Citizen: Introducing the CX2Editor - 16th January 2017
If a mobile and high-quality photo thermal sublimation printer is something you require for event photography, then it’s worth taking a look at the image results of the new Citizen CX2 Compact, which will be available in early 2017. Pixel investigates…
Event photography is somewhat of a growing business segment, and what better demonstrates proof of a competent event photographer than the ability to present printed images to his/her customers at the actual event? Seeing results leads to satisfied customers, good word-of-mouth publicity and further follow-up orders, and Citizen’s brand new CX2 Compact printer, which will be available for purchase during this new year, promises all of these elements to be within reach. The requirements of an event printer are often very stretched; people want a compact, light, sturdy and fast-delivering product, and of course one that presents first-class and high-quality images. Despite numerous new products being released in the industry every year, finding a printer that meets all of these requirements can often prove to be quite difficult, but with the Citizen CX2, this should no longer be a concern.
Quality and portability are often the most critical requirements for a photo printer, and users won’t need to look any further than the Citizen CX2 Compact; the product that adds even more to Citizen’s already high-regarded CX Printer range; providing users with new levels of quality, portability and compactness and causing it to now be the go-to product for event photography in particular.
The Citizen CX2 Compact – with a weight of approximately 12kg – is 2kg lighter than its larger brother, the CX model, and is 15% smaller, with dimensions of 275mm x 366mm x 170mm. While smaller size can often suggest smaller capability, the Citizen CX2 proves that size isn’t everything and nevertheless prints 300 x 300 dpi photographs in laboratory quality in just over 8 seconds per image! In addition, and incase this just isn’t quite good enough, the high-quality mode is also available, allowing the printing of images with a resolution of 300 x 600 dpi. As well as all of this, the element of giving consumers the choice of a glossy or matte finish on their end photographs combine to make the Citizen CX2 Compact the perfect printer for event photography, party photo booths and retail kiosks.
Speed is everything with the CX2, and even in high-quality mode, a 10 x 15 cm print requires just 11.3 seconds to produce a first-class print. For the 13 x 18 cm print, the CX2 Compact needs just 14.2 seconds (or 19.2 seconds in HQ mode) and for the 15 x 20 cm print, it requires just 15.6 seconds (or 21.3 seconds in HQ mode).
With the Citizen CX2, 400 images in the format of 10 x 15, 230 images in the format of 13 x 18 and 200 images in the format of 15 x 20 are all possible without even having to change rolls, providing consumers with endless hours of photo fun, and event photographers with impressive prints. Additionally, with the new ribbon rewind function, the use of 15 × 20 cm material for 10 × 15 cm prints can save color and photo paper, causing it to be much more than a one-time only partner for event photographers; it’s an economic system for continual use. A further advantage of this innovative product in the packed-out photographic industry is the very fast and easy media exchange: the new and improved printer driver keeps the user constantly informed with direct real-time feedback.
In addition, with event photography, the ability to produce never-ending amounts of prints is an incredibly important element, especially those who desire memories of a birthday event or special occasion. This is where the new Event Photo software, and app, comes into its own. There is of course, as all professionals know, money to be made from party images that would otherwise just sit on peoples’ smartphones and tablets, and with the ‘selfie revolution’ seemingly here to stay, capitalising on this trend in the simplest way possible is where the market needs to steer. Event Photo allows photographers to create a whole new revenue stream from their service, and allows users an easy and fuss-free solution to keeping their memories in a more traditional way. As a fantastic way of differentiating your service, guests can download the Event Photo app, take photos of themselves and their friends at the event, connect quickly and easily through Wi-fi to a Citizen printer, and have their own print in no time. The software is also compatible with Wi-Pics, so users can also upload photos to Event Photo from a professional camera.
The Big Interview: Gary Andrews
Pixel got in touch with Citizen’s EMEA Business Manager, Photo Printers at Citizen Systems Europe, Gary Andrews for more details on the all-new CX2 printer:
The photographic industry is full-to-the-brim with printers. What is it – besides the fact that it is a much more compact product – that makes the CX2 stand out from other products of its kind in the market?
Although it is an OEM printer, everyone prefers the CX2 design. Compared to the inkjet solutions and other dye-subs, the quality of the hardware is higher and print quality better. Those that have seen the printer believe the sharpness and blacks are very good – and I agree – but this is subjective. Citizen is a premium Japanese brand in photo and this is the level I have been pitching at.
Why do you think event photography has become so prevalent?
Event photography via professional photographers has been popular for a few years, but the real boom is in photo booths and ‘selfie’ style solutions such as Citizen’s Event Photo. The photographer is effectively taken out of the equation. The customer for the printer now may not be a professional photographer but a hotel, a club, a venue or Joe Bloggs renting photo booths and other event applications. Citizen printers are also extremely reliable. No one wants the printer to fail at an event, because a broken printer equals no revenue.
Is the CX2 compatible with smartphones? If not, will this be the next step to take?
The CX2 is compatible with smartphones via kiosk software and solutions such as Event Photo, and by no other means. However, smartphones can be connected to all printers by USB.
Can you expand on how the ribbon rewind function economises printing?
It means a single media (6×8) can be used for both 6×8 and 4×6 prints without wasting any ribbon. If 6×8 media is used in the CX printer (and many other printer models), 4×6 prints can also be printed via double cutting a 6×8. However, if an odd number of prints is sent to the printer, half of one 6×8 panel of ribbon and paper is wasted. With the CX2, the ribbon is re-wound so that the other half of the ribbon is used.
Is your main clientele event photographers?
I believe it is. My customers are resellers and they sell to all photo segments. I understand event photography is where most of my printers go in the industry.
Where else and when are you planning on making these printers available?
EMEA shipments start this year in the UK via our friends, Photomart. The public can see the CX2 at the SWPP show in London this month. It’ll be there on the Friday if there is any readers who wish to meet me!
For more information, please visit www.citizen-systems.com