With a KODAK PROSPER 5000XL Press installed in July 2011 and a KODAK PROSPER 1000 Press installed in December 2012, Mercury Print Productions is preparing for a third press to be installed at the beginning of 2014. A leader in digital book printing for the education market, Mercury Print is based in Rochester, N.Y., and will use the new KODAK PROSPER 5000XLi Press to broaden its offerings of short-run, on-demand book production for existing clients while also adding other services to attract new business.
“We have believed strongly in Kodak’s Stream inkjet technology from the very beginning,” said Christian Schamberger, President of Mercury Print. “For us, the combination of cost, quality, and technology, along with the future direction of the company, have all played a role in our selection of Kodak for all three of these inkjet presses. We have been extremely pleased with the performance, reliability, quality, and support that we have experienced with Kodak. This additional press enables us to increase our capacity and move into areas such as full-color, personalized direct mail.”
The PROSPER 5000XLi Press was introduced earlier this year and features the Intelligent Print System (IPS), which combines in-line video monitoring and advanced software controls to process thousands of press inputs that measure imaging performance, detecting variations and making adjustments as needed on the fly. Optimized output color quality is achieved regardless of varying substrates, image content, web speed, and environmental conditions.
In addition to the new capabilities provided by IPS, the PROSPER 5000XLi Press was engineered and built with a range of other features to optimize print speed, ensure smooth operation, and maximize productivity. These include an auto-adjusting intake system that simplifies changing paper stocks, a variable-length paper path to improve drying, and an advanced drying system that adjusts for ink load, web speed, and substrate.
“Due to the continuous innovations engineered into this press, our customers are able to really grow their businesses with the quality and productivity they are experiencing,” noted John O’Grady, Kodak’s Vice President and Regional Managing Director, U.S. and Canada. “It’s not at all uncommon for our customers to add an additional press once they see the initial benefits and client impact. Mercury Print is a great example of a customer that understands the market and the opportunities, and is taking a leadership position by embracing the latest innovation.”
Helping users further extend substrate options, the in-line KODAK PROSPER Image Optimizer Station (IOS ) automatically prepares commercially available substrates for inkjet printing at full press speeds, enabling users to run industry-standard uncoated, coated—and even glossy coated—papers between 45 to 300 gsm on roll widths from 8 to 25.5 inches (20.3 to 64.8 cm).
“We have seen an increase in our page volumes, which has been driven by the print quality and low cost per page the PROSPER Press offers us. One of the best features is that we can print on multiple substrates with the IOS coater that we have on the front of our 5000XLi,” added Schamberger. “This is truly a unique attribute of the KODAK Stream Inkjet Technology.”
Schamberger foresees continued growth year over year for Mercury Print and feels that digital technologies such as inkjet printing give his customers the ability to produce their products at a price point that makes sense, in a time frame that works. He also cites the ability to individualize each piece as a key factor in that growth.
The PROSPER 5000XLi Press offers full process color perfecting with a print width of up to 24.5 inches (62.23 centimeters) at speeds up to 650 feet (200 meters) per minute with a duty cycle of 90 million A4 or U.S. letter pages a month. The system is capable of print quality that rivals offset output—up to 175 lpi. To further maximize uptime and the production of sellable pages, the PROSPER 5000XLi Press features a number of innovations in its transport system that virtually eliminate page imperfections caused by paper stretching and wrinkling.