Software Media & Inks



  • Latest Esko AVT innovation for print inspection at packaging converters delivers measurements “hundred times faster” 

    Packaging converters can now benefit from faster and more accurate inline colour inspection, with the launch of the latest innovation from Esko, AVT SpectraLab XF.


    Unveiled at the recent Esko Innovation Summit, AVT SpectraLab XF is a unique inline colour measurement solution based on a new, super-fast X-Rite sensor. With XRGA-compliance, AVT SpectraLab XF delivers the ability to measure during make-ready and production, ensuring colour and quality consistency across the entire print cycle.

    “When it comes to brand recognition and value, colour consistency and quality are absolutely crucial,” said Guy Yogev, Esko AVT Senior Director of Product Marketing. “The uniformity of a brand’s packaging color inspires trust and loyalty among consumers. But achieving perfectly reproduced brand colours for packages and labels requires converters to print to the numbers and monitor colour accuracy - all while manufacturing at high speeds and volumes.

    “Meeting this standard can be challenging, especially with increasing demand for shorter production runs as brands seek to grow market share with targeted campaigns, brand extensions and limited editions,” he said. “Using handheld manual measurement falls short of this challenge - measuring only a few points per roll is insufficient, time-consuming, and requires frequent operator intervention. AVT SpectraLab XF has been developed to help converters meet these brand expectations, through effectively measuring and monitoring during run-time and make-ready and ensuring converters print to colour target.”

    Delivering accurate and automated colour measurement for the full array of packaging applications, AVT SpectraLab XF incorporates a new X-Rite spectral sensor and can measure a complete vertical colour bar in a single repeat. Smaller, 4-5mm patches can be supported depending on press speed and a new LED lamp with M0, M1, and M2 correlates to offline inspection standards.


    “AVT SpectraLab XF is fast, accurate, and saves converters valuable time,” said Guy. “This new solution is capable of measuring colour targets and in-image colours in a much faster run time, delivering measurements one hundred times faster than before, with higher frequency and many more measurements per roll,” he said. “The technology delivers much better targeting and accuracy, and importantly can work with very flexible materials.”

    Guy explained that as AVT SpectraLab XF also enables measurements during make-ready, converters can save significant, valuable time in ensuring colour accuracy, as well as reducing job change time. “With the support for as small as 4mm targets or patches, users can also enjoy a saving on material trim area, while the optional data import/export option gives the ability to send data to various colour reporting systems, as well as ink-room interfaces such as X-Rite IFS.”

    Incorporating AVT SpectraLab XF into the inline inspection system not only saves time in setup, but it also maximises operator efficiency. “The system provides both visual inspection as well as colour measurement and enables every aspect of process and quality to be monitored. Using the BestMatch optional module, AVT SpectraLab XF suggests possible actions on press and saves time as well as reducing the workload further,” said Guy.  “It measures L*a*b*, Delta E, density and dot gain on flexible packaging and folding carton applications, comparable with offline devices, but all at point of print with no press stops, for maximum efficiency.

    To find out more about AVT SpectraLab XF, visit the Esko website. For details of the full range of Esko solutions, visit the Esko Innovation Hub at innovation.esko.com.

    About Esko
    Esko is a global provider of integrated software and hardware solutions that accelerate the go-to-market process of packaged goods.
    For each stakeholder in the process, Esko solutions enable them to work efficiently and deliver right-first-time packaging and marketing content on time, every time.
    Our goal is to make it easier for CPG and pharma businesses to manage their packaging, labeling, regulatory and marketing content. With our packaging management platform, brand marketing and packaging teams can increase their productivity, reduce costs, and save time.
    For packaging and label trade shops, premedia service providers and printer converters, we digitize, automate, and connect the entire print production process with software and hardware solutions for CAD design, prepress processes, flexo platemaking and print inspection.

    Facts & numbers

    • Packaging for 9 out of 10 major brands is produced by our customers
    • We are headquartered in Gent (Belgium)
    • Worldwide, we employ about 1,600 associates from 40 nationalities
    • We serve 25,000+ customers in 140+ countries
    • 61% of our staff are customer-facing daily
    • Our global sales network consists of 300+ direct sales staff and 120+ resellers

    For further information, please visit www.esko.com





  • NUtec Digital Ink has announced its latest UV-curable ink developed for Epson® DX4™, DX5™, DX6™, DX7™, I3200-U1™ & XP600™ printheads, adding to the company’s growing range of inks optimised for LED lamp curing.



    The Ruby R10-HYB is a general purpose, hybrid, UV-curable ink designed for rigid and roll-to-roll applications and is optimised for LED UV lamps. The company’s latest UV ink addition exhibits impressive flexibility for roll-to-roll applications while also providing excellent adhesion on a wide variety of rigid substrates.



    The R10-HYB performs well in a demanding, high speed printing environment and is designed for compatibility across a broad range of substrates including plastic, metal, wood and glass. Featuring a superior colour gamut for brighter, more vivid images, the R10-HYB is ideal for indoor point of sale signagedurable outdoor advertising and branded or custom promotional goods.


     


    The R10-HYB packaging configurations include 0.5L bottles, 220ml cartridges or 500ml cartridges. Colour options for an expanded gamut include CMYK, Lights and White plus a Varnish option for protecting your prints or adding texture and special effects.



     

    The R10-HYB printed images will last for up to 24 months provided the inks are used in regular applications using suitable substrates, while all NUtec inks are covered by the company’s Ink Delivery System (IDS) warranty.







  • Xeikon America today announced VariOne, a new variable data generation tool for Xeikon’s X-800 digital front-end. This integrated software innovation can immediately generate and print unique creative designs, based on an image or on vector graphics, in endless complex patterns. Xeikon’s VariOne is a true differentiator and has been developed and designed to add value and benefit brand owners, designers, illustrators, printers, converters and consumers. VariOne can achieve the highest levels of variable imagery possible today. Demonstrations can be run by appointment and the new VariOne will be commercially available as an option for systems running X-800 version 7.00 or higher.

    “Print is becoming more customised and valuable,” said Xeikon Director Product Management Jeroen Van Bauwel. “With VariOne, Xeikon is taking a significant leap forward in its research and development and now offers completely new horizons for differentiation. With VariOne it is possible to create thousands of unique and individual clips from a base design. With our new integrated variable data solution built into Xeikon’s digital front-end, the possibilities for producing unique images are limitless on both our dry toner and inkjet presses. The Xeikon strategy is to extend the capabilities of its X-800 workflow even further and expand the range of possible applications.”

    Differentiating products to meet consumer demand is a continuous challenge for brand owners. Consumers are willing to pay a premium for personalised goods, and they are on the lookout for products that uniquely express their personality and that can be shared on social media such as Instagram and Pinterest. In the fight against counterfeiting, which can impact consumer safety, brand owners are looking for new software technology solutions with extra image and text capabilities, and with hidden techniques to track and trace items such as unique patterns and images, hidden codes and guilloches. VariOne can be used as a tool to add an extra layer of security.


    With Xeikon’s VariOne, personalised image creation can be fully automated within the printing process. The software functionality achieves random selections from zero to millions. This variable data application offers endless uses and endless variations. What sets this innovation apart is the immediacy of the process. VariOne can immediately process, format and print unique creative designs featuring variable patterns with random elements and the widest gamut of colour combinations. Unique designs can be created on the fly and in minutes in a variety of unique patterns. This new innovation is a breakthrough and a complete game changer.

    The advantage of VariOne lies in the complete uniqueness of each design, which can be driven by the database or randomly created from bitmap or vector-based images, creating new and unusual designs in millions of shapes, styles and surreal effects. Brand owners will be able to utilise this opportunity in a variety of sectors with different applications for fashion magazines, retail catalogs, tourism marketing, promotional materials for football competitions or film festivals, as well as high-end label and packaging applications.

    For decades, cost has been the differentiator in our industries, but with the ever-rising costs of consumables and labor, it has now become virtually impossible to be successfully competitive based on that variable only. The focus has shifted to efficiency gained through automation. The new functionality of VariOne is the next step in efficient and sustainable variable data production, and VariOne also enables big savings in time and cost, both in prepress and in the pressroom. Van Bauwel said, “Xeikon is taking mass customisation to new levels with an explosion of creativity which will add value for everyone in the supply chain. Xeikon’s VariOne has taken a complicated prepress process and made it immediately fast and flexible.”





  • New features and functionality support business transformation and growth

     

    Packaging businesses can today benefit from more speed, efficiency, sustainability and quality across workflows, as Esko releases its newest innovations.

     

    True to its aim of continuous improvement through innovation, the global developer of leading integrated software and hardware solutions for packaging and labels customers has unveiled Esko Release 21.11. The update delivers a host of new features, functions and updates that further digitise, automate and connect processes to accelerate the go-to-market process of packaged goods. It also expands upon significant advances in software development and delivery to enable customers to achieve previously unattainable levels of connectivity, usability, and integration across workflows.

     

    “As a long-term partner to our customers, we are committed to innovating to ensure our solutions remain up to date and relevant, empowering and enabling anyone using them in the packaging value chain to benefit from operational efficiency, quality and sustainability improvements,” said Jan De Roeck, Esko Director of Marketing, Industry Relations and Strategy.

     

    “Many of the updates are focused on enabling customers to leverage the benefits of cloud technology,” said Jan, “which will boost connectivity, deliver further operational efficiencies and drive productivity across their entire workflow. Whilst further enhancements point to improved usability and the introduction of more automation and advanced reporting tools. These additions will further accelerate the business benefits Esko solutions have been delivering to users worldwide.”

     

    The new Esko Release 21.11 will be launched at a live Esko Innovation Summit, held in the UK, on November 18. Highlights include:

     

    Automation Engine - SaaS users can reduce data storage costs significantly with a new cloud storage facility, while enhanced integration and new performance tools help optimise workflow processes for users and ensure a completely connected workflow with more MIS partners.

     

    Flexo Engine – Included as part of Automation Engine, this new solution merges functionality, automation and a host of features developed to increase flexo plate room productivity. A new intuitive dashboard also helps to simplify operations. Auto Plate Cut further drives efficiency by automating the set-up of staggered cut plates – saving operators around 15 minutes per job. 

     

    PlateID – Part of Flexo Engine, this feature eliminates the need for handwritten labels and etching by automating the plate marking process, accurately imaging vital information with no additional hardware or steps to the workflow. PlateID ensures clear, permanent marking and removes the risk of ink loss in addition to the risk of manual error during marking. Operators can spend less time looking for the correct plates, leading to efficiency gains, and waste is minimised as the software calculates and identifies the ideal position for marks, to optimise plate utilisation. 

     

    ArtPro+ – The new Layout Edition of ArtPro+ includes basic step and repeat functionality as well as CAD-based sheet layout for improved speed. It features crucial prepress functionality to validate received artwork, such as Preflight, Inspectors and QA viewing, plus tools to create barcodes, new reporting and VDP templates, and dynamic marks. 

     

    WebCenter – As with Automation Engine, the latest WebCenter release features new simplified dashboard views. New usability enhancements and feature walk-throughs also make managing tasks and workflows easier than ever, and simplified deployment means users can now benefit from simpler and easier upgrades to newer WebCenter versions across sites.

     

    AVT SpectraLab XF – This new spectral measurement tool delivers inline absolute colour measurement at high press speeds. It measures L*a*b*, density and dot gain on flexible packaging and folding carton applications, comparable with offline devices, but all at point of print for maximum efficiency. With standard design and easy correlation to offline handheld instruments through a special calibration process, it is as simple to use as it is accurate.

     

    “The pandemic has accelerated existing packaging megatrends and added a fresh impetus for innovation,” said Jan. “This latest release underlines our commitment to working with customers to develop solutions they need to meet the challenges faced today while anticipating future needs.”

     

    The highlighted features represent just a sample of the latest innovations release. For more information about these features and the full range of Esko software solutions, visit the Esko Innovation Hub at innovation.esko.com.





  • NUtec Digital Ink is expanding its range of UV-curable inks optimised for LED lamp curing with the addition of the Ruby R20-HYB ink.

     

    The Ruby R20-HYB ink is a general purpose, fast curing, hybrid UV-curable ink designed for rigid or roll-to-roll applications and is optimised for LED curing.

     

    The R20-HYB formulation is designed for compatibility across a broad range of printer models using Ricoh® MH5420/5440 Gen 5; Ricoh® MH5220 Gen 5s and Kyocera® KJ4A printheads and performs well in a demanding, high speed printing environment.

     

    Featuring a superior colour gamut for brighter, more vivid images, the Ruby R20-HYB UV-curable ink is ideal for both indoor signage and outdoor advertising and is offered in 1L bottles in CMYK and light colours.

     

    This latest development in NUtec Digital Ink’s product offering fulfils an increasing demand for more environmentally-sensitive solutions, as LED lamp curing is considerably less energy-intensive with a smaller carbon footprint than traditional or conventional lamp curing.






  • French software creator Caldera has announced the release of the latest iteration of its award-winning RIP program, CalderaRIP Version 15, to coincide with the company’s 30th anniversary. On October 15, Caldera users will be able to upgrade their RIP for enhanced performance, increased flexibility and a clutch of new features which will further enable them to meet the challenges of the large-format digital printing industry.

    Highlights of the new version include six new features that will be available to all Version 15 users, as well as additional special inclusions for CalderaCare subscribers. Additionally, OS Support has been expanded in readiness for the release of MacOS Monterey and more than 20 new Print & Cut drivers have been added to V15 ISO. Along with the new version of CalderaRIP, the company is releasing V1.12 of CalderaDock, the toolbox which allows users to manage the licenses and installation of all their Caldera solutions. It now comes with an improved interface for attaching and switching RIP licenses and the Sync&Deploy module to allow users to install their drivers and profiles remotely.

    According to Arnaud Fabre, Product Manager at Caldera, “For our 30th anniversary, we’ve demonstrated our commitment to leveraging our customers’ workflows by adding a range of new features to our RIP. I’m delighted to see that entering our fourth decade, we are still fueled by innovation, while our customers continue to benefit from our rock-solid foundation as we address new challenges together.”

    The new features included in Version 15 will contribute to making it one of the most versatile RIP packages on the market. A new White Under Marks feature has been created for improved cutting accuracy on non-white media such as dark, transparent or metallic substrates, while the new Wide Contour Offset greatly improves the accuracy of the cutting process on shrinking or distorting textile substrates. Users will be able to automate their trimming workflow using the ASP (Automatic Slicer Positioning) functionality of the Fotoba XLA 170. This feature is unique to CalderaRIP and saves on manual processes while delivering maximum cutting speed, flexibility and precision.

    Version 15 also includes a new Preview feature to help keep track of nested jobs in high-throughput production environments. It facilitates job inspection and verification, before and after printing, and can be used to easily identify jobs inside the nest and check marks to minimize errors and media waste. The existing TileOrder feature has been improved, and there’s a new update of the Pantone Fashion and Home Interior Spot Colors library.

    Along with these enhancements to the RIP software, Version 15 comes with new features for CalderaCare subscribers, including a PrintProof feature to set up an efficient customer verification workflow and avoid unwanted waste,  and a new date filter in CalderaJobs to help operators easily find any job they need to reprint or archive. SmartImport has also been improved in order to further automate job submission workflows.. All Version 15 users will further benefit from changes to CalderaDock – the new V1.12 embeds an improved interface, plus remote deployment using Sync&Deploy.

    Samin Sarkar, General Manager, says, “CalderaRIP Version 15 continues our long tradition of putting our customers’ needs at the heart of what we do. Each new iteration of the RIP is designed to drive their businesses forward by providing the most advanced comprehensive digital printing software available.”

    caldera.com





  • The ink specialist provides a range of resources, including an Online Troubleshooting Guide, to ensure the best printing quality.


    Modern press technology continues to push the limits of printing. With press speeds increasing and brands becoming ever-more discerning, Sun Chemical has taken strides to ensure that converters are generating the best quality print.

    Sun Chemical offers an Online Troubleshooting Guide, which is a platform highlighting a range of common on-press challenges. By using this resource, Sun Chemical can direct users’ questions to the right experts for their applications. In addition, the company is using its social media channels, namely LinkedIn, to answer questions via the hashtag #SunSolve.

    Sun Chemical has identified drying speeds as one of the more common challenges affecting printers today.

    “One of the major issues we’re seeing is drying speed for the speed of the press, which can cause ink smearing or tracking,” explains Moe Rahmeh, technical customer service functional excellence director. “Those types of issues are non-starters because they’ll shut a press down quickly. Then we have all the variations of dirty print, which show themselves pretty regularly.

    “Regardless of job design, everybody wants to run the fastest they can run,” he adds. “When we come in, the first thing we do is recognise the type of job we’re running, that way we can make sure we have the right ink in the press to start with. Today, you need a drying speed for high press speeds while keeping the ink wet on the plate and in the anilox. You need to dry it fast enough to where you don’t have any smearing or blocking. The biggest issue for us with drying speeds is making sure the chemistry is right. The chemistry of the ink is extremely important to be soluble enough to print.”

    In order to successfully run presses at high speeds, there is a real marriage between the plates, the anilox and the ink, as they all work in concert with each other. For example, Sun Chemical has noticed a common drying issue as it relates to the anilox. According to Rahmeh, anilox technology and plate technologies are changing every day. So too is the surface treatment on the plates.

    “If the customer is trying to get some real high densities on their anilox, and they’re pushing the anilox volumes up on the screen values, then you end up with some drying issues,” says Rahmeh. “You also then start getting dirty print. Sometimes just by looking at the anilox and the volume, we’ll know if we can get this issue fixed on-press or if we’ll have to go in a different direction.”

    Sun Chemical has an extensive staff on-hand to help troubleshoot these types of issues. For Rahmeh, the company prides itself on asking as many questions as possible. The team has also been traveling extensively throughout the Covid-19 pandemic in an effort to help converters service their essential industries.

    “We at Sun Chemical have taken a different approach to troubleshooting,” states Rahmeh. “The main thing for us is asking questions. We’re asking a lot of questions before we even get to the customer, so we’re prepared to address whatever situation we might come across.”

    A big factor in Sun Chemical’s troubleshooting process is selecting the proper ink products for each customer. Tailoring a unique solution is key, as this is not a one-size-fits-all process.

    “As an industry, we’ve always made the mistake – to make it simple for the customer – we’re just going to give you one ink that does everything,” comments Rahmeh. “My goal is to give you an ink that you just put in the press and run it. We try to address all those conditions within our formulations.

    “At Sun Chemical, we can work with our own pigment group to develop these kinds of solutions,” he adds. “All of our solutions are coming from our experience in the field, and that’s really required. If we have all those things in place and we’re still having those kinds of issues, most of the time we find it’s just an imbalance in a viscosity or pH, and/or the anilox volume is too high or too low depending on the job design they’re running. We will come in and help you figure out the sweet spot.”

    Sun Chemical has also been active in collaborating with press manufacturers, especially as they launch new press technology. “We are in constant contact with them as they develop new presses, especially as it relates to drying speeds and drying mechanisms, as well as how they set up the dryers. We’re looking at everything that goes into printing, we’re giving the suppliers advice as far as what’s needed for different substrates and the separation of the inks.”

    Sun Chemical has developed a wide range of solutions for its NWTL (narrow web tag and label) customers. Not only are these troubleshooting resources available for seasoned veterans, they can serve a great need in helping those new to the industry get up to speed.

    “We put a lot of emphasis on NWTL market,” says Rahmeh. “We’re collaborating with a lot of people, and that’s why I feel really strongly about what we’re doing for the entire industry.”






  • Electronics For Imaging, Inc. has unveiled its newest digital front end (DFE) and workflow solutions for display graphics and industrial printing, EFI Fiery XF/Fiery proServer version 7.3 and EFI Fiery Prep-it workflow software.

    Print shops managing numerous wide- and superwide-format inkjet printers and cutters want a single DFE and automated workflow software that can simplify and integrate their operation, reduce operator training, and achieve consistent high-quality colour output. Fiery XF 7.3 with Prep-It addresses these challenges by adding the technology that highly productive organisations need.

    Hundreds of new supported printers

    Print shops with mixed-manufacturer printers can achieve greater production efficiencies with less operator training by having one RIP technology. Fiery XF 7.3 software and the EFI Fiery proServer digital front end (DFE) now have added support for more than 180 new printer drivers from Agfa, Canon, d.gen, Durst, HP, Mimaki, Mutoh, Roland DG, and Teckwin among others, bringing the total number of Fiery-supported printer models to more than 1,200. Customers can also now request a driver for an additional 400+ printers to complete support for their shop’s installed printer base.

    More efficient and flexible ways to print and cut

    Customers are no longer tied to one cutting workflow when they own multiple different types of equipment with the new capability to mix and match cutting equipment with print and cut printers. Fiery XF 7.3 increases productivity through QR code support for cutting solutions from Zünd, Esko Kongsberg, iCut, EuroSystems OptiScout v8, and MATIC cutters.

    Faster, more-powerful colour management

    This release also includes a new printing mode that can reduce the processing time of jobs that include spot colours by up to 50%. Users can choose between presets that select the highest accuracy (e.g., for proofing applications with certain spot colour settings) or highest speed as their priority when processing jobs.

    Print businesses with wide-gamut printers can make the most of their printer’s color capability with a new Clean Colors mode that delivers more-intense, vibrant prints. The newly supported PrintWide2020 ICC profile produces greater colour saturation and contrast for higher-impact prints while, at the same time, maintain G7 tonality, a neutral gray balance and realistic skin tones.

    Automated cutting workflows and cut path control with Fiery Prep-it

    The new EFI Fiery Prep-it software launching in November can dramatically improve cutting preparation and production in wide- and superwide-format printing. Prep-it delivers industry-leading true-shape nesting saving more media versus competitive solutions due to its superior image placement. Automated workflows, double-sided nesting control, sophisticated cut path editing and more significantly accelerate print to cut production. The exclusive Fiery XF integration with Fiery Prep-it to enable the support of more than 1,300 cutters for the Fiery Prep-it and Fiery XF combination.

    Offerings tuned to the unique needs of proofing vs production markets

    Fiery XF 7.3 now offers two versions that are more specifically tuned to the needs of proofing and production customers. The two different product configurations give customers in each segment exactly what they need, including the Fiery Color Profiler Option, at the right price – with room to grow when their businesses and needs change.

    “The advanced, highly automated Fiery XF, proServer and Prep-it solutions we are launching make end-to-end production more efficient and more profitable for customers,” said John Henze, vice president, sales and marketing, EFI Fiery. “These new innovations reflect our ongoing goal to help wide- and superwide-format print customers deliver the very best possible prints as quickly as possible.”

    The latest Fiery XF software release is now available for all users with a current EFI Software Maintenance & Support Agreement or an EFI Enhanced Service Program. Users can purchase Fiery Prep-it software from EFI, or from authorised EFI Fiery resellers. 

    efi.com





  • + CorelDRAW Introduces Valuable Subscriber Updates & New CorelDRAW Technical Suite

    Corel extends its CorelDRAW 2021 professional product family with new subscriber-exclusive updates for CorelDRAW Graphics Suite 2021 and unveils CorelDRAW Technical Suite 2021, the newest editio...

    October 05 2021

    Corel extends its CorelDRAW 2021 professional product family with new subscriber-exclusive updates for CorelDRAW Graphics Suite 2021 and unveils CorelDRAW Technical Suite 2021, the newest edition of its comprehensive software collection for high-impact technical design and documentation.

    Whether they choose CorelDRAW Graphics Suite or CorelDRAW Technical Suite, subscribers can now enjoy a more flexible way to stay up to date with productivity-boosting dynamic asset management and collaboration workflow enhancements, additional fonts, creative templates and more to maximise their creative potential.  

    “Whether you’re at the office, at home or working remotely, the CorelDRAW 2021 product family includes robust suites that enable graphics pros to work how, when and where they want,” said John Falsetto, Senior Director of Products, Graphics and Productivity. “With new features, helpful content and support for the latest technologies, these new subscription-exclusive updates offer creative and technical graphics professionals maximum value and deliver on our commitment to provide everything they need for success.” 

    Available for CorelDRAW Graphics Suite and CorelDRAW Technical Suite, these new subscriber-exclusive updates include: 

    • Work faster with dynamic asset management: Access and manage all assets from one central location and share symbols across teams. Easily sync updates to ensure you’re always working with the most current asset.  
       
    • Work even better together with enhancements to collaboration workflows: An enhanced collaboration workflow makes working with colleagues and clients in a remote world more efficient than ever. Enjoy a streamlined sign-in process and performance enhancements for faster saving, opening and sharing of Cloud designs.
       
    • Boost your creativity with new time-saving typography tools: Create stunning typography faster than before with new integrated access to the Google Fonts library in Corel Font Manager. Effortlessly browse, search and preview more than 1,000 font families from the Google Fonts library without having to install the fonts you wish to use. 

    Expanding beyond graphic design, CorelDRAW Technical Suite 2021 builds on the strengths of CorelDRAW to offer a full collection of powerful tools specifically for the creation of professional technical illustrations and visual documentation.  

    CorelDRAW Technical Suite 2021 offers exceptional control and precision for flawless technical documentation and design. From manufacturing and engineering to architecture and high tech, CorelDRAW Technical Suite 2021 is the ultimate hub for designing detailed technical illustrations, documentation, marketing and more with total control and incredible efficiency. 

    “Thanks to new timesaving tools and simplified workflows, CorelDRAW Technical Suite 2021 gives technical graphics pros everything they need to create exceptional designs,” said Klaus Vossen, Senior Product Manager, CorelDRAW. “Open everything from 2D and 3D source files to photos, documents and data. Produce, collaborate on and publish technical communications all with one comprehensive suite. Illustrators can boost their productivity and create intricate graphics or virtually any kind of technical visuals with total precision and control.” 

    CorelDRAW Technical Suite 2021 goes beyond the new subscriber-exclusive updates to also include the following new capabilities:  

    • Experience a seamless transition from 3D design to illustration: Easily turn repurposed 3D engineering data into detailed technical illustrations with a new thread workflow that simplifies working with bolts imported from XVL Studio Corel Edition. The new 3-Point Thread tool accurately snaps to the sides of your bolt as you drag the thread along it, and the new Remove Border tool quickly removes redundant outer lines of the projected shape with one click.  
       
    • Work faster with a reimagined approach to technical illustration: A reconfigured Projected Axes docker brings commonly used technical drawing tools and settings to the forefront of your illustration workspace. Now there’s no need to switch between dockers or other UI controls to move objects on a plane and moving elements along the projected axis is more intuitive. A new Projection Shortcut makes projecting shapes in and out of parallel perspective instantaneous. Save time with new Projection Bookmarks and the ability to pin custom perspective settings on your illustration for easy use at a later time.
       
    • Create complete spare parts pages with impressive new functionality: Experience a series of noteworthy new features purpose-built to power discrete manufacturing workflows. Import .DES, .CDR, and spreadsheet files into Corel DESIGNER’s Sources docker to couple technical illustrations with specifications in tables. Working with linked assets is easier with the ability to sync changes to designs and data when the files are edited elsewhere. New support for interactive SVG files conveys parts information with even more clarity and makes it simple to publish fully interactive documentation online.
       
    • Transform technical designs into compelling marketing assets: Go beyond classical technical illustration with access to the latest CorelDRAW Graphics Suite 2021 applications for professional image editing, page layout, font management and more. 

    Main Applications in CorelDRAW Technical Suite 2021: 

    • Corel DESIGNER 2021: Precision illustration and technical design 
    • CorelDRAW 2021: Vector illustration and page layout 
    • Corel PHOTO-PAINT 2021: Professional image editing 
    • XVL Studio Corel Edition: 3D visualisation and authoring 
    • CorelDRAW.app: File access, collaboration, and on-the-go illustration via web browser 
    • CorelDRAW.app for iPad: Vector illustration and graphic design iPad app 
    • PowerTRACE: AI-powered bitmap-to-vector tracing 
    • CAPTURE: Screen capture tool 
    • AfterShot 3 HDR: RAW photo editor 

    Extend the power of CorelDRAW Technical Suite 2021 with XVL Studio 3D CAD Corel Edition 

     
    Transform complex 3D CAD parts and assemblies into comprehensible visualisations with the XVL Studio 3D CAD Corel Edition add-on. Available as a separate purchase for CorelDRAW Technical Suite, this powerful 3D authoring software is packed with productivity and performance enhancements, as well as added file format support. Save time with a more efficient process for updating 3D-sourced illustrations in Corel DESIGNER, and experience more control over automated updates, thanks to enriched Auto Detection and Update functionality. 

    Availability and pricing 

     
    CorelDRAW Graphics Suite 2021 is available on Windows 10 and Windows 11, macOS, web, iPad and mobile in English, German, Italian, French, Spanish, Brazilian Portuguese, Dutch, Polish, Czech, Russian, Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese, Turkish, Swedish and Japanese. Subscription is $249 USD / €349 / £299 per year. A perpetual license with included 1-year maintenance is available at the suggested retail price of $599 USD / €933 / £778. EUR and GBP prices include VAT. 

    CorelDRAW Technical Suite 2021 is available on Windows 10 and Windows 11 as an individual license in English, German, French and Japanese. Corporate licenses are also available in Spanish, Italian, Brazilian Portuguese, Czech, Polish, Russian, Dutch, Turkish, Simplified Chinese and Traditional Chinese. (All licenses include XVL Studio Corel Edition in a choice of English, German, French or Japanese.) Subscription licenses are priced at $499 USD / £469 / €499 a year. Suggested retail price (SRP) for a full version perpetual license with included 1-year maintenance is $1,199 USD / £1,129 / €1,199. Perpetual license upgrading pricing with maintenance is also available. GBP and Euro prices include VAT. 

    Access to the newly included Google Fonts library integration, dynamic asset management features and collaboration workflow enhancements are exclusively available with a CorelDRAW Technical Suite subscription, a CorelDRAW Graphics Suite subscription or licensing with maintenance.  

    corel.com





  • + EFI ProGraphics UV LED XA Ink Now Available for EFI Wide Format Flatbed and Hybrid Printers

    EFI™ ProGraphics™ XA high-adhesion ink – a versatile UV LED display graphics inkjet ink from 

    October 05 2021

    EFI™ ProGraphics™ XA high-adhesion ink – a versatile UV LED display graphics inkjet ink from Electronics For Imaging, Inc.suitable for a wide range of rigid and flexible media – is now available for EFI Wide Format flatbed and hybrid roll/flatbed printers. ProGraphics XA ink delivers superior results on corrugated plastics and other substrates with adhesion challenges.
     
    EFI customer Kurt Kahmnke, owner of Fenton, Missouri-based Payler Signs & Graphics, has gained greater adhesion and durability on rigid substrate prints he produces on his company’s new EFI Pro 30h hybrid wide-format printer. The ink gives Payler Signs superior results compared to the UV inks the company uses on a flatbed inkjet printer.
     
    We’ve tested prints produced with the ProGraphics XA ink in our EFI Pro 30h printer in a variety of modes on Coroplast®, acrylic, aluminum composites and other challenging materials by spraying them with water, leaving them outside in the heat, and stacking them ink side to ink side,” said Kahmnke. “We are very pleased with the ink’s adhesion, quality, and performance and are confident that we made the right choice.”
     
    The ProGraphics XA ink does not chip during cutting when used on standard acrylic, corrugated plastic or other fluted polypropylene media. Plus, ProGraphics XA ink is flexible enough for 180-degree heat forming applications. Bringing this advanced ink to the EFI Pro 24f, Pro 30f, Pro 16h and Pro 30h wide-format printers gives sign and display graphics operations more capabilities in the range of applications they offer to customers.
     
    We are pleased to bring this exceptional high-adhesion ink to our Wide Format printer owners,” said Ken Hanulec, EFI’s vice president of worldwide marketing. “We continually strive to increase the value of EFI investments, and now customers will have the benefit of ProGraphics XA ink’s versatility, durability and flexibility to extend the range of substrates and surfaces they can print on.”
     
    When purchasing an EFI Wide Format printer, customers can choose the ProGraphics Series UV LED ink set that best meets their application needs. Other ProGraphics inks include:
     

    • EFI - 3M™ ProGraphics UV LED ink for flexible applications, including those that need to be stretched or heated or require the 3M™ MCS™ Warranty;
    • EFI ProGraphics UV LED POP ink for rigid board and flexible media printing of indoor and outdoor applications;
    • EFI ProGraphics UV LED Rigid ink provides the best surface mar resistance and is ideal for printing on specialty rigid media, such as lenticular lenses, steel, aluminum, and wood;
    • EFI ProGraphics UV LED Ultra ink for a highly diverse range of flexible and rigid media applications, such as banners, exterior signage, retail signs, interior architectural design, and those that need the best outdoor weathering performance without lamination.

    For more information about EFI Wide Format printers and inks, visit www.efi.com.





  • Electronics For Imaging, Inc., launched the latest update to EFI™ Fiery® Command WorkStation®, version 6.7, which helps Fiery customers improve automation and job management to better handle growing numbers of short-run print jobs. Fiery Command WorkStation enables a unified Fiery Driven™ print room, allowing users to control all Fiery servers, either local or remote, thereby gaining operational efficiencies and increasing productivity.
     
    A long-time user of EFI™ Fiery® digital front end solutions, sedruck KG in Leipzig, Germany found that the new features in the latest EFI Fiery Command WorkStation — available as a free upgrade — helped the company better manage print jobs and improve their turnaround times on a growing volume of short-run, quick-turn print jobs.
     
    ‘Getting us back into full production faster’
     
    The fact that we can now search for jobs across all of our 10 Fiery digital front ends is amazing, it saves us up to 80% on time and energy per search to find what we are looking for. Having two methods to pinpoint a job or jobs is also extremely valuable, plus, the interface has been kept super-simple,” said Manfred Gebauer, head of Purchasing & Technology Process Management at sedruck KG. “This new function also provides supervisors insights into a job’s journey. Multiple hits across queues and servers can indicate production challenges that are difficult to identify in other ways, allowing us to investigate and fix issues more readily, getting us back in to full production faster. Thank you, Fiery Team.” 
     
    Many print businesses face the same kind of production pressures. According to data from industry research company Keypoint Intelligence, nearly a third of European print service providers and 55% of North American print service providers reported that dealing with a high number of small jobs is a primary challenge for their current workflow. As the number of orders increase, print service providers in many parts of the world are also facing labor shortages, a factor that makes automation more necessary than ever.
     
    Find it, prepare it and print it better with version 6.7

    The new version 6.7 of Fiery Command WorkStation – the management software that comes with all Fiery digital front ends (DFEs) for cut-sheet and wide- to superwide- format printers – addresses the most pressing job volume and labor needs of print service providers by speeding up the administration and production of print jobs with several new enhancements. Automated job tagging using print presets now helps customers classify, find, and manage jobs faster. And, a new search tool gives users the power to search for jobs across all their connected Fiery DFE servers. Both features save valuable time when managing a large volume of jobs in fast-moving print shops.
     
    Command WorkStation – working in tandem with connected Fiery Workflow Suite software – also makes other important print job preparation tasks simpler and faster for print service providers. In the new release, for example, the Workflow Suite’s Fiery ImageViewer solution has new controls for reordering, duplicating, or deleting pages, eliminating the need to step out of the tool for simple page-level edits.
     
    Print businesses can save even more timing by using Fiery Hot Folders with Command WorkStation 6.7 to automate server presets, imposition templates and more. And, for variable-data jobs, users also have the ability to significantly streamline job submission tasks using another integrated solution, Fiery FreeForm™ Create – a free, award-winning product for designers and Command WorkStation users.
     
    Getting many short-run, high-quality jobs done as fast as possible is in the Fiery DNA, and we have always been focused on the challenges of high-volume, short-run work,” said John Henze, vice president of sales and marketing, EFI Fiery. “Our customers choose Fiery because it excels in this area, and this newest Command WorkStation release gives customers even more of what they want.”
     
    For more information about EFI Fiery Command WorkStation and other advanced print solutions from EFI, visit www.efi.com.





  • Sun Chemical has launched its Streamline TVL 2 ink series to support the sign, display and graphics market for use with Roland’s SG2 and VG2 range of eco-solvent inkjet printers.

    The Streamline TVL 2 ink series is a fully color-matched CMYK, Lc, Lm and Lk ink series supplied in 500ml pouches which are fully mixable with Roland TR2 ink series, enabling a simple and fast transition to Streamline TVL 2 inks.

    Formulated with Sun Chemical’s low odor chemistry, the Streamline TVL 2 ink series is Greenguard Gold certified for low indoor emissions. In addition, Streamline TVL 2 inks are GBL free, ensuring full regulatory compliance for sales in all regions across the world.

    The Streamline TVL 2 ink series provides added value for both print shops and customers by enabling same-day print and print finishing. The Streamline TVL 2 ink series allows print shops to print and laminate jobs within six hours, thus enabling customer express order requests.

    Streamline TVL 2 also improves print-shop productivity, simplifying the production workflow by eliminating the need to store interim prints before they are ready for finishing.

    “After thorough trials with customers across Europe and the United States, covering a wide range of substrate (media), we are excited to launch the Streamline TVL 2 ink series, which has been met with universally positive feedback for its print performance and quality,” said James Gould, Product Manager of Streamline Inks, Sun Chemical.

    sunchemical.com





  • + Developments in the US: Beaver Paper Launches Revolutionary New Fabric Line that Goes Beyond Recyclable

    Beaver Paper Group, a leading manufacturer of sublimation media, is proving their commitment to producing sustainable products with the launch of their new TexStyles NatureSeries family of graphic ...

    September 21 2021

    Beaver Paper Group, a leading manufacturer of sublimation media, is proving their commitment to producing sustainable products with the launch of their new TexStyles NatureSeries family of graphic fabrics. NatureSeries is a revolutionary line of sublimation fabric made with cutting-edge sustainable CiCLO technology. In ideal conditions, fabrics made with CiClO will biodegrade at the end of their lifecycle within three to five years as opposed to 60 years for traditional synthetics in the same conditions, including recyclables.

    Currently, over 44 million pounds of synthetic textiles end up in U. S. landfills each day! Since synthetic textiles are extremely popular, Beaver Paper’s fabric manager, Jeff Mills, spent almost two years researching and developing the NatureSeries Soft Knit fabric to help mitigate the negative effects of synthetic textiles and raise the bar on sustainability within the industry. Beaver Paper’s new Soft Knit with CiClO will help reduce textile accumula­tion in landfills.

    Since it is the most widely used fabric for exhibits and retail signage, Mr. Mills focused on creating a truly sustainable soft knit fabric including attention to the products end-of-lifecycle.  The new NatureSeries Soft Knit fabric will be a major rival to the many soft knit recyclable fabrics currently on the market.

    “My goals in creating NatureSeries Soft Knit were to take the most popular fabric used in the industry and make it truly sustainable, and to challenge the industry to think about sustainable standards for end-of-life products that end up in our landfills,” said Jeff Mills, TexStyles Product Manager.

    NatureSeries vs. Recyclable Fabric

    Recycled fabric, while a step in the right direction, still ends up in a landfill at the end of its lifecycle and can remain there, in ideal conditions, for up to 60 years. On the other hand, as NatureSeries graphic fabrics hit the landfills, its CiCLO® additive technology goes to work, in ideal conditions, breaking down the fabric so that it is close to 95% degraded within 3-5 years.

    “It’s exciting to be launching our NatureSeries line  that highlights our commitment to producing high-level sustainable products,” said Tobias Sternbeck, CEO of Beaver Paper. “I believe our new NatureSeries fabric goes beyond anything in the industry today, in reducing synthetic textile pollution.”

    How It Works
    CiCLO is a sustainable textiles ingredient in the form of an additive that is combined with polyester during melt extrusion at the beginning of the fibre making process. CiCLO additive creates millions of biodegradable spots in the matrix of the plastic where microbes that naturally exist in certain environments, such as landfills, can break down synthetic materials like they do with natural fibres. Third party lab studies, using recognised ASTM Test Methods, show greatly accelerated rates of biodegradation compared to traditional synthetics in landfills, sea water, and wastewater plants.

    NatureSeries Soft Knit, made with CiCLO fibres, looks and feels like traditional synthetics with the same high performance and durable characteristics but behaves more like natural fibres if they end up in the environment. The new Soft Knit fabric has been tested to ensure traits such as tenacity, pilling resistance and printability are unchanged. It is also proven to be safe for use in sustainable textile applications by a third-party OEKO-TEX ECO PASSPORT certification and meets industry requirements for safety and health.

    NatureSeries graphic fabric is durable and produces the most vivid colour reproductions. NatureSeries possesses all the characteristics of high-quality polyester graphic fabrics with one exception, when it is discarded, it will not stay piled in the world’s landfills for up to 60 years.

    beaverpaper.com





  • + ASLAN Introduces Three New Products

    ASLAN, the German specialist for self-adhesive films, keeps developing new solutions and introduces three new exciting products. MagicProtect Matt ASLAN SL 99 – it’s a lami...

    September 07 2021

    ASLAN, the German specialist for self-adhesive films, keeps developing new solutions and introduces three new exciting products.

    MagicProtect Matt ASLAN SL 99 – it’s a laminate with a magical, repellent effect against paint, varnishes and dirt. Made from a special top coated 80 μm PVC film, it was developed for smooth and rough surfaces. It comes with a matt, repellent coating that protects prints successfully against graffiti, dirt and other surface vandalism. The effect is the same like water on a lotus leaf – the paint is dripping off while spraying. Due to this effect, the sprayer cannot complete his work and very quickly loses interest in the “artwork”. Paint does not stick to the surface, vandalism is prevented. When laminated on smooth substrates, graffiti can be removed just like of other dirt and staining. When it comes to rough surfaces, the ASLAN MagicPro Cleaner will help to clean graffiti very easily. The film is available in 1.37 x 50m rolls. Once applied, it will last up to 3 years outdoors.

    Holographic ASLAN SE 72 is a silver self-adhesive film with a holographic effect. Based on a 50 μm polyester it shimmers in the colours of the rainbow. To make it unique: Not only does the film have the same effect on both sides, but it also has no repeat pattern, as holographic materials usually have. With its in-house developed solvent-free special adhesive the film offers an outdoor durability of up to 3 years outdoors. Holographic ASLAN SE 72 is printable with latex and UV-curing inks, is suitable for smooth and flat surfaces. It will be perfect for use in retail stores, shop windows, exhibitions as well as for visual merchandising. The film is available in 1.01 x 25 m rolls.

    WrapTheBase ASLAN DFP 48 is the last born in the already wide range of ASLAN floor graphics films. It is suitable for indoor smooth floors, is based on an 80 μm PVC film, and is not only easy to apply and reposition during application, but is also perfectly removable in one piece without leaving any residue. The films will get its perfect slip resistance in combination with FloorProtect ASLAN MP 326 (R9) or PremiumFloorProtect ASLAN MP 300 (R12). As a very special highlight, as you know it from several other ASLAN floor graphic solutions, the printed floor graphics film, when combined with ASLAN floor laminations, offers the Bfl-s1 EUROCLASS fire certification for floors. WrapTheBase ASLAN DFP 48 is available in 1.37 x 50m rolls.

    aslanvinyls.com





  • + Automatic Production Monitoring with Z√ºnd Connect

    Zünd Connect compiles production data from integrated Zünd cutting systems into meaningful key performance indicators, such as cutter capacity, availability, and overall equipment effecti...

    September 07 2021

    Zünd Connect compiles production data from integrated Zünd cutting systems into meaningful key performance indicators, such as cutter capacity, availability, and overall equipment effectiveness. Zünd Connect creates transparency and identifies areas in the digital cutting workflow with potential for optimisation.

    There are many ways to optimize digital cutting and ensure maximum productivity, which is the reason why Zünd now offers Zünd Connect, a monitoring tool that helps the user recognise this potential and increase productivity. Using Zünd Connect, the user can see at a glance when and, more importantly, why machine interruptions occur, how much time is spent in setup, and what the availability of each machine is.

    The most successful companies are the ones that produce the most saleable products per hour. High machine availability and productivity are essential for profitable cutting and finishing. As simple as this may sound, it is no small thing in the day-to-day production environment. Where do the relevant key performance indicators come from? Is data available that enables monitoring? And last but not least, how is the data compiled so that it can be interpreted accurately and reliably?

    This is where Zünd Connect comes in. The web-based monitoring tool gives the user access to cutter- performance data at a glance, any time of day. Reliable key performance indicators are available at all times to help users maximise productivity. The system records productivity levels over a freely definable period using Zünd Cut Center – ZCC (Version 3.4 or later) as data source. Data monitoring provides information users need in order to make informed decisions. This comprehensive overview of production data reveals connections that are often overlooked. Zünd Connect supplies valuable key performance indicators for assessing how efficiently cutting systems are working. To be able to improve cutter efficiency, potential areas of improvement must be uncovered and recognised. This potential lies primarily in the technology but also in the way it is being used. Zünd Connect consists of multiple dashboards with specific options for evaluating data:

    Overview–This dashboard provides past production data and indicates, for example, fluctuations in machine utilisation. The user can select various views and switch between indices for overall equipment effectiveness (OEE), availability, and capacity. In addition, a filter function can be used to compare performance across different shifts.

    Job list– This shows a list of processed jobs, what they entailed, the time it took to produce them, and the cutting distance traveled per job. Diagrams show the time spent by each individual material/substrate, processing method, tool, and module. In reference to materials, for example, bar graphs show the processing time for each material used during a specified time frame. Loss detection – This view visualises losses in terms of time. It shows, for example, when process interruptions tend to occur most often. Loss detection enables the user to evaluate factors such as the specific time frames, materials, or tools most likely to be associated with interruptions.

    Interruption statistics – This lists the reasons for such interruptions. The user can filter for time of day, material, method, tool, or module. The statistical representation shows the user how many hours the cutters were unable to produce during a specified period because of machine interruptions.

    Zünd Connect is available in a “Monitor” or an “Analyzer” version. As the name suggests, “Monitor” consists of a graphical display of overall equipment effectiveness and is available to all ZCC users for free. “Analyzer”, on the other hand, makes it possible to perform subsequent analysis and pinpoint productivity losses. “Analyzer” provides the necessary tools for the user to be able to evaluate the production process and recommend improvements.

    zund.com





  • + Nazdar 270 Series UV-LED inks now available globally

    Nazdar Ink Technologies has announced the global availability of the 270 Series of UV-LED inks. This general graphics/product print ink set has been specifically designed for UV-LED cu...

    September 07 2021

    Nazdar Ink Technologies has announced the global availability of the 270 Series of UV-LED inks.

    This general graphics/product print ink set has been specifically designed for UV-LED curing with ambient temperature controlled printheads.

    The Nazdar 270 Series low viscosity, low-odour inks offer a replacement for UV-LED printers that do not require an ink to be heated to jet at a certain specification. The vibrant inks deliver long-term exterior performance with proven resistance to UV degradation and colour fade.

    Adhering to a number of both flexible and rigid substrates including vinyl, styrene, sintra, foamboard and polycarbonate, the cost-effective inks have been formulated to provide 2 years' outdoor durability when mounted vertically.

    On the introduction of the new ink set, Josh Lutz, Nazdar's Global Market Segment Manager for UV Digital Inkjet Inks, comments: "The 270 Series inks were developed in direct response to feedback from end-user customers regarding the globally-successful 260 UV-LED Series inks. The new updated formulation delivers a stronger colour strength with a noticeable increase in black; lower odour to accommodate office environment printing; and an increased surface cure response to lesser powered LED units."

    "As with all our ink solutions, the 270 Series are covered by one of the most comprehensive warranties in the market which enables businesses to confidently take advantage of the increased efficiency and cost-effectiveness offered by Nazdar's fully field-tested products."

    For full information regarding validated equipment, please see the Nazdar 270 Series Technical Data Sheet.





  • + Esko unleashes the power of Variable Data Printing with world-first integrated automation solution

    Esko has delivered a world-first in connected packaging production, supercharging secure Variable Data Print (VDP) capabilities in terms of both speed and scale for a new collaboration with Scantru...

    August 31 2021

    Esko has delivered a world-first in connected packaging production, supercharging secure Variable Data Print (VDP) capabilities in terms of both speed and scale for a new collaboration with Scantrust and pioneering packaging company ePac Flexible Packaging®. Esko Automation Engine is at the heart of the operation, with its innovative VDP technology enabling the printing of serialised and secure QR codes on flexible packaging on a mass scale, unleashing the power of VDP for the new connected packaging and connected goods service, ePacConnect™.

    “Variable Data Printing has the ability to take the role of packaging to a whole new level,” said Esko Product Manager, Paul Land. “With opportunities for localisation, serialisation, personalisation and traceability, the advances in automation mean it is now possible to further harness the technology to transform the prepress environment. With cloud deployment for 24/7 global access to data and new scalability capabilities, Automation Engine is enabling ePac to realise the power of VDP for an organisation without the downsides.

    “By connecting the VDP module in Automation Engine with Scantrust, we have created a framework for codes that makes it easy for converters to use,” said Paul. “Not only is this implementation the first of its kind, but it also unlocks capabilities that were previously difficult to achieve.”



    Because every ePacConnect™ flexible pack includes a Scantrust QR code, every pouch becomes an online gateway. The unique on-pack code, which is smaller than a postage stamp, activates the Scantrust suite of connected goods and connected packaging tools. Accessible features range from consumer engagement tools to active brand protection and anti-counterfeiting features that work through scans of a safe QR code on the pack.

    “Scantrust gives every single physical product a unique digital identifier, which adds complexity for prepress and production,” said Peter Kostur, Scantrust Sales & Partnership Director. “Our platform can deliver protection against counterfeiting and improve traceability within the supply chain as every single label, pouch, or bottle can be traced, even when in the hands of the consumers,” he said. “Brands utilise such digital interface technology to connect with consumers, integrate with loyalty platforms and customer relationship management tools, and also for internal supply chain operations. When incentivizing consumers to interact with the products, not only can the relationship and trust between brand and consumer be significantly improved, it can also help by crowdsourcing the supply chain data for further strategical improvement.

    “There are three building blocks to making the connected packaging,” added Peter. “There’s the variable QR code, a mobile environment enabling the user interactions, and a platform that enables the customer to manage the codes, product content, and extract the data. However, each project starts with a question from the brand: How do we get the variable data on our product?”

    Automation Engine makes the integration of VDP requirements as easy as a few mouse clicks. “It is now simple to integrate the VDP requirements into the process,” said Paul Land. “The process can even happen in the cloud, for added flexibility in terms of printing a job at any location.

    “Typically, once the order details are entered, the information is passed through into Automation Engine which then acts as the enabling platform between all the systems,” he said. “It consolidates and pulls the variable data information through, determining the quantities and parameters of the job. So for example, with a quantity of 100,000 records it expands the files and the variable elements for printing, and then automatically expands the template file to the quantities needed - each with its own unique QR code - and lays them out for production. The automation means that a process that used to take hours or even days is now completed in just a few minutes.”

    Ryan Kiley, Director of Market Development, ePac Flexible Packaging®, said the ability to produce mass scale VDP regardless of run size had been a game changer. “Scale is where the rubber meets the road,” he said. “Scale is what we can accomplish through working together. Now, with a single click, a customer can turn their packaging into an interactive platform delivering consumer engagement, proof of provenance, and brand protection while reducing touchpoints in prepress and production.

    “With the VDP automation, we can accelerate our rate of growth as we add plants, people, systems, languages, currencies, substrates, structures and other technologies,” said Ryan. “And with Automation Engine being cloud-based, it means we have total control over our production – with our teams able to access files from anywhere, at any time for 24/7 operation, scale production up or down to meet demand and enabling us to divert the production to any plant around the world.

    “As a result, our ePacConnect™ service has achieved customised, flexible packaging with connected packaging features that require very little or no up-front costs, lower minimum order requirements, and minimal technical setup.”





  • + NEW CONTRA VISION PRODUCT TO CREATE IMPRESSIVE DUAL-COLOUR SIGNAGE

    Contra Vision are proud to present a great value product that makes signs stand out both day and night. Contra Vision® Performance™ Black Perforated Film in 20% transparency is a black on...

    August 10 2021

    Contra Vision are proud to present a great value product that makes signs stand out both day and night. Contra Vision® Performance™ Black Perforated Film in 20% transparency is a black on black perforated film intended for the production of dual-colour back-lit signage.
     
    The film is applied to the outside surface of built-up channel letters and during the day, when it is not backlit, the letters appear black. When the sign is backlit at night, it takes on the colour of the translucent sign face used.
     
    Already this product has been used successfully by sign makers based predominantly in the USA but with increasing use in other countries. Recently, it was used by Rainbow Signs and Maintenance, who are based in Northern Ireland, on the Carryduff Community Church sign and the installation has been met with a great response.
     
    Gavin, Lead Pastor at Carryduff Community Church said of the response to the sign,

    “We love the sign and have had a number of very positive remarks about it from the general public as well as the folks who attend the church.”

    This 20% transparency film gives greater night-time light output than other lower transparency products currently available on the market. This means signage will stand-out to passers-by due to its vibrancy.
     
    Alternatively, we offer a white on black perforated window film in 20% transparency which can be printed to produce channel lettering that is coloured by day and white at night.

    www.contravision.com/case_studies/carryduff-community-church-dual-color-backlit-signage/

    www.contravision.com





  • + Packaging and labelling lead times slashed for brands with Esko content management solution

    Content Management in WebCenter from Esko is making significant time and cost savings for brands, with one multinational customer reducing its end-to-end labelling lead time from 14 weeks to just 1...

    August 03 2021

    Content Management in WebCenter from Esko is making significant time and cost savings for brands, with one multinational customer reducing its end-to-end labelling lead time from 14 weeks to just 14 days with structured content.

    As a result of the global pandemic, consumers now place significantly more value on food safety and hygiene, according to McKinsey1. As brands adapt their packaging and labelling to meet changing regulations and legislation, it’s essential that speed to market must not come at the cost of accuracy to maintain consumer trust and confidence.

    Matthew Haws, vice president global marketing at Esko Brand Solutions, said: “In reality, many businesses are still working with disconnected processes, which is a real minefield when it comes to approvals. In the case of heavily legislated industries, such as pharmaceuticals for example, it slows lead times down if multiple stakeholders are struggling to track various versions of both content and artwork for approval.”

    The content management function of Esko workflow management software, WebCenter, which includes both packaging and structured elements, makes it simple for teams to specify, manage and reuse content to be used in artwork designs by connecting content and workflow directly in the artwork creation process.

    “This single source of truth helps brands to navigate the complexities of managing content when creating and marketing consumer products,” continues Haws. “Enhanced efficiency, faster lead times, and improved quality can be planned into one central process.”

    WebCenter structured content coordinates regulatory efforts company-wide, including affiliates and partners within a single‚ÄØsystem‚ÄØtightly integrated with label and packaging departments. Through collaborative editing and improved traceability, brand teams can re-use approved content for labels, IFUs, and leaflets with complete confidence.

    When every element that makes up a label or pack on a consumer product must be created and approved at a rapid pace, the ability to manage the creation and approval of everything down to barcodes and symbols, in one system, ensures that packaging and labels are compliant and error-free.

    “Eliminating error-prone manual processes and increasing efficiency by automatically feeding content into artwork is invaluable when accuracy is essential to maintaining brand trust. The influencer effect had already established consumer confidence in brands as a major factor in the purchasing decision. The pandemic has heightened the need for brands to maintain consumer confidence as a powerful marketing tool.”

    https://www.esko.com/en/solutions/brand-solutions/webcenter/content-management





  • + Spandex introduces STEK DYNOflex Windshield Protection Film

    This new film from STEK is designed to resist chips, scratches, and virtually all other forms of road damage, making it the ultimate choice for windshield protection! The proprietary design feature...

    July 13 2021

    This new film from STEK is designed to resist chips, scratches, and virtually all other forms of road damage, making it the ultimate choice for windshield protection! The proprietary design features highly elastic TPU layers, allowing DYNOflex to absorb and disperse even the most substantial shocks.

    Thanks to its hydrophobic property, DYNOflex also offers excellent weatherproofing, effectively preventing damage caused by harsh climates. The versatile windshield film is easily applied on curved surfaces and requires no heat guns or shrinkage when used. Once installed, it offers continuous protection that eliminates the need for glass replacement, ADAS sensor recalibration, and other costly repair procedures.

    Visit here for more information