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Device How-To

Is it time to add closed-loop automation to your workflow?

Hitting offset lithographic color targets isn’t always fast or easy. The manual process of measuring color bars and making ink key adjustments takes time and opens the door to operator error. Meanwhile, the press is running (and wasting) paper and ink. To achieve accurate and repeatable color, printers need to convert their printing operation to an efficient manufacturing process and drive efficiencies in all phases of their operation. For many, a closed-loop automated solution is the answer.

Closed-loop automates the process by capturing spectral data directly from the press sheet, then automatically updating the ink keys. It cuts down on paper and ink expenses that accumulate when you’re not getting up to color quickly, makes short runs more profitable, and minimizes operator intervention. It’s so much faster and more accurate than a traditional workflow that it pays for itself almost immediately.

BellBain

Today we’re looking at the options available for a closed-loop solution to help you determine if your printing operation is ready to upgrade to automation.

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Confidently shop for color-critical items with Color-Eye!

If you’re reluctant to buy clothing and home decorating products online or in the store because you’re not sure how the color will look when you get home, you’ll love X-Rite’s newest color-matching solution.

Color-Eye® uses a calibration card and smartphone app to help consumers shop for items that match or complement things they already have at home, like a paint color that looks great with the curtains, a handbag and shoes that coordinate with a special occasion dress, or a jacket that will match the pants already hanging in the closet.

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Color Workflow Management in the Pressroom

We’ve written a lot about “color workflows” and “color management” on our blog. Today we’re connecting the dots to show you how “color workflow management” can mean big savings in a busy pressroom.

Pressroom

Without color workflow management, you can end up producing something you think is right, but is completely wrong in the end.

Especially in the printing industry, checking color quality at multiple steps along the way is the key to ensuring you’re on the right track. Color workflow management closes the gap between users, specifications, and color to ensure good quality.

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Are you using the right device for digital standards?

Whether you’re producing textiles, automotive parts, or plastic pieces, color needs to remain consistent or the final product will be rejected. Unfortunately, there are many ways for color errors to creep in during manufacturing.

Creating and using digital standards is one way to combat these errors. They can be used to accurately specify and communicate color, design layouts, and formulate colorants and raw materials. Digital standards give brand owners peace of mind that the color they communicate is the color that will be produced, and manufacturers the confidence to work faster and more efficiently.

To create digital standards, you need an accurate, repeatable master spectrophotometer. But with so many instruments on the market, how can you choose? Today we’re highlighting some of the features of our new Ci7860 so you can judge for yourself whether it’s the right instrument for you.

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Don’t throw away your leftover inks… Reuse them!

As brand owners compete to make packaging stand out, printers are charged with achieving accurate color – on unique substrates – with shorter print runs. Many spend a lot of time mixing ink, then end up throwing it away when the color isn’t right.

If you’re stuck in this cycle, you’re essentially paying for ink twice – once when you buy it, and once again to dispose of it. What are the economics behind this waste? What’s the impact on our earth?

Today we’re demonstrating how the InkFormulation Software’s Leftover Management feature can help you reduce inventory and waste and lower your disposal costs.

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Defining a Realistic Pass/Fail Tolerance

Did you read our blog: Are You Using The Right Tolerancing Method? If not, check it out. Today we’re taking the topic one step further to investigate how tolerances are chosen in different industries.

A pass-fail tolerance is the amount of color variation that is considered commercially acceptable. In part, tolerances are driven by customer expectations. While color tolerances are very tight in the automotive, plastics, and paint & coatings worlds, they can be much less strict in other industries.

car door color matching

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Why your Color Might be Wrong on Press: Environment

In a perfect world, you should be able to put ink in the press and simply run a job. Unfortunately, every year flexo and gravure printing operations waste ink, substrate and press time trying to get color right. Although advancements in technology have made it easier to achieve color accuracy, the variables that affect color still exist.

In this three-part series, we’re sharing over two dozen reasons your color might be wrong on press. We’ve already covered two important factors – Instrumentation and Standards & Ink. Today we’re looking at how the environment and your press can affect final color.

press sheets on printer

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Why your Color Might be Wrong on Press: Standards & Ink

In a perfect world, you should be able to put ink in the press and simply run a job. Unfortunately, every year flexo and gravure printing operations waste ink, substrate and press time trying to get color right. Although advancements in technology have made it easier to achieve color accuracy, the variables that affect color still exist.

In this three-part series, we’re sharing over two dozen reasons your color might be wrong on press. If you missed the first article – Instrumentation – check it out first.

Today we’re looking at how your standards and ink can affect final color.

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Why your Color Might be Wrong on Press: Instrumentation

In a perfect world, you should be able to put ink in the press, run a job, and achieve color consistency. Unfortunately, every year flexographic and gravure printing operations waste ink, substrate, and press time trying to get color right.

Although advancements in technology have made it easier to achieve color accuracy, the variables that affect color still exist. In this three part series we’ll share over two dozen reasons your color might be wrong at press side. Today’s topic looks at issues that can affect your color measurement instrument and substrates.

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