Star Product: HP Scitex FB7600 flatbed printer

Tim Sheahan
Wednesday, January 18, 2012

The latest version of this popular series adds a number of refinements

 

What does the machine do?

The HP Scitex FB7600 printer is the successor to the company’s FB7500 model, which has proved to be a popular choice since its launch in 2009.

The 3.2m-wide flatbed printer can print on a range of rigid and flexible substrates, such as corrugated board, paper, foam board, Dibond and plastics for both indoor and outdoor applications. It can print on sheets of up to 1,650x3,200mm in size and up to 25mm thick.

When was it launched and what market is it aimed at?
The FB7600 was launched in October 2011 at SGIA Expo in New Orleans. Much like its predecessor, HP is pitching the new model at large-format print businesses expanding into or migrating to digital wide-format production.

How does it work?
The FB7600 wields 312 Scitex X2 drop-on-demand piezoelectric inkjet printheads, each equipped with 128 nozzles giving the FB7600 a total of 39,936 nozzles. This, HP says, enables the press to deliver the ink quantities required to print high-quality images at high speeds.

According to Mark Rowland, HP Scitex country manager for the UK and Ireland, users can choose from six HP UV-curable colour inks, which the manufacturer claims offer "excellent dot gain and an impressive colour gamut". Preset print modes include matt, semi-gloss, gloss, spot gloss, and a new saturation mode for backlit displays.

How productive is it?
The FB7600 can print at a top speed of 500m2/hr, the equivalent to 95 full beds each hour.

It also features a new point-of-sale (POS) print mode that produces 55 full beds an hour at a quality HP says is suitable for indoor applications.

How does it differ from the FB7500?
The latest iteration of HP’s 3.2m flatbed introduced a number of improvements and upgrades upon its release last year. These include an optional multisheet loading table that enables the simultaneous loading of up to four sheets, while an ability to handle smaller sheets reduces post-print cutting and finishing.

Workflow and productivity improvements include inline saturation control, which improves colour accuracy for backlit applications, and automatic job preparation with hot folders and job queues.

The machine also uses HP’s new FB225 Scitex inks that Rowland claims have better adhesion on plastics, while improving flexibility on corrugated media. 

In addition to reduced odour, the company’s ink system is Greenguard Children and Schools Certified, a certification that helps ensure prints produced using the inks are suitable for use in indoor environments.

Lastly, the FB7600 can also print faster than before and with improved results on backlit jobs.

What is the USP of the HP FB7600?
According to Rowland, it is the patented six-section vacuum table and media handling system that enables production with difficult media without the need for masking. This is said to enable higher productivity and the versatility to handle more applications, both rigid and flexible.

How easy is it to use?
"As with all HP printers and presses, the Scitex FB7600 is designed for ease-of use to maintain workflow and minimise downtime," says Rowland. This applies, he adds, when producing everything from POS displays to banners, backlit displays and self-adhesive vinyls.

What training and support is available?

HP offers its Scitex Print Care suite to customers of its FB7600 machine. This is a set of tools and services that help users anticipate technical issues before they cause downtime. Rowland says these provide "quick, accurate diagnosis and resolution" that will help maximise uptime.

New developments to the Print Care suite include video camera remote support and online diagnostics.

How much does it cost?
The HP Scitex FB7600 press is available from £650,000.


SPECIFICATIONS

Max speed 500m2/hr
Max resolution 600dpi
Max sheet size 1,650x3,200mm
Max media thickness 25mm
Price From £650,000
Contact HP www.hp.com 0845 605 6013


ALTERNATIVES

Durst Rho 1000
The Durst Rho 1000 is a continuous UV board printer. It can output up to 500 boards per hour (1,250x800mm). It uses the company’s Quadro Array printhead technology and can be integrated into existing offset and screen workflows.
Max speed 500m2/hr
Resolution 600dpi
Max print width 2,500mm
Max media thickness 40mm
Price POA
Contact Durst UK www.durst-online.co.uk 01372 388540

Inca Onset S20
The Inca Onset S20 delivers output speeds of up to 310m2 an hour and includes software options such as Inca’s Print Run Controller that makes handling complex jobs simpler, according to company.
Max speed 310m2/hr
Resolution 600dpi
Max print size 3.14x1.6m
Max media thickness 50mm
Price From £550,000
Contact Inca UK www.incadigital.com 01223 577800

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