CTP FIELD REPORTS -- Set to Compete
Platesetter: Screen PlateRite 4300
Plates: Kodak Polychrome Graphics Sword
Better plate technology is what led this printer to kick off the new year by replacing its original CTP system, reveals Shawn McClafferty, president. The shop had been using a visible-light plate and manual platesetter. "We were approached by KPG representatives who opened our eyes to the capabilities of the new plate and thermal technology."
A key selling point of the product was the capability to use the same processor and chemistry for the shop's conventional and digital plates.
"Only needing to have one processor is a big advantage," agrees Tony Fecondo, plant manager. "That gives us cost savings and process consistency. We still have film capabilities as a backup, and we do some film outsourcing business."
The company put the digital plate through some tests and was impressed with the results, Fecondo recalls. KPG then worked in concert with a dealer to put together a platesetter and plate package for the shop, he adds.
Screen (USA) has positioned the platesetter as a six-page machine, but Fecondo says he sees it as a four-up machine that perfectly fits the plant's 29˝ press format. The bulk of the shop's work is run on a lineup of half-size Heidelberg presses, including a seven-color Speedmaster 72, six-color Speedmaster 74 and a two-color Quickmaster.
Starting with a very basic, manual system had made for an easier initial transition to CTP, the plant manager says. "As a three-shift plant, though, we appreciate having a fully automated system now," he adds. "The decision was a no brainer. Not only can we plate 24/7 basically without an operator, it's also a faster system." Thermal technology further improved the shop's platemaking operations by getting them out of a safelight environment, Fecondo says.