The hottest laser Imagesetter faces challenges and

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Laser Imagesetter faces challenges and opportunities

in recent years, due to the emergence of the emerging computer direct plate making (CTP) technology and digital printing technology, the scope of application of imagesetter has been greatly impacted. With the development of CTP technology and digital printing machine, will the application scope of laser Imagesetter be greatly reduced or even disappear

although some authorities predicted that the film would disappear soon more than a decade ago, at least today, the laser Imagesetter still occupies a certain distinction between the original market screen display model and the previous model. For this reason, we have conducted extensive investigation and research with relevant people in the industry and manufacturers, and finally believe that the laser Imagesetter still has broad prospects for development and a huge range of market applications

I. advantages of laser Phototypesetter

1. Machine price: at present, the price of CTP system includes not only the production cost of the equipment itself, but also the cost of new product marketing and promotion, as well as the cost of early-stage technology development, development and operation. Since large-scale mass production has not yet been formed, the overall production cost of CTP system is relatively high. Reflected in the sales price, the price of CTP is still higher than that of the same grade imagesetter

2. machine performance: after more than 20 years of development, the imagesetter has been fully mature in technology. However, CTP is still in the stage of development and improvement, its function is not perfect, its speed is not ideal, and its internal structure and principle still have many defects. These factors make the domestic printing industry colleagues unwilling to easily agree with it

3. cost and technology of consumables: the imagesetter with film cost is cheaper than the plate making machine with the same output size and format, and the consumables are also cheaper. Therefore, Phototypesetter still plays an important role in many prepress and printing companies

from a technical point of view, CTP technology skips the film step and directly sends raster data to the plate making equipment to form an image on the plate. The technology goes further

however, consumables must be considered when CTP technology is adopted. Generally speaking, the main cost composition of the output center, in addition to the investment in equipment, a large part comes from the cost of consumable materials. Now, China has made great progress in film production technology, but there is still a long way to go in CTP plate production. The existence of this situation objectively leaves room for the development of the application of Phototypesetter

4. process requirements: in the traditional process, the film can be adjusted in multiple processes such as film production, plate printing, proofing, etc. Due to the direct printing of CTP, the simplification of process inevitably requires the improvement of technical content, and its operation flexibility is not as flexible as film

5. Determined by the national conditions: China is in the stage of primitive accumulation of capital. When users' overall requirements for the quality of printing and plate making are not very high, each output center always takes the lowest cost as the premise, takes low-cost competition as a means to compete for customer resources, and realizes the purpose of industry integration and optimization by squeezing the generation space of competitors. Under this premise, if the output center introduces the CTP system with high cost and high consumables, it will not produce too good economic benefits

6. service system: at present, all major laser Imagesetter manufacturers have offices in China, are equipped with professional technicians, and have built a perfect after-sales service system, which can provide timely and effective services for domestic users. In addition, the price of accessories of laser Imagesetter is relatively low. In this regard, the manufacturers of CTP system are facing huge market competition pressure, and the resulting uncertainty and possible risks will eventually be transferred to the end users of the equipment

7. personnel quality: Laser Imagesetter has been used in China for many years, and has accumulated rich experience in personnel training. At present, there are many people familiar with the operation of Phototypesetter in China, and the cost of training a novice is also very low. However, the operation of CTP system has raised the requirements for employees, and a perfect training system has not been established in China. This is also something that enterprises have to consider when investing in CTP system. After all, the price difference between a set of four-color version and a set of four-color film is very wide interface: due to the particularity of the Chinese use environment, the requirements for Rip are very high. In this regard, the leading domestic product is still the rip of founder of Peking University. At present, the laser Imagesetter introduced in China can basically be connected with Founder rip, but CTP system cannot be guaranteed. How to realize the connection between CTP system and the existing system and ensure the consistency between rip results and typesetting content is the necessary technical premise for the popularization of CTP system in China

9. enterprise scale: Although there are many printing enterprises in China, they are mainly small and medium-sized enterprises. Due to the cruel living environment, small and medium-sized investors always hope to recover their investment as soon as possible. However, CTP system may not meet the requirements of such enterprises, so the risk is relatively high

10. the impact of other alternative technologies: for CTP technology, we are now faced with wolves before and tigers after. Looking ahead, the digital printing press was born almost at the same time as CTP technology. This more direct printing method constantly peeks at the market share occupied by traditional printing; Looking back, the laser Phototypesetter is still unwilling to withdraw from the stage of history early, but tries to improve itself and strive to retain its place. The CTP sandwiched between the two has neither the absolute advantage of energy technology that was undoubtedly provided for Nanzhuang's industrial transformation when the laser Phototypesetter replaced the electric extension, nor the strong support from low cost and high flexibility, so it is inevitable to live a hard life

II. Market application of laser Phototypesetter

computer direct plate making technology has brought a great impact on the laser Phototypesetter market, among which the impact on the split Phototypesetter for the production of whole page mosaic printing film is the largest. However, some imagesetter manufacturers, even those like Agfa, which not only manufactures imagesetters but also plate makers, still recognize the use of film. More importantly, they are constantly developing laser Imagesetter technology

let's take a look at the development of Phototypesetter in the past few years: Agfa company launched selectset avantra 44xt roller Phototypesetter, with a width of 44.5 inches, which can be used for whole page mosaic output in large format printing. In addition, u1tre's 5400 and 5800 winch imagesetters can also be seen on the market, which can be used for the output of film or polyester plates. In addition, there is the film or polyester version of the Stingray 5200 of ECRM company; Another product of the company, 6300 type split Phototypesetter, is mainly used in the newspaper printing market

Mr. David Parker, the distribution manager of AGFA's electronic prepress system, said: "our company sells more phototypesetters in the United States alone than all companies including our company sell plate making machines with a large number of fatigue testing machines and lower market prices." Dean Meyer, manager of prepress production department of Heidelberg company in Canada, also agreed with this statement, saying: "The main part of our business is still on the imagesetter."

in a word, the information obtained from domestic and foreign laser Imagesetter manufacturers shows that laser Imagesetter is still the main product business project of various printing machinery manufacturers

III. future development trend

ctp and digital printing system have entered the sales market and have a certain impact on the whole industry. But it did not achieve the desired effect. At present, there is no strong market demand in China. To complete the same printing task, those factories that intend to invest in CTP system have realized that the most reasonable step should be to output the whole page of patchwork film. Therefore, many companies will first consider investing in the folio imagesetter before purchasing the direct plate making system

on the contrary, most CTP systems or digital printing machines are installed in large printing enterprises, and some are purchased by prepress enterprises. After all, there are not many such enterprises

these two trends make the sales market of imagesetters on the rise. There is still a large market space for traditional film output. Manufacturers of different devices believe that film will still exist in the next five years. Moreover, in the next few years, the sales of imagesetters will develop faster, better and more flexible, and the pursuit of high quality and low price is still the main trend

for the next ten years, there will be differences of opinion. Some manufacturers promise that they will still produce imagesetters and use film in the next decade; Other manufacturers believe that if they still talk about film ten years later, there will be a problem. They believe that the direct plate making machine at that time will be easier to use, cheaper and more flexible

it can be predicted that in the next five years, Phototypesetting opportunities will develop in the direction of faster speed, higher quality film production and easier operation, and will be significantly reduced - cheaper or the same price, more performance and better quality. Therefore, the laser Imagesetter still has a broad development prospect and a huge market application range

information source: must win

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