INDUSTRY STANDARDS — FOR THE COMMON GOOD
Some members of the U.S. printing community have questioned the usefulness of promoting gray balance as the preferred control mechanism ahead of TVI. The strongest dissent, however, has come from the European community. Olaf Druemmer, chairman of the European Color Initiative, become the unofficial spokesperson for this group that argues in favor of continuing to use the ISO 12647 family of standards. Its members see no compelling reason to replace the standard and walk away from the decade’s worth of experience with it.
G7 was not developed to be in competition with ISO printing standards, but instead should be seen as a best practice for implementing ISO 12647-2, reports Dianne Kennedy, vice president, publishing technologies, at IDEAlliance. Kennedy says there’s growing evidence of the process taking hold globally, but she also acknowledges that some printers are reluctant to change to the new techniques.
The IDEAlliance G7 Expert Program has trained leading pressroom and color management professionals from companies across the United States, Canada, Latin America, Europe, Asia and Australia, she adds. Further, a test designed to compare traditional ISO 12647-2 printing methods with the new G7 method was organized this past July by the BPIF (British Printing Industries Federation) Technical Standards Committee.
“A color test form was designed and prepared to incorporate both the Fogra and GRACoL G7 control targets,” Kennedy notes. “According to BPIF, ‘When both sets of printed sheets were subject to close comparison, the color and appearance of the two tests results were remarkably close, which indicated…both (Fogra or the GRACoL G7 ) could achieve the ISO 12647-2 standard.’ ”
SWOP (Specifications Web Offset Publications)
In a related move, this past spring IDEAlliance announced an initiative to “modernize” SWOP in response to changing needs reported by users. Speaking for the group, Jim Mikol, senior vice president of technology at Leo Burnett USA and member of the SWOP Advisory Committee, observed, “Our industry has changed since SWOP first developed its specifications, yet SWOP has not (changed). We now demand tighter tolerances and greater assurance of a close visual match from proof to printed publication.”