Durban-based Impress Print is poised to enter a new digital print era with an advanced HP Indigo 10000 B2 Digital Press.
IN the highly-competitive modern commercial printing sector, converters have to be flexible enough to handle a variety of challenges. And, for those wishing to take their products to the next level, embracing the digital age is a must.
Proving that digitisation can fast-track expansion is the team at Durban-based Impress Print who have been providing customised print solutions since 2011.
‘Our first digital press was an HP Indigo 5000 sheetfed press, initially purchased to accommodate short-run print jobs,’ comments Suhail Agjee, co-director of Impress Print. ‘However, with personalisation, customisation and print-to-order requirements increasing, we quickly expanded our portfolio to include high-quality photo books, bespoke packaging, personalised calendars and so much more.
‘In 2015, to keep up with fast-growing demand, we purchased our second HP Indigo press, this time a 5500 model. And, after completing a substantial expansion project at our Intersite Avenue production facility, we’re now the first commercial printing shop in Africa to introduce an all-new HP Indigo 10000 digital press,’ Suhail states. ‘Installed during the second week of September, tested the following week and commissioned on September 23, this state-of-the-art machine is already beginning to pay its way thanks to its larger format capabilities and advanced printing features and applications.’
As with all new pieces of technology, he emphasises there is a lot to be learnt, especially with operations on the Indigo 10000. ‘However, having previous HP Indigo experience has been helpful. Our operators also went abroad for training, prior to the arrival of the machine, and both Kemtek and HP technicians were onsite for two weeks upon installation of the machine to provide technical support and trouble shooting,’ Suhail explains. ‘HP and Kemtek will continue providing support over the next few months to ensure a general success in operating the press. Our relationship with Kemtek stretches back approximately 20 years.’
Putting value-add in print
The robust HP Indigo 10000 runs at 3 450 B2 sheets/ hour (or 4 600 sheets/hour in enhanced productivity mode) and can handle over 2 800 certified substrates, including coated, uncoated, coloured papers and paperboard for folding cartons – from a minimum thickness of 1.05mm, up to a maximum of 6.35mm. Up to seven ink stations can be installed for extended colour gamut or white or special colours, with an image resolution of 812 dpi at 8 bit, addressability: 2 438 x 2 438 dpi HDI (high definition imaging).
With its B2 sheet format and built-in duplex mechanism, the press makes it possible to digitally print any size application, including pocket folders, six-page brochures, posters, and even large lay-flat books. Within the next few weeks, the 10000 digital press platform will be upgraded with the capabilities of HP Indigo’s latest 12000 sheetfed press, providing substantial improvement in colour accuracy and consistency, an impressive range of design and print applications and an advanced productivity benchmark, plus PrintOS, HP’s proprietary cloud-based production operating system. ‘Overall, the speed and consistency of our new series four press is really impressive, and the B2 size is definitely a big draw card,’ asserts Suhail. ‘What’s more, the ability to provide top-quality print in a fast turnaround time is a tremendous value add. Overall, reinforcing our reputation for innovation and consistent high quality is what we’re all about and our latest HP investment gives us greater production flexibility and higher job throughput, as well as excess production capacity when required,’ he adds. ‘I’m convinced that with the gamut of advanced printing and finishing technologies that we now operate under one roof, backed by our quality-guaranteed personal service, we’re poised to become one of the largest Indigo-based digital printing hubs in the country.’
Accommodating the new press
Impress Print has made several changes to its facility to accommodate the new HP Indigo 10000 B2 Digital Press. Co-director, Suhail Agjee, explains the company has had to sell an old conventional litho press to create the necessary floor space. ‘We then renovated this space into an entirely new room to welcome this modern era of technology, and to meet the machine’s requirements. Additionally, we have made changes to the workflow to accommodate the much faster pace of jobs moving around.’ He adds the company will undergo further minor changes internally to facilitate the growth that has resulted from this expansion. The digital division has grown from two to 15 employees since 2011.