October 4, 2002 -- (WhatTheyThink.com with special comments from Noel Ward) -- Electronics For Imaging (EFI) and Scitex Digital Printing (SDP) yesterday announced a strategic agreement to jointly develop a custom Fiery server to drive Scitex Digital Printing's next generation of ultra-high-speed Versamark Business Color printers.
SDP's press has production speeds of 500 feet per minute or 2,000 color pages per minute. It will feature EFI's user interface, open standard variable data printing and color management and workflow productivity tools. The new Fiery-branded color server will be released in late 2003.
"EFI is excited to partner with Scitex Digital Printing on its next generation of ultra-fast, digital printers," said Guy Gecht, CEO of EFI. "Our award-winning Fiery technology has made us the color server leader in the office, corporate and print-for-pay markets. Now we can bring that expertise in quality color, VDP, efficient workflow and robust performance to Scitex Digital Printing's high-speed production printing market."
“How fast do you want to go?” Comments from Noel Ward
Last winter while skiing with another industry veteran, he said, "It's hard to believe that Scitex Digital Printing isn’t going to do well with their VersaMark high-speed color machines." I agreed then and I agree now.
SDP's Business Color technology is a great fit for data centers, service bureaus and other high-volume print operations ready to make the shift from black and white laser printing to full color. The cost per page is attractive and the machines are designed to run at the high volume levels transactional printing--such as credit card statements and utility bills--demands.
The newly announced partnership between EFI and SDP brings broad use of these machines closer to reality. EFI says their RIP can send fully variable pages to the VersaMark with the press running at full rated speed--some 2,000 pages per minute.
This opens the door wide for a broad range of hybrid marketing and transactional applications because the press they are referring to is not the present iteration of VersaMark machines that print at 300 x 300 dpi or 600 x 300 dpi but a new line that prints at resolutions as high as 1200 x 300 dpi.
To be able to lay 100% variable content down at this resolution in real time is impressive, both for EFI and SDP. It means printing operations that routinely print in volumes of a million pages a day can produce good quality, full-color variable data pages at an attractive cost, making hybrid marketing and transactional documents a day-to-day reality.
Noel Ward is [email protected]