In the midst of an economic downturn, Durst Image Technology U.S., llc today reported a dramatic increase in the number of installs of its Theta 76 30-inch Multi-Format Lab System during the first half of the year, primarily at photo labs looking for greater efficiency, versatility and productivity from a single digital photo printing platform.
While specific sales figures were not released, Durst acknowledged that sales of its Theta 76 during the first six months of the year were greater than for any other recent six-month period. ?I can tell you that by the end of June, we?d already hit our annual quota, and interest in the Theta is still very high,? said Gordon Kane, Durst?s National Sales Manager for photo products. ?The Theta is basically helping our customers do more for less, and do it better, at a time when that?s precisely what?s needed.?
The Theta 76, Durst said, is increasingly viewed by professional photo labs, photography studios and other commercial imagers as one effective response to today?s economic pressures by delivering quality images in a simpler, more efficient workflow that reduces cost of operation while actually enhancing offerings to customers. New Theta owners have been very forthright in their comments about the latest addition to their operations.
?We chose the Theta 76, with the cutter, because of the flexibility it gives us and the productivity we get from being able to make all the print sizes for an order on a single piece of equipment,? said Grant Steinle, Vice President of Operations for Dwayne?s Photo Service in Parsons, KS. ?It eliminates the time it took to move partially completed orders from one area to another and then collate all the prints, as well as the potential quality and matching problems from producing parts of a single order on different equipment. Now customers receive a higher quality product, and we get a more productive workflow in the lab. It?s a win for everyone.?
The 30-inch-wide Durst Theta 76 ?large-format minilab? prints sharp, accurate digital images ? from 2.5 feet by 13 feet down to 2-up wallets ? at standard minilab productivity ratings. It is an excellent choice for the photo retailer or studio photographer who wants to offer higher-margin panoramics, metallic prints and restorations, as well as the professional lab looking for versatile photo output and ?back up? during peak production times. The Theta 76 comes in several configurations ? including High Speed and Black & White ? and features an on-board processor, sophisticated auto-nesting capability, auto-inline cut and sort, and true variable back printing.
A Durst Theta imager at Allied Photographic & Imaging of Grand Rapids, Mich., was used to produce the exacting target file prints that competitors in 2009?s DIMA Digital Printer Shoot-Out were required to recreate. Itself a DIMA Shoot-Out winner, there are more than 1,400 Thetas installed worldwide.
For Jeffrey Lazo, Chief Operating Officer for Digital Precision Imaging / ProDPI in San Luis Obispo, CA, This new Theta ? the lab?s second ? represents an opportunity to update and enhance his photo output capabilities with a proven performer. ?Once we started looking for a suitable replacement for another wide-format silver halide printer we had, the Theta was a no-brainer,? he said. ?Its track record, paired with its extreme ease of use and practically maintenance-free operation, was matched by its output quality. Its versatility, print size range and easy interface with our software workflow systems sealed the deal for us. Our professional customers demand the best from us, and we trust our Theta to deliver it.?
At Burrell Colour Imaging in Crown Point, IN, the Theta 76 was the solution to a nagging dilemma. ?The biggest problem we?ve always had is the ability to match our larger prints to our unit printing, but with our new Theta we no longer have that problem,? said General Manager Cindy Agans. ?Because everything in an order is printed at the same time, from the same roll and the same emulsion, we don?t have to worry anymore about trying to match different printers and papers. Our turnaround time on orders is also much better now too. Printing an order on different machines wastes time and money. Now we can print and ship it the same day. Image quality has been very good on the Theta, and operation of the machine is very easy. We?re using it for more and more of our orders.?
Steve Pullin, President and Chief Operating Officer of Full Color Inc. in Dallas, TX, said he chose the Theta 76 ?to keep up with the latest technology and equipment. And the Theta, since it processes and cuts all in one machine, allows us to free up valuable floor space for continued growth. We?re operating more efficiently than before, which positively affects the bottom line. We?ve actually operated Durst equipment here for many years and it?s proven to be high quality and very reliable ? also good for the bottom line.?
?The exceptional image quality, versatility and workflow of Durst?s Theta 76 printer is widely known, and it has become even more important as photo professionals look for ways to get the most out of their operations during this economic downturn,? said Christopher Howard, Senior Vice President of Sales & Marketing for Durst U.S. ?Our ability to come up with solid solutions based on leading equipment sets us apart, and it?s prompting more labs to turn to Durst.?