Fiery vs KMBS print controller

bcr

Well-known member
I had a demo on my PC of KM's AccurioPro Flux software a couple of years ago.

It wasn't connected to a controller but it seemed to process a large file quite quickly - by process I mean compiling hundreds of pages from different docs, inserting tabs etc..

So in that sense I think you can probably do a lot of what you can with a fiery using KM's workflow software instead. Don't know about the limitations of each controller though, but If you're doing everything through drivers sounds like there's lots of room for improvement.

You mention an embedded fiery. I have several of those which are about 7 years old and they are slow as shit. Think they have celeron professors even. A recent external fiery controller will be much faster.
 

Shredder

Well-known member
Yeah those embedded fierys really sucked. I do remember atleast one of them being a celeron. Fiery has done an excellent job of making people think they make good products. My experience with them is a constant state of beta and never working the way its supposed to.
 

jwheeler

Well-known member
So I talked with fiery expert and he claims having a Minolta C6100 and using kmbs controller is like having a Lamborghini and putting a yugo engine in it. He was claiming that kmbs does not have a way to put spectrometer on it to color calibrate. The kmbs manual says differently. I think we have color calibrated 1-2 in last 20 years.
Of course the Fiery expert will say this to get you to buy a Fiery! I have a C6085 at my print shop with a KM controller and we love it. And yes, we can calibrate with a spectrophotometer. You just need to use the i1Pro instead of the ES-2000...although they look exactly the same and probably are, just use different software. The KM controller comes with Color Centro, so you can adjust spot colors, create custom curves/profiles, etc. It also comes with Job Centrol which is just like Fiery's Command Workstation. The KM controller even comes with APPE built in, along with a 'composite overprint' feature...both of these options help with flattening/transparency issues.

We used to have a KM with a Fiery on it and it looses connection all the time. You'll see this in other postings that Fiery's lose connection from any brand of machine, not just KM. The KM controller is nice because all of the jobs show up on the actual machine screen, and you can change all job settings, even rearrange pages, insert blanks, and more, all from the machine's screen, no need for an extra monitor, and it never disconnects since it's built in! You can create hot folders as well.

The main thing you don't get with the KM that is awesome on the Fiery is Impose/Compose. However, in our shop, we don't need imposition at the controller since it's all done in our graphics dept before it gets to the printer. KM does sell their own imposition software, and there's several low cost PDF plug-ins out there like Quite Imposing if you really need imposition. I haven't personally done a side by side test, but we feel the KM controller is just as fast as the Fiery.

With all this being said, the Fiery is a much more popular controller, so you'll be able to find one on ebay much easier and for less money. If you use a PDF workflow in command workstation instead of sending jobs through the print driver, you'll find it's much easier to use. Just make sure it comes with a VI-509 (video interface kit) which is required to connect it to the printer.

(I think I've spoken with you about all this before, but I also used to sell KM production gear. I sold color units with Fiery's about 90% of the time, mostly because the KM controllers used to be terrible, and because most printers were already used to the Fiery's...but the KM controllers have come a long way. When I sold a machine with the KM controller, it was usually because someone either wanted to save some money, or because they were already using KM office copiers and were uncomfortable learning the Fiery.)
 

Shredder

Well-known member
Of course the Fiery expert will say this to get you to buy a Fiery! I have a C6085 at my print shop with a KM controller and we love it. And yes, we can calibrate with a spectrophotometer. You just need to use the i1Pro instead of the ES-2000...although they look exactly the same and probably are, just use different software. The KM controller comes with Color Centro, so you can adjust spot colors, create custom curves/profiles, etc. It also comes with Job Centrol which is just like Fiery's Command Workstation. The KM controller even comes with APPE built in, along with a 'composite overprint' feature...both of these options help with flattening/transparency issues.

We used to have a KM with a Fiery on it and it looses connection all the time. You'll see this in other postings that Fiery's lose connection from any brand of machine, not just KM. The KM controller is nice because all of the jobs show up on the actual machine screen, and you can change all job settings, even rearrange pages, insert blanks, and more, all from the machine's screen, no need for an extra monitor, and it never disconnects since it's built in! You can create hot folders as well.

The main thing you don't get with the KM that is awesome on the Fiery is Impose/Compose. However, in our shop, we don't need imposition at the controller since it's all done in our graphics dept before it gets to the printer. KM does sell their own imposition software, and there's several low cost PDF plug-ins out there like Quite Imposing if you really need imposition. I haven't personally done a side by side test, but we feel the KM controller is just as fast as the Fiery.

With all this being said, the Fiery is a much more popular controller, so you'll be able to find one on ebay much easier and for less money. If you use a PDF workflow in command workstation instead of sending jobs through the print driver, you'll find it's much easier to use. Just make sure it comes with a VI-509 (video interface kit) which is required to connect it to the printer.

(I think I've spoken with you about all this before, but I also used to sell KM production gear. I sold color units with Fiery's about 90% of the time, mostly because the KM controllers used to be terrible, and because most printers were already used to the Fiery's...but the KM controllers have come a long way. When I sold a machine with the KM controller, it was usually because someone either wanted to save some money, or because they were already using KM office copiers and were uncomfortable learning the Fiery.)
I always appreciate and respect your opinion from your experience. Yes I had this question 6 months ago and during covid this project was put on backlog. I have been conflicted about this and didn't have time to go to local KMBS dealer to see demonstration. What is throwing me off more is how many people love fiery and how my experience has been reverse.

FYI I had hoped to come across a used print controller used in a few months and not able to find ANYTHING. I had asked Konica how many of C6100/C6085 are in the market and it sounded less than 100 in US. I tried to investigate if I could use an IC-602 $100 to run C6100 (as C1060 and C6100 seem to be related). Now I am trying to see if I can trade in my old C6000 for a KMBS IC-604 controller even if I have to pay extra for it.

The only other thing running through my mind since I am able to purchase the Fiery locally with lifetime warranty and its running same price as KMBS controller that I should purchase it to increase resale value of my machine. My preference is to use my C6100 for 10-15 years as the only feature I care about is being able to print thick stock, efficiently and cost effectively. It would have been slightly nicer to get 450gsm capability but I can live with 400gsm. But as machines eventually get traded in and resold first question out of everyone's mouth is does it have a Fiery? It makes it easier to sell/trade/etc. But like I said before I dont see a reason for 10+ years unless printing costs come way down or a better perfect binder is released that gives zero headaches (not likely).

How many service calls have you put on your C6085? I am still debating whether to put mine on contract. I found a local KMBS dealer that charges less than KMBS USA on PPC contracts. In the past I would get PPC contracts just for the Fiery. There have been times where all fusers had to be changed but that would run cheaper than my monthly bill. With new vacuum paper feeding system and RU-518 I am hoping less paper jams running 13x19 duplex. Can RU-518 be used as a finisher or do I need to put my PB-503 at the end? I read online that the RU-518 can auto purge paper jams would be super awesome feature.
 
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jwheeler

Well-known member
1. I tried to investigate if I could use an IC-602 $100 to run C6100 (as C1060 and C6100 seem to be related).
They are not related...the C1060/C1070 were from the same generation as the C1085 and C1100. But even then, the C1060/70 used a different KM controller than the C1085/C1100. Job Centro got some big improvements from those series to the C6100 series.
How many service calls have you put on your C6085?
We installed ours in December 2019 and we haven't had any calls on the engine, just the in-line booklet finisher. We only have 170,000 clicks on it so far....We were completely shut down from March-June, and partially closed in July due to COVID. Business has been slow since we opened back up. We are a county department in-plant and we mostly do b/w on our three KM 6136's.
Can RU-518 be used as a finisher or do I need to put my PB-503 at the end?
You need to put your PB-503 at the end. This configurator might help you: System Simulator
I read online that the RU-518 can auto purge paper jams would be super awesome feature.
Yes, it does if a jam happens in a finisher after the RU-518. You will have to clear anything past the RU-518 manually. But all sheets that were before the RU-518 will usually automatically purge themselves.
 

jwheeler

Well-known member
Our files come from illustrator/photoshop and 600+dpi. How can they not be soo huge esp when printing press quality as opposed to 72dpi and less? Usually cover art alone is 1 GB.
Your settings need to be changed if the cover alone is a 1gb PDF. If you used the default "Press Quality" PDF save settings, it would default to 300dpi, not 600dpi. Is your designer altering the settings to also turn off flattening of transparency? If you did a side-by-side print test of your designer's save settings, and the default "Press Quality", you'll most likely see no noticeable difference, but you'll save on hard drive space and Ripping time.
 

Shredder

Well-known member
We installed ours in December 2019 and we haven't had any calls on the engine, just the in-line booklet finisher. We only have 170,000 clicks on it so far....We were completely shut down from March-June, and partially closed in July due to COVID. Business has been slow since we opened back up. We are a county department in-plant and we mostly do b/w on our three KM 6136's.

Nice to know its working so well for you. I am getting quotes on PPC contracts from local service companies. Does it bother you to pay for piece of mind? I imagine there wont be any major issues until passed 500k copies. The reason I ask is because if money could be saved I can buy another C6100 with the money saved.
 

Shredder

Well-known member
Yes, it does if a jam happens in a finisher after the RU-518. You will have to clear anything past the RU-518 manually. But all sheets that were before the RU-518 will usually automatically purge themselves.

How high can you stack 13x19 sheets on RU-518? It doesn't look very stout for 100+ 400 gsm sheets. On our C6000 I usually the output tray on top of PB-503 but it looks like it goes through the rollers and not sure how 400gsm will fare in PB-503. FYI when I looked up RU-518 it shows 350gsm.
 
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Ynot_UK

Well-known member
Nice to know its working so well for you. I am getting quotes on PPC contracts from local service companies. Does it bother you to pay for piece of mind? I imagine there wont be any major issues until passed 500k copies. The reason I ask is because if money could be saved I can buy another C6100 with the money saved.
PPC covers a lot more than peace of mind, I.e. toner and consumables. As an aside, what you’re suggesting regarding a potential saving doesn’t work financially, as a press is Capex whereas PPC costs are revenue.
 
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Shredder

Well-known member
Your settings need to be changed if the cover alone is a 1gb PDF. If you used the default "Press Quality" PDF save settings, it would default to 300dpi, not 600dpi. Is your designer altering the settings to also turn off flattening of transparency? If you did a side-by-side print test of your designer's save settings, and the default "Press Quality", you'll most likely see no noticeable difference, but you'll save on hard drive space and Ripping time.
We would see a difference on the C6000. For book covers we want super high resolution to help make the cover more attractive.
 

jwheeler

Well-known member
Nice to know its working so well for you. I am getting quotes on PPC contracts from local service companies. Does it bother you to pay for piece of mind?
Not at all. I agree with @Ynot_UK in your other post about PPC contracts. It makes it easy to know exactly what you're margins are, and you don't have to worry about the cost or parts, supplies, labor, or your own wasted time trying to fix it.
 

jwheeler

Well-known member
How high can you stack 13x19 sheets on RU-518? It doesn't look very stout for 100+ 400 gsm sheets. On our C6000 I usually the output tray on top of PB-503 but it looks like it goes through the rollers and not sure how 400gsm will fare in PB-503. FYI when I looked up RU-518 it shows 350gsm.
It will support 400 gsm. I just ran some 450gsm synthetics the other day and had to tell the machine it was 400gsm and I output to the RU-518 tray just fine. I've never counted but I'd say no more than 100 sheets of 400gsm. If you're concerned about roller marks from the PB, then I'd suggest buying an OT-510. It's a very in-expensive stacker option. It looks just like the FS-532 finisher, but it's gutted out with no finishing inside, just the path to the offsetting stacker tray.
 

Shredder

Well-known member
It will support 400 gsm. I just ran some 450gsm synthetics the other day and had to tell the machine it was 400gsm and I output to the RU-518 tray just fine. I've never counted but I'd say no more than 100 sheets of 400gsm. If you're concerned about roller marks from the PB, then I'd suggest buying an OT-510. It's a very in-expensive stacker option. It looks just like the FS-532 finisher, but it's gutted out with no finishing inside, just the path to the offsetting stacker tray.
AWESOME!!! 450 GSM? Are you serious? I would love to run super super thick stock like that. I kept eyeballing the C12000 dreaming about 450gsm.

I've been thinking about the OT-510 in order to get straight paper path if I don't go with a PPC contract. Can an OT-510 and a PB-503 work in 1 system? I doubt but thought it's worth asking. I haven't been able to find it on ebay.
 

VanessaB

New member
I work for KM selling only production & industrial print devices and have been seeing tremendous success and satisfaction with the KM controller over the last few years. Fiery is also a fantastic choice and would ultimately depend on the user's previous experience. I have customers who have been Creo users for years and recently tried the KM Controller and actually preferred it. It is extremely easy to use and to learn how to use.
If you select the KM controller I would recommend looking into getting the AccurioPro Flux Essential software to accompany your controller. This will help make your impositions/compositions and make ready setups a breeze. Lastly, I would recommend reaching out to your local KM dealer/branch and request a virtual or live demo on the controllers as well as the software/options available. Also great choice on the AccurioPress C6100, it is an incredible device!

Good luck!
 

VanessaB

New member
We are not in the printing business. We print our packaging materials and perfect bound books in house. Our volumes are pretty low (100k annually). Although we desire to increase that someday by printing more books. Currently most of our print jobs are 13x19" double sided thickest sheets. We have had a bunch of bizhub machines and bought our first printing press 5 years ago (C6000). Each time I specified fiery print controllers but lately we have been using the KMBS controllers in all bizhub devices due to how annoying fiery drivers can be. Printing on C6000 fiery is a huge chore esp setting up books. I have a C6100 that needs a print controller and can't decide between fiery and kmbs. Both are running same price for me but I am thinking of overall ease of use. We don't have a dedicated prepress manager nor do we like being trained on anything.

Can someone please give some advice? I have been reading marketting materials for both and they don't seem to be clear esp for someone like me who isn't in printing business to sell prints.
Hi, I responded to your initial question above, I am still a newbie in regards to using this forum but if you have any questions, I would be glad to help! I have sold a lot of C6100 and have a lot of experience with the industry & product.
 

jwheeler

Well-known member
AWESOME!!! 450 GSM? Are you serious? I would love to run super super thick stock like that. I kept eyeballing the C12000 dreaming about 450gsm.

I've been thinking about the OT-510 in order to get straight paper path if I don't go with a PPC contract. Can an OT-510 and a PB-503 work in 1 system? I doubt but thought it's worth asking. I haven't been able to find it on ebay.
Yes, we got 450gsm to run, but I wouldn't recommend doing it on a consistent basis. The OT-510 will not work with the PB-503. You would have to get the FS-532 instead. However, if you keep the PB in line, you're still going to get those roller marks. That has always been an issue for high color coverage. Try out that configurator I listed a few posts back...it will answer questions like these. It won't let you do any configuration that doesn't work...and it won't let you select "confirm" until you have at least the minimum components.
 

Shredder

Well-known member
Yes, we got 450gsm to run, but I wouldn't recommend doing it on a consistent basis. The OT-510 will not work with the PB-503. You would have to get the FS-532 instead. However, if you keep the PB in line, you're still going to get those roller marks. That has always been an issue for high color coverage. Try out that configurator I listed a few posts back...it will answer questions like these. It won't let you do any configuration that doesn't work...and it won't let you select "confirm" until you have at least the minimum components.
Too bad you aren't selling machines anymore I'd buy the OT-510 from you. It looks pretty rare as I haven't found much info online about it.

I have been using that simulator but I don't know why I dont trust it. Also, do you recommend HM-103 for the RU-518? Does it really make a big difference having a humidifier at the end of the output?
 

Shredder

Well-known member
I work for KM selling only production & industrial print devices and have been seeing tremendous success and satisfaction with the KM controller over the last few years. Fiery is also a fantastic choice and would ultimately depend on the user's previous experience. I have customers who have been Creo users for years and recently tried the KM Controller and actually preferred it. It is extremely easy to use and to learn how to use.
If you select the KM controller I would recommend looking into getting the AccurioPro Flux Essential software to accompany your controller. This will help make your impositions/compositions and make ready setups a breeze. Lastly, I would recommend reaching out to your local KM dealer/branch and request a virtual or live demo on the controllers as well as the software/options available. Also great choice on the AccurioPress C6100, it is an incredible device!

Good luck!

Thanks for posting. I do think Konica has come a long way from emperon controllers. I don't have need for impose but would have loved a cheap embedded print controller. Im leaning to Fiery only because at resell time it will go for more even though for my purposes the KM controller would be a better option.

If C6100 could do 450 gsm regularly (Konicas were famous for being able to do more than they spec) I don't think I will ever upgrade and run this to the ground.
 

jwheeler

Well-known member
Too bad you aren't selling machines anymore I'd buy the OT-510 from you. It looks pretty rare as I haven't found much info online about it.

I have been using that simulator but I don't know why I dont trust it. Also, do you recommend HM-103 for the RU-518? Does it really make a big difference having a humidifier at the end of the output?
The OT-510 is a newer option and thanks for the mention of buying from me if I still sold. I'd be happy to get paid for consulting services by phone/email if that's something you're interested in. The simulator is reliable...it's what I used to put machines together when I sold them so I didn't forget anything, and so I could tell the customer the required floor space. In the 5yrs I was at KM, I never once sold a unit with a HM-103...but it may just not be needed here in So Cal. It might help for your books if you've ever had issues with wavy pages. I saw in the other thread that you are printing your own custom books to give away. What are the books? Why do you give them away and not sell? Do you have a website?
 

Shredder

Well-known member
The OT-510 is a newer option and thanks for the mention of buying from me if I still sold. I'd be happy to get paid for consulting services by phone/email if that's something you're interested in. The simulator is reliable...it's what I used to put machines together when I sold them so I didn't forget anything, and so I could tell the customer the required floor space. In the 5yrs I was at KM, I never once sold a unit with a HM-103...but it may just not be needed here in So Cal. It might help for your books if you've ever had issues with wavy pages. I saw in the other thread that you are printing your own custom books to give away. What are the books? Why do you give them away and not sell? Do you have a website?

If you want to help me find equipment used/discount/servicing I would be interested in consulting services. I think this is going to be the last machine I buy for a long time. We don't have wavvy pages in my books. There is a tiny bit of unevenness with cover and paper but I bought a 1970s champion guillotine cutter for $200 to trim books. The perfect binder trim setting wasn't working properly for us.

I sell the books at $15/ea and have sold out of them a number of times. The books are written with a lot of love and not a profit motive, religious in nature. They are gifted to inspire others to go on their own journey. I usually get excellent feedback from those who have read the books many cried themselves to sleep and transformed their perspectives on life. I live to inspire! In the modern digital age, I am a huge purveyor of books (esp out of print 100 year old texts). I bought my printing press in hopes of helping younger and future generation connect with their past and develop emotionally, intellectually, etc. It seems cliche but a good book is one of the greatest gifts to give a youngster now.

The people who make a living selling religious books are pretty scared of me as I have freely distributed over 25,000 publications hoping to spread the spirit of love.
 
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