What’s in Store for Print in 2015?

The-Road-To-The-Future-Of-PrintWhat’s in Store for Print in 2015?
By Deborah Corn | January 12, 2015

Greetings Earthlings, Prink Geeks and Citizens of the Printerverse! It’s a new year and while I am sure you have been planning for it, it’s always nice to hear some print prognostications from a wide range of industry pros. You can use this info to validate your direction or adjust it, seek out events to help you understand these topical subjects better, and even find help to implement them into your business. Personally I am using this post as a guide to creating conversations with you, bringing these topics to life through our weekly #PrintChat, and partnering up with experts to provide free educational opportunities.

While I would never refer to myself as an industry expert, this is my site and one of the perks of ownership is that I can add my thoughts here – so I am going to! My 2015 CMYK Manifesto is coming out in January’s News From The Printerverse, so make sure you are subscribed!

After mine, the comments below are posted in the order I received them. Happy New Year and Print Long and Prosper in 2015!

Deborah Corn – Intergalactic Ambassador To The Printerverse, Print Media Centr / @PrintMediaCentr

Print and Paper are going to be directly in the line of fire as far as “the environment” even more in 2015. Consumers find going “paperless” a quick and easy way to feel environmentally responsible, and brands will need to show they care by providing even more paperless engagement and options in their marketing and packaging. It is up to us to help customers print smarter so resources aren’t wasted, and help educate customers and consumers that using paper and printing responsibly won’t leave the earth barren of trees and depleted of oxygen. Supporting Two Sides (select the country that applies to you) is a fantastic way to make sure we set the record straight, and help end corporate greenwashing. Visit the site and consider joining as a member for as little as $250 for the year. “Click. Share. Bust Some Myths” as often as you can through your channels… we are all in this together!

Cary Sherburne – Senior Editor and Director of Services, WhatTheyThink.com@csherburne 

2015 will be another year of both consolidation and transformation for the printing and publishing industries. As the global consumer base increasingly turns to mobile communications for securing and communicating information and entertainment, there will be an increasing array of opportunities for both print service providers and publishers to find innovative ways to monetize new, mobile-oriented services.

Despite the many years of consolidation these industries have undergone, 2015 is already shaping up to be a busy year in terms of events, both for customers and analysts/journalists. This is a sign that despite, or perhaps because of, the many disruptive forces we have been dealing with, the supplier community sees opportunity and is investing in these events to keep the momentum going.

All in all, 2015 should be an exciting year – and a vibrant run-up to drupa 2016, where we can hope to see even more innovation surface.

David Murphy – WW Marketing Director, HP Inkjet Web Press division / @DavidJMurphy

Remember when the market shifted from dumb phones to smart phones? CRTs to LCDs? Dial-up to broadband? DVDs to flash drives? In 2015, we will start to see the beginnings of a seismic shift in print from offset to inkjet. Quality, media versatility, and application expansion will give more print providers, brands, agencies, and publishers the ‘aha’ moment, inspiring them to shift more work to high-quality production inkjet for improved impact and ROI.

Mr. D. Eadward Tree – Chief Arborist at Dead Tree Edition / @DeadTreeEdition

Postal rates next will be more unpredictable than they have been in a long time. This article explains it pretty well: http://deadtreeedition.blogspot.com/2014/09/postal-rates-in-2015-could-rise-or-fall.html. With the updated information in this article, we could have a rate increase in April and then a larger rate decrease in the summer when the “temporary” surcharge goes away. But you know how things go with the government: “Temporary” taxes have a way of becoming permanent ones — in this case either from a court order or because Congress decides that mailers should pay for its bad decisions.

And another: Sales of printed books will do well next year, perhaps increasing. But traditional offset book printers will suffer, as more book printing shifts to digital presses, especially for print on demand.

Nigel Cliffe – Driving improved business-to-business return from Social Media at Value Exchange Ltd / @nigelcliffe

Personalisation, across all channels, will be of increasing importance in 2015.

Mass marketing used to be tolerated – just one of those things you had to bear. Now it damages brands. Period. We receive so many messages in our day that those untargeted messages have moved from being acceptable to unnecessary, to damn right annoying.

Engagement is the buzzword for 2015 – genuine one-to-one communication. 2015 will be the year in which marketers will change their efforts to converting opportunities one by one – not by throwing enough at the wall and hoping it sticks. With the exception of a very few, developing business is not about numbers, but about seeking genuine engagement with a few.

Meeting hundreds of people as I do in my world of LinkedIn training for business to business solutions I ask a simple question. “How many new clients would it take to make you very successful next year?” One a week? One a month? The numbers are rarely beyond two figures. Why then do we mass market our effort to so many people hoping a moment of magic will occur? For that’s what it would take for a random connection to do business with you. No – you are far more likely to do business with someone with whom you have created a genuine relationship through Know, Like, Trust.

So there we have it – the year in which the pendulum swings towards the arc of personalization! Oh, and picking up the ‘phone will come back into fashion

Pat McGrew M-EDP, CMP – Evangelist, (Print, Inkjet, Production Mail) at Hewlett-Packard / @PatMcGrew

2015 is the year before drupa so a lot of things will slow down to get ready for big announcements there. But, that doesn’t mean nothing cool will happen. New solutions with higher resolution across a variety of platforms, printers adopting new media to print on, and great new finishing solutions will come to the floor to change the market perception of what printing using digital technologies really means. The first big WOWs should start in January and keep on coming!

Catherine Doggett – National Marketing and Sustainability Manager, K.W.Doggett Fine Paper / @kwdoggett

More value add. Paper and print as the message/the experience rather than just a medium to deliver printed words on. Less transactional work and more wow factor on shorter runs. More trade printing. More digital.

Nathan Doggett, National Sales Manager, K.W.Doggett Fine Paper / @kwdoggett

Print has really expanded now into many new areas – so lots more paper diversification to continue next year.  Clients want more choice and are always chasing new stocks and machine technology is dictating this. New machines/ new paper sizes/new substrates.  Lastly, tactile stocks have been making a comeback for a few years and I think this will continue. People want their print to stand out. Smaller print runs with a powerful/interesting feel and look. Think Buffalo/SKIN/Matter/Knight Vellum – touch/feel/excite/spec/boom town!!


Joanne Gore – Director of Marketing, Avanti / @avantisystems

I predict that 2015 will see a turning point in the Print industry, as we begin to integrate both online and offline marketing strategies for both end-users as well as ourselves. As I recently wrote in “News from the Printerverse”, we are an industry with a rich history in craftsmanship and (very) old-school technology. And although we have struggled over the years, we have the opportunity to marry some of these old-school techniques with new school ideas. We’re going to start seeing more and more cross-over, with the incorporation of QR codes and AR (Augmented Reality), resulting in the best of both physical and virtual worlds.

I also believe that now, more than ever, the future is wrapped in the Cloud. The focus will continue to be customer-centric, with printers requiring instantaneous access to all aspects of a job as it moves through the shop, while eliminating breaks in the workflow. Investing in cloud-based software, which also works as a solution to their Print MIS concerns, is the way to go to ensure the biggest “bang for their buck”.  Companies who have not moved forward and/or invested in this technology will quickly lag.

Trish Witkowski – Chief Folding Fanatic, Foldfactory.com / @foldingfanatic

With all of the privacy issues and technology breaches we’re seeing in the digital space – and the ease and frequency in which they seem to be happening, I think we’re going to see a rediscovery of mail. Privacy is one of its greatest benefits, so my prediction is that there will be renewed interest in mail as a private and targeted marketing and communications medium.

Deborah Hutcheson, Director of Marketing, Agfa Graphics, North America / @agfagraphics 

When we look forward to 2015, there are a number of trends that point to continued solid growth opportunities in the UV Sign & Display market. Overall, customers are focusing on productivity, efficient end-to-end integration and ROI.

Print service providers (PSPs) will continue to buy more productive equipment and see the value of automation (automated board feeders/ABF, etc). Workflow is gaining importance. PSPs are becoming fully integrated with workflow solutions that improve file delivery, offer consistent color management and link them to their upstream clients via web-to-print. Successful PSPs know the ultimate goal is to increase customer satisfaction, gain efficiencies and save time.

Customers are looking to expand their application scope and broaden their market reach into the world of industrial inkjet. Digital inkjet manufacturing is becoming feasible on existing inkjet printing platforms. Examples include printing doors, cabinet fronts, touch sensors or personalized sporting equipment.

In the mid-segment and high-end market, businesses will continue to expand by offering printing capability with finishing, tooling, mounting and multi-media utilizing various inkjet technologies to remain relevant and grow.

Chloe Mahendra-Fuji, Print Diva / @ChloePrintDiva

2015 will be the breakout year for conversion of a lot of print that doesn’t need to happen on high end offset presses to great, equivalent digital presses. It’s a new generation of print buyers and print specifiers, and they are finally getting on board the digital train. From packaging to posters,  direct mail marketing to in store signage, digital gives you the flexibility, color reliability, and innovative substrate alternatives. I can’t wait!

Ron Pergande – Director of Digital Media, GPA Specialty Substrates / @RedCoolerRon 

I think disruptive print communications will continue to grow in popularity and evolve in the coming year. Innovations such as 3D printing and augmented reality are taking print to another level, challenging the boundaries of traditional print while adding value to it. These innovations are also making it possible to engage audiences in more dynamic ways and across a variety of media to make messages more memorable.

Greg Kestler – Director of Technical Products for Pressure Sensitive Paper & Printable Films, GPA Specialty Substrates / @AskGPA

Point-of-sale and point-of-purchase graphics have been strong in the recent past, and I anticipate that this will not change in 2015. These tried and true applications will continue to thrive, and I also believe packaging will continue in popularity.

Stephanie Gaddin – CEO, Dolphinworxs@dolphinworxs

2014 saw the explosion of web-2-print , vendors seemed to pop up almost monthly, with everything from simple shopfront ordering systems, branded for print, all the way up to massively complicated and highly integrated web stores where clients could design, approve, order and pay for their print.

What I am most excited about for 2015 though is the evolution of the Print MIS as a tool for smaller businesses, and what the fierce competition means for the printing industry as a whole. Lots of software vendors means there is a good strong market for software products in printing ; what a good indicator of an industry that is not dying!

Many people have taken steps to move online (or into the cloud if you want to use the latest buzzwords), either by shifting their hardware infrastructure offsite into managed servers, or simply by using tools such as managed email accounts, online CRM packages, or online accounting. Once we make that mental shift, it becomes easier to grasp the value of an integrated MIS that is not only offsite, but managed and hosted for you.

Many people keep predicting massive growth in the “cloud”, I believe we may have finally reached a mass acceptance and I predict a tipping point in 2015. I think that by December 2015 more printing companies will have moved “into the cloud” than not.

Smaller companies will choose managed solutions including online software, larger companies will want more finely grained technical control and will choose offsite managed servers that are accessed remotely, but still “in the cloud” none the less.

I also predict a much bigger International Print Day celebration, we will trend in Australia, and possibly even the planet this year. Viva #IPD15!


Mid-State Litho, Inc.
5459 Fenton Rd.
Flint, MI 48507

We’ve Seen the Future of Direct Mail, and It’s Awesome

We’ve Seen the Future of Direct Mail, and It’s Awesome

By Christine Alexander | January 8th, 2015

crystal-ballIf I had a crystal ball and could look into both the past and future of direct mail, I can guarantee I’d see two completely different scenes. Direct mail from five years ago is drastically different than direct mail today.

Just ask print guru Jim Hamilton, a 27-year direct mail industry veteran. As a group director at InfoTrends, Hamilton oversees production consulting services, including digital printing, wide format, packaging & labels, production workflow and variable data tools, document outsourcing, market research, and forecasting for product and market analysis reports.

In a recent conversation, Hamilton shared his thoughts on the direct mail industry – both where it is today and where he thinks it’s headed.

What’s the hottest thing happening in direct mail right now?

According to Hamilton, marketing automation is the hottest trend right now. Giving people what they want when they want it is crucial in the grand scheme of the marketing mix.

Perhaps most importantly, you have to be able to do this across multiple channels. You want to connect with your consumers online, with social media for example, but you also need mobile and email marketing.

With tools like quick response (QR), augmented reality (AR), near field communication and personalized URLs (PURLs), marketers can use print pieces to engage with consumers online. PURLs also help in the automation process. Campaigns can be set up to trigger emails to customers based on activity and inactivity, and connect with social media networks to reach consumers. At the same time, PURLs track the campaign numbers, which you can use to help figure out your marketing return on investment.

How can you be personal—without being creepy?

Digital printing has changed the landscape of what’s possible with direct mail. With variable imaging and messaging, marketers can create more relevant communications. But how do you avoid coming off as creepy?

First and foremost, Hamilton recommends leveraging more than just a person’s name. There are so many elements that you can consider when making collateral more relevant to the recipient. He suggests diving into specific locations, even a specific neighborhood, or looking at buying patterns and playing off what interests your recipients.

Hamilton suggests not saying, “We saw you bought product X; here are products Y & Z that complement your recent purchase nicely.” Instead, get creative and use what you know about them. If they’ve been purchasing the same can of tomatoes on a consistent basis, why not send them a recipe featuring their preferred brand and offer up a coupon?

When it comes to the creepiness factor, Hamilton made an excellent point that the Internet has greatly impacted what will creep consumers out. Think about it – today you can go to virtually any site and ads will pop up in the sidebar that advertise the exact product you just Googled. That’s normal, not creepy.

Digital printing has also made it possible to print variable messaging on outer envelopes that can capture a recipient’s attention and drive them to find out what’s inside. Pitney Bowes client, Wilen Direct, did just that with Pitney Bowes Print+ Messenger™ Color Inkjet System, and their customers are reaping the benefits. You can read their success story here.

Where is the industry going?

Perhaps my favorite part of our conversation was hearing what Hamilton had to say about the future.

We currently hear a lot about digital inkjet Web technologies and how they’re impacting the digital sphere of printing, from highly variable books where literally every single page is unique, to variable couponing paired with variable perforation.

The next step, according to Hamilton, is towards cut-sheet inkjet solutions. The option of printing on separate sheets can help boost productivity rates, plus it’s cost-effective for direct mailers that don’t quite have the volume to consider digital inkjet Web solutions.

The Future is Exciting

Anyone who’s been in the direct mail industry for the last five to 10 years understands how quickly the digitization of the world is affecting the print component of direct marketing. The future will be no different.

Whether you’re looking for interaction, or simply want to get more creative with variability at larger volumes, the future may just be what you’re waiting for.

Article Provided by Brilliant Communications

Mid-State Litho, Inc.
5459 Fenton Rd.
Flint, MI 48507

4 Reasons Why Print Newspapers are Still Relevant

4 Reasons Why Print Newspapers are Still Relevant
Article Provided by: ChoosePrint.org

With so many “doom and gloom” stories about the future of print
newspapers, we thought we’d take a look at some of the reasons why print
newspapers are still relevant for both readers and advertisers. Here is some
food for thought:

Print ads spur action – A recent study conducted by Frank N. Magid
Associates for the Newspaper Association of America found that 40% of U.S.
adults have taken an action online as a result of reading or seeing an ad in a
print newspaper in the past 30 days. In addition, 78% of adults have taken
some action in the past 30 days as a result of an ad in a circular that was
included in the newspaper package.1

Print readers recall more than online readers – Another study, conducted
by a researcher at the University of Houston, found that people who read
printed news publications remember more news than people who read news
online. A number of possible explanations for this are offered. For example,
because story placement in online news outlets is constantly changing,
readers are less likely to realize which stories are the most important ones
of the day. In addition, knowing that anything they find online can be easily
retrieved, readers of online news stories may simply pay less attention as
they read.2

Print is more trustworthy – When Nielsen asked people whether they
thought different media are “trustworthy,” printed national newspapers
outranked all other options, with 58% of respondents appreciating
newspapers’ trustworthiness.3 Perhaps this is because, as a recent editorial
in the Orange County Register pointed out, “Print outlets are uniquely
able to take a longer view than other media. They can vet the facts
more thoroughly, attempt to fit them into a broader context, and – most
importantly – take the time to actually engage in a little reflection.”4

Print is preferred by many – Given all of these facts, perhaps it should come
as no surprise that a 2014 Scarborough newspaper readership survey found
that 55% of U.S. newspaper readers choose to consume their local paper
in print only.5 Not coincidentally, when the Dallas Morning News surveyed
2,000 of their print subscribers to see if they would be willing to switch to
an all-digital platform, very few said yes. Even if the digital product was
priced at just one-tenth of the print subscription, only 5% of respondents
said they’d be interested. Why weren’t readers interested in switching? As
Jim Moroney, the newspaper’s Publisher & CEO explained, “Butter is not a
substitute for a car. They’re different things.”6

These are just a few of the reasons to Choose Print!

1 Frank N. Magid Associates, How America Shops and Spends 2014
2 Arthur D. Santana, Randall M. Livingstone, and Yoon Y. Choo, Print Readers Recall More Than Do Online Readers. Newspaper Research Journal, Vol. 34, No. 2 – Spring 2013.
3 Nielsen, 2013 National Cross-Media Engagement Study
4 Orange County Register, Editorial: Why Print Still Matters, September 24, 2014.
5 Scarborough newspaper readership survey conducted on behalf of the Newspaper Association of America, 2014.
6 Erik Wemple, Dallas Morning News publisher: Print and digital are like butter and a car, The Washington Post, October 17, 2014

Mid-State Litho, Inc.
5459 Fenton Rd.
Flint, MI 48507

2014 in Review: A ‘Golden Year’ for MGI JETvarnish 3D Users


2014 in Review: A ‘Golden Year’ for MGI JETvarnish 3D Users

MELBOURNE, FL, USA (January 8th, 2015) – MGI Digital Graphic Technology is pleased to announce another successful year for JETvarnish 3D users, bringing in over 8 esteemed awards worldwide.

From Thailand to Germany, JETvarnish 3D users are turning heads with their stunning, tactile pieces.  Utilizing the unique capabilities of the JETvarnish 3D, users can vary the drop size from the 3 to 200 microns (with the “T2” option), allowing for maximum creative control.

MGI user Steve Hatlem, President of Sipe Steel Rule Die located in Fort Wayne, Indiana, brought home two 2014 FSEA Gold Leaf Awards. “The JETvarnish 3D provides a unique finish that very few printers are able to offer,” states Hatlem. “The additional enhancement of the UV varnish gave the piece the ‘wow’ factor that helped us win the award, but more importantly the piece can be used to generate new and unique sales opportunities.”

Another 2014 award-winner, Mark Resnick, owner of The Printer’s Edge located in Orlando, Florida, brought home multiple awards from the 2014 FSEA Gold Leaf Awards and a Flamingo Award from the Print Association of Florida for ‘Best Special Treatment’ with his JETvarnish 3D.  “Beyond the many awards received, our first sample set printed on the JETvarnish 3D has proven to be a strong business development tool for both us and our customers. This capability has already opened doors for The Printer’s Edge,” states Resnick.

From Thailand, TRINTY owner Samak Chiratananan wins a Gold Certificate Award at the Asian Print Awards. “For the first time we can offer our customers something completely different in 2D and 3D effects within the same artwork in a single pass,” states Chiratananan, the veteran Thai printer. “The visual effects of the unique finish made possible by this truly revolutionary piece of equipment are really exciting.”

In Europe, Point44, a large offset printer in France, won the Digital Added Value award and Dürmeyer of Germany won the coveted 2014 Gold PrintStars award in the Direct Mail category for their “Black Box” marketing kit finished on their JETvarnish 3D.

The JETvarnish 3D can produce up to 5,200 A3 pages or 3,000 B2 pages per hour (2D effects) with an input/output capacity of about 4,000 sheets. Now the JETvarnish 3D comes with new, flexible upgrade options- the “T2” option, a second row of print heads, to improve spot coating quality and productivity, and the new iFoil option, for inline hot foil done 100% digitally for flat or embossed-like effects with variable data capabilities. Both options are field upgradeable at any time.

The iFOIL & JETvarnish 3D are the first 100% digital solutions available for this industry worldwide.

For more information visit MSL online!

Mid-State Litho, Inc.
5459 Fenton Rd.
Flint, MI 48507

Genuine OKI Toner

Genuine OKI Toner

OKI develops and makes its own consumables to ensure the best performance from our printers. While there seems to be many choices of replacement consumable for OKI® toner-based printers—including some from non-printer companies—only one brand is recommended for use in our machines: genuine OKI toner.

Microfine Spherical Toner

In the mid 1990s, OKI introduced a revolutionary new type of toner for theirmonochrome page printer engines.


Traditionally, a crushing/grinding process was used to produce the fine toner powder to be used in the electrophotographic printing process (see image at top right). OKI understood that this process led to some disadvantages to the printer user:

  • Jagged edges of the toner particles allowed the toner to form on the paper in poor image quality (creating a “dusting” effect)
  • Scattering effect that was visible at edges of lines and characters, due to the movement of the rough edged toner during the process

To overcome these deficiencies, OKI developed Microfine Spherical Toner. A chemical process is used, producing smooth round particles about one-tenth the size of traditional toner (see image at top left).

The advantages were immediately clear.

  • Virtually no toner scatter
  • Sharper, crisper characters (even visible to the naked eye)

Low-Melt Formulation

As users’ printing demands increase and printers are required to print at higher speeds, the toner must be heat/pressure fused to the paper in ever shortening times. This means fusing at higher temperatures and therefore higher printer power consumption.

OKI’s commitment to preserving the environment dictated that OKI engineering should develop a low melting temperature toner to overcome this problem. A unique special toner was created. To stop the low temperature toner surface fusing and coagulating during storage, each individual toner particle is encapsulated in a polymer shell to preserve the integrity and free-flow characteristics of the compound. OKI can now continue to produce printers that use no extra power to fuse the toner to the paper thus preserving the environment.

As a by-product of this development, the user gets:toner-sphere

  • Faster printing as the printer takes less time to warm up
  • No additional/less energy consumption – more environmentally friendly
  • Noise reduction in some of our printers due to absence of a fan

Mid-State Litho, Inc. is your authorized dealer for Genuine OKI Data Supplies and Consumables. For additional information, visit us online at www.midstatelitho.net or contact us directly. 

Mid-State Litho, Inc.
5459 Fenton Rd.
Flint, MI 48507

Simplified Card Production Process

MGI JETcard 3D - Plastic Card ProductionUtilizing MGI’s award winning and revolutionary inkjet technology, the JETcard 3D provides card manufacturers with an all-inclusive printing/encoding/finishing solution.

MGI’s JETcard 3D is a true Card Factory and can replace up to 5 different pieces of equipment traditionally used in the plastic card production chain: Litho press, collator, lamination press, die cutter and encoder/personalization printer.

The JETcard 3D utilizes pre-cut blank cards (with/without magnetic stripe or RFID) and is ideal for turnkey production from 1 card to millions, all ready to be sold (fully printed, personalized, coated, encoded & verified).

The JETcard 3D is targeted for card manufacturers as well as commercial printers, maximizing productivity for high volume applications while still remaining cost-effective for short runs. The JETcard 3D has already been awarded the prestigious “2010 Siemens Innovation Grand Prix” and the “2011 Engineering Prize”, in recognition of MGI’s R&D achievement.

From an individual blank ISO CR-80 card, the JETcard 3D is able to achieve in one pass, the following processes:

  • Pre-coating to ensure a full compatibility with the substrates available on the market (plastic, paper, PLA, etc.)
    • Printing 4, 6 ou 8 colors to expand the spectrum of the printable colors \
    • Optional white opaque ink
    • Optional security ink revealed only under a black light
    • Micro text and guilloché patterns
    • Full variable data printing including text, barcodes & images
    • Spot UV coating or flood UV coating for card protection
    • Read & write capabilities on HiCo/LoCo magnetic stripes
    • Automated quality controls and rejection of the defective card
  • New Enhanced Printing Functions (2013)
    • Printing with spectacular 3D raised effects
    • Variable Data Printing even with 3D raised effects
    • Hexacolor printing to expand the gamut and/or spot colors (orange, blue,…)

jetcard-3d-featuresTypically, a traditional plastic card production chain is using up to 5 pieces of equipment: offset press, collator, laminating press, die cutter, and personalization printer/encoder. Each piece of equipment has varying productivity levels, requires a specialized operator, and can sometimes be spread across a large site.

Combined, these factors result in high production costs. With the JETcard 3D features, MGI streamlines the production chain by bringing all these key processes into one piece of equipment. The JETcard 3D features MGI’s award-winning inkjet technology and is a true reinvention of the traditional plastic card production process. For additional information visit us online at www.midstatelitho.net.

Mid-State Litho, Inc.
5459 Fenton Rd.
Flint, MI 48507

LED Technology

LED Technology

OKI has pioneered the development and use of LED technology in printing for over 20 years. LED or Light Emitting Diode/Device is the type of light source used in the electrophotographic printing method for most of our printers.

LED printheads use an array containing multiple LEDs and the LEDs individually turn on and off according to print signals.

Conventional LEDs have a two-terminal structure comprised of an anode and a cathode. In a technology made possible by Epi Film Bonding, the new LED array features a three-terminal structure comprised of an anode, cathode, and gate, adding switching capabilities to the conventional LED function of emitting light. The new LEDs reduce the number of wires required in the chip and reduce chip width by 22%. They also make it possible to deploy a single power line on the substrate on which LEDs are mounted, halving the number of substrates used.

OKI was the world’s first company to achieve high-volume production of LED printheads based on this new technology. All future LED products will incorporate this new LED printhead.

LED Printhead Advantages

  • Smaller dot sizes create highly accurate output
  • Multi-level shading provides superior print quality and clarity
  • LEDs have no moving parts and are ultra reliable
  • LED is smaller and more compact, using fewer material resources and energy

LED vs. Laser

Laser systems rely on elaborate combinations of rotating mirrors and lenses that must remain in alignment through use. The laser scans from one end of a line to another, then zig-zags down to the next line.LED technology uses a Light Emitting Diode printhead as a light source within the imaging device. Unlike laser systems, the LED printhead is solid-state and has no moving parts. The LED bar pulse-flashes across the entire page width and creates the image on the print drum as it moves down.

OKI also has a straight-line paper path (Single Pass Color) that’s less susceptible to jams when feeding heavy stock, envelopes or labels.

LED technology is the future. We’re so sure of this that we guarantee the printhead of every OKI page printer for five full years — by far the longest warranty in the industry!

See a comparison of the complex steps required for laser printing versus the single step required for OKI’s Dgital LED printing.

LED Dot-Size Precision

With 1200 dpi (dots per inch) print resolution, a printer should place 1200 dots/spots, precisely printed at 25 micrometers apart (on center). However, while a 1200 dpi LED printer can produce a 25 micrometer dot/spot, a 1200 dpi laser printer can only produce a 65 micrometer dot/spot. This translates to greater print quality when using LED technology. See the animation at right for a quick demonstration of this comparison.

Multi-level vs. Bi-level Printing

Traditional laser printers apply dots using two levels of intensity: 100% black or 100% white. Dots are grouped together (creating halftone cells) to simulate levels of grey. This is referred to as bi-level printing.By contrast, our multi-level LED printing technology can produce different levels of intensity. This produces up to 16 shades or tones in the range between black and white. This is similar to the effect you get when replacing a standard light switch with a dimmer switch.

Multi-level Technology delivers more shades of grey or color within the same size halftone cell. This results in a higher level of detail and greater color depth, another great feature from OKI.


For additional information on OKI Data equipment, please contact our office or visit us online at www.midstatelitho.net. 

Mid-State Litho, Inc.
5459 Fenton Rd.
Flint, MI 48507

Print Promotes Forests

PrintPromotesImagePrint Promotes Forests
Article Provided by ChoosePrint.org

There are many misconceptions about the environmental impact of print on paper. Since printers and their suppliers use natural resources—trees—as a substrate for their products, many people think that by forgoing printing, they are saving trees and making the right choice for the environment. However, the exact opposite is true.

Print Values Trees
Much paper now comes from sustainable forests. These sustainable forests are essentially “tree farms,” where trees are grown as a crop, just like broccoli or wheat. When these trees are harvested, new stocks are planted. Print gives landowners a financial incentive to renew forests rather than convert them for other uses, such as agriculture or development.[1]

Print Uses “Waste”
Overall, one-third of the fiber used to make paper comes from wood chips and sawmill scraps; another third comes from recycled paper.[2]In the United States, 76% of paper and paperboard mills use at least some recovered material in their manufacturing process in 2011, while 113 paper mills used recovered fiber exclusively.[3]

Print is Recycled
But that is not the complete story. Print on paper is recycled and reused. In 2011, nearly 66% of paper used in the United States was recycled, and this number increases each year with more deliberate curbside and drop-off collection systems.[4] Recycled paper is used to make everything from construction products to consumer goods.

Print is Responsible
Just 11% of the world’s forests are used for paper, and in the U.S. the wood used to produce paper increasingly comes from certified forests.[5]The Forest Steward Council (FSC) and Sustainable Forest Initiative (SFI) track fiber content from certified lands through production and manufacturing to the end product.

From sustainable forests to the renewable nature of trees and the recyclability of paper, the print and paper industries have a positive environmental story to tell—one in which print on paper and healthy forests thrive hand-in-hand.

Source: Two Sides, 2013. Click to enlarge.

Source: Two Sides, 2013. Click to enlarge.

[1] Edward L. Glaeser, Professor of Economics, Harvard University, “A Road Map for Environmentalism,” Boston Globe.
[2]U.S. EPA, Office of Solid Waste, 2014.
[3]American Forest and Paper Association, “Fun Facts,” 2014.
[4]U.S. EPA, Office of Solid Waste, 2014.
[5]5]International Paper, Down to Earth, “Is it Worth Printing?”

Mid-State Litho, Inc.
5459 Fenton Rd.
Flint, MI 48507

Print Drives Online Sales

PrintDrivesImagePrint Drives Online Sales
Article Provided by ChoosePrint.org

Print is a major driver of online sales. Print is a powerful media…and its power is multiplied when used as part of a multi-channel campaign. Print enhances the impact of television, telemarketing, and the internet by providing an extra dimension that’s warm, inviting, highly personalizable, and technologically savvy.

Traffic Lift
Studies show that print advertising drives consumers to online shopping. For example, a study by the Direct Marketing Association[1] shows that 78% of consumers react to direct mail immediately; when they receive mail from a brand that they’re interested in, 44% visit the brand’s website and 34% search online for more information about the product.

Sales Lift
A 2013 study by global management consulting firm Kurt Salmon shows that print catalogs directly boost online sales. They do this by increasing purchase intent – 58% of online shoppers surveyed said they browse catalogs for ideas, and 31% have a retailer’s catalog handy when they make an online purchase – and by increasing the average order size (compared to internet-only customer shopping) by 12.5%.[2] Another study, by Exact Target, found that 65% of consumers surveyed have been directly influenced to purchase an item or service thanks to a direct mail piece.[3]

Brand Awareness in the Digital Age
Consumers are more likely to learn about new brands, products, and services  from print media (e.g., magazines and newspapers), television and online media (e.g., news site and blogs) rather than from social media channels, such as Facebook and Twitter.[4] In addition, highly active smartphone owners, those who do six or more activities daily on mobile, are both subscribing to and reading more print materials than any of the other groups (smartphone or regular phone owners).[5]

New Opportunities-New Vision
While online and mobile use continues to grow, marketers are acknowledging and voting with their dollars that print media is a vital component of the marketing mix. Print is an integral vehicle in cross media platforms, employing innovative technologies, including PURLS, QR codes, augmented reality, and intelligent print imaging, to bridge the gap between the real and digital worlds.

[1] UK Direct Marketing Association, “From Letterbox to Inbox 2013.”
[2] Kurt Salmon, “Is the Catalog Dead? Not in the Omnichannel World,” 2013
[3] Exact Target, Channel Preference Study, 2012..
[4] eMarketer,  “Most Consumers Still Don’t Talk About Brands on Social Sites,” January 10, 2012.
[5] Quoted in Gabrielle Kalika, “Heavy mobile users are highly engaged print consumers as well: InsightExpress,” Mobile Marketing.com, December 15, 2011.

Mid-State Litho, Inc.
5459 Fenton Rd.
Flint, MI 48507

Print & Healthy Forests

Print & Healthy Forests
Video December 10, 2014 | MyPrintResource.com

Print and healthy forests are a natural match. It’s easy to understand why. In North America, trees used for paper production come from well-managed forests or “tree farms.” By providing a market for responsibly grown wood fiber, print on paper gives landowners a reason to grow trees rather than sell the land for other uses. As a result, these landowners plant over 4 million trees each day. With forest growth currently exceeding harvest by 33%, there are 12 million more acres of forest in the U.S. today than what existed just 20 years ago.

Print is Good For Trees

Tired of all of the hype about how we should go paperless and “save a tree”? So are we. After all, media campaigns such as “National No Print Day” only serve to perpetuate the myth that printing and packaging are major causes of deforestation. Which, as it turns out, is really not true. In fact, print is actually good for trees.

Consider these facts:

  • Nearly all of the wood harvested in the US – 91 percent – comes from privately owned forests; the rest comes from government and tribal lands.1
  • 35 percent of US forestlands are owned by family forest owners. This is more than the federal government or private industry. Most only own small parcels of land. These families rely on income from their land to offset the costs of sustaining their forests.2When a working forest cannot make money, the landowner will often sell the land for other uses. The use of print on paper is one of the things that helps provide landowners with a financial incentive to continue to grow trees rather than permanently convert the land to other uses.3
  • Only 17 percent of the wood consumed worldwide each year is used to make paper. Even at that, much of this is in the form of wood scraps and chips leftover from sawmill operations. Of all the trees cut from the world’s forests, over half is used for fuel, mostly for cooking and domestic heating.4
  • Trees are infinitely renewable. We can keep planting trees forever, providing resources for products we use every day, such as paper.5
  • Paper is 100 percent recyclable. In 2013, 63.5 percent of the paper consumed in the US was recovered for recycling.6
  • Much of that recycled paper is used to make more paper. 33 percent of the fibers used to make paper come from recycled paper, 33 percent comes from wood chips and scrap from sawmills, and just 33 percent comes from virgin trees. 7

But this is not the whole story. Paper manufacturers and printers often provide chain of custody certification, through FSC, SFI and PEFC. This certifies that trees used to make paper have been harvested from forests that support responsible, sustainable forest management practices. In addition, the Lacy Act amendments of 2008 require paper importers to declare that the paper did not come from illegally harvested sources.

In the end, from sustainable forests to the renewable nature of trees and recyclability of paper, the paper and printing industries have a positive environmental story to tell. Print on paper and healthy forests go hand-in-hand.

For more information please visit, www.chooseprint.org. 

[1]Fun Facts, American Forest and Paper Association.
[2] Building with Wood Helps Keeps Forests as Forest, American Forest Foundation.
[3] Print Grows Trees.
[4] Frequently Asked Questions, Paper University.
[5] Go Paper. Grow Trees. International Paper.
[6] Frequently Asked Questions, US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
[7] Paper and Paperboard Recovery, Paper Recycles.

Mid-State Litho, Inc.
5459 Fenton Rd.
Flint, MI 48507