Lower Total Area Coverage Is Acceptable and Offers Big Savings, VIGC FindsOctober 20, 2011
Lower TAC holds its own in the field
The VIGC eventually moved on to a print test to investigate if what was visible on the screen or on the proof, would be confirmed when being printed. The results were presented to several printers and the findings were amazing—nobody saw any significant difference between the pictures with 320 percent and 260 percent ink coverage. A packaging printer that regularly prints packaging for chocolate and sweets even found the 220 percent version to be the best.
Versions of the test pictures that had been converted with the known Adobe and ECI profiles were also included in the print test, but no real difference was visible there either, as far as the optimum black was concerned.
More positive results at the Print/EasyFairs trade fair test
Dozens of print professionals conducted the VIGC test at its booth at the Print/EasyFairs trade fair in Brussels. Four versions of one of the test pictures were shown. Although most of the specialists detected a minor difference, none found that any one of the versions was qualitatively poor due to lower ink coverage.
Even the version with only 220 percent ink coverage was qualitatively acceptable as far as all the specialists were concerned. One of those present at the trade fair commented, “If you gave this job to four different printers, you would end up seeing bigger differences than between your four versions.”
“The test we carried out at Print/EasyFairs is the final part of our investigation. We’ve submitted the results to a group of specialists, and everybody was full of praise. Nobody would have rejected the printed material with the lower TAC, while more than half gave an identical or higher evaluation to the pictures with a reduced TAC,” notes Hagen.
“This confirms that prints with a much lower TAC are not only possible, but also they’re acceptable to print experts. Just imagine the savings that can be realised, and how many problems regarding transferring and processing can be prevented.”