Canon Solutions America Introduces Book Smart Suite

By Andy Gordon / Published:

Andy Gordon

Canon Solutions America (CSA) has been a pioneer in production inkjet printing and especially in book printing for years. Many of their key customer accounts have been hard won deals based on solving complex processes that often have required customized solutions including workflow, finishing and integration. CSA has risen to this challenge time and again by innovating on the fly and creating robust solutions.

At Canon Solution America’s One Canon event in Boca Raton this week, the company discussed their approach to growth opportunities in the book printing market. CSA highlighted publishing sector data from InfoTrend’s U.S. Digital Printing Applications Forecast for 2017 – 2022:

  • Book printing in the U.S. to grow 8% and reach 87 billion pages by 2022.
  • Color book pages to grow 12.7% CAGR from 25.4 billion pages in 2017 to 46.2 billion pages in 2022.

CSA discussed how they are addressing this growth opportunity through the introduction of new technologies, products and solutions tailored for book printing for a variety of requirements and environments.

Ed Jansen, Vice President PPS Professional Services with Canon Solutions Americas, stated “Past book projects were pin-point, custom solutions unique to the customer.” About a year ago, CSA started to change the approach to enable more reusable solutions that can be deployed out in any environment. This solution set was introduced this week as the Book Smart Suite, Powered by PRISMA. It is a three-tiered approach to address a range of production workflow requirements:

    • Simple Sheet-fed Book Solution – leverages the PRISMAprepare controller and Color Split technology for Canon sheet-fed devices.
    • Integrated Book Solution – Uses either PRISMAproduction or PRISMAprepare controllers with an Advanced JDF Processor to integrate output on both Canon sheet-fed and multi-vendor continuous feed equipment.
    • Advanced End-to-End Production Solutions – Uses PRISMAproduction with Advanced JDF Processor and custom end-to-end production (E2E). CSA highlighted scenarios including a ProStream and Hunkler configuration, ColorStream and Tecnau LibraOne, as well as a VarioPrint i300 with CP Bourg.
Océ PRISMA Advanced JDF Processor

Core to the more complex scenarios is CSA’s new Océ PRISMA Advanced JDF Processor (AJP) technology which includes input, prepress, management, and workflow modules. AJP complies with the Standard XML Order format, process PDF for both sheet-fed and continuous feed devices, utilizes the Unified Job Definition Format (JDF) for multivendor devices, and offers closed loop messaging to MIS or ERP system via Job Messaging Format (JMF) for tracking, billing, inventory control, history and reporting. Canon then builds on top of the JDF workflow by building end-to-end custom integrations to meet specific production needs.

This solution aims to deliver on the promise of JDF. Some of the key benefits include intelligent batching, tracking orders including jobs and pages through production, automated imposition including late bindery decisions, passing JDF commands to finishing devices or leveraging barcodes, automation, reprint, and auto-release of text blocks by cover barcode scanning, printing covers in descending order for lamination to ensure ascending order on bindery, and the ability to print a quality print pattern periodically throughout the production cycle.

CSA provided a closer look at this workflow in action as it applies to barcodes:

  1. Banner page releases text block and tracks online end-to-end solution
  2. Barcode on lead-edge ensures cover to text block matching (authentication)
  3. 2D barcode for reprint on every page has a batch #, Job ID, and page #
  4. Creates a barcode or sends JDF commands to the finishing device
  5. Collates covers in descending order for lamination to ensure ascending order for the binder

CSA also highlighted how the Océ PRISMA Advanced JDF Processor works with variable signatures and discussed a solution with the ColorStream and Tecnau LibraOne. Within a single job, they are able to offer variable length signatures to switch from 18 to 12 page signatures to minimize wasted pages. You can also switch between 6 x 9 and 8.5 x 11 books between jobs.

The SmartBook Suite is currently in production with 3 CSA customers in the USA including McNaughton & Gunn of Ann Arbor Michigan.


Canon Solutions America’s Book Smart launch highlights the maturation of the company’s solutions for complex book production requirements on a range of technologies, from sheet-fed to continuous feed, CSA’s PRISMAprepare and PRISMAproduction controllers, Canon equipment or competitors, to a broad range of finishing capabilities. Workflow solutions are what ties it all together, and Canon is offering substantial streamlining opportunities for a variety of complex workflows. The development of their Océ PRISMA Advanced JDF Processor takes us one step closer to the full promise of JDF and we look forward to seeing more success stories as the company rolls out this capability.

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Andy Gordon

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