LEADING prepress supplier Agfa Graphic Systems launched its new entry-level model of the Xcalibur 45 thermal platesetter at the recent Graph Expo in Chicago.
Known as the Xcalibur 45E, the new 8-up thermal platesetter uses a removable cassette for quick and easy plate handling and outputs 15 full-format plates an hour at 2400dpi ,in either manual or automatic operation.
The 45E complements the original Xcalibur 45S, launched at IPEX 2002,which outputs 20 full-format plates an hour.
Both the 45E and 45S offer uncompromising image quality and maximum convenience, according to Garry Muratore, Agfa Graphic Systems’ Oceania marketing manager.
He said Agfa’s 1160mm plate setting system used advanced Grating Light Valve (GLV) technology, an application developed by Silicon Light Machines and originally designed for the emerging High-Definition Television (HD TV)market.
Agfa was the first to apply this technology to the prepress and printing market.
He said the new model would complement the existing Excalibur 45 range perfectly.
"Based on our experience in the US and Europe, large printing operations were very happy with the Xcalibur 45S. We also found that small-to medium-size printers were interested in the machine, but they didn’t need to make as many plates so the new Xcalibur 45E is the ideal entry level solution for these operators.
“Also ,if more speed is needed in the future the 45E can be upgraded to bring it up to the 20-plate-per-hour speed of the X45S model," Muratore said.
Both Xcalibur 45 models were available in manual, semi-automatic and two fully automatic configurations, enabling printers to choose the level of automation that matched their throughput requirements.
Coupled with Apogee PrintDrive, Agfa ’s unique digital output management tool that offered increased productivity, functionality and control, the Xcalibur 45 assured printers of a continuous flow of plates to the pressroom.
Agfa also announced the shipment of a new removable cassette for both Xcalibur 45 models.
The cassette held up to 50 plates and kept them ready to load. This, Muratore said, would free the operator to do other tasks.