G7 Qualification : The Art of Maintaining Color
G7 is a process, a color calibration method, that allows printers to gain repeatability across the gamut of printing devices and substrates. It requires financial and time commitments—both manpower and equipment.
Berman Printing's Bill Tucker.
“It establishes a certain amount of credibility. We use our G7 logo prominently in our marketing materials, when we do sales presentations and on our Website. Frankly, I’m surprised at how many times it’s come up. Potential clients and existing customers who really don’t understand what it means have latched onto G7 as a way of finding quality printers.”
Where it has made a measurable difference, for Berman, is in expanding its customer base geographically. Those potential clients who aren’t aware of Berman’s local reputation for quality, consistent printing can rely upon the G7 designation to provide assurance.
One out-of-area print buyer visited the Printing Industries of Ohio and Northern Kentucky (PIANKO) Website to determine which printers had their desired printing capabilities, then cross-referenced those results against the IDEAlliance list to find out which companies were G7 qualified.
Simply stated, G7 is a process, a color calibration method, that allows printers to gain repeatability across the gamut of printing devices and substrates. It requires financial and time commitments—both manpower and equipment—though depending upon your shop’s current configuration, both commitments are likely to be extremely minimal compared to the outlays in time and funding that it would require to install new iron.
For Berman, the G7 qualification was a fairly straightforward process, according to Paul Hilvert, who headed up the project for the printer. “We have closed-loop color control on all of our presses, we have an automatic spectrophotometer scanning table for reading proofs and press sheets, and we pre-verified all of our presses,” he says. “If you approach this process with multiple presses that don’t run alike or run well—or maybe manually read press sheets or proofs with a handheld device—that makes the work tedious, if not difficult, and prone to error.
“I was lucky because we already had a lot of things in place in prepress and the pressroom,” he says. “Basically, you need something that’s stable, therefore repeatable and able to measure.”