Color Label Solutions

Color Label Solutions
www.colorlabelsolutions.com

Sunday, February 16, 2020

Smart Touch Panel-C6000P


At the recent WestPack 2020, John Roberts of General Data Automation showed in our booth the Smart Touch Panel running the C6000P.

Smart Touch Panel/C6000P
John Roberts with the Smart Touch Panel/C6000P

General Data is the new parent of Color Label Solutions; learn more here. 

And John leads our automation group, which designs and deploys label application and other automation equipment; and is the developer of the Smart Touch Panel."


According to John, “ The Smart Touch Panel is a powerful, single board computer, running on open source Linux. The Smart Touch Panel is ideally suited for data collection over networks with barcode scanners, printers, or PLC’s.”  In our case, it’s great with the new C6000P printers.

Smart Touch Panel
Smart Touch Panel

Continuing, John says, “The Smart Touch Panel fits where an operator is applying a label by hand.  With the Peel and Present feature of the new C6000P, the printer prints the label and presents it ready to apply.  With the Smart Touch Panel, the operator doesn’t require a PC to operate; and fits where you don’t want the operator running a computer.”

Watch John start a print job and print here:



In this video, John has produced a label template and adds variable data such as lot, date, and/or shift codes along with a color code to identify the production date of the product easily.

“In the past, companies used this type of solution with preprinted labels using a thermal transfer printer such as Zebra to add the lot and other codes.  Now with the C6000P, manufacturers can start with blank labels and print the entire label on-demand just prior to use.  This system makes labeling with variable data easier to do”, says John.

You might find these earlier posts on the new C6000 series printers of interest:


https://colorlabelsondemand.blogspot.com/2020/02/my-new-c6500p.html

https://colorlabelsondemand.blogspot.com/2019/09/new-c6000-series.html


Smart Touch operates on a network with a server running a label software program such as Codesoft or BarTender.  This software creates the template that serves the data to the Smart Touch Panel to operate.  According to John, “the Smart Touch Panel works best in situations with multiple printers/stations running similar templates/printers”. 


The Smart Touch Panel costs $995 with $895 for the stand that holds both the printer and the panel.

If you have multiple stations applying labels by hand, consider not only the Smart Touch Panel, but also moving to color with the C6000P printers.  This new technology will save you time; and make your operation much more productive.

Contact us if we can help with the Smart Touch Panel or the C6000P printer.

Guy Mikel
855-962-7670
info@colorlabelsolutions.com 

Monday, February 3, 2020

My New C6500P


FYI: I received my first C6500P printer.

C6500P In The Box
C6500P In The Box



As I tested this exciting new technology, I thought you might find my out-of-the-box experience of interest. You might find my introductory post on the C6000 series printers of interest:  

After opening the box and removing the printer, I started the printer without ink and attempted to install the driver (Get the driver here);  but the driver would not install.  I realized quickly the install had to be done from the LED front screen and not the driver.  The initialization took about 20 minutes (longer than the C3500).  After the initiation process finished, I could install the driver; and learned the initiation process consumed about 50% of the initial ink cartridges (similar to the C3500).

C6500P Driver


Once initialized, I checked the firmware version to see if it was up-to-date; it wasn’t.  It is not surprising as these printers are brand new to the market.  Epson has the updated firmware on the same site as the driver above.  After downloading the firmware, I installed the updated firmware.

C6500 Firmware Update


I found the firmware update process very similar to my inexpensive, Multifunction, WF-4720, Epson printer.

Now that the driver was installed and the firmware updated, I decided to print some matte paper labels.  I found loading the paper using the spindles very easy to do. (Note to self: we need to order more spindles). If you have ever used a LX2000, you’ll find the process with the C6500 much easier to do. (see my previous post comparing the LX2000 to the C7500.  Check out the paper loading section):

C6500 Media Spindle
C6500 Media Spindle

For the matte paper, I selected the normal quality setting;


C6500 Media Settings
C6500 Media Settings

In addition, I changed the Ink Profile in the Advance setting to the darkest setting.  I’d recommend this change on most all artwork and applications.

C6500 Ink Profile
C6500 Ink Profile

Finally, be sure to configure the settings to “Rewind” if you are not using the Peel & Present feature:

C6500 After Print Settings
C6500 After Print Settings

Otherwise, the printer will tell you to remove the label.  If you don’t change this configuration, the next label will not print.  You can move the label slightly and the next label will print.

And found the print quality and speed (about the same as a LX2000) very good.

C6500 Matte Paper Labels
C6500 Matte Paper Labels

After my first print jobs, I loaded some gloss paper and printed both at the Quality and Max Quality.  I did notice a slight difference in colors; but very little.  Notice the differences in the green bar; and maybe the red block.  Frankly, I don’t think that vast majority of users will use the Max Quality setting.

C6500 Gloss Paper Labels
C6500 Gloss Paper Labels

Max Quality on the Gloss Paper is the maximum print resolution and slowest print.  Watch these two labels print here:  


Now that I was printing labels, I tested the Peel & Present feature on the C6500P.  I changed the configuration in the driver to “Manual Apply”; and loaded the liner through the peeler.  The Peel & Present worked great!

C6500P Peel & Present Feature
C6500P Peel & Present Feature


No other color label printer offers this feature.  If you have operators on the line printing and applying labels by hand, this feature will increase productivity.  Please know: the Peel & Present version does not have a cutter.

After using the Peel & Present feature, I tested the new Spot Color replacement capability in the Epson driver.  With this capability, the printer can change one color automatically.  In the Printer Setting Utility (Stored Data section), you establish an RGB value to replace an existing color.


C6500 Spot Color Setting
C6500 Spot Color Setting


And then you select the color in the media definition section of the driver:

C6500 Spot Color Driver Setting
C6500 Spot Color Driver Setting


And you can change the print output colors without changing the artwork.  See how the blue block below has a different color.  Again, no other printer I know offers this capability.


C6500 Spot Color Replacement
C6500 Spot Color Replacement; Check out the Blue Differences
This feature seems to work only with artwork created as RGB, and not CYMK.  More to come on the Spot Color Replacement.

After all these tests, I want to try rear feed using very large drum labels; 8.375” x 13.875”.  Again, I see the C6500P as a perfect replacement for the C831 printer.  With large labels and rear feed, opening the media cabinet from the back was very convenient.

C6500 Rear Feed of Large Labels
C6500 Rear Feed of Large Labels
And using the Synthetic setting at the Normal Print Quality, I found the print speed faster than expected; probably faster than the C831. Watch me print this long label here:


And the print quality as well better than expected with the C831.


C6500P Print Quality on Drum Labels


After testing these large drum labels, I wondered how well the Peel & Present feature would work on 8.375” x 13.875” size.  Peel & Present seemed to work well.

C6500P Peel & Present-Large Drum Labels
C6500P Peel & Present-Large Drum Labels

This long label did stick to the liner below; but came loose when pulled.  The Peel & Present feature would seem perfect for chemical drum labeling.  I suggest owners of C831 printers upgrade ASAP.


Overall, my out-of-the-box experience with the C6500P was very positive.  High Print Quality, Easy Operation, Unique Features like Peel & Present, Spot Color Replacement and Multiple Door Openings make the C6500 a great alternative to printers from Primera such as LX2000, LX900 or LX1000; from VIP such as the VP485 and VP495; or from Neuralabel, the 300x.  If you have one of these printers, you should consider upgrading.  And I did not test several the new features; MAC driver, Remote Printer Management or I/O port.  We’ll get these tests done in the new future.  Be sure to see my post on printing with ZPL here:  


Contact us if you find the features of the C6500A or C6500P of interest.  We’ll make printing with these new technology printers easy to do.

Guy Mikel
855-962-7670
info@colorlabelsolutions.com 

Friday, January 31, 2020

Printing ZPL With The C6000


With Epson’s new C6000 color label printers, you can “colorize” ZPL to increase the readability, improve the look of your labels and even decrease the latency of your printing operation.

ZPL Printed With The C6000A
ZPL Printed With The C6000A

“Zebra Programming Language (ZPL and ZPL II) is a page description language from Zebra Technologies; and is used primarily for labeling  applications” says the Wikipedia page for ZPL.  Wikipedia says also, “A page description language (PDL) is a computer language that describes the appearance of a printed page in a higher level than an actual output bitmap.”

Zebra Printers Use ZPL
Zebra Printers Use ZPL

When introduced to the market, thermal transfer and direct thermal printers utilized these types of languages to produce the text and objects printed on the label.  To compete in the market, competitors to Zebra developed emulations and/or interpreters to enable their printers to “plug and play” in environments driven by software using only ZPL.  Now, Epson offers this capability in their new C6000 series printers without requiring the Windows driver.

Epson C6500P
Epson C6500P


Bill Vasques, Vice President, Software and Systems Development for General Data, demonstrated the different ZPL printing capabilities of the C6000A printer recently.
  • Printing native ZPL
  • Adding images/logos in ZPL
  • Adding color images/logos in ZPL
  • Printing objects (text, lines, logos, etc.) in color in existing ZPL

Watch Bill print these types of situations here: 


According to Bill, “Epson’s Escape Label is very similar to ZPL, but provides additional commands to add color to the ZPL.  And the additional code required to add color is very small.”  For example, Bill added a PNG image to the image itself to print the logo in the video; and he did not have to load the code into the printer itself.  Some time ago, I discussed uploading an image to the C7500 and running ZPL:
https://colorlabelsondemand.blogspot.com/2018/05/zpl-with-c7500.html 


Bill continued, “what is great about the Epson printer, the ZPL should produce label output that is no different than with Zebra printers. Now you can get higher resolution labels, eliminate the hassle of loading thermal transfer ribbons and save money compared to using resin or even wax/resin ribbons when printing black, text only labels.”

The new C6000 series printers offer other features that make replacing Zebra printers easy to do:

  • Peel and present
  • Remote printer management
  • SAP direct integration
  • I/O integration for print/apply and other applications


Learn more about the new C6000 series printers here:

Color Label Solutions merged with General Data in March of 2019 to gain access to the capabilities offered by our new parent; like what Bill shows with ZPL in the video.  Learn about our merger here:

The C6000 printer opens up the black only, thermal transfer printing world to color.  If you run Zebra printers in your factory, warehouse or other facility, now you should consider how colors, logo’s and images can improve the look of your labels; and make your labeling operations easier to do.  Contact us to discuss how moving to color will fit your operation.


Guy Mikel
855-962-7670

Sunday, January 19, 2020

C6000 Series Winders


If you are considering the Epson C6000 series printers, you need to consider winders as well for this printer. DPR has both unwinder and rewinder for these important new printers.
C6000 Winders DPR
C6000 Winders
 Watch the video of the DPR winders here:  


Or a shorter version here:
 

Download the brochure here:  

Given the 8.375” C6500A and C6500P printers come with only the capability for a 6” OD, I believe many if not most users of these wider printers will want an unwinder to enable larger rolls.  You can order either the unwinder, rewinder or both.  A plate is required for any of the 3 possible setups to ensure the labels are fed into or out of the printer straight.

C6000 Unwinder
C6000 Unwinder
When asked why the rewinder is behind the unwinder, Michael Panzeri, Vice President of DPR, said, “With the rewinder in the back, it enables the user to wind either the label itself or the liner if they are using the Peel and Present mode.  Further, it enables the label to be wound either face in or out.  The rear rewinder makes this configuration very flexible.” 


C6000 Rewinder
Michael did say that DPR will release another rewinder for the front of the C6000A or C6500A that will sit in front.  This front facing rewinder will prevent any predispensing of labels during rewinding using the cutter versions of the printer.

If you don’t know about the C6000 series printers from Epson, learn more here: 

C6500P
C6500P

To purchase the DPR unwinder for the C6000 printers, visit our store: 

To purchase the DPR rewinder for the C6000 printers, visit our store here:

And don’t forget to purchase the plate:

With the unique capabilities,
  • High print resolution
  • 8.375” max print width
  • Peel & Present
  • MAC, Linux and SAP connectivity
  • Spot Color Replacement
  • Network Management
  • ZPL datastream printing



The C6000 series printers will be a big hit in the label print market.  Purchase your C6000 printers here:

Or contact us to learn more about the C6000 printers and the DPR winders.

Guy Mikel
855-962-7670

Sunday, January 5, 2020

Preroll Label Applicator


If you produce and sell prerolls, you know the hassle of applying labels to these tubes.  With the CTM Tabletop Wrap Label Applicator, you can eliminate this tedious and costly activity.
CTM Wrap Label Applicator
CTM Wrap Label Applicator

Watch this applicator apply labels to our customer’s CoolJars tubes:


When our customer first saw this video, their response was “Awesome”!  This customer has production lots of 30,000+ prerolls.  Further, they have to begin applying batch ID’s on their tubes prior to receiving their test result data which is included on the final label.  This applicator will make applying both of these labels much easier.

You might also like to watch the CTM video of this label applicator.


And look at some of the applied labels on a different tube size.


Auto Applied Labels on CoolJarz Prerolls
Auto Applied Labels on CoolJarz 116 mm Tubes


The Tabletop Wrap Label Applicator works as follows:
“Round products are manually loaded onto the infeed magazine. The indexing starwheel will remove one product at a time from the infeed magazine with each indexing motion. Once products have been captured by the starwheel, they are indexed to the labeling station where a powered roller spins the product as the label is applied. Labeled products will then continue around the starwheel until they fall onto the exit chute where they will fall into a collection hopper (collection hopper or box is not included.)”

What I find great about this applicator is the “Machined Starwheel”.  This component is machined for the exact tube you have; even those tubes with a taper.  The capability to change the Starwheel allows for many different tube and label sizes.

Although named “Tabletop Wrap Label Applicator”, this machine is not small:  40" H, 48" W, 25" D and weighs 250 pounds.  It does need to sit on a sturdy table for easy operation.

With tapered tubes, you do need to consider your label sizes as well.  If you place a rectangle label on a tapered tube, you’ll get a gap that is not consistent top to bottom:

Rectangle Labels on Tapered Tubes

To eliminate this inconsistent gap, plan on using tapered labels.  For example, we would recommend on this tube a label size of 4” x (2” on bottom side and 2.25” on the top side were the tube is larger).  Using this taper label, you will make the gap consistent and potentially more visually appealing.  We can work with you to insure the label fits your tapered tube.

As a producer of prerolls, you can save a lot of time and money by automating your label application.  Contact us to discuss how the CTM Tabletop Wrap Label Applicator can work for you.

Guy Mikel
855-962-7670
info@colorlabelsolutions.com 

Saturday, December 14, 2019

MJBIZCON 2019

MJBIZCON2019 was a big success for Color Label Solutions, as we spoke with hundreds of customers and prospects during the event. 

MJBIZCON 2019 Booth
MJBIZCON 2019 Booth

Although a lot of work, MJBIZCON gave us the opportunity to learn more about our customers and prospect’s needs; and discuss what we’re offering.  To those of you who missed the show, you may find interesting what we covered with the people who visited our booth.

First, the QL-300. 

QL-300
QL-300
We printed a variety of materials:  Silver Poly, Silver paper, gold paper, clear film, grass paper, black paper and even hemp paper.

QL-300 Printed Silver Foil
QL-300 Printed Silver Foil
 And much of our artwork utilized white:


QL-300 Printed Black Paper
QL-300 Printed Black Paper
Many of the visitors to our booth generally appreciated the appearance of these labels; especially the printing on the different materials.  Learn more about the QL-300 here. 

Purchase the QL-300 here: 

Second, we discussed the new C6000 and C6500 printers that are coming beginning in January, 2020.

C6500P
C6500P
Many of our cannabis customers and prospects need the high print resolution offered by the C6000 series;

4x6" Gloss Poly Label Printed with the C6000

combined with the durable ink, service offerings and affordable price from Epson.  We believe these new printers will fit many of our customers.  Learn more here:

If you use a LX900, LX1000, LX2000, VP485, VP495, or even a C3500/C831, you should consider upgrading to the new C6500 printers.  And if you use a Zebra thermal transfer printer, consider using this printer for an easy move to print on-demand color labels.

Place your order for the C6500A (8.375” wideprinter with cutter) printer here: 



The C6000A and C6000P (4.25” wide printers with either cutter or peel and present) are due out in April 2020.

Third, we discussed the affordable, C3500, which our customer used to print badges at the registration desk for MJBIZCON:

C3500 Printers at MJBIZCON Registration Desk
C3500 Printers at MJBIZCON Registration Desk

And our gloss paper tags printed great on the reliable, C3500 printers:


C3500 Gloss Paper Badge
C3500 Gloss Paper Badge


If you need to print text, barcodes and small images on a basic white label or tag, the C3500 is the prefect tool.  Purchase the C3500 here:  

Fourth, we had a lot of people interested in the current $1,000 rebate on the C7500 and C7500G that Epson extended to December 31, 2019:

C7500 $1,000 Rebate
C7500 $1,000 Rebate 


Purchase by the end of the month to qualify for the $1,000 rebate.  These workhorse printers have never been less expensive.

Finally, we showed people examples of our preprinted color labels; produced both with analog and digital presses:


 
Preprinted Labels from Color Label Solutions
Preprinted Labels from Color Label Solutions
If you need labels printed, contact us.

MJBIZCON was a great success for us.  If you did not attend MJBIZCON, I hope you found this summary of what we showed and discussed in our booth of value.  

And if you attended and met with us, I hope this information acts as a reminder of our discussion.  Contact us to learn more about any of these items; or discuss your label printing requirements further.


Guy Mikel
855-962-7670