COMPUTER-TO-PLATE -- CTP Editions
The experiences Perry Judd's Inc. has had with implementing CTP production vary significantly depending on the plant, reports Ed Bacsik, vice president/division manager at Perry Judd's Madison, WI, prepress facility. Bacsik's division provides prepress services to three of the organization's four printing plants. He says the nature of the customer bases they serve is the biggest factor in the different CTP adoption rates at the facilities.
"Our Waterloo, WI, plant is running 90+ percent of its work computer-to-plate," the division manager says. "Its customers primarily are very large, sophisticated publishers of national titles, such as Time, Business Week and Computer World. These were some of the first publishers pushing to go CTP.
"Our Strasburg, VA, facility, which has its own prepress operation, is running about 75 percent CTP work. It prints some national titles, but does a lot more regional and medium-sized publications," he continues.
"We have yet to implement computer-to-plate in our Spencer, IA, plant, which primarily serves smaller publishers. We are starting to see customers in that market wanting to make the transition, as well, so we plan to add CTP capabilities in the next 12 months."
(The fourth plant, in Baraboo, WI, primarily does catalog printing. It also is doing more than 90 percent of its work CTP.)
According to Bacsik, the company's philosophy from the very beginning has been to let customer needs dictate its pace in adopting CTP capabilities. "We try to read the market and time our moves so we are not ahead of the curve or behind it," he explains.
Giving clients options, rather than telling them the "best" way to do something, is an extension of this philosophy, the imaging manager notes. Similar to the other printers, Perry Judd's has developed a four-tier pricing structure—based on the materials/file types submitted—for CTP work, instead of trying to establish a preferred workflow.