ROYAL IMPRESSIONS -- Getting With The Program
Royal Impressions encountered a number of challenges in developing that market, the company president reveals. Its progress was slowed by technological issues and a need to build the required infrastructure, as well as educate and sell clients on the marketing approach.
"It was scary," DeSantis admits. "At first, the technology was not there yet. The state-of-the-art in processing files (RIPing) at the time meant a project could take hours or even days to run. Since we didn't have an internal IT department, we had to outsource all of that work. And, we had to educate our clients on the technology."
The turning point came with the introduction of the Xerox Docu-Color 2060 driven by Creo's Spire front end, the company president says. "It opened a lot of doors for us. The type of projects I had been evangelizing for years became practical and started to come in as clients began seeing real results."
The key to the system is the way it RIPs files, DeSantis explains. A caching function enables static parts of the document to be preprocessed and temporarily stored in a format ready for output. This means only the variable data components need to be RIPed on-the-fly and then matched up with cached page elements.
"Caching saves a ton of time in RIPing. It has enabled us to drive the 2060 at its rated speed, which is 60 pages per minute," he adds. "The system was the first one we found that could efficiently handle variable data and deliver on quality." Royal Impressions currently has two DocuColor 2060s, both driven by Creo Spire RIPs.
As variable data was becoming a reality, the company also made a move into static, short-run digital offset printing with the installation of a Heidelberg QuickMaster DI press. "That became a very profitable business for us," DeSantis reports. "It fit a nice niche. We were able to transfer some of the offset work we had been outsourcing over to it."