Latest version of Nexus, thoughts
We have a old Nexus (8.1) which is very long in the tooth. We are currently looking at upgrading the RIP to something more modern or a completely different direction.
Just curious what would stand out from upgrading from Nexus 8.1 to the latest Nexus (version 10?) Is it basically the same system or is it quite different. Still raster based or is it PDF engine with vecter traps?
Version 10 has both options. But I don't think you should be looking at version 10 if your going to be upgrading. Nexus 10.1 is starting to become a dead product. Esko is pushing their customers to AE. AE is a PDF workflow only and as it should be.
AE is a major change from Nexus.. AE does not have all the same functionally as nexus... It's still a lackluster product!
If I were you I would look at AE, Prinigery and even Rampage.
They are all very different then nexus.
You are talking about Automation Engine? As you may or may not know. AE uses Nexus in the background to rip and trap the file. All AE is, is a traffic cop, but more functionality then that. We might consider AE after we figure out if moving up to new nexus is right for us.
Of course we are looking at all options including other manufactures. The advantage right now is the leverage of owning nexus. The cost to upgrade should be less then a new workflow. Dollars are tight these days.
How do you mean AE is, or did you mean nexus, a lackluster product? Citations please.
Yes, I'm talking about Automation Engine. And no, AE is not just the traffic cop. It was like this for Nexus users back in Backstage era.
Now that its AE 12 it can do just about everything nexus does expect for RIP.. (aka screen the job). It still uses nexus. This should change in the next 12-18 months. AE does RIP but it does not have the nexus screen set.
I've been running AE in a test environment for the majority of this year. We are nexus users (10.1).
Since your coming from a very old version of nexus, not sure if your going to see much of an advantage.
I'm talking about AE being lackluster from an nexus user and enterprise. It still lacks many functions that nexus has. Don't get me wrong, it's still a very powerful. It made leaps and bounds from AE 10 to AE12. It's still pretty buggy and the hoops you got to go thru to do what it takes nexus to do is mind blowing.
The writing is on the wall!!
Esko is killing nexus and there are no major planned updates for it. They will still do bug fixes for awhile.
Nexus is a technology on its way out. Esko has even started using the terminology ImagingEngine. Your Esko rep. should be able to show you roadmaps and such from EskoWorld. Esko is surprisingly open and frank (compared to the competition) about communicating to their user base where they are headed a year or two out.
If I remember, you have a substantial Heidelberg background. Did you move to a packaging operation or are you now at a commercial operation using Nexus?
I moved to a commercial shop with a old Nexus 8.1 system. We are looking to modernize the department. But it would be nice to leverage what we have, if we can. Unfortunately before I arrived the company invested into Freeflow thinking it was going to help. But from what I am seeing freeflow is limited, not well suited for litho prepress, and does not trap or screen files. Their (xerox) suggestion was to invest in a RIP so Freeflow can hand off the file. This brings me back to nexus.
My background was commercial (digital and litho) prepress for nearly a decade and I made the switch to packaging prepress. I really like Esko products for packaging prepress. That said, their offerings are very focused at the packaging area (lightyears ahead of the competition in packaging). I would suggest giving Esko a chance but also focusing your energy on evaluating and migrating to a solution that is much friendlier to a commercial operation.
Esko is behind about moving to being a PDF based workflow. AutomationEngine is their first iteration and I am stilling getting "we're working on it" answers for technologies like PDF/X type conformity. However, they did buy Enfocus and that can only be good. Realize that packaging doesn't typically require multipage documents and we rarely deal with InDesign/Quark so EPS/AI/DCS/etc. has long been acceptable and normal. As far as RIP technologies go - inkjet, electrostatic, offset, flexo, gravure and others all have their own quirks and requirements. I'd sit down with your management and peer into future investments. Why not keep your Nexus box RIPing for offset while investing in a separate solution designed for electrostatic and inkjet?
Last edited by chevalier; 10-18-2012 at 12:58 PM.
You bring up some interesting points. It might be we get a full prepress workflow from another vendor or upgrade our nexus rip. All depends on money. The full workflow would be great if we can pull it off. Not to say upgrading nexus is not worth it but lack of PDF engine is limiting for modern files.
you can add the PDF engine to your current nexus. Nexus has three flavors: Nexus RIP (classic CT&LW), Processor (Artpro automation) & the PDF Processor (Native PDF workflow and RIP)
The thing I would be careful of is legacy files. Do you have any PSTI's archived that you might need to run in the future? If so you need to keep the nexus around.
So PDF Processor is a PDF engine rip? I just want to clarify since I am getting my head wrapped around esko terminology.
This means the it would vector trap and only raster the file once it goes to plate? Also I would be able to create proper PDF proofs for clients when low rez images and retain text quality from the press ready PDF?
We don't have to many re runs. Plus breaking away from what we have been doing could help us move ahead instead of being held back.