Pin Point Block enhances flexo offering with Esko

Installed the Esko CDI Crystal 5080 XPS and innovative Print Control Wizard software for more automation

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Pin Point Block
Pin Point Block has installed the Esko CDI Crystal 5080 XPS and innovative Print Control Wizard software to deliver more automation.

Pin Point Block is taking advantage of the latest developments in flexographic technology from Esko to enhance its entire plate making operation, introducing the full Esko Crystal line of platemaking solutions at its facility in Ahmedabad, India.

The sister company of Pin Mark Block, one of India’s leading flexographic trade shops, Pin Point Block has installed the Esko CDI Crystal 5080 XPS and innovative Print Control Wizard software to deliver more automation, enhanced quality, increased simplicity and improved reliability to the plate room. The company is the first in South Asia to have a CDI Crystal 5080 XPS with Optics 100 V2, a further optical development exclusive to the Esko platform, which combines best in class imaging quality with optimal productivity.

Rutul Zaveri, a partner in the platemaking business, said having enjoyed a long-standing relationship with Esko for more than sixteen years, the decision to continue its digital transformation journey with the new Crystal platemaking technology had been a simple one. “We always aim to supply excellent quality processed digital flexo plates to our customers, which helps them to achieve superior flexo print results,” said Zaveri. “When we were looking to replace our existing lamps plate imager, we knew we wanted to invest in the most innovative and reliable solution. The Esko CDI Crystal 5080 XPS met all our requirements and expectations.”

Pin Point Block’s visual appeal of its flexo-printed artwork

Renowned for its in-depth knowledge of prepress and printing of all types, Pin Point Block has earned a reputation for maximizing the visual appeal of its flexo-printed artwork on any given press. “We are always keen to implement new technologies and were the first to invest in an automatic flexo platemaking module within Esko Automation Engine, which integrates our imager and state of the art Kongsberg cutting table to ensure quality and accuracy at a significantly faster pace than the manual way of cutting flexo plates,” said Zaveri. “This newest addition perfectly complements our state-of the art Esko prepress software, which not only includes the latest generation automation engine but also ArtPro+ and imaging engine. Indeed, the Imaging Engine is also unique in that it has two processing channels, which enables us to RIP two jobs at the same time, improving our throughput and helping to ensure all deliveries are on-time.”

Murad Kalal, Esko regional manager Sales, said that this latest investment again demonstrated how Pin Point Block always works to stay ahead of the curve and surpass customer needs. “With the Crystal technology from Esko, the platemaking process – in terms of imaging and exposure – is now much less complex and has significantly fewer steps. The integration of our Print Control Wizard software and hardware technology means that the Pin Point Block team are now completely in control of the quality and performance of their plates and subsequent print consistency.”

The CDI Crystal XPS can be operated with single touch operation using an intuitive screen interface and allows for unattended operation. The award-winning Esko XPS Crystal technology optimally combines UV main and back exposure, using LEDs that always emit consistent UV light as opposed to traditional exposure frames, which use lightbulbs with fluctuating output. The combination of the CDI Crystal flexo imager with the XPS Crystal exposing unit offers a perfect, consolidated flexo plate making workflow for Pin Point Block. “The integration and automation of the digital imaging and LED UV exposure processes improves consistency and overall ease of use for the prepress operators,” said Murad. “The CDI Crystal XPS not only frees up valuable time but also reduces maintenance of the flexo equipment.”

As well as the latest imaging technology, the Pin Point Block team is using the award-winning Esko Print Control Wizard to automate its workflow and ensure the highest quality of plates. Designed to improve the flexo platemaking process and flexographic print quality via crystal screens, Print Control Wizard brings a simplified, standardized approach to take process parameters like ink, printing press, substrate, and anilox into consideration for screen and curve creation. The software guides the user in a wizard-style experience and outputs a set of crystal screens and curves used for plate exposing on a CDI Crystal XPS, resulting in the optimum flexo print quality.

“We are glad to be associated with Pin Point Block, a company which is synonymous with flexo prepress and delivering excellent results,” added Murad. “Thanks to the new CDI Crystal XPS configuration, Pin Point Block can produce exceptional quality flexo plates that generate optimum print quality for their customers.”

The Covid-19 pandemic led to the country-wide lockdown on 25 March 2020. It will be two years tomorrow as I write this. What have we learned in this time? Maybe the meaning of resilience since small companies like us have had to rely on our resources and the forbearance of our employees as we have struggled to produce our trade platforms.

The print and packaging industries have been fortunate, although the commercial printing industry is still to recover. We have learned more about the digital transformation that affects commercial printing and packaging. Ultimately digital will help print grow in a country where we are still far behind in our paper and print consumption and where digital is a leapfrog technology that will only increase the demand for print in the foreseeable future.

Web analytics show that we now have readership in North America and Europe amongst the 90 countries where our five platforms reach. Our traffic which more than doubled in 2020, has at times gone up by another 50% in 2021. And advertising which had fallen to pieces in 2020 and 2021, has started its return since January 2022.

As the economy approaches real growth with unevenness and shortages a given, we are looking forward to the PrintPack India exhibition in Greater Noida. We are again appointed to produce the Show Daily on all five days of the show from 26 to 30 May 2022.

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– Naresh Khanna

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