Canon Océ ProStream levels up inkjet printing

March 15, 2017

Packed with new core technologies, the Océ ProStream series aims to take high quality inkjet printing beyond its current limits. 

 

In 2016, the number of pages printed by inkjet and toner is the same for the first time ever. The inkjet technology of today, while able to provide high quality, variable content and productivity, is still limited in media flexibility.

 

Facing this challenge head-on, is the Canon Océ ProStream series. The new platform was first introduced to the world on 17 February 2017 at Canon's facility in Poing, Germany. One of the main features of the Océ ProStream is its ability to expand the choice of media, opening opportunities for new digital applications.

 

“We are confident that the Océ ProStream series will continue to drive our success in our competitive market. With more than 33% percent market share, Canon/Océ is the undisputed worldwide leader in continuous feed inkjet. The Océ ProStream will build on this heritage and carry forward our proud tradition of innovation in professional digital printing,” Unterberger added. 

 

The Océ ProStream series incorporates several new core technologies for continuous feed inkjet. Some of the technologies include new 1,200 print heads, ink formulation with ColorGrip, a contactless drying system and enhanced usability powered by a new DFE.

 

New Print Heads

 

The latest Kyocera KJ4 piezo electric drop on demand print heads is based on Océ DigiDot Multilevel technology for sharper details, smoother half tones and economised ink usage. It can print at a resolution of 1200 dpi and 1200 npi and produce multilevel dot modulation of 2 picoliter and 5.6 picoliter at full 1,076 A4/min productivity.

 

The new print heads will have a higher firing frequency of 64 kHz, resulting in an increased generation of heat. To combat overheating, there is a print head water-cooling system. The cooling system will allow the inks to maintain its target temperature of 32 degrees celcius and below, and reduce the risk of drying in the nozzle. This is expected to result in improved jet stability over print width and time.

 

New Polymer Pigment Inks with ColorGrip

 

The ProStream utilises new pigment-based polymer inks, which are ultra fast immobilizing, enabling high printing speeds for increased productivity. The inks are developed and manufactured by Océ.

 

The polymer pigment inks work to form a ‘glue layer’ which is able to benefit in a few ways. Firstly, the ‘glue’ layer adheres the pigment onto the media, leading to a large range of media. Due to the layer, the pigments are kept on the surface of the substrate, which also results in a larger colour gamut. According to Canon, the polymer pigment ink set is able to match, if not exceed, offset colour gamut.

 

The ink set is equipped with ColorGrip technology, which was first seen in the Océ Varioprint i300 press. ColorGrip technology allows printing on a wider range of media, including a variety of coater, uncoated offset stocks, to expand applications. The ColorGrip is applied using the print heads. It facilitates full area coverage to minimise paper curl in addition to humidifying the print gap climate for less drying in the print head nozzle.

 

The final print quality for uncoated media allows for more vibrant colours, less feathering, less strike-through, and less mottle. On coated media, ColorGrip enables less colour-to-colour bleed and less coalescence.

 

New Contactless Floatation Drying Technology

 

The sensitive floatation air dryer ensures that the printed paper is not touched until the print images are fully robust. The no-contact drying method means that there are no scratches, rub-off or changes to gloss levels in the dryer. The drying technology also allows for consistent drying of all colours, and over the whole paper width to avoid media cockle. The result is minimal stress to the substrate, allowing for maximum print quality.

 

There is recirculation of heat in the system, reducing the amount of power required for heating and lessening exhaust of the system. There is also active cooling to stabilise the printed image and reduce paper stress.

 

New Usability with PRISMAcontrol DFE

 

The Océ ProStream is powered by a new workflow system, the PRISMAcontrol. The digital front end will support direct native PDF production and modification. It allows for printer job and paper settings management, and has production queue control at the printer. Canon added that eventually DFE operations can be controlled remotely, for example, via a mobile device.

For the full version of this article, read the latest issue of Print Innovation Asia.

 

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