19 Sep 2019

Fujifilm expands support for XMF with new European centre

Fujifilm XMF

FUJIFILM Europe GmbH today announces a new European support centre for its XMF cross-media workflow. The centre will be based at Fujifilm’s UK headquarters in Bedford and is part of a global initiative to expand support for Fujifilm workflow solutions.

Despite the downturn in economic conditions over the last 6-12 months, the growing success of XMF has resulted in Fujifilm deciding to expand its support infrastructure. The new European centre will provide guidance on workflow issues and technical support for the XMF cross media workflow portfolio, and is just one of several such centres that have been established worldwide. Similar facilities have also been set up in North America and Asia, with all regional teams working closely with a newly formed Fujifilm support centre in Tokyo created as an extension to the R&D software development division.

The new European centre already has six new employees recruited in the last 12 months from the fields of prepress, print production, print IT services and print quality assurance to provide expertise on all aspects of print production, with a comprehensive internal training programme now complete.

John Davies business strategy manager, workflow solutions, FUJIFILM Europe GmbH says: “As the XMF user base expands and the features available in the XMF product range extend, we recognise that we need a dedicated software support team that can provide technical expertise across the whole XMF workflow spectrum. This expertise ranges from all aspects of print production workflow such as guidance on pre-flight, imposition and colour management, to the more complex areas of JDF and MIS connectivity, web-to-print, and the integration of offset and digital printing solutions.

"In addition to providing immediate access to product and application experts who can help solve workflow issues, by using services such as WebEx, we’ll also be able to provide remote diagnostics to further improve our customer service and response times."

Fujifilm continues to invest heavily in its workflow solutions and this newly expanded global support infrastructure is also able to monitor customer demands, feeding back new requirements to the R&D software development teams based in Japan. ”The combination of a European support infrastructure and dedicated software development teams in Tokyo means we are able to react to changing customer requirements in the most effective way” concludes Davies.

GMG offers RapidCheck GO! Software as a Free Download

GMG RapidCheck GO

Advertising agencies, production managers and print buyers are only a free download away from a quick and effective quality check of print products.

GMG, supplier of high-end colour management and proofing solutions, is pleased to announce that the free shareware GMG RapidCheck GO! is now available for download on the company's website www.gmgcolor.com. The tool allows advertising agencies, production managers and print buyers to check the quality of print products and their compliance with required print standards at a click of the mouse.

The need for standardized printing is growing as greater importance is given to compliance with international or in-house defined print standards. Advertising agencies and production managers involved in the production of print products as well as print buyers want tools that enable them to verify quickly whether delivered prints comply with a predefined quality standard.

With GMG RapidCheck GO! users have to perform only a single measuring procedure in order to obtain all the important information regarding the print job in question. The available data is presented in a clearly structured and easily comprehensive ISO/PSO and GRACoL-compliant report. A "green check" is displayed when the print product passes the quality control.

To check the print quality, users need to apply one of the following measuring instruments: X-Rite Eye One, X-Rite SpectroEye, X-Rite 500 Series, Techkon Spectrodens and Techkon RS800.

According to Jan-Peter Homann, consultant for international clients in the field of color management and standardized print production: "the GMG RapidCheck GO! shareware for the evaluation of a print product's compliance with common industry standards offers a range of functionalities only available within commercial solutions, until now. This very easy-to-use tool provides the basis for better and easier communication between print suppliers and clients."

Currently, the shareware version is available in German and English.

The Wasatch Tracer Simplifies the White Ink Production Process

Wasatch SoftRIP V6.6

The all new Wasatch Tracer, available in SoftRIP Version 6.6, is a tool for creating underlays, overlays, varnishes, second surface prints, and other non-colour separations directly in Wasatch SoftRIP. This feature streamlines white ink workflows, improves the white ink production process, and makes it easy to auto-generate white ink plates.

The Wasatch Tracer provides a streamlined white ink workflow so users can spend less time preparing their job and more time printing it. With the ability to render any contour cut path in white, the Tracer provides a powerful alternative to creation of white plates in third party graphics applications.

The Wasatch Tracer gives SoftRIP users complete control of the white ink production process. With the ability to set a tolerance level, specify a minimum object size, apply a choke or spread to the contour cut path, and exclude interior paths from being traced, users can customize a white plate for nearly any situation.

White ink printing is a widespread new capability of inkjet printers. Dark substrate signage, digital garment printing, and second surface printing of transparent materials all present special production problems. Generating these special plates within the RIP is often the best answer. With the ability to completely control Trace options and auto-generate inks from the resulting traced areas, the Wasatch Tracer makes it easy to manage white ink workflows.

Currently UK users that upgrade to Wasatch V6.6 through IGS, will also be entitled to a free training day, held at Walsall College, where all of the new and most relevant features of SoftRIP will be taught.

Wasatch SoftRIP is available in the UK and Europe from Tech8

ColorGATE Relaunches Website

New Colorgate Website

Just in time for the release of the current product generation 6, RIP software specialist ColorGATE has announced an extensive relaunch of its website and presents the company and its portfolio—including Productionserver 6, recently certified with top marks for the HP DesignJet L25500—even fresher, more clearly structured and with an elegant new navigation menu: simply more attractive, reflecting the company's new product claim.

"Of course we also want to communicate our product claim of 'Simply more productive' consistently in the organization and design of our website at www.colorgate.com in the future as well," said Catherine Kirschner, MarCom manager. "After all, efficient content preparation is also a time and costs-saving resource that can lead to greater productivity."

Parallel to the company's new strategic development from software manufacturer to service-oriented solution provider, the entire ColorGATE services portfolio has now been organized in the following business areas: Product Solutions, Expert Solutions and System Solutions.

"The Support area reserved for sales partners and registered users still includes a wide-ranging offer of more in-depth information and supplementary services," said Kirschner. "But we have now also placed a keener focus on all those target groups who still have to get to know the company and its solutions."

In addition to facts, figures and data, the new ColorGATE website also includes easy-to-use, well prepared infotainment: Short flash animations visualize more complex topics like parallel RIP process management or ink-cost-saving via GCR reseparation with the help of amusing cartoon characters.#

"We are eager to see how this way of presenting information, which is not exactly typical for this industry, will be accepted by the visitors to our website," said Thomas Kirschner. As for the entire website, the adventures of Customer King and Peter Print are available in German and in English.

Hallmark Cards turns to Enfocus Switch for automated error-free digital workflow

Hallmark Cards

So it's not large format print, in fact most of it is not even A4, but it is digital, and the workflow aspect of the story will perhaps be of interest to some LFR readers...

 

Hallmark Cards is renowned worldwide for its greeting cards and produces thousands of new designs and cards each year. The company’s European subsidiary based in Capelle a/d IJssel, the Netherlands, has chosen Enfocus to establish a completely digital workflow. Hallmark Cards uses a customized application of Enfocus FullSwitch and PitStop Server.

With more then 3,000 new cards brought to market every year, Hallmark Cards Continental Europe had an impressive archive of traditional films. The switch to digital started in 1999 when part of the company’s projects was set-up in Quark Xpress and Adobe Photoshop. A Digital Asset Management system was implemented in 2004 to archive the enormous amount of digital files. The company switched to Adobe InDesign on Apple OSX in 2006, paving the way for a completely digitalized PDF workflow.

Sourcing a top-speed, error-free workflow
Hallmark Cards put together a team to identify a fast, automated and error-free workflow. Dejan Mladenovic, IT Manager, and Miranda Vink, Technical Support and Development Manager evaluated several prepress workflow solutions from different suppliers, but none met Hallmark Cards’ criteria. According to Mladenovic, many of these workflow solutions had too many options, which made them expensive and too time consuming to work with on a daily basis.

When Vink discovered Enfocus Switch at a trade show, it proved to be the solution that fitted the company’s needs perfectly. Plus,  Wifac PDF Diensten en Systemen, Hallmark's house supplier of software solutions, supports Switch, which was an extra advantage. "We were happy to have been able to test a free trial version so we could see what Switch could do," explains Vink. "We worked out a prototype of our preferred workflow, which was then set up in detail by PDF Diensten en Systemen and Enfocus. They offered us a customized solution for a standard price." 

Extensive control guarantees top quality
The newly established digital workflow allows Hallmark Cards to work faster and more efficiently. Enfocus FullSwitch also enables the company to support one of the critical parts of its production. Although all prepress and print preparation work is done in-house, printing is outsourced as the European subsidiary does not have its own printing department. This means perfectly controlled PDF files and a highly accurate color management system are essential. Errors can prove very expensive, plus they damage Hallmark's reputation for producing high-quality cards.

Hallmark Cards considers every card to be a separate project that must be carefully checked and proofed before it’s sent to the printer. And this is where the Enfocus solutions really prove their worth. The company combines the Enfocus FullSwitch with PitStop Server to automate the flow of all incoming and outgoing files and check them for color, overlays and fonts etc. This extensive control saves valuable time and ensures the print-ready PDF files are 100% accurate. The files are then sent for proofing to two Epson printers via FullSwitch.

Working smarter and cutting costs
"Our investment in FullSwitch has already made our operation more efficient and helped us trim costs," says Mladenovic. "After implementing the software, we saw a significant drop in the number of errors. Plus it has enabled us to produce cards faster and reduce the hours needed for manual control and fixing mistakes."

Setting up a proofing workflow with the ISO-certified Epson printers has been another huge advantage. Handling proofing in-house save costs and time. And the time savings achieved using Enfocus FullSwitch have afforded Hallmark Cards the opportunity to broaden its range of cards and develop more designs. The specialists that were previously occupied checking the hundreds of files and proofs are now concentrating on color management and in-house photography.

Streamlining production
The team at Hallmark Cards is dedicated to improving their systems and workflow - something that Enfocus FullSwitch is helping them achieve. The company’s goal is to replace hard proofing with soft proofing and use the PDF job ticket information that is incorporated in the Enfocus Certified PDF technology, the core of all Enfocus products.

One task that still requires manual work in the original InDesign file is the encoding of each card, which is different for each country and language. "We’re now implementing an automated system to imposition all the cards,” adds Vink. “And for this we prefer a customized workflow that includes encoding our cards directly in the PDF. Establishing this process makes our PDF workflow complete."

GMG SmartProfiler now available to colour management users worldwide in local languages

GMG SmartProfiler

GMG, supplier of high-end color management and proofing solutions, is pleased to announce the availability of the profiling solution GMG SmartProfiler in 8 additional languages besides the English and German release. GMG SmartProfiler is a wizard for the calibration and profiling of different output devices, such as digital presses or large format systems.
The brand-new GMG solution is now available with language support for:

  • French
  • Italian
  • Spanish
  • Portuguese (Brazil)
  • Japanese
  • Chinese, Simplified (People’s Republic of China)
  • Chinese, Traditional (Taiwan)
  • Korean (Korea)

The GMG SmartProfiler wizard allows the profiling and calibration of different output devices, such as digital presses or large format systems, easily and quickly.

“We are pleased to serve more customers worldwide by multiplying the languages offered in GMG SmartProfiler. This will help users to become more quickly familiarised with the product and to take full advantage of its functionalities,” says Christian Schwarze, Vice President of Sales at GMG. “As digital and large format printing are extremely growing markets, the  localisation of a key colour management tool like GMG SmartProfiler, which easily enables users to achieve highest colour accuracy, repeatability and colour consistency with nearly every printing system, will certainly lead to greater penetration of these markets,” adds Schwarze.

About GMG: The software company founded in 1984 and located in Tuebingen, near Stuttgart, Germany, has a worldwide distribution network with local presence in France, Spain, Benelux, Nordic, the UK, Asia and the Americas. GMG has specialized in high-end colour management for the entire graphic arts industry. Today, more than 9,000 systems have been sold across the industry spectrum from ad agencies, prepress houses and offset printers to newspapers, flexo converters and international gravure printing plants. In fact, the GMG ColorProof system has become the de-facto standard of Europe’s extensive gravure printing industry.

About the GMG family of products: GMG ColorProof, a colour management software system, provides the most accurate way of calibrating digital inkjet proofing engines to produce digital contract colour proofs, precisely matched to the printing press. GMG DotProof® enables users to generate contract quality halftone proofs, using the original bitmap data of the output RIP. Specifically tailored to the needs of the packaging industry is GMG FlexoProof, which supports specific flexo file formats and includes a complete Pantone® spot colour library, along with other functions. GMG ColorServer is a tool for automatic colour conversions – CMYK-to-CMYK, RGB-to-CMYK and RGB-to-RGB – for more efficient workflows.

GMG InkOptimizer automatically reduces chromatic colours, thus providing cost savings by reducing unnecessary ink usage, along with better print stability on press. GMG ProofControl is the ideal solution for instant, colour-accurate verification of proofs. GMG PrintControl is one single software for standardising the press from start to finish. GMG RapidCheck is a verification tool to control the printing process at a click of the mouse. GMG Media is a range of proofing-specific papers and films for the most popular inkjet printers. They are manufactured to high tolerances for colour critical applications, available in a range of sizes.
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