Aiming to accelerate the printing industry’s transition from offset to high-volume digital output, Canon USA Inc. has announced “Niagara” (development name), a high-volume sheetfed color inkjet digital press. Previewing at PRINT 13 in Chicago next week, this new digital press will help consolidate sheetfed black-and-white and color workflows on to one production printing system.
Canon was an early pioneer of inkjet technology, accumulating broad and deep expertise in inkjet heads, paper and ink technologies. The Company’s continuous feed color inkjet systems, which command a leading 41 percent market share in the United States and Western Europe combined2, are known for their robust design and consistent, high-quality output. Coming to market with a high-volume, sheetfed inkjet digital press is a natural extension of this industry leadership.
Featuring a patented four-color ink system, Niagara-based systems will provide B3 sheetfed color inkjet printing on standard coated and uncoated offset media at anticipated production speeds of up to 3,800 duplexed B3 sheets per hour and up to 8,500 duplexed letter sheets per hour, with volumes of up to 10 million letter size images per month. The Niagara digital press will also offer integrated end-to-end digital workflow built atop the Océ PRISMA software platform, along with robust feeding, output and online finishing capabilities, managed by full process quality controls.
“Offset run lengths are rapidly decreasing while job frequencies are increasing. To achieve the flexibility, speed and control over operational costs required to compete effectively, professional printers need solutions capable of meeting a wider array of applications,” said Sam Yoshida, vice president and general manager, Marketing, Business Imaging Solutions Group, Canon U.S.A. “Over the last few years, Canon has achieved several breakthroughs in scaling inkjet technology to enable new levels of productivity, quality, reliability and cost effectiveness in its offerings, leading to the development of the Niagara digital press.”
Niagara is a result of customers, industry experts and Canon development teams working together to shape development priorities and various aspects of product concepts and processes. IWCO Direct, one of the largest providers of direct marketing solutions in the United States and a Canon client, was one such participant in the Niagara Project.
“I expect Niagara to help inkjet expand into new segments because it will offer a practical sheetfed solution that produces high-quality results on the same media we use in our offset work,” said Dave Johannes, vice president of digital print and mailing operations at IWCO Direct. “Besides offering the potential to help reduce our overall operating costs, what really excites me about Niagara is that we will be able to leverage many existing in-line finishing options.”
PRINT 13 Preview
Canon will preview Niagara as a technology showcase at PRINT 13 (Booth #502), being held in Chicago’s McCormick Place, September 8-12. The first Niagara-based digital presses are expected to be launched by Canon in the first half of 2014.