COMPUTER-TO-PLATE -- CTP Editions
"We truly don't have a preference," Bacsik says. "We explain the options, including the pros and cons of each file format. Even a vector file will work well if it is made correctly."
Over the course of the last three years, Bacsik says the percentage of ads submitted to Perry Judd's as film for copy-dot scanning has dropped from about 80 percent down to around 10 percent. The majority of incoming files are still in native application formats, but the central prepress facility also regularly receives TIFF/IT and standard PDF files, he notes. Bacsik has yet to see a PDF-X file come in.
Perry Judd's helps its publisher clients set up internal systems for preflighting submitted ads, if they want to do the work internally, or it will handle preflighting of the files for a fee. The same goes for archiving/pick up of digital ads.
"It really comes down to a question of how publishers perceive themselves and their roles," Bacsik says. "Some of our customers see themselves as publishers in a strict sense, and consider the processing of digital ad files to be a different business—whether you call it prepress or something else. Other publishers say, 'This isn't any harder than what we are already doing for editorial, so let's take it on.'
"This vision can change depending on the personnel doing the work. If a publisher hires somebody who is technically very competent and ambitious, it may take on more responsibilities. We've also had customers lose those types of people and ask us to pick up the slack."
On the whole, Bacsik reports Perry Judd's has had a positive experience in adopting thermal CTP production. "Computer-to-plate production saves time and money, and you end up with a better product in terms of print quality. It's a true win-win for the printer and publisher," the prepress exec concludes.