Konica Minolta IQ-501 worth it?

BigSi

Well-known member
Around 23k (New Zealand dollars) added to the purchase price on a C4070 for adding the IQ . How good is the standard alignment process.
(the old fashion way, print from machine and scanning on the glass). I guess if your flat out busy all the time it would be worth it but otherwise?.
The fullwidth system on the Fujifilm machines are certainly great. (but I did not have to pay any extra for this)
Your thoughts are appreciated.
ta Simon
 
When it works, it works well. We had a KM6085 with this and it’s really a flawed design - has a few sensors that you need to periodically clean - with a stick - which only serves to push the dust around, requiring the technician to regularly take the whole thing apart to clean it.

In theory it could be setup to adjust its own alignment while printing, but I usually disabled this because it slowed the printing way down (every single time the machine stopped for any reason it had to sit and adjust itself for several minutes before resuming) and didn’t seem to make a measurable difference in registration. Also, when the machine would randomly decide the sensor was dirty, it would force you to cancel printing and disable this feature. IMHO the whole IQ module is smoke and mirrors to make up for deficiencies in the rest of the print engine…I have a Ricoh with an inline scanner now that accomplishes the same thing but actually works as intended, and isn’t a $20k option,

I didn’t have a scanner on the KM so wasn’t able to try the standard alignment process, but when I’ve done those processes on Xerox machines it was a giant hassle.
 
Around 23k (New Zealand dollars) added to the purchase price on a C4070 for adding the IQ . How good is the standard alignment process.
(the old fashion way, print from machine and scanning on the glass). I guess if your flat out busy all the time it would be worth it but otherwise?.
The fullwidth system on the Fujifilm machines are certainly great. (but I did not have to pay any extra for this)
Your thoughts are appreciated.
ta Simon
We have it on our KM C6085 and C7090. It does an amazing job of automatically aligning the sheet before you start a job, and you have the choice to make it check throughout a run. However, if you're not a very busy/big shop, then I wouldn't recommend the extra investment. I sold KM machines for several years without it and people were still quite happy with their presses. Just make sure you get the scanner on the main engine so you still have some way of automating the alignment because doing it manually is very frustrating. You can save some money by just getting the OC-511 cover for the scanner instead of the document feeder if you don't think you'll ever use the feeder:

To use the scanner for alignment, you output a sheet that has marks in the corners on both sides. You scan two corners of side 1, and two corners of side 2, then it aligns the sheet. It holds this alignment very well and only takes about 3 minutes.

FYI, the IQ does have some other nice features such as monitoring the color throughout the run and even checking for printing issues like stripes or hickeys throughout your prints...but we don't even use those features. For it to check the color throughout the run, you always have to print on sheets larger than your finish size so it can put color marks on the edges of the sheet.
 

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We have a C4080 without the IQ-501, with scanner and OC-511 cover as @jwheeler describes above.
There have never been any registration issues - it is accurate and consistent.
The RU-518m relay unit is great, delivering perfectly flat sheets even with challenging synthetic substrates. Also loving the PF-707m air feed paper deck.
From our point of view, the weakest link is the OEM controller. Next time we'd probably opt for the Fiery.
 
Thanks guys. A little bit of conflicting information here but all good to know. Does anyone know if they have made any changes/updates since the IQ first came out? maybe a "IQ-502" ? or maybe one planed for the near future?. ta Simon
 
Thanks guys. A little bit of conflicting information here but all good to know. Does anyone know if they have made any changes/updates since the IQ first came out? maybe a "IQ-502" ? or maybe one planed for the near future?. ta Simon

There's an "IQ-520" in their accuropress 400 toner label press. Might be the same as the 501, or upgraded to keep up with the label press' speed.

I'd wait for Drupa in a few weeks, in case of new equipment announcements, show specials, and discounts on recently replaced models.
 
@BigSi the most notable update they made since the IQ first launched was being able to check each sheet for printing quality issues such as streaks, scratches, hickeys, voids, etc. This was a firmware update, not a hardware update. The way it works is you output your first proof. If it looks perfect, then you classify that as the benchmark for future prints. If the machine notices a streak, scratch etc on future prints, it can automatically eject those prints to a separate tray for you to check out and decide if it's worth keeping. Beyond that, @SoggyWinter 's suggestion of waiting for the new launches at Drupa is a good idea.
 

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