-Tronic 8, C15
Swiss computer-to-screen (CTS) specialist Sign-Tronic will unveil the latest device in its StencilMaster range, the STM-One. This new machine is a direct exposure device for imaging small screens. The STM One can produce screens of up to 1.2x1.2m at 1,270dpi and the firm says it’s a good option for those on a budget needing to print smaller-format screens. According to Sign-Tronic the machine offers quick exposure times and straightforward operation thanks to the front-loading format. The company will also be showing the latest addition to its STM-TEX series, the STM-TEX-S and a new developing machine, the G-Wash 175 XS.