GRAPH EXPO 2006: Prepress & Software — Putting All of the Pieces Together

Microsoft is introducing XPS with the release of its Windows Vista operating system and the 2007 Microsoft Office suite. Assuming the operating system is delivered per the latest schedule, its adoption may be slower than previous major upgrades because of all the publicity given to the delays and problems.

Global Graphics has been spearheading development of a reference RIP for XPS. Ralph Lloyd, vice president of product marketing, notes that this puts the company in a leadership role as compared to its current PDF clone status. Even so, he adds, its RIP solution has done native PDF processing from start to finish for years.

That’s the key advance offered by the Adobe PDF Print Engine—native PDF data processing without interim conversion to PostScript. Support of transparency, JDF integration and improvements in file processing speed are other benefits. Kodak Prinergy, Agfa ApogeeX, Heidelberg Prinect MetaDimension, a prototype workflow from Fujifilm, and RIPit OpenRIP Symphony are among the systems with new releases in the works that will incorporate this technology.

Agfa’s ApogeeX 3.5 also offers greater JDF/JMF enabled connectivity, Raster Preview function for soft proofing, interactive editing of PDF documents and an AutoStrip JDF-based stripping module.

Kodak previewed Prinergy version 4, which implements its Kodak ColorFlow color management technology and is a component of the Kodak Unified Workflow solution (for more on those technologies, see Digital Digest, page 88, in the October issue of PRINTING IMPRESSIONS). Other enhancements include a new “Dashboard” browser-based interface to the system, rules-based automation, greater MIS system connectivity and Digital Print Manager software for automating digital print production.

Thinking small (format) is in at Heidelberg with its Prinect MetaDimension 52i RIP system driving the new Suprasetter A52 thermal platesetter. This package comes with the new Prinect Imposition Editor, an Adobe Acrobat plug-in for imposing PDF pages, that can save imposition settings in JDF format. The company also announced that the Prinect Digital Print Manager, for integration with Xerox, HP Indigo and Kodak digital printing systems, will be available in early 2007.

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