Connect is still growing in its 17th year, with pre-registrations surpassing last year’s record customer attendance. The conference, which caters to customers’ evolving needs for information related to market and technology trends, features eight new educational tracks in an agenda of 200+ classes.
Special sessions include fireside chat keynotes with Quad/Graphics CEO Joel Quadracci and print technology veteran Jeff Jacobson, speaking on Connect’s opening day in one of his first public presentations since becoming CEO of Xerox two weeks ago.
In addition to the new printers, EFI is unveiling version 5 of its Productivity Suite end-to-end workflow offerings at Connect. And, the company is highlighting next-generation EFI Fiery digital front end (DFE) production technologies that deliver uncompromising quality and productivity in digital print production.
In his opening keynote speech at the Conference, EFI CEO Guy Gecht addressed artificial intelligence and the impact the next wave of advanced technology is having. Some ERP and MIS workflow products developed by EFI, for example, learn to be more efficient as they track business’s operations.
“As with the developments we have all seen with personal computers and mobile technology, artificial intelligence promises to create more opportunities,” said Gecht. “In print, it can drive preventive diagnostics and predictive maintenance, which helps our customers improve their top and bottom lines.”
During Connect, EFI is announcing its new VUTEk 5r and 3r printers, which are designed to be the industry’s most technically advanced LED roll-to-roll production offerings. Printing at speeds up to 4,896 square feet per hour in resolutions up to 1,200 dpi, the 5-meter EFI VUTEk 5r and 3-meter EFI VUTEk 3r printers maximize performance, efficiency and quality.
Featuring high-resolution, 7-picoliter EFI UltraDrop Technology, the new printers offer the fastest throughput in the market, superior image quality and a lower total cost of ownership for premium graphics work. The printers are also available with a complete range of upgrade options for high productivity and versatility, including optional light colors and white for multi-layer printing; inline finishing for all-in-one printing, cutting, slitting, and collecting; auto backlit and blockout printing, and more. The new, superwide, roll-to-roll LED printers are available now.
Customers can take advantage of fast-growing soft-signage opportunities using EFI’s largest soft signage printer, the 5.2-meter EFI VUTEk FabriVU 520 launched at Connect. The printer gives users new capabilities for producing a broader range of soft signage products, including wall murals, theater drapes, and other superwide seamless applications.
The printer can produce up to 4,800 square feet (446 square meters) per hour, and prints at resolutions up to 2,400 dpi. It can do both direct-to-textile and transfer printing with an easy changeover using the same inkset for greater versatility. A patented ink-recovery system saves more than 95% of the ink lost in textile printing systems offered by other manufacturers.
Both new VUTEk printers on exhibit at Connect feature the latest-version EFI Fiery proServer DFE, which gives users the advantage of fast RIPing, accurate, high-quality color and robust production management. EFI also is presenting a technology demonstration of a new, 65-inch wide EFI Wide Format LED inkjet hybrid roll/flatbed printer at Connect.
Connect also features new technologies and exhibits in its solutions center from EFI partners, including: 3M, Berger Textiles; Canon; Duplo; Enfocus; Esko; KDX America; Klieverik; Kodak; Konica Minolta Business Solutions U.S.A., Inc.; NextWave; The Print and Graphics Scholarship Foundation; Print ReLeaf; Progress Software Corp.; Ricoh Americas Corp.; Riso; Xerox and Zünd.