Screen appears to have replaced its 16-up VLF thermal platesetters with a new range, but inexplicably named the new series after one of the old models, the PlateRite Ultima 16000N, which was released back in 2014. Confused? You should try reading the rest of the press release…
Okay, that’s a little unfair as the press release sort of makes sense if you don’t know that Screen already makes 16-up platesetters and aren’t sneaky enough to look up the specifications for the current models.
So, the new 16000N is actually a complete series of three models, the Z, S and E. The specifications appear to be broadly similar to the outgoing 16000 mk II series. They use an updated version of the GLV imaging heads, with the main benefit being that this generation requires less maintenance and cleaning of the optics than with the earlier models. The same GLV technology is fitted to the HD8900N series that was announced at last year’s Drupa show.
Productivity is similar to the older models. The Z model appears to be based on the old 16000N model, with a single 1024 channel head, and is able to produce the same 42 plates per hour. The S and E models use the 512 channel heads and can produce 29 and 17 plates per hour respectively.
There are some small improvements, such as the reduced clamp size and a new interface which makes it easier to integrate the machine in the network. In addition, all the models take the slightly larger maximum plate size of 1470 x 1180mm that was first introduced in 2014 with the original 16000N model. There’s also an option to handle plates down to 450 x 370mm.
Martijn van den Broek, Screen’s EMEA wide format Product Manager, says that the most noticeable improvement is in the power consumption, adding: “Screen is continually working to reduce the power consumption of all its equipment.” Thus this new series has inherited the power-saving mode introduced last year with the larger HD8900N allowing significant energy savings during idling.
Screen estimates that this cuts the energy use by 55 percent overall and the stand-by energy use by 83 percent. Of course, the key question here is whether or not Screen has also increased the price of the new platesetters, which might undermine the energy savings, though no one seemed keen to reply to that question.
Screen has also updated its multi-cassette autoloader system, with the MA-L16000N II, which can hold 450 plates, up from the 420 of the original version.
Van den Broek adds: “Also, there have been developments to the automatic plate loading devices, so that the whole system can be monitored on-line with our Trust remote network service.”
The 16000N series will be available worldwide from this month.