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Xeikon Launches New Powerful Front-end Intellistream 3.5

Press release from the issuing company

World’s first full PPML-ready front-end hits the digital printing industry. Chicago (October 7, 2002) — Xeikon, the world’s leading provider of digital color production systems, today introduced the IntelliStream version 3.5 digital front-end, the leading edge workflow solution for demanding digital printing. IntelliStream 3.5 is Xeikon’s first major product introduction since Punch International purchased the company in March of this year. Xeikon America demonstrates IntelliStream 3.5 on booth #1059 at Graph Expo. Powerful new features IntelliStream is the Xeikon developed workflow solution for production digital color printing. The new version 3.5 contains many new features of which the most important ones are: Real-time print queue management: easy to use drag-and-drop operation allows manipulation of jobs in the queue, changing the print priority, modifying run lengths and so on - up to the last moment before printing; Runtime gradation: a clever color management feature to perform dot gain compensation and adjustment during the print run for each of the 4 color separations on both sides of the web. Runtime gradation control allows to fine-tune print quality during the print run to match the original hard-copy proof; Integrated support for PPML 2.1: Xeikon’s IntelliStream 3.5 is the first front-end to implement the new, open variable data printing standard PPML 2.1. In combination with its advanced production oriented architecture and the ability to scale performance by adding off-line units, IntelliStream 3.5 is a true PPML workhorse. Support for PPML/VDX: with IntelliStream 3.5, Xeikon also supports the ANSI/CGATS standard PPML/VDX. This format is based on the general PPML standard and uses PDF as its page description format. By combining PPML and PDF, PPML/VDX allows a "blind exchange" of variable data jobs between designer and printer, a requirement which is most important for entry-level variable data applications; Workflow optimization and User Interface improvements: IntelliStream offers complete job ticket based workflow management, including previewing, imposition and job status tracking. In version 3.5, the press control software Xpose and IntelliStream run on the same platform which makes it easy for the operator to monitor the complete control of the digital print operation. IntelliStream 3.5 offers an upgraded version of the popular Ultimate IMPress imposition product. The new IMPress for Windows offers the same ease of use as the Mac version with improved performance and support for PDF imposition; New Adobe CPSI RIP: IntelliStream 3.5 is using the newest release of the Adobe CPSI RIP, which, in combination with the new hardware platform results in a 300% increase in RIPping speed. Platform and availability IntelliStream 3.5 is running on one single, new hardware platform: the advanced COMPAQ EVO W8000 workstation. This workstation performs all server, streamer, RIP and engine control functionality. The new DFE is also available as off-line RIP, working with exactly the same hardware and features. The off-line RIP allows users to expand their RIP and storage capacity, according to their productivity needs. IntelliStream 3.5 comes full featured, with no expensive options. It supports the full range of Xeikon-based web-fed digital color presses, including simplex printing presses using the 5th white color station. Dirk Van Thillo, Xeikon International’s Director of Marketing, says: "IntelliStream 3.5 puts Xeikon far ahead of all competition. Xeikon has been leading the digital printing industry since it first introduced the DCP web-fed presses. Xeikon set the standard in all critical areas that make a difference to the printer: productivity, quality and cost per page. IntelliStream 3.5 adds to these elements. We have extensively tested IntelliStream 3.5 with high volume Xeikon users and they all confirm that it has dramatically optimized their workflow, resulting in a more flexible and reliable operation and, ultimately, more finished jobs per shift." Variable Data Printing with PPML With the introduction of IntelliStream 3.5, Xeikon today has the most advanced implementation of the new, open standard for variable data printing, PPML (Personalized Print Mark-up Language). The goal of developing PPML was to lower the threshold to variable data printing to help it grow to its full potential. Therefore the industry needed a flexible architecture that allowed to produce the most simple as well as the most complex variable data jobs with standard authoring tools and a standard print workflow, rather than expensive, proprietary systems and formats. The Print On Demand initiative (PODi) formed a workgroup in 1999 to build a solution and in a record time of less than 2 years the standard was developed. Today PPML is a fact: it is an open standard and an object-based XML application that guarantees interoperability between authoring tools and digital front-ends. It brings together the know-how and technology of all major players in the industry. At Drupa 2000, Xeikon was the first company to show a front-end that was able to consume PPML. In 2001, Xeikon was honored by PODi as its most valuable member. Xeikon remains dedicated and continues to contribute to the development of the new PPML extensions: PPML Graphic Arts (GA) and PPML Transactional. Xeikon was also the first company to develop a PPML viewer application. This functions as a pre-flight station to view and test the output of PPML variable data applications before they are actually printed. The viewer is free downloadable from Xeikon’s website, www.xeikon.com. Rab Govil, President of PODi says "Xeikon’s heritage as a pioneer in Color Production Digital Printing is very evident in the release of their Intellistream 3.5. Their implementation of the PPML architecture continues to be world class. Not only have they produced and shared the world’s first PPML viewer, today Xeikon also brings a proven solution for production variable data printing using version 2.1 of the new open PPML variable data printing language. Customers of Xeikon printers that are implementing PPML in their variable data workflows confirm that they find it easy to use and that it helps them to build powerful applications."