EOL on Xerox Iridesse Coming Soon....


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Our 2 Xerox Iridesse are coming to end of lease in about a year from now. I know this conversation has been had on repeat but because time can change perspective with these machines I am looking to get an updated collection if opinions. Our machines were one of the first releases in the US. My options will be either new lease with 2 replacement Iridesse printers or switch over to 2 Ricoh's. We run over 90% of our work on Dull cover 120lb 326 gsm paper. Our length ranges from 18" up to 26". The Iridesse printer quality was leaps and bounds over the iGen150 so we cannot go backwards from where we are today. We purchased the over under colors, 2 inline Plockmatic booklet makers and an inline GBC. All of which was not necessary and have been paying ever since. We were never able to upsell the specialty colors to customers. The GBC is not rated for our paper which Xerox knew what we were running on but still said it was rated (this is on us for taking their word over looking at the specs on the documentation). Also the inline GBC creaser does not work for our paper weight and cracks on folding so we have to take the jobs offline to score and then hand insert back into the machine. Also the oversized feeder is extrememly limiting with the amount of sheets we run on lengths over 19". I did hear the Xerox introduced a high capacity oversized feeder last year so that is promising. When these machines are up and running they are great. In the winter we struggled badly with arching and having to replace the IBT Belt (if I am correct) at 10k impressions or less. When once went down the other was quick to follow. With that being said, we are looking at no specialty colors, no inline finishers as a lot of our work also goes offline for UV before finishing.

We have seen the slide in service with Xerox and we have been a Xerox customer since 2000. We went from Doc12, Docucolor 3000, iGen3, iGen4, iGen150 to 2 Iridesses printers over the years. Xerox technicians have been great, the issues have been leadership over the techs that in my experience have reduced the techs ability to keep our machines running without issue. We have not had any experience with any other vendor and I do know the grass is not always greener on the other side. I would like to hear the good an bad experiences from others. I read someone saying that they were getting a quote on the base Iridesse at around $6k which sounds insanely low compared to what we are paying on ours.
I get that you know that the grass isn't always greener on the other side, but, sounds to me like you already know what color the grass is on your side, and, it's not green.

I'd look at Ricoh & Canon.
I'm quoting new equipment right now. The Ricoh 9200 came in 10% less than a a CMYK IR120 and has a range of over 19" sheet options and a performance guarantee for those. Both machines are under $4000/month on a 60month lease. Western US.

I quoted at an Irredesse in 2018 with specialty colors and it was going to be over $6000/month on a 72 month lease.

My experience with Xerox is the same- they still have some good field techs, but I don't have anything else nice to say. The Ricoh 9200 series is very well regarded in this forum and the samples that I picked up at Printing United were excellent. It was worth checking Xerox's pricing just in case they were offering some crazy lowball.
Doesn't hurt to get pricing and check out the other vendors (even fuji?). Sure it is a pain to do but at least you can sleep well knowing you did your due diligence.

Are you thinking dual Ricoh 9200's? Or are you thinking about switching to inkjet if they can get the ink to dry?
The inline booklet makers may have added $1000/m or more to your lease. I quoted one a few years ago and it was $275,000 for an inline powersquare vs $90,000 for an offline. Part of that cost was getting the techs trained.
Doesn't hurt to get pricing and check out the other vendors (even fuji?). Sure it is a pain to do but at least you can sleep well knowing you did your due diligence.

Are you thinking dual Ricoh 9200's? Or are you thinking about switching to inkjet if they can get the ink to dry?
Is there a cutsheet inkjet besides the Baltero or KM1 that could print on the 326gsm media SPowers runs?
MCS says the Merlin goes up to 360 gsm.

Duplex is limited to 300 gsm. Get the Kyocera from Ricoh though. Everything but the engine is theirs (9200) and they offer a service contract. MCS is pay as you go "shared maintenance". Still uncoated only.
The Ricoh c9200 series is a beast. Never goes down for service, replaceable parts are on hand if need be to keep you going until the tech shows up. The front/back registration is awesome and has an automated set up.

Ricoh is now rolling out a "matte" fuser kit as well. Ours is technically a Heidelberg Versafire EP, but it's the same machine. My sales rep showed me two samples, one from a c9200 and one from a Heidelberg Speedmaster 107 and I could barely tell the difference.

Speed comes either 115 (c9200) or 135 (c9210) pages per minute. It can run duplex 24pt. board (475 gsm). Even the banner sheets feed well and register great. Morgana/Plockmatic even make a special feeder if you're doing a ton of banner sheets and a special output tray for the banner sheets as well. I would highly recommend the c9200 series.
Couldn't agree more, the 9210 is a beast. We installed our 2 months ago. Put 900K large color prints on it already with I think 3 jams.
Thank you all for the feedback. I agree I have been leaning towards Ricoh over Xerox. This has been helpful, especially since we have been a Xerox customer for over 20 years now since the iGen3 days. I am definitely going to see what everyone brings to the table to make sure I am keeping our business best interest in mind as we move into the final phase.
It is very sad what happened to Xerox. We have been customers since the early 90's starting off with a Docutech. I still have my ColorPress 1000i which I will be happily getting rid of end of year.
This is an interesting discussion to drop into. I'm in Western Canada, but I can offer similar insight with regard to repair on other vendors seeming to all follow the same path. We've been running a Kodak Nexpress for just over 5 years now, previous having had Ricoh and Konicas on the floor. I have seen a decline in service at the top end over the years. More of the fact that tech in the field has their hands tied because of whoever is managing them.

All that said, I'm also considering getting out of the Nexpress and looking at something else to replace it (that's a whole other story). We like the OP, have had little traction trying to sell the extra colours on the Nexpress so going with a straight CMYK production focus is what we're considering.


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