New research explores inkjet print quality measurement and paper qualification

A new research report from Inkjet Insight into customer requirements regarding print quality measurement and paper qualification data has revealed some surprising facts. The Inkjet Insight Production Inkjet Market Survey on Print Quality Measurement and Paper Qualification includes data gathered from dozens of production inkjet users in the United States in the fourth quarter of 2019. The survey was designed to gather information on customers’ requirements for print quality measurement when qualifying papers for use on inkjet presses, as well as to measure satisfaction with related Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) services. The survey covered companies involved in a wide array of production inkjet application segments – including book manufacturing, commercial printing, direct mail, packaging and transactional printing. The new research revealed that only 17% of survey participants said that their OEMs provided additional paper evaluation data not included in standard paper listings. Nearly 50% of survey participants said that they need additional paper qualification data that their OEM didn’t currently supply. Responses covered participants who reported working with a wide range of OEMs including Canon, HP, Kodak, Komori, Ricoh, RISO, Screen, Superweb and Xerox. Many survey participants worked with more than one inkjet OEM.

Elizabeth Gooding.

“With only 28% of survey participants indicating satisfaction with the qualification data supplied in standard OEM media listings, it’s clear that there’s room for improvement,” said Elizabeth Gooding, President of Inkjet Insight. “However, customers also need to understand the challenges that OEMs face in keeping up with media qualification efforts.” The research report includes recommendations for current owners of production inkjet devices when requesting paper qualification data from OEMs, as well as recommendations for OEMs on improving communication and supporting data-driven decision making for customers.

Mary Schilling.

Mary Schilling, co-founder of Inkjet Insight, believes that both OEMs and customers have a role to play in improving the paper-qualification process. “Customers need to consider the competing demands that OEMs have for press time between testing system upgrades, certifying finishing partners, supporting the sales process, and working with mills to qualify papers,” Schilling said. “Media qualification is a costly process that must be repeated every time inks and press options are upgraded.” Inkjet Insight’s research also shows that there are significant opportunities for improvements in the paper qualification process that can benefit customers, inkjet OEMs, paper mills and print buyers alike. The full report is available on InkjetInsight.com at https://inkjetinsight.com/knowledge-base/inkjet-insight-production-inkjet-market-survey-on-print-quality-measurement-and-paper-qualification/.

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Tony Curcio is the editor of Graphic Arts Magazine.