Quality is crucial: Flash Photobition has installed the country’s first Océ Arizona 550GT flatbed printer, building on the success it achieved by installing the first Arizona 350XT just a year ago
Flash Photobition, one of Australia’s foremost graphics and display companies, has taken delivery of the first Océ Arizona 550GT flatbed printer sold in Australia. Fredrik Uden, director of Flash says the investment will up his production speed with prints nearing photographic quality.
Since its inception in 1986, Sydney-based Flash Photobition has provided thousands of graphic solutions for an extensive array of purposes; including retail fit-outs, trade shows, exhibitions and museums, posters, billboards and point-of-sale solutions. Last year the company also installed the country’s first Océ Arizona 350XT.
Uden outlines that one of the key drivers for the investment in the Arizona 550GT was its capability to print high quality images on a range of media. He says, “The ability to print directly on to material really transforms your business. Our print production has gone from a three step process to one step.”
The new 550GT was released worldwide in January and will be seen publicly for the first time in Australia at the Visual Impact Image Expo on the Gold Coast April 30-May 1. Uden says however, the company decided that – based on its experience with previous Océ models – not to wait for the product to be shown publicly before making the purchase.
He says, “The Arizona’s ability to work with a wide range of substrates, dovetails with our ability to provide a wide range of different materials to our clients in display panels, fit outsor exhibition display systems.
“We invest a great deal of time in profiling to maximise the potential of any given substrate. I challenge any company to provide a better result than we are able to obtain from our Océ Arizona systems.”
According to Océ, the 550GT extends the Arizona range, doubling the speed of the existing models. It can produce more than 40sqm of high quality printing per hour, or more than 100 full-size boards per eight-hour shift.
Flash Photobition – which also has operations in Canberra and Brisbane – employs more than 70 staff and has twice been nominated as one of Australia’s top 100, fastest growing businesses.
From its origin as a photo lab with mounting and laminating capabilities, Flash has grown exponentially into a double shift display solutions provider, and broadened its offering beyond graphics, through the supply of portable display systems and modular exhibition systems.
Uden continues that the Arizona investment was a direct response to a strong customer demand. He says, “Our philosophy has always been find the work first, then buy the machine.
I wouldn’t have invested in new equipment if I had to go looking for extra work for it. However the Arizona has also given us some spare capacity.”
Uden also says that there was no hesitation when placing the orders for the country’s first 350XT and 550GT as there was little else on the market that could compete. He says, “Anyone can put ink on paper, but because of our background as a photo lab we really enjoy printing beautiful images.”
He continues, “The way we analysed our equipment options was simple, if the dots were too big and the image looked too coarse we weren’t interested.”
Another benefit is the production speed, Uden says, “With the new, faster 550GT we will able to offer more customers high quality prints, without working Sundays.”
Océ says that the 550GT display graphics printer reaches out to high capacity print providers - typically companies printing larger jobs of graphics for sign and display applications, for whom total or peak capacity is crucial. Unlike most high capacity flatbed printers, the 550GT features image quality suitable for closely-viewed point-of-purchase signage, according to the manufacturer.
Océ continues that the image quality is also suitable for printing on transparent media for use as illuminated backlit signs such as those in the cosmetics section of large department stores. Océ anticipates its customers producing an estimated 11 million sqm of printed output on Océ Arizona Series printers this year.
Flash Photobition also houses a number of wide format solvent printers as well as routing equipment, which combined with the new Océ equipment, the company claims it can print to almost anything regardless of shape including wood, metal, plastics and acrylic.