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Epson has launched its SurePress L-4533 series of short-run label presses.
The series, which is slated to replace the existing L-4033 series, will be shown for the first time at Labelexpo, Brussels in Sept, and it will become commercially available straight after the show. It is comprised of two models, the seven-colour L-4533AW, which comes with white ink capability, and the L-4533A, which comes without.
Frank Maeder, Epson product manager for its labels division, said he estimates around 80% will purchase the L-4533AW. Pricing is yet to be finalised.
The machine, which was beta-tested in Japan, is intended for small and medium-sized label converters aiming for digital printing capabilities, as well as commercial printers looking to diversify into labels. It is looking to build on the 4033’s global install base of more than 200 units.
Maeder said the 4533 was the result of  “continuous development” initiated almost immediately after the 4033 was launched six years ago.
“This is a refresh of the platform. Quite a number of small things have been put together, so the development of the features did not take that long but you can see this as almost a combination of everything we’ve learned in the last five to six years,” he said.
“If you think about how we position this platform, the 4033 has been popular with people entering digital, typically flexo printers. When you look at what these people prioritise in a product it’s things like substrates, versatility, quality and ease-of-use. If you look at every incremental change on the 4533 they go in that same direction.
The series offers improved speed and quality over the L-4033, printing in two-pass mode at a maximum speed of 8.2m/min - 3.2m/min faster than the 4033’s maximum speed - as well as faster variable data processing. It also offers an additional two-pass mode, mainly intended for barcode printing, meaning it now prints in two-pass, four-pass, six-pass, eight-pass and 16-pass mode.
Maeder added: “What we’ve done is increased the quality in the four and six passes, meaning that we can now do quality equal to what we used to do in eight passes in six. So you get quality improvements and productivity improvements.”