What is Closed-Loop Color Process Control for Digital Presses

Periodic monitoring of the aim characteristics (required colorant and overprint values) of a digital press is an important prerequisite for ensuring consistent color reproduction. The remainder of the necessary and sufficient operations for commendable color quality is the ability to correct colorant densities to meet aim values. Each of these two operations can be accomplished either manually or automatically via hardware and software. The former is the traditional process, which leaves lots of margin for…

Top 5 Reasons to Consider “Closed Loop” for Digital Presses

The traditional method of color calibration of a digital press is a manual operation, which falls into two logical categories. The first is a one-time task during the make-ready operation and the second is on going during the press run. With an automated process, color make-ready and run time press calibration fold into one continuous operation from press startup to print run completion. A high-speed color measurement instrument (in-line spectrophotometer) mounted on the press will…

5 Technical Considerations for Color Quality Assurance Software

Cloud-based printing workflows manage the interface between a print buyer and print service provider by means of a client-server or browser based application software package. The application software is developed and managed by a third party organization, the cloud print service provider, which oversees all interactions in converting content to print including pricing, ordering, job routing, quality control, and shipping/delivery. All of this can be accomplished with global connections between buyers and printers. In addition,…

Pass/Fail with your SpectroDensitometer

Using the Pass/Fail Function: This function is found on the SpectroDens Premium handheld instruments. 1. What is this function / What does it do? The Pass/Fail function is a unique Techkon function that easily enables a Press Operator or QC Manager to compare a sample color, ink drawdown or press sheet to a standard color stored onboard the instrument. They know immediately whether or not they are within tolerance with the onscreen feedback and audible…

Building Color Libraries with your SpectroDensitometer

Question: With four SpectroDens devices on different flexo presses, running three shifts, how can I set up all the color libraries, get my entire staff trained and be assured they are all following the same prescribed procedures? Answer: Build highly accurate color libraries for the jobs to be run each day. Train your staff on loading the proper color libraries and checking proofs to see if they “Pass or Fail,” and quickly and efficiently correcting…

Maintaining Brand Standards with Color Guide

Color Guide: This function (formerly known as Ink Check) is found on the SpectroDens Premium, SpectroJet Pro and SpectroDrive Pro instruments. The Color Guide Feature is a great tool to support intiatives related to maintaining brand standards. 1. What is this function / What does it do? The Ink Check function is a unique Techkon function that combines the measurements of Density and Color (L*a*b*). When operating a printing press an operator can either add…

A Short History of the SpectroDensitometer

Over the last 15 years, the trend has shifted from traditional CMYK densitometers to spectrophotometer based densitometers. This shift was mainly driven by more affordable, lower cost technology and the need to know more about the characteristic of the ink that is being printed. This has created a new class of products called Spectro-Densitometers. Spectro-Densitometers are catching the eyes of press operators everywhere. Historically, they’ve had to rely on their eyes to calibrate the press,…

Going Outside the Box with SpectroDens MiniExpresso

One of the great advantages of printing to standards is having a known target to aim for. ISO 12647 indicates precise L*a*b* values for offset CMYK solids when using ISO compliant inks with ISO compliant paper. But what do we do to establish proper ink density targets when no standard exists? Printing onto unusual substrates such as plastics or synthetics, printing to “G7 Extreme”, or printing using unusual techniques are all examples of important non-standard…

Is it time to upgrade your densitometer?

In my travels helping companies achieve G7 Master Printer Certification I encounter lots of creative ways of managing color on press. Lots of folks have a densitometer at the press console to spot check sheets. While this has undoubtedly greatly improved the consistency of press color on each station over time it becomes obvious that some densitometers do not correlate to each other when measuring the same press sheet and ink zone. Which densitometer is…

The Good News, The Bad News, The Good News

Life can be a series of ups and downs, and instituting a process control system can follow the same zig-zag pattern, but with one important difference: With process control there are a lot more ups than downs. First the good news: having automated process control on press has never been as inexpensive and easy to implement as it is now. Clear standards and methodologies exist, proofing is better than ever, and true automated spectral scanning…

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