Started by SkillSans, January 24, 2018, 09:53:29 AM

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does this sound like pure crazy talk, or is this in any way possible?

We have some software that powers an Epson printer. This software prints each printing plate (taken from the actual Esko "len" TIFF files that are used to produce the plates) but applies the dot gain etc to mimic the output from the printing press in question. This is all very good and helpful, but takes an awful long time to print the result.

I am told that we need a posh monitor and extra software/hardware to get any kind of reliable soft proofing on screen. This seems a bit overkill for what I am trying to achieve, so I am instead playing around with some Ps adjustment layers to try and mimic the press conditions (very rough 'ballpark' results) so I can see the effect of any changes that are made within Photoshop.

Should I stop, or is this a viable method?

Any advice will be gratefully received (Thanks in advance)

(P.s. I can give approx details & data on the actual things I am trying to achieve if the general consensus is that this is worth trying)

Regards, J


Well with the "posh monitor and extra software/hardware" it is possible to give yourself a very good representation of your press output. I think your method is going to be exactly as you say..."very rough 'ballpark' results'".
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Short answer:
I think you could "make it work" with some upfront trial and error to get a "close" replication of the output effect. However, the concern (for me) would be that you likely won't be able to have a standard adjustment layer that you apply to all jobs/files. I believe the adjustment layer will interact with different colors different ways, and what worked on one job and got you close, might/might not work as close on the next. I feel like you would be constantly chasing your tail.

Long Answer:
  • How much money do you have allotted to invest should it be decided that your client base is going to need a better solution than your "close" adjustment layer? I would guess there is a few options from free/inexpensive up to state-of-the-art high dollar proofing systems. Just depends on your budget and needs.
  • What does the ROI look like on the investment? (will have to figure in time for constantly chasing said tail, potential rejected jobs that client signed off but didn't like the actual output, etc)
  • What client-based expectations are in the equation?
  • Does your company want to grow into a larger, more savvy client base? 
  • Does your company want to submit any work for industry awards? (future selling tools)
  • There are likely a whole list of other questions, but you get the point that there is MUCH to consider in a decision like this - that is currently absent from this discussion to give you honest feedback.
People will notice the change in your attitude towards them, but won't notice their behavior that made you change.  -Bob Marley