New Printer Brings 'Phenomenal' Quality, Labor Savings to Butler University
When Butler University Campus Impressions installed a new 44˝ HP DesignJet Z9+ aqueous wide-format printer a few months ago, the quality upgrade did not go unnoticed.
“Immediately we started getting comments about the brilliance and the vibrancy of the colors of the posters,” remarks Director Chris E. Davis.
But as big of an improvement as that was for the seven-employee Indianapolis-based in-plant, it wasn’t the main reason Davis chose that device.
“We can … trim-to-bleed large-format posters [on four sides],” he exclaims.
The DesignJet Z9+ has top, bottom, and side trimmers that adjust automatically for each image. This is an incredible time saver for the in-plant, especially on high-volume jobs, like a recent run of 92 posters (42x56˝) it printed to hang in residence halls, showing bios and photos of student workers.
“Before this device, we would have had to take those to the light table and hand cut each and every one of those four sides,” Davis remarks. “Very labor intensive.”
The new DesignJet Z9+ was sorely needed to replace the shop’s six-year-old HP DesignJet 5400, which had “outlived its life expectancy,” Davis says.
But although he had approval for the upgrade by early 2020, he says, “when the pandemic hit, all purchases were put on hold.”
So the DesignJet 5400 was driven to its limits printing the surge of COVID signage and floor graphics the in-plant was asked to do.
Davis is thankful the new DesignJet Z9+ is finally in place.
“It’s an easy 25% time saver,” he declares.
The shop is keeping it busy printing yard signs, bulletin board displays, directional signage, banners, vinyl floor graphics, and event signage.
“We printed over 300 signs for homecoming,” Davis says.
The output looks much better than it used to, thanks to the nine ink cartridges in the DesignJet Z9+, which include chromatic red, blue, and yellow, “which really adds a lot of depth to the images,” he says.
Though the inks are more expensive, the drastic difference in quality convinced Davis the cost was worth it.
“The quality is just absolutely phenomenal,” he enthuses.
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Bob has served as editor of In-plant Impressions since October of 1994. Prior to that he served for three years as managing editor of Printing Impressions, a commercial printing publication. Mr. Neubauer is very active in the U.S. in-plant industry. He attends all the major in-plant conferences and has visited more than 170 in-plant operations around the world. He has given presentations to numerous in-plant groups in the U.S., Canada and Australia, including the Association of College and University Printers and the In-plant Printing and Mailing Association. He also coordinates the annual In-Print contest, co-sponsored by IPMA and In-plant Impressions.