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Autumn Alert for Digital Debutantes


By Chris Matthews, Digital Business Manager of Heidelberg UK

Heidelberg UK will hold a digital printing specific event in the Brentford showroom this autumn – watch this site for details. This will offer printers the chance to view two newly announced SRA3 digital toner presses, the Versafire EV (V means Value) and the Versafire EP (P means Performance). Put another way the Versafire EV is for more creative applications and the EP for high volume production four-colour print.

The Versafire EV is a four- or five-colour press with five special colour options including a new “invisible red” which shows up under UV light and is ideal for security products. This is in addition to white (which can be printed before the laydown of the four process colours allowing users to print onto colour or clear substrates), neon pink, neon yellow and clear vanish.

The EV replaces the former CV product and offers faster print speeds (85-95 A4 ppm) on stocks of up to 360gsm and a higher resolution (4,800x2,400dpi). The inline calibration and inline register increases stability, precision and quality. The banner option is retained but now has the added benefit of being able to print a 700mm sheet length with full auto duplex, meaning printers can produce A4 landscape or A4 six-page work. In addition, A4 eight-page work can also be produced with sheet lengths up to 1,260mm in simplex mode with an optional feeder extension. This will appeal to B1 customers especially. In the UK almost all Versafire EV orders are likely to be in five-colour configuration because of the added value to be gained from the production of unique products incorporating a fifth colour. More importantly, printers can charge more for this type of work.

The all new Versafire EP can handle even heavier stocks, up to 450gsm or 600 micron, which opens up opportunities in short run packaging and prototyping. It has two speed options, 115 A4ppm or 135 A4ppm. There is an even longer banner option of 1,030mm (duplex) and 1260mm (simplex). The ability to handle 6pp portrait folders or A4 landscape products has been very popular in the market, but now, with full auto duplexing of a 1,030mm sheet length using an extended feeder option, printers can produce eight-page work with ease. The EP is an exceptional product with an especially competitive price/performance ratio. In short, the new Versafire EP is a real giant killer when it comes to the total cost of ownership compared to some high volume, higher capital cost products from other digital vendors in this market.

With both new Versafire products EV and EP users can add extra feeders, high capacity stackers and inline booklet makers at, or after, installation should customer demand dictate.

Both the Versafire EP and EV can run with Heidelberg’s powerful Digital Front End (DFE) which means the digital operations can be linked in to existing Prinect workflows. Standalone configurations of the DFE will also be offered to users of competitive workflow products. Users can expect to benefit from Heidelberg’s remote support services either way. The benefits of the DFE include special uncoated profiles as standard to emulate offset output and, subject to how customers maintain colour control on their offset presses, the Heidelberg DFE in combination with a Versafire can match offset press output with a high degree of accuracy.

Heidelberg is now on the brink of announcing early orders of the new generation Versafires. To find out more about these products contact your local sales rep or ring me on 07827-937069.

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