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Keundo’s SupraQ 3300-UV cured flatbed UV printer was launched in Europe last summer Print E-mail

Keundo has been working on a UV printer for more than two years. The first prototype was actually displayed quietly at one US trade show about three years ago. This prototype used solvent ink and had only a narrow table; the new final design for the UV version has tables front and back the entire width of the machine.

Keundo SupraQ 3300-UV cured flatbed hybrid inkjet printer

The complete new and improved design has been displayed at Korean trade shows in 2007. But they are intelligently not yet presenting it at US shows (at least it was not at ISA 2007). But they did show it finally at FESPA ’07. This is smart of Keundo:

  • the Infiniti UV was exhibited while still in alpha-stage, and sold while still unfinished: the owners who bought them complained it simply fell apart after a few months.

  • DuPont had to recall 90% of their second generation printers (DuPont DCC 22UV digital printing system), and most of their third or fourth generation Cromaprint 22 UV printers are still having occasional issues (ask anyone who bought one). If they had waited until the factory had more experience it would have been better for the reputation of that model.

  • Zund had to recall most of their premature Zund UVjet 250-Combi printers and it took them two years to redesign them. The new Zund 250 is now out, significantly improved, and we will spend two days in Switzerland inspecting it before FESPA. Our comments will be updated as soon as we have this opportunity to test it in person.

  • The Oce Arizona 60uv was shown at trade shows for almost two years: never did function adequately and was recalled.

  • Raster Printers tried to display their Chinese-made printer before it was functional. DJT tried to sell their printer before it was even finished!

  • The Kodak 5260 was not a UV printer but is the best example of the public embarrassment caused by displaying a printer before it is finished. Actually it was never finished, but Kodak spent over a million dollars in advertising it nonetheless. The printer, and eventually Encad, went down the drain.

The lesson to be learned: end-users dislike being guinea pigs for testing unfinished printers. It is safer (for the long haul) to wait and get the printer fully finished first, and then show it.

So we commend Keundo for not showing an unfinished printer. Keundo, and all the other Korean companies, have an excellent quality, so we look forward to seeing this printer Keundo SupraQ 3300-UV when it is displayed in Europe and the US.

Image of Keundo SupraQ 3300-UV-cured flatbed hybrid inkjet printer, comparative prices
Keundo SupraQ 3300-UV, Nicholas at Keundo's Booth in Fespa 2007.

Some features of the Keundo SupraQ 3300-UV printer

The first surprise is that this is a platen-based design. This classifies it as a hybrid. The only other grand-format hybrid design is that of Neolt. All other large-width UV printers are either dedicated flatbeds or combo style (with a transport belt). The main issue of a hybrid is feeding heavy or smooth surfaced rigid materials; these will tend to skip, stutter, or skew when being fed by grit rollers. A hybrid is okay for roll-fed material but not ideal for boards.

The printer uses 12 Spectra Galaxy PH 256/50 AAA printheads, so it aims at signage-quality output with some speed, as compared with other companies that have gone to Toshiba Tec heads (to get text down to 4 pt that are legible).

As with other printers you can opt for 6 traditional colors of CMYK + 2 white. It takes two white to be opaque enough. Print width is 3.2 meters (so it’s not truly a 3.3 meter machine…).

Overall it appears to be a large and sturdy looking machine, as I would expect from Keundo. The tables, for example, look well designed and robust.

As soon as the printer is shown again outside Korea we will update our comments on what we sense about its features, and its chances of survival in a competitive world of dozens and dozens of UV printer manufacturers. Our evaluation policy since 2006 prefers a site-visit case study to reveal how a printer functions in real life at an actual printshop. And we need a factory visit as well, so we can inspect build quality to document it is solidly constructed. So far we have visited the factories of MacDermid ColorSpan, Gandinnovations, Grapo, Inca, NUR (twice last year year), Sun (FastJet), and VUTEk (three times this year) and Durst (three times in 2008).

Keundo SupraQ 3300-UV printer reviews
Keundo SupraQ 3300-UV printer at FESPA trade show, 2007.
Keundo SupraQ 3300-UV cured flatbed hybrid inkjet printer

 

the Keundo SupraQ 3300-UV cured flatbed hybrid inkjet printer reviews
The Keundo SupraQ 3300-UV printing samples at Viscom Germany trade show, 2007.

 

Image of Keundo SupraQ 3300-UV-cured flatbed hybrid inkjet printer evaluations

 

Plenty of other hybrid UV-curable flatbeds are available: ColorSpan HP Designjet, DEC Legend 72HUV, Neolt, etc.

Plus you may want to read the FLAAR Report on classifications of UV printers to understand the difference between a hybrid and a combo and a true flatbed.

 

 

Most recently updated November 24, 2008.

First posted May 14, 2007, Updated September 17, 2007.

 
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