When facing the decision to purchase digital finishing equipment (usually after you spend too much time on just the digital print engine decision – see my last blog entry on this revelation), one of the key considerations is whether to configure the equipment in a near-line (fancy name for off-line) or in-line workflow. Why should you agonize over this issue, when you can have it all?
Digital finishing solutions (like the SigmaLine technology from Muller Martini – shameless plug) have the ability to be installed in an in-line configuration, while still possessing the ability to be fed manually by the operator. This flexibility is the result of clever engineering that provides intelligence at the component level as well as an overall line control functionality.
So how does this help you better utilize your large digital investment? Well, if all of the components of your in-line system are running well, you will take full advantage of the power of in-line collation inherent with digital printing (i.e., produce books with as little labor and waste as possible). However, even if one aspect of the line isn’t performing, you can still utilize the individual modules of the line. For example, when maintenance has to be done on your print engine technology (something you will get used to), you can still hand-feed book blocks into the measuring station of an in-line SigmaBinder.
So make sure that you invest in digital finishing technology that possesses both near-line and in-line configuration flexibility, otherwise you will never fully utilize your large digital investment.
Thank you for reading my blog. I look forward to your feedback. Until next time…