Big Welcome For Big Ten
More than 90 people converged on Purdue University recently for the 36th annual Big Ten Printing & Copyright Conference.
By Bob Neubauer
For the second year in a row the Big Ten Printing & Copyright Conference took place in Hoosier territory, this time at Purdue University, in West Lafayette, Ind. The first cold snap of the year didn't deter more than 90 in-plant and copyright managers from getting together for the 36th annual event.
The mood was set when Purdue President Dr. Martin Jischke told the assemblage, "Printing and copyright play important rolls in the future of this university." That statement was followed by two days of educational sessions split between the two topics.
Since many in-plant managers have questions about digital color printing devices and how they compare with offset processes, one of the conference's first sessions brought the key vendors together for a frank discussion.
Jim Bearss, of HP-Indigo, gave an inside look at the new Series 2 digital presses that will debut at Drupa. Each Series 2 engine prints up to seven colors and can image 2,000 four-color pages per hour. He also described HP-Indigo's liquid ElectroInk, which has a small particle size for producing higher resolution, higher gloss, sharp image edges and very thin image layers, similar to offset.
Fred DeBolt, of Xerox, noted that the dry ink toner used with the iGen3 digital color press offers color consistency across a range of substrates and has a wider color gamut than offset. The dry ink wraps around fibers instead of absorbing in. Also, he noted, the dry ink is non-toxic and has a transfer efficiency rate approaching 100 percent, meaning less waste is generated.
Danny Cutshaw, of Heidelberg, showed a printed piece that combined offset printing with NexPress output and invited an in-plant manager to examine it and determine how each page was printed. Though the manager identified most pages correctly, the exercise illustrated how closely digital color resembles offset quality. Cutshaw also showed some NexPress applications, where a university mailed recruitment post cards with different images and text on them depending on the interests of the recipients.