CDS President Steven A. Brown (right) with Greg Wood, Sales Manager at Muller Martini USA
For Steven A. Brown, President of CDS—a company of Consolidated Graphics—there is no doubt: “Digital printing is the future. Personalization and customization allow educators, publishers and businesses to target specific customers with print products designed specifically for their needs.”
CDS, founded in 1906, was the first newspaper publisher in Medford, Oregon. Their offset facility is supported by a comprehensive bindery which includes two Starbinder perfect binders and several Muller Martini saddle stitchers. In recent years, CDS has invested significantly in digital systems for their expanding digital facility, also located in Medford.
Various products are printed on 18 digital printing presses: 12 HP Indigo 7000s and 7500s; three Kodak Nexpresses; and three Xeikon 5000/6000s. Commented Brown, “We specialize in simple-to-complex printing solutions for a range of customers in many different industries including education, technology, finance, healthcare and photo books. We combine digital and analog technologies and provide support to our customers throughout the entire production chain, from pre-press to delivery.”
The Acoro A5 Is Digital-Ready…
For print finishing, CDS relies on systems that are digital-ready. The most recent investment is an Acoro A5 perfect binding line from Muller Martini, commissioned in the fall of 2011. It features a manual feed station and a Merit S three-knife trimmer. “We’ve used Muller Martini systems for decades,” said Brown. “They are reliable, functional and flexible, with a service team that responds quickly when needed.”
The Acoro A5 is used for making book blocks for softcover and hardcover products with one-off print runs, such as photo books. It also supports personalized magazines, catalogs, manuals and textbooks. The Acoro binding solution accommodates a thickness variance of 1.5 mm, ideal for one-off production. CDS employs a barcode system throughout the entire process chain, ensuring that each product is matched to the correct case, dust jacket and book block.
...As Is the Diamant MC 35 Digital
Muller’s Diamant MC 35 Digital bookline was put into operation in the fall of 2010. The Diamant line produces books ranging in sizes from 2 mm thin to large format, including photo books, manuals and catalogs. Integral, full-flap or plastic covers are easily accommodated.
The Diamant MC 35 Digital also allows a thickness variance of 1.5 mm, once again reducing downtime for changeovers. When changeovers are needed, the Diamant servo technology allows the line to continue to run. The Diamant is also equipped with a book block/case verification system so that the correct case is matched to the book block. “With ultra-short runs, only barcodes can effectively ensure that the right cover and content are matched,” emphasized Brown.
As with the Acoro A5, CDS considered alternatives to the bookline. According to Brown, “What tipped the scales in favor of Muller Martini was that they met all of our quality and product requirements, something the competition was unable to do.”
It is precisely in the production of digitally printed hardcover books that the Diamant MC Digital offers the highest book quality and efficiency. The Diamant MC Digital, a version of the tried and tested Diamant MC, can be changed over sequentially and is designed particularly for one-off book production, making it ideal for photo books.
“The Diamant is an excellent example of how Muller Martini found a way to combine modern technology with a proven production system,” says Brown. “In my opinion, it is the best bookline available to support our customer requirements.”
A global presence
At its Medford digital center, CDS can complete 18,000 job orders every day. Most orders for ultra-short runs are placed online; however, no orders are processed directly by CDS. “We work exclusively with other companies on a B2B basis, providing the platform, but never directly engaging the end customer,” emphasized Brown.
Every now and then, there is a conventional print job with larger print runs. “It is not true that offset only helps digital printing—often it is the other way around,” said Brown with a grin.
Under the company motto, “Global Printing Services, Local Support,” CDS, with 350 employees, is also active in Europe, Asia and South America, with production facilities in Prague, Czech Republic; London, England; Gero, Japan; and Sao Palo, Brazil.