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Tried & tested: Komori Lithrone S29

The development of the B2 plus Komori Lithrone S29 series was an extension of the highly automated B1 Lithrone S40 series and the B2 Lithrone 28 series.

Tried & tested: Heidelberg Speedmaster CD74

Launched at Drupa 2000, the Speedmaster CD74 was introduced primarily as a packaging press and built using an entirely new design. However, over the past 10 years, the B2 machine has been tweaked to produce a number of different-format machines and printers have found various other applications for it.

Tried & tested: KBA Rapida 75

Unveiled at Drupa 2008, the Rapida was the first B2 press that used performance features and innovations found on the manufacturer's larger presses. The 75 essentially evolved out of the predecessor series, the Performa 74 and the Rapida 74, and according to Malcolm Riddle, senior technical sales support manager at KBA, it incorporated the best of both of them.

Ryobi 512

In the early 90s, Ryobi found itself facing a dilemma. Its customers that were using the single-colour 500K machine were increasingly asking for a two-colour press, while customers that were using its 3302 two-colour portrait machine were trying to meet to the greater demand for landscape printing.

Mitsubishi 3 series

According to Mitsubishi Lithographic Presses UK managing director Thomas Doliwa, when the B1 Mitsubishi 3 series was first launched, comparing it to other machines at the time was like comparing "a Toyota to a Vauxhall". The most popular press manufacturer in Japan did not install its first press - the 3E sheetfed machine - in the UK until 1987.

MAN Roland R300

The MAN Roland R300's popularity has held steady since it was launched at Ipex in 1993. Over the 10 years it was available in the UK, MAN shipped out an average of 10 per year. It has also found a strong foothold in the secondhand marketplace across the UK.

MAN Roland 500

In the early '90s, when MAN Roland launched its 700 press, many of its customers were a little apprehensive. The new layout was not what Roland customers were used to and it took a number of years for them to build their trust in the model.

Sakurai OL472ED

Sakurai's first footsteps into the four-colour B2 market came in 1989 in the shape of its OL472ED press. At the time of its introduction, it was one of the very first B2 presses to have double diameter impression and transfer cylinders in the seven o'clock configuration. Sakurai UK operations director Mark Jennings says: "This layout has subsequently been adopted by all manufacturers. This meant that when we first launched the machine, it had a considerable advantage."

Komori Lithrone 526

Since its establishment 84 years ago, Komori has been producing offset printing products. Its original flagship presses were the 40in and 29in Lithrone S Series, and the Sprint Series sheetfed offset machines. The more recent additions to its offset press line include the System 38 Series. It has also made currency-printing presses and, for many years, exclusively supplied Japans National Printing Bureau.

Hamada B452A-I

Pneumatic control and a heavy-duty build extend the life of the Hamada, making it ideal for a secondhand B3 press purchase, reports Lisa Berwin

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