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Harlequin RIP with Palladio platesetter

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DigiCorn:
Just got a call from a guy this morning who bought the 60mw laser from the old shop I worked at to replace his 5mw. He's running a Harlequin which I have NO experience with. He says before everything ran fine, but now he gets banding in screens, AND he gets an elongated dot on his CMY plates, but K is just perfect. Running Agfa plates.

I don't know how I became the Sacramento area Palladio expert, but this is now the fourth different shop that has called me looking for advice. He did clean the optics and mirrors, so I know it's not dust. I told him it sounds to me like the laser wasn't focused properly when replaced - he did it himself, and did not have Agfa do it.

I told him to run a set of linear plates at 5% intervals from 0 - 100% and then read them with a dot reader and tell me what he gets.

I really have no idea what might be causing this. Any ideas?

Duffy:
If it was focus, none of the plates would image correctly...you said the K plate is fine.

Sounds like a setting in the RIP more than anything else, have him change the RIP to output all four plates on the K setting and see if the elongation is gone - or image a composite greyscale of it.

Banding depends alot upon direction, it could anything from plate size, to vacuum to ????

DigiCorn:
The Palladio, if I remember right, images flat on a "table." There is no drum, vacuum or clamps to skew the plate.

Duffy:
No vacuum to hold the plate?????? Not sure how that would work but not mine to worry about.
It couuld be dirt/dust on the spinner thread, but agin not sure how one plate would be fine and the rest off without it being the rip...have him do a composite preview of the pages on the RIP and see if the dots look elongated on the preview, it not start checking boards and cables and change the slot of the card on the pc.

DigiCorn:
I'm thinking it's a RIP issue. That combined with a little operator error. He says the CMY are elongated but the K and spot plates are fine. Unless the spot angle is truly unique from the CMY angles, that would mean his K and PMS are the same angle. Personally, I run my PMS and Cyan both at 15, K at 45, M at 75 and Y at 0. If he was printing K and PMS at the same angle, he couldn't run duotones because then he'd be printing dot directly atop dot... but I don't know the guy - he could be an idiot.

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