3 Reasons Offset Printers Need Automated Color Control

While color measurements can be taken by hand, calculated, and worked out to verify a ‘passing’ sheet, for most offset printers this is not practical. The time it takes, both to measure and to calculate all the required print attributes, is prohibitive. When printers ask about doing this, we advise that while it can be done, for most printers they will not be successful. Many brand customers care about a variety of attributes such as gray balance, overprints, solids and more across the entire sheet. For most press operators, it is just not possible to hand measure all those items, in all the ink zones across the sheet, and understand them and respond quickly enough to be productive.

In most cases it is recommended to use automated measurement devices and software.  The top three reasons for using an automated scanning spectrophotometer are:

  • Save on Time and Materials.  Due to the growing popularity of smaller print jobs and shorter press runs, the time spent between starting the press and getting “up to color” for consistent quality is critical. Automated scanning spectrophotometers like the SpectroDrive reduce this non-productive time drastically. You will increase profitability by reducing paper and ink waste and save valuable on-press time. The SpectroDrive scanning system makes your print jobs more data-driven and results more predictable. As a result, customers will appreciate the color accuracy and the consistency in quality. Utilizing the SpectroDrive metrics, ISO-compliant printing is easier than ever before. The time and materials saved by introducing an automated scanning spectrophotometer leads to an immediate return on investment.
  • Scan a 40″ Press Sheet in Less Than 8 Seconds.  Managing a press from the beginning to the end of a print run can be compared to piloting a commercial jet. It is a detailed process that requires many time-critical decisions. The press operator – much like a pilot – must perform many tasks and make many time-sensitive decisions throughout the run. Using an automated scanning spectrophotometer like the SpectroDrive is exceptionally intuitive, making operation seamless, fast, precise, and effective.  The motorized measurement head scans the entire color bar on a printed sheet within seconds and simultaneously sends the spectral measurement data wirelessly to the software.
  • Improve Color Accuracy and Consistency.  With the SpectroDrive, the measured density and color information is displayed with suggested density changes for more accurate color. The spectral color engine delivers unbeatable measurement accuracy and consistency over time.  The SpectroDrive can be also be used as a hand-held device for “spot check” measurements.

In addition to the points mentioned above, the SpectroDrive has a variety of features designed for convenience, including; 1) A laser that can be activated to support the exact positioning of the print control strip, 2) A single button to start the measurement process 3) Simple installation ensuring the device is set-up and operable in a matter of minutes, 4) Solid aluminum uni-body construction ensuring exceptional durability and reliability 5) Fast and convenient inductive charging.  These compelling reasons are driving many commerical printers to integrate automated scanning spectrophotometers like the Techkon SpectroDrive.