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White knock out in DQS

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  • White knock out in DQS

    We are using ApgeeX v4 ripping templates from Preps and pages separately and combining pages and template using DQS in PrintDrive.
    That just leaves us with the problem that white marks that used to knock out when using a separated workflow from Preps no longer knocks out in the pages.
    We have come up with a work around where we adjust the bleed in the template to make sure that eg cut off marks get the correct amount of white border.

    We have also used a spot color where we used to have white in the marks. In printdrive we then used the quick mask option, but that also knocked out in the plate slugline, and furthermore it wasn't automated.

    I cannot understand why AGFA cannot come up with a solution after all these years with DQS.
    It should be possible to include sort of "clipping path", that cuts out in the template...

    It is very time consuming to adjust templates to acommodate this anoying problem so any advice is most appreciated.

    Edited by: Stilling on Mar 5, 2008 2:40 PM

    Edited by: Stilling on Mar 5, 2008 2:41 PM

  • #2
    Re: White knock out in DQS

    Hi Stilling,

    Can you email me a screen capture of the issue you are seeing at PrintDrive?

    jmorgan {at} hopkinsprinting {dot} com

    Jon :-)


    • #3
      Re: White knock out in DQS

      Why don't you just begin your crop marks where the bleed stops?

      Unless Printdrive is doing the final screening, each color of each page or flat exists as a one-bit bi-level image, where one value represents ink and the other is transparent, not "white." A pixel of the merged layout will be "black" if it is black on either the page or flat, or both. ApogeeX (I have ver. 3.5) processes each "flow" independently of the other when using DQS. In fact, you can run a DQS job without a template, or without pages. I get a job in every once in a while that is black and one spot color, and the customer supplies hard-copy laser separations. I scan them into two separate PDF's, one for the black pages and one for the spot color. Then I run a DQS job with template and black pages, and another job with just the spot color pages (they're black to ApogeeX) and no template. In Printdrive, I change black to the spot color for the pages-only job, then move the pages in Printdrive from one job into the other. I think Printdrive is the best Agfa software I've used - beautiful in its logical simplicity, fast, and I can't even think of a single bug off the top of my head. It's too bad they're planning on phasing it out in favor of pretty icons.

      A probable work-around would be to run the job in non-DQS mode, which is what Afga would likely say. It's good to know someone else is enjoying the benefits of DQS. Did Agfa set you up for DQS or did you have to discover it on your own?

      If you ask Agfa about this, please post back a summary of their response. I have two long-shot ideas that I'm going to test out before I ramble on any further.


      • #4
        Re: White knock out in DQS

        the cropmarks is not the issue, they don't cause me any problems.

        On the press we have cameras that catches a "cut off" mark", when that mark is "caught", the mark is monitored and fixed during the whold print run.
        Both the "cut off mark" and "color register mark" needs white inside or outside of the mark.

        The marks is very close to the trimmed page, and therefor we cannot just pull back the bleed of the pages.
        Therefore the intention is to make a mark which have a border of 1 mm white that knocks out in the underlaying pages. But using DQS where two 1-bit tiffs are merged does not leave us that option.

        Running the flats in normal mode (not DQS), then we do not have this problem. But then we loose the flexibility of ripping pages and templates separately.

        I have attached two pics that shows what it should look like on plate, and how it looks on plate running DQS... it is not the acutally marks but I think they do illustrate the problem.

        To run the job in non DQS mode is not an option.
        We are running 72 page presses, using 1-bit tiffs wrapped into pdfs. Each PDF is in 2400 dpi with an average size of 35mb. Each plate holds 36 A4 pages and the job would just take forever to process as a non DQS job.



        • #5
          Re: White knock out in DQS

          Hi Stilling,

          The easiest thing I can think of would be to export the mark in question to your desktop, open it in Illustrator and add a white background, save, and re-import the mark back into your system. In our experience with 3.5, white backgrounds in our marks were honored during rendering necessitating the removal of the white backgrounds as it was knocking out small portions of the actual artwork.

          If your mark already has a white background, you could try ensuring that the mark is above everything else in your template. If that doesn't work, you could try modifying the mark printing preference in the 'Imposition Service' System Component (service-level access would be needed within the ApogeeX client to do this though).

          Hope this helps!
          Jon Morgan
          Hopkins Printing


          • #6
            Re: White knock out in DQS

            Thanks but I have already tried all these things.

            The issue is that in DQS mode white is no longer white, it is transparent, exactely as when you merge two layers in Photoshop with multiply selected.


            • #7
              Re: White knock out in DQS


              I think I have a solution for you, but its implementation depends upon a few factors.

              How many version of position do you need? If the mark needs to land in the same place on all your plates for all your jobs, and you just have one plate size, that would be one version.

              Can the mark be the same in all four process colors, or is their a difference between them, and if so, are the CMY plates the same?


              • #8
                Re: White knock out in DQS

                Hi, I have five different plate sizes, and the marks are not positioned in the same position on the plates. They follow the page width.
                Some are in pure black others are reg marks used for color register, these are five different marks in either cyan, mag, yel and black.

                Where the marks are common or on the same spot. I use either borders or finishing marks in printdrive...


                • #9
                  Re: White knock out in DQS


                  Apogeex borders and Printdrive finishing marks were the two solutions I came up with. You can make a mark using Printdrive finishing marks where each pixel can be either black, white, unchanged/transparent, or an inversion of black and white by creating two images and placing one on top of the other. If "printmode=knockout" precedes the first image and "printmode=default" precedes the second, then white in both images will be transparent, white in the first and black in the second will invert, black in the first and white in the second will be white, and black in both will be black.

                  The downside is that if you have a mark that is different in black than in cyan, magenta and yellow, you would have to set the CMY version to be the default, output CMY plates, then output K plates with a manual change of the mark file in the print dialog. If the mark is different in all four colors, you would have to have four different mark files. Maybe you could put the cut-off mark you need to knockout at the edge of the web regardless of page size, and leave everything else to the template or Apogeex borders. The positioning can be changed to be based off of any of nine points on the plate, so if you're lucky you might be able to reduce the number of versions necessary by using a certain origin point.

                  I have found (with Apogeex 3.5) that DQS jobs run a bit slower when the whole job is going through, but slightly faster when there is a single page correction on every flat. Our jobs tend to have a lot of sporadic corrections, and we don't re-proof entire flats, so we use DQS so that everything that re-renders re-proofs. It is also good for the "combine to spread" function, and proving black-only plate change versions match up with the same CMY plates.


                  • #10
                    Re: White knock out in DQS


                    I just tried this and it worked. You can have TIF files named "MarkCyan.tif," "MarkMagenta.tif", etc., and if the finishing mark file uses the name "Mark$Color.tif," you can have a mark be different on the process plates. The downside is that any spot colors would have to have a mark created, or you would have to plate them with a different mark file, otherwise the output will terminate in error.


                    • #11
                      Re: White knock out in DQS

                      Thanks for your ideas, I have tried and yes it does work. But I find it very hard to automate as marks are sitting differently for every press / plate and imposition.

                      The way I have worked my way around it is to us a specific spot color in my marks. (In my case it is called "DQS_WHITE"

                      All flats sent to print drive has this fifth color. All we have to do now is to use that separation as a "Quick Mask", and then I have white knock out where I want it.

                      This work around cannot be automated too but it is very easy to use. Though it would be nice if you under color definition could tell PrintDrive to use the "DQS_WHITE" as a Quick Mask evetytime...



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