Do you know how many different commercial printing machines are out there? After separating digital from offset, there are dozens of options within each category, and each one has a strength and/or weakness depending on the job. These strengths and weakness typically affect cost, results, and timeliness – factors that you are no doubt considering when evaluating potential print partners.
So how do you find the “right tool” for your print job? A tool that will produce great results, timely completion, and a good price. Well, I guess you can take some time to study the production side of printing. Learn how ink hits the paper and the proper configuration of images on plat…you asleep yet? Your eyes slowly glazing over? Yeah, probably not going to take that rout. Fortunately, there are folks out there who can examine your print job, recommend the ideal machine (tool), and have access to that machine. These folks are commonly known as print managers.
Let me give you a great example of a print job that required the perfect tool. On the surface, the project had relatively simple specs, a 22 X 28 poster, but production proved difficult and ultimately unsuccessful. The posters were produced with large amounts of color banding, a sort of streaking effect. The printer explained that there was nothing that could be done, that all machines will have the same result, and that the banding would not be noticeable to the casual eye. Unhappy with the results, the customer approached us and explained the situation. Upon reviewing the results and the actual artwork, the issue was identified. The design of the poster required a complete flood of ink in the background. We explained to the customer that some 40” presses have poor ink delivery characteristics when it comes to massive solids – ghosting, ink starvation, ink zone lines, etc. In order to achieve a nice even flood of ink, we must produce this piece on a Heidelberg Anicolor unit that has a one to one ink to paper ratio. We contacted our facility that possesses such a machine and the rest is history.
Remember, all print jobs have an ideal solution. If you’re unhappy with your current printer, call us and let us explain how a print manager can reveal that solution every time!