Beyond the Densitometer – Part 3

Improve Pressroom Efficiencies – Part 3 Two weeks ago, we kicked off our 3-part blog series looking at “Good”, “Better”, and “Best” upgrade options for packaging printers to reduce their make-readies, improve their color matching process, and attain more consistent color throughout their pressruns. In part 1, we examined the benefits of switching from densitometers to handheld spectrophotometers in flexographic pressrooms. In part 2, we looked at the benefits of adding press-side color quality software solutions…

Beyond the Densitometer – Part 2

Improve Pressroom Efficiencies – Part 2 Last week, we kicked off our 3-part blog series looking at “Good”, “Better”, and “Best” upgrade options for packaging printers to reduce their make-readies, improve their color matching process, and attain more consistent color throughout their pressruns. In part 1, we examined the benefits of switching from densitometers to handheld spectrophotometers in flexographic pressrooms. As discussed, this is a relatively easy upgrade because these instruments still measure the familiar process…

Beyond the Densitometer

Improve Pressroom Efficiencies – Part I While handheld densitometers have already been adopted in many flexographic pressrooms, it’s important to remember that these devices do not actually measure color and are therefore incapable of reporting the accuracy of brand or spot colors on press.  The best that desitometers can do is to measure and report the densities (ink film thickness) of solid color patches and the tone value increase (TVI) of halftone dot areas.  While these…

Sheetfed Closed-Loop Color Control

“It’s Easier Than You Think!” Is your closed-loop color control system showing it’s age or require expensive repairs? Any chance it was made by that “X” company? Upgrading to a new Techkon SpectroDrive can improve your productivity enough to cover the cost. Find out why KBA, Heidelberg, Manroland, Komori, RMGT, Sakurai, Goss, Akiyama and more are retrofitting their presses with Techkon press-side color measurement solutions. After reading about the advantages for sheet-fed offset presses, use…

CIE ΔE* (Color Difference) Equations

The intent of using deltaE (ΔE) is to describe the distance between two colors. The Just Noticeable Difference (JND) of deltaE is usually 1. In other words, if two colors have a deltaE less than 1 it is imperceptible and larger than 1 is perceivable. Unfortunately, due to the nature of human color perception (our eyes), the visual perception of colors is different. In general, our eyes are more sensitive to changes in Chroma than…

Victor Envelope Implements the SpectroVision Inline Color Quality Control Solution

We sat down with some of the staff at Victor Envelope to learn more about their operation, facility, and why they chose to implement Techkon color control solutions.  A billion envelopes is no small feat and we are proud to be an integral part of making that happen! Interview Participants: John Horgan – Quality Control Specialist Kent Gundlach – President Dariusz Kogut – Technical Training & Production Development Manager We asked John to comment on…

A New Appreciation for Inline Color Measurements

It goes by many names.  Some call it “pressroom color QC”, “pressroom color QA”, or even “pressroom color quality control”.  However, regardless of the name, packaging printers are recognizing the value and are investing in color quality solutions for their pressrooms with the ultimate goal of getting up to color faster, lowering their make-ready costs, and achieving more consistent color across long press runs. Most typically, these solutions feature new software (such as Techkon’s ChromaQA)…

Choosing the Right Color QC Software Package

Brand managers and print providers can take control of their color quality process by implementing a Color QC software solution.  Color QC software solutions are an essential tool in the pressroom to communicate job color standards and tolerances, provide PASS/FAIL feedback for operators, offer recommendations to quickly achieve desired color targets, and provide reporting of job color metrics to internal and external stakeholders such as brand customers.  Press-side and on-press color quality solutions are available…

What is a SpectroDensitometer?

By: Bruce Leigh Myers, Ph.D. Color reflection densitometers have been used for many years in the graphic communications industry, and are likely the most widely-adopted type of color measurement for process control especially when dealing with four-color process (CMYK) printing. In the 1990’s, instruments began to be utilized that, while providing densitometric information, were referred to as “SpectroDensitometers.” This has led to confusion by some, and has been regarded as hyperbolic marketing by others. This…

Color QC In The Inkroom

Greetings and welcome back to our blog! While pressroom color QC solutions are designed to help press operators get up to color faster during make-ready and improve color consistency throughout production, I want to spend a few minutes today and talk about how printers can further increase their operating efficiencies by implementing a dedicated inkroom color QC solution. Specifically, we are going to discuss the “Chroma Standards” software module that is included with Techkon’s ChromaQA…

Optimizing Density for Non-Process Colors

When printing colors other than CMYK, many users understandably turn to colorimetric information (CIE LAB, Delta-E). Frequently overlooked, however, is the importance of using optimized density metrics for process control in the offset lithographic pressroom.  One such metric, available on many spectrodensitometers, is spectral density (sometimes called “density-by-wavelength” or “lambda density”). A brief illustration of how a densitometer “sees” color ensues, followed by an overview of spectral density. Consider looking at a printed cyan ink…

Have You Fallen Behind on Your Device Recertifications?

The device recertification process for a densitometer or spectrophtometer ensures that your device is functioning properly and meets our strict international standards.  We recommend it be evaluated every 12 months at a Techkon Service Center. This preventative maintenance is critical to keeping your equipment performing at optimum levels and will help avoid sudden and unexpected interruptions on the pressroom floor. Properly maintaining your equipment helps ensure the accuracy of your color measurements while also extending…

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…

MYIRO-1: First Impressions of the Software

A few weeks ago I wrote a blog regarding my first impressions of the MYIRO-1 instrument and how it stands apart from the competition.  This week, I’d like share a few quick thoughts regarding the MYIRO-1 ICC color management software and how it has been built to support several specific use cases that complement an ICC profiling workflow very nicely. Ease of Use: Before we get into the features and functions of the software, I…

The Importance of Color Quality for Brand Owners

We invited Sonja Dearden, Print Production Manager at Lindt Chocolate, to a discussion on color quality for brand owners and developed this Question & Answer Guide to provide valuable insights on the importance of print standardization when managing color around the globe. QUESTION: Why do we need print standardization? ANSWER: An international company can have many different designers, pre-press agencies and print vendors around the globe working on their brand. If they all start from…

Beyond the Brand Requirements: Using On-Press QC for Efficiency

Screen from ChromaQA, Color Quality QC software, showing ink Delta E, as well as recommended adjustments to improve Delta E. For printers, being able to see if the print is good during makeready and production is important. Most press consoles do not have any easy way to see if a print is measuring to the print standard. Press consoles typically show metrics such as dot gain, density and even solid ink LAB values but they…

MYIRO-1: First Impressions of the Instrument

It’s February 2021 and the year is already off to a very busy start over here at Techkon USA. As you probably remember, just a few short weeks ago, we issued a press release announcing our partnership with Konica Minolta to launch, promote, and distribute MYIRO-1 solutions in North America. This was indeed exciting news for us and we are thrilled to partner with Konica Minolta on this innovative product. In case you missed our…

Closing the Loop on Color Management in Offset Printing Environments

Closed loop color management is becoming an important trend in offset printing environments, and for good reason. Press runs continue to get shorter which means more makereadies and reduced profits for printers. For those of you that have already invested in an automated color bar scanner to shorten your makereadies, you are half way there. So now let’s talk about “closing the loop” on color, examine the benefits, and see just why this trend is…

A Testimonial from Paul Sherfield

Me and my MYIRO :  I have been using my MYIRO-1 for nearly 10 months now as my main handheld, computer attached spectrophotometer. The instrument from Konica Minolta is clearly aimed as the first creditable competitor to well known market leading spectrophotometer in this area. Its build quality is good, a strong plastic body with a ‘lens cap’ that also serves as the calibration plate. The instruments technology is based on Konica Minolta’s FD-9 high-end…

3 Reasons Why Packaging Printers Love SpectroDens

When our Director of Marketing asked me for a blog this week titled “3 Reasons Why Packaging Printers Love SpectroDens”, I shot her a curious look (via my webcam) and replied “you must joking”.  How can I possibly whittle down all of the pros of the SpectroDens to a list of only 3 things?  However, after some quick reflection on this idea, I have decided to give it my best shot.  Although, at this point,…