New solutions from Kodak Polychrome Graphics at drupa

In addition to the launch of the thermal direct non process plate, and the introduction of Matchprint Virtual Press Side Proofing System — the virtual proofing system designed for installation in the pressroom — KPG will bring new business opportunities to customers at all stages along the adoption of digital workflows with further plate, proofing and systems product launches, including additions to the plate solutions range for the commercial, packaging and newspaper markets.

Says Vic Stalam, vice president and vhief marketing and business development officer, “Visitors to our stand at drupa will see an exciting range of new solutions in plates, proofing and digital printing demonstrated under our ’Ideas Creating Opportunities’ banner. KPG research and development teams are constantly in touch with the marketplace to ensure we develop the right products at the right time for the right territories and can turn our ideas into business opportunities for our customers around the globe. The products we will demonstrate clearly indicate our commitment to this objective.”

KPG will demonstrate the new Sword Ultra Positive-Processing Thermal Plate based on its Sword technology. Incorporating third-generation plate technology optimised to meet European specifications, the presensitised aluminium plate helps users gain extra productivity without compromising on quality. The Sword Ultra plate offers simple, compatible processing with KPG market-leading Electra Excel plates and KPG positive plates such as Capricorn Electra whilst delivering a new industry standard in high solvent resistance for press use. On press, the plate achieves run-lengths of 200,000 impressions without postbaking and in excess of one million impressions when postbaked. The new thermal plate has optimal chemical resistance without postbaking which makes it suitable for UV inks. The plate renders consistent hard dots and reproduces ultra-high resolutions for a dynamic range of 1-99 per cent at 175lpi. It also allows users to take advantage of advances in stochastic screening thus enhancing print quality.

KPG will also introduce a new entry-level CtP system to allow small-to-medium customers to invest in a competitively priced, fully-integrated solution that delivers the benefits of the highest-quality thermal CtP technology. It will be initially available in Asia Pacific, Latin America, the United States and Canada.

The principal components of the ready-for-production system are a multi-featured ROOM (Rip Once Output Many) workflow and a market-proven, cost competitive thermal CtP device from Screen — the PT-R4100. The system also includes a server and an inkjet proofing device. “We have developed this system in response to input from small- to medium-sized printers that have not yet adopted CtP,” says Vic Stalam. “The companies involved overwhelmingly expressed the desire to purchase a competitively-priced, entry-level system from one single supplier that provided integrated workflow and color management.”

To demonstrate its commitment to providing digital options for customers, KPG will introduce an upgraded version of the Matchprint Professional Server IIc, version 3.2. This upgrade features a Kanji graphical user interface and double-byte (CID), third-party font downloader support to service customers in Japan and the Far East.

As a further digital output option, KPG will show its existing direct imaging press – KPG DirectPress 5034 DI — to demonstrate the extent of the range of digital output solutions available. KPG DirectPress 5034 DI, currently distributed in North America, opens new doors for users through its ability to print high quality, short run colour jobs on demand. The efficient workflow from file to printed page and fast makeready and turnaround times means the press can increase the throughput of colour jobs thus improving profitability.

Meanwhile, KPG will show a technology demonstration of a new CtP plate designed for flexographic packaging companies – the KPG Flexcel NX CtP Plate. Flexcel NX CtP plate delivers superior resolution and excellent colour reproduction on any packaging substrate – from the thinnest polypropylene to the thickest corrugated board. The plate is compatible with CtP devices with a sensitivity range of 830nm to 1064nm and can run on press with alcohol and water-based, as well as UV inks. Flexcel plates are designed with wide exposure latitude and extremely short drying times to meet today’s demanding quality and production schedules.

“Flexcel NX CtP Plate allows KPG to provide packaging solutions to meet the needs of all our customers. Packaging customers will be able to source lithographic aluminum CtP plates, a proofing system, film, and high quality flexographic conventional and CtP plates optimised for their market sector all from one supplier,” says Vic Stalam.

The Flexcel family of flexographic printing plates contains three additional versions that serve all segments of the package printing market including flexible packaging, label and tag, folding carton, corrugated, envelope and wide web paper.

From its proofing portfolio, KPG will launch the First Check Desktop Proofing System Macintosh RIP, thus bringing the benefits of this easy-to-use, affordable proofing system to the entire graphic arts community. The First Check Proofing System’s ability to reproduce opaque white and metallic colours allows packaging designers and printers to create low-cost, high-quality mock-ups. The First Check Transfer Film can be laminated to a variety of substrates to achieve the real look and feel of the package. Proofing to First Check Shrink Film is ideal for flexographic proofing applications.

KPG will launch a new version of its SWOP® certified Matchprint Inkjet Proofing System including KPG Matchprint Color RIP Version 3.0 and new Matchprint Media providing improved productivity to users. Version 3.0 of the KPG Color RIP is based on Adobe’s CPSI and incorporates KPG’s proprietary colour technology. The RIP supports additional inkjet printers, including new devices from Canon, HP and Epson, and the system provides improved colour and image control.

Important enhancements in Version 3.0 include: improved linearisation and calibration, increasing users’ control of their printers to ensure consistent output; the ability to modify existing profiles for improved colour, control and accuracy; the ability to print to multiple printers; and a new easier-to-use interface which boosts productivity.

KPG is introducing, for the first time, Matchprint Inkjet pigment-compatible substrates that will run on Epson printers using Ultrachrome inks. Matchprint Inkjet dye-compatible media is also available, improving image quality and productivity for those using leading dye-inkjet systems, including those from HP. The development means KPG provides solutions for both pigment-based and dye-based inkjet devices.

Both media deliver fast drying (instant in the case of the pigment-compatible product) and improved inkjet coating and paper/ink matching for excellent, long-term colour stability, image quality and accuracy. They are available in three tints — super-white, commercial and publication — in roll or sheet form.

Also on display will be new proofing capabilities for the Matchprint Inkjet System. KPG’s new software automatically takes screened data (one-bit tiff files) from high end workflows, colour manages them and reproduces them on an inkjet printer to preserve dot structure. The software, which is hot-folder driven and offer transparent processing, is compatible with a wide range of workflows.

KPG will show additions to the KPG Matchprint Digital Halftone Proofing System that extend the capabilities of the system for both commercial and packaging customers. New metallic media – Matchprint Digital Halftone Silver Media and Matchprint Digital Halftone Gold Media – and the new Matchprint Digital Halftone White Media enables users to create high-quality digital halftone proofs incorporating metallics or an opaque white underlayer — as required for package printing on clear or foil substrates.

The Kodak Approval Digital Proofing System will debut a new universal black donor that provides a superior emulation of today’s process black inks, in both hue and color overprint rendition.

Following success in the newspaper sector with the launch of the dedicated thermal newspaper plate, ThermalNews Plate, in 2000, KPG has developed an enhanced plate for global use. The new ThermalNews Gold Plate has a fast exposure speed of approximately 70mj/cm2 at an improved resolution of 1-99% at 150lpi. The highly productive plate can handle run lengths in excess of 200,000 impressions and the ThermalNews Gold Plate shortens cycle times in the pressroom by providing fast, make-ready, low waste and fast and accurate registration. The plate is suitable for use on the KPG Newsetter System as well as on other thermal newspaper platesetter devices.

Concludes Vic Stalam, ” As our new corporate message — Ideas Creating Opportunities — announces, we are not only in the business of developing the products highlighted above but also in bringing new ideas and creative solutions to our customers, so that they can identify and seize new opportunities in our constantly evolving part of the communications business.

“The KPG stand at drupa will provide a first look at real solutions to the challenges printers face every day, in every market segment. The KPG drupa experience will showcase a company ready to partner with customers, providing innovative technology and real business solutions.”

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