Hewlett-Packard gave a sneak peek of its new PageWide wide-format printer, ahead of the product’s official launch at the Sign and Digital exhibition 2015.

A 40-inch wide-format printer, without any product name branding was shown running on the Hewlett-Packard booth.

Visitors were also able to learn more about Hewlett-Packard’s plans for the product, but only if they signed an NDA (non-disclosure agreement).

The PageWide technology is a development of the inkjet heads used in Hewlett-Packard’s T-series high-speed inkjet web presses. 

The wide-format implementation involves a static array of printheads, with the substrate moving at speed under the head. 

On the device shown at Sign & Digital, eight five-inch wide printheads formed the print bar. Detailed technical specifications were not made public. 

Product manager, Victor Marti from Hewlett-Packard claimed the new printer would be “the fastest and most efficient printer on the market.

He further added, “There will be no need to differentiate between black-and-white and colour workflows. The cost of printing black-and-white and colour will be exactly the same.”

Marti said the use of pigmented inks made it very versatile and said the printheads were very long-lasting. He cited applications including technical drawings and Computer-Aided Design printing, as well as poster printing and point-of-sale.

The demo device was shown printing roll-to-sheet A1-format paper maps, Computer-Aided Design-type plans, and colour images and posters. Solid colour and four-colour halftone quality appeared adequate for quick turnaround, short-lifespan promotions.

Hewlett-Packard will be showing the PageWide device at Fespa in Cologne in May.