by Danny Mertens
History of digital printing
“The year 2018 marks an important milestone in the history of digital printing. It has been 30 years since Xeikon, one of the earliest pioneers of the direct digital colour press, was founded,” Brunner said. “And it’s been 25 years since the Xeikon DCP-1 and the Indigo E-Print 1000 were introduced at IPEX 1993. The Agfa Chromapress, based on the Xeikon engine with an Agfa front-end system, one of the first integrated digital production systems on the market, was also introduced at that time. The digital printing industry has come a long way over these years, and it is a good moment in time to explore digital printing’s evolution and what it can tell us about the possible future of media and communications, especially the printed variety. We hope it will be beneficial to those who are relatively new to the industry, and a walk down memory lane for veterans who have been around for a while.”
“It’s quite special to be part of Xeikon, a company that was a key player in giving birth to the era of full-color digital printing and a company that continues to innovate as digital printing evolves,” said Danny Mertens, Corporate Communications Manager for Xeikon. “Of course, none of this would have been possible without the knowledge, expertise and dedication of our talented employees. We had the right people in the right place at the right time – and still do. This 30-year anniversary is the perfect time for a shout-out to all of the Xeikon family that made this achievement possible.”
The Triple-X series begins with a discussion of the desktop publishing revolution and how that led to the birth of full-color digital printing. “In addition to strolling down memory lane,” Boogaard stated, “we also invite readers to share their stories, successes and expectations, and to join us in celebrating the present while exploring the roads to the future of print as well.”
The Xeikon XXX blog series can be found at https://www.pastprintfuture.com/. Readers can subscribe to the blog to ensure notification as each new segment is published.
Xeikon, a division of Flint Group, is a long-standing leader and innovator in digital printing technology. Grounded in the principles of quality, flexibility and sustainability, Xeikon designs, develops and delivers web-fed digital colour presses for label and packaging applications, document printing, and commercial printing. These printing machines work with different imaging technologies, open workflow software and application-specific consumables.
As an OEM supplier, Xeikon designs and produces plate makers for newspaper offset printing applications. In addition, Xeikon manufactures basysPrint computer-to-conventional plate (CtCP) solutions for the commercial offset printing market. For the flexographic market, Xeikon offers digital platemaking systems under the ThermoFlexX brand. ThermoFlexX systems provide high-resolution plate exposure combined with unique plate handling, flexibility and unmatched productivity.
In 2015, Xeikon joined Flint Group to create a new “Digital Printing Solutions” division for the leading global print consumables and solution provider to the packaging and print media industries. Flint Group develops and manufactures an extensive portfolio of consumables for the printing industry. These include a vast range of conventional and energy-curable inks and coatings, pressroom chemicals, printing plates and equipment, printing blankets and sleeves, and pigments and additives for use in inks and other colorant applications. The Flint Group is based in Luxembourg and employs around 7900 people. It is the world's largest or second largest supplier in all its main market segments.