The 22nd annual EFI Connect conference in Las Vegas this week showcased the newly launched 126-inch-wide EFI Pro 30h UV LED printer and EFI’s advanced class of superwide-format inkjet printers. Connect also featured the first live demonstration of the new EFI Fiery FS500 Pro digital front end and the debut of EFI Fiery Prep-it software - an innovative prepress product for display graphics businesses.
EFI CEO Jeff Jacobson's keynote address at EFI Connect in Las Vegas
The new 126-inch-wide EFI Pro 30h UV LED printer prints up to 2,477 square feet per hour, offering a combination of speed and efficiency that makes it an ideal hybrid flatbed/roll-to-roll superwide-format solution for businesses targeting production display graphics.
“Designed to provide broader application capability, versatility, and profit potential, the printer maximizes productivity by printing large boards or multiple small boards continuously,” EFI said in a press release. “Switching from rigid to flexible media with the printer is easy, and the Pro 30h can print on dual rolls, giving users high throughput and the ability to run multiple jobs simultaneously.”
Connect attendees also learned about signage production opportunities empowered by EFI’s class of superwide-format inkjet printers.
The EFI VUTEk® XT (pictured above) is a 126-inch-wide hybrid solution with available media handling automation that prints at speeds above 375 boards per hour. "A new CP5G system for the XT model delivers complete ink circulation, superior dot placement, 5-picoliter drops and grayscale imaging for near-lithographic quality without expanding beyond four-color CMYK ink sets."
The EFI VUTEk Q5r, a 208-inch-wide UV LED inkjet production workhorse that is the fastest roll-to-roll printer in its class, thanks to throughput speeds that reach 7,233 square feet per hour. Users can establish a complete print-to-finished-graphic workflow on the VUTEk Q5r with in-line slitting, trimming and other options including a new in-line visual inspection system available this year.
The EFI Nozomi 18000+ LED single-pass printer for display graphics, is a "groundbreaking" 71-inch-wide signage solution. Available with up to six colours, plus white ink, it prints on synthetic and paper-based media at up to 1,000 sheets or boards per hour – "three or four times faster than the most productive shuttle-based/multi-pass display graphics printers."
Connect also featured the first live demonstration of the new EFI Fiery FS500 Pro digital front end (DFE) – the most-advanced print server in EFI’s 30+ year history – and the debut of the EFI Fiery Impress DFE, a scalable, flexible server and colour management solution for inkjet label and packaging applications, as well as for inline manufacturing lines that need variable print.
EFI Connect also marks the debut of an innovative prepress product for display graphics businesses, EFI Fiery Prep-it software for the preparation, layout, and automated production of print-for-cut jobs. Designed to address productivity needs amid continued labour shortages, this true-shape nesting solution reduces the time needed to nest complex objects for wide-format printing by up to 90%.
|New EFI Fiery Prep-it software launched at EFI Connect delivers true shape nesting for wide-format printing|
An early user of the software, Hossein Rasoulian, technical specialist at California-based Super Color Digital, said it reduced time spent nesting jobs by 50%. “Fiery Prep-it is a very powerful and easy-to-use solution. It can nest irregular-shaped jobs very quickly and uses media extremely efficiently. We can also fully automate our print-and-cut process using Prep-it’s integration capabilities to get a high quantity of jobs produced accurately, without errors.”
EFI is also expanding its leading DFE technology offerings at Connect with the worldwide debut of the Fiery Impress DFE, a scalable, flexible off-the-shelf server and colour management solution. "The Fiery Impress DFE helps equipment manufacturers achieve outstanding productivity and image quality," EFI said. "Specialty inkjet equipment vendors with low unit volumes, as well as single manufacturing lines that want to add in variable or personalized print with a print bar, can expand their digital offerings with this innovative new technology."
The Fiery Impress DFE can drive entry-level, mid-range or high-volume inkjet equipment on a range of hardware platforms. For example, users can output TIFFs to a storage location for entry-level CMYK digital presses, or produce rapid, RIP-while-printing output of variable-data content to high-volume, continuous-feed 7-color digital presses. Fiery Command WorkStation – the industry’s #1 operator interface for job management – is standard with the Fiery Impress DFE. A wide range of integrated software options are also available, including prepress, colour management, workflow automation, and EFI IQ cloud analytics.
“As the industry works to regain its footing after a very difficult couple of years, EFI customers and partners are coming to Connect to learn about the actionable strategies and important tech developments that could be essential to their future success,” said Ken Hanulec, vice president of worldwide marketing, EFI. “And, more than anything, this year’s conference reflects the community, collaboration and innovation that print businesses can use to capture the growing opportunities of the industry’s analogue-to-digital transformation.”
Connect conference offerings include a two-day, accelerated Expert/Professional training for certification on Idealliance G7 print specifications.