by Katy Ibsen, managing editor

At PRINT 18, APTech celebrated the inaugural Red Hot Technology recognition program, an opportunity for companies to highlight their “red hot” products.

“The program was created to provide a place where the PRINT attendee base, primarily print service providers, can easily discover the newest products and services on display. It’s a way for OEMs in the industry to put a spotlight on what’s new in their ever-expanding product mix,” said Julie Schafer, APTech’s association vice president, program and community development, and organizer of the Red Hot Tech program. “Programs like this benefit both printing industry practitioners and their suppliers and are part of the Association for PRINT Technologies’ dedication to support the entire commercial print value chain.”

To be recognized, products must align into one of 12 categories, including postpress, with a product that came to market within the last 12 months. A Red Hot Technology evaluation team then reviews each entry and supporting documentation to verify it meets the program criteria. Products are not in competition within each category; rather any new product meeting the program criteria is eligible for recognition as Red Hot Technology.

“This is an especially important distinction for software products, because modern software development is ongoing and often year-to-year updates are significant. We think that those products can be as deserving of recognition and brought to the attention of attendees as something just brought to market,” added Schafer.

Under the Specialty Printing, Post-Press & Finishing category, several products were recognized. PostPress visited with several of those that fit into the postpress/finishing category to learn more about recently released products and technologies.

Learn more at:

MGI USA – JETvarnish 3D Image Editor Software Application

The MGI JETvarnish 3D Image Editor allows unlimited prototyping, modification, personalization and customization of CMYK print files right at the workstation. So, no need for time-consuming, costly and laborious back and forth exchanges with prepress departments and supply chain (i.e. broker/print buyer/agency/brand/end-user). For trade finishers and packaging/label printers, this is absolutely revolutionary because they are dependent on other firms for image creation. The Image Editor is integrated with a Job Cost Calculator and the OptiFoil Management System so printers and finishers know how much foil and varnish will be used before bidding, pricing and negotiating jobs. This also helps to manage operations such as job and staff scheduling, as well as supply procurement. The OptiFoil software automatically manages the foil roll application process to minimize unnecessary waste.

The MGI JETVarnish 3D Series of digital inkjet print enhancement presses are standalone postpress finishing solutions (taking in offset, digital and flexo output). The Image Editor allows the “capture” of sheets and rolls so print embellishments can be created and produced, even without a CMYK print file or registration marks because it can create an entirely new file and assorted varnish and foil embellishment file layers – a first in the industry.

The Image Editor comes loaded with more than 50 free pre-formatted 3D textures to use as a starter library, and users can add an unlimited number of new styles.

The touchscreen interface of graphical design and intuitive print file management tools gives press operators the ability to create and modify new, decorative special effects with no prior graphic design experience or training necessary. This is a powerful vehicle for creativity and adding value to print jobs, thereby increasing profitability as well. The software can even be downloaded to desktops and networks, so design work and prototyping activities can be created remotely.

Nobelus – LuxeFilms Rainbow Holografik Metalized printable laminate and Streams of Light Holografik

The LuxeFilms Rainbow Holografik Metalized printable laminate film features a smooth, subtle brilliantly metallic holographic surface, ready to be printed. The effect is an engaging visual display of light and color that provides a striking impact and is ideal for surface printing to enhance high-end graphics. Rainbow Holografik Metalized film boasts a 40″ seamless pattern, allowing for full press sheet use.

The Rainbow Holografik Metalized film adheres to most substrates and can be printed with conventional offset and UV offset inks while performing in postpress applications such as diecutting, folding, gluing, foil stamping and spot UV finishes. Rainbow Holografik Metalized film is an excellent substrate for folding cartons, labels, book covers and point-of-purchase (POP) displays.

LuxeFilms Streams of Light Holografik is a special clear overlaminate film featuring a distinctive light band pattern. The effect is an engaging and seamless visual display of light and color that draws attention to and highlights the graphic elements of the printed piece. Streams of Light Holografik boasts a seamless pattern so the eye cannot detect the pattern repetition.

As a PET thermal overlaminate film, Streams of Light Holografik adheres like standard lamination to most print substrates and performs well in postpress applications such as diecutting, folding, gluing, stamping and spot UV finishes. This makes it an excellent finish for folding cartons, labels, tickets and tags that need anti-counterfeit protection, POP displays and much more.

Standard Finishing Systems – Standard Horizon StitchLiner Mark III

The Standard Horizon StitchLiner Mark III has been equipped with the latest in automation technology, including true end-to-end support for variable thickness production, a key innovation for personalized and short run work. The system is designed to meet the evolving requirements of the market and improve on previous technology. Users value the machine’s tools that minimize changeover time and maximize efficiency.

Read more about the Standard Horizon StitchLiner Mark III in Tech Watch on page 25.

Streamfeeder – BW Integrated Systems – P1250 Tip-On Feeder

The P-1250 Tip-On Feeder offers highly accurate and precise placement with on the run fine tuning. Its small footprint can be easily integrated into existing equipment such as folder-gluers, vacuum bases, mail tables, conveyors, etc. It is also available as a turnkey system. The feeder includes a state-of-the-art servo drive and motor, along with an Allen Bradley HMI to make set-up fast and easy via user-friendly menus.

The P1250 Tip-On Feeder can feed a wide variety of products including plastic cards, coupons, promotional products, magnets, notepads, calendars and others.

Tecnau – Stack 5250

Featuring the double-cutting cutter c52, Tecnau’s Stack 5250 accommodates the broad range of papers and heavy ink coverages characteristic of the demanding applications migrating to digital inkjet printing

Handling delicate graphic arts work at speeds up to 656 fpm requires a stable web of paper with minimal touchpoints. The taut-web Stack 5250 holds the web securely, minimizing friction on the printed surface. Stack 5250’s Stacker s50 module produces 1-up, 2-up, 2-up merged or 3-up stacks, featuring a patented “gripper” technology for reliable, damage-free handling of high-value print. North/south job offsetting ensures high-speed operation even for consecutive small set/book-block jobs.

Stack 5250 features next generation controls for compatibility with the “Internet of Things” (IoT). The system includes natural-language error reporting on the user screen and onboard diagnostics to help keep the system up and running. IoT options are being introduced for remote monitoring and diagnostics, automatic software updates and preventive maintenance aids.

Xerox Corporation – customized envelope feeder and conveyor for the Xerox Versant Press

With no fuser change required, the Versant Press can run envelopes continuously and can run standard production sheets to 26″ posters on any type of media. The Xerox Versant envelope feeder and conveyor makes printing and finishing envelopes (a task once impossible to run on a digital production press) as efficient and simple as a standard print job, ensuring continuous, uninterrupted envelope production and unloading.

The customized Envelope Feeder offers a top-loading friction feeder that feeds the press from the bottom of the stack to ensure reloads don’t stop or slow the press, resulting in extended, uninterrupted runs. For the first time, this feeder enables a Production Digital Press with ease of use and flexibility to run all types and sizes of envelopes.

To keep the press running, a conveyor unloads envelopes from the output tray. This elegantly designed ensemble is an affordable game changer, enabling printers to migrate smaller offset envelope runs profitably to digital, while delivering matched print quality for the envelope and contents.

This solution would allow for more than 5,000 envelopes an hour, with operator intervention limited to dropping stock into the chute feeder, with a conveyer that will automatically unload printed envelopes. Simple size adjustment and reliable operation makes for a great addition to any Xerox Versant Press.