The unit will be installed at the London, Docklands-based high-end commercial printer on 17 July and is expected to be operational by the following week.

The S200, details of which were revealed in January this year, is the first product to be manufactured by Coventry-based firm LumeJet.

The much anticipated machine, which will have a list price of £145,000 when it becomes commercially available later this year, combines digital printing with silver halide-based substrates using an inkless, LED-based system that ‘prints’ light in dots that are four microns across.

LumeJet claims that by exposing just 400dpi, the machine can output the equivalent of 8,000dpi inkjet quality because it gives the same continuous-tone result as traditional analogue photographic printing.

The beta test is initially intended to run for three months, but will be extended “on an open-ended basis” depending on customer requirements.

Altaimage director Rob King said: “We are very excited about the arrival of the LumeJet S200, as we believe it opens up new markets for us.

“The ultra high-quality output is a step up from anything we have been able to offer previously. For those looking for pin-point sharpness and absolute colour reproduction, we now have a machine that can deliver.”

LumeJet commercial director Miles Bentley said the machine was attracting “very strong” interest and that samples had been requested by a number of well-known UK printers.

Meanwhile, he said he was in discussions with potential global distributors in countries such as Macedonia, Malta, Portugal and Germany.

“We’re also talking to some of the biggest photobook manufacturers in Europe,” he added.

Bentley said that the LumeJet S200 was particularly targeted at high-end commercial printers with interior design, fine art and architect clients, as well as the photobook market and professional photographic studios.