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Holland Litho's Brian Baarman on making the digital transformation

Published on April 9, 2010


I'm Brian Baarman, Executive Vice President of Finance and Administration.  In 1994, we put in a chromapress and I don't think that the world was really ready for digital printing at that point.  The quality was not there and everybody in that timeframe was looking at, you know, we do professional photography, we do high-end press checks, we do all this stuff, and digital printing is not that.  It still isn't.  It's getting closer, but it still isn't as good as what we were producing in lithography print at that time.

So that didn't go so well.  We got into lithography printing and then just December of '08 we put in our first digital press: Kodak NexPress M700.  And we had a hard time choosing between the M700, which is a Canon engine, and going to a full-blown 2500.  It was a big price difference, but -- and the quality was pretty similar.  It's not that far off.  There's more consistency with the 2500 and there's more uptime, but we got to the point about four or five where the M700, it was just breaking all the time because we were putting so much work through it.  By the middle of summer, it was very evident we needed to add another digital print capability and so we put in the SE2500.  That's a very strong machine; it's got very little downtime.  You know, maybe two service calls a month. It's just really great and the quality is -- the quality is about the same as the M700 but the uptime is so critical and the consistency of it.  It has got higher consistency, whereas the NexPress Color seems to wander more.

But the Kodak front end really does a good job with color matching, when the customers we send them a proof and they okay the proof and the proof comes back and we can match the proof with their front end really well.  And if they want to match PMS colors, we can do that too with their software.  It works really well.

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