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Gmg Absolute Digital Jon Wallbank Lfr

UK-based Absolute Digital Print has invested in GMG ColorProof and GMG ColorServer to offer a higher quality, consistent print and proofing service across its fleet of digital, B2 litho and wide format print devices.

Absolute Digital initially started as a purely digital print services provider, with the proposition of addressing the quality end of the local short-run market. Within a short space of time, clients were turning to the company to address more and more of their print requirements – including longer-run jobs that lend themselves better to litho printing. “Our ethos is to provide a diverse range of high-quality print services with the focus on offering exceptional customer service,” says Jon Wallbank, Director at Absolute Digital. “We found ourselves investing in B3, and later B2, sheet offset presses to enable us to increase on the range of services we offered.”

As well as serving local markets in the North West of England, Absolute Digital boasts blue-chip clients such as Reebok, The North Face, Lowe Alpine and The National Trust. Short-run digital is handled by a Canon ImagePress, while wide format duties are shared between an HP Scitex FB-500 and Epson Stylus Pro 11880 devices. Of particular note is that the company has standardised on stochastic screening for all of its B2 litho work.

“The main reason we came to GMG was a need for standardisation and achieving colour consistency across our print processes,” says Jon. “With a growing investment in a diverse range of output devices, we needed a way to reference the output characteristics of all our printers to allow us to deliver consistent results regardless of which machine or media the job was printed on.

“We went directly to GMG – we didn’t even consider any other supplier – since we knew of GMG’s reputation within the industry and were confident that they could deliver the results we expected.”

GMG proposed a solution based on GMG ColorProof and GMG ColorServer, designed to offer Absolute Digital device-independent output that would be easy to manage on a day-to-day basis, and would manage output against their target print colour space of FOGRA 39L or ISO 12647-2.

For more than 20 years GMG ColorProof has established itself as the premier software solution for the production of high-accuracy digital contract proofs. Key to GMG ColorProof’s success in the proofing market is its unique 4-D colour transformation engine that ensures the highest possible quality and production reliability.

GMG ColorServer automates the colour normalisation of PDF files, providing highly-accurate CMYK to CMYK, RGB to CMYK and spot colour to CMYK conversions while preserving the integrity of the black channel. The result is a standardised and simplified colour management model that delivers consistent print results across any print process and substrate.

After a smooth installation and training period, Absolute Digital couldn’t be happier with the results. “I have to be honest that there was some internal scepticism that - from the litho side – all we had to do was run to a given ink density and the press sheet would match the proof. Also that once the digital devices were calibrated, the results would match not only other digital devices, but the offset press as well. However, seeing is believing and the results have been amazing. GMG has taken the issue of the variations in colour perception, print process and print substrate out of the equation. It’s allowed us to work more methodically and scientifically to offer a greatly-enhanced proof and print service to an ever-more demanding client base.”

Toby Burnett, MD, GMG UK, says: “Absolute Digital is a great example of the new next-generation of print services provider looking for fast, accurate, device-agnostic output that’s easy to use and maintain. Implementing GMG solutions has enabled the company to remove output inconsistencies and standardise on a single user interface across all devices, which brings significant colour management benefits, productivity gains and delivering time and cost savings throughout the production workflow.”

[Image shows Jon Wallbank, Director at Absolute Digital]