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MetaDimension vs TrueFlow Workflows --- I need opinions

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  • MetaDimension vs TrueFlow Workflows --- I need opinions

    Good afternoon, everyone,

    My manager put me up to the task of getting a new CtP system along with a workflow...we currently have an old imagesetter and strip film and burn plates...we are also using an old version of a Harlequin Rip...we want to get out of that...I have narrowed it down to Heidelberg's Meta and Screen's TrueFlow....with each of these, we will either purchase Heidelberg's A74 or Fuji's/Dart's 4300E...

    I've done a TON of research and i just seem to be getting more confused the further I go...I have a ton of info on both systems and they both seem to be solid and top notch...I guess what I'm looking for here are opinions...If anyone has used or is currently using either of these systems, could you please respond to this...good, bad or ugly, pass it my way so I can at least present a few points of view with my research...any kind of input will be useful...thanks ahead of time...


    Edited by: Chris on Dec 18, 2007 2:05 PM

  • #2
    Re: MetaDimension vs TrueFlow Workflows --- I need opinions

    Well, my friend, it is your lucky day.
    I have used Screen TF for 3.5 years now. I also spent three months with Heidelberg last year
    and Meta.
    My choice - TF by far. Now, I am in direct mail. I did run TF in a commercial shop as well.
    First bit of advice - IF you get TF, make sure the Dart hooks up directly to your imagesetter.
    I HATE one bit tiffs. The shop with the Meta had $20,000 in rework while I was there? Why,
    because that #$#$^& tiff catcher still had the black plate on it that got changed at noon.
    That night they went in and re-ran a new black plate. Guess what? They ran the old one.
    Why spend $250,000 on a RIP and platesetter and have your whole world held hostage to a
    $2,000 Dell box with OLD one bit tiff files? Would you keep LAYER 3 mask with old type on it
    if you stripped in new film? NO!
    If you get TF and a Screen imagesetter you can send directly to the platesetter. No one bit tiff.
    (OK, I am not stupid. It is there, but invisible. You will never see the one bit tiff).

    Disadvantages to TF: Speed. Not rip, not trapping. It blazes on that. I am talking response time of
    hitting one button on the client and waiting to see something. Believe me, I have spoken all of the
    way to Japan on this one. They just do not get it. Meta is FAST. However, my main box that I run
    TF on is the best there was THREE and a half years ago. DO NOT buy the cheapo box from
    Screen. Spend the extra $10,000 and get a beefy box. How many times do you get to go to
    the well? At my company, you shoots your wad, you buys your toys for the next four years....
    Also, if you have funky layouts, (bastard cut we used to call them) then TF is clunky. If you have 4 x 2 or
    similar stuff that we all use, flatworker is excellent. I have used Preps, Meta, etc. Flatworker holds its own.
    Advantages to TF - I do not know what you have been quoted, but I know what our sister company paid
    for an imagesetter from Heidi along with the Meta Rip and a three magazine holder. I could have had my TF with a
    platesetter, magazine and $80,000 or so LEFTOVER! TOO much imho.
    What do I Love about TF? I get a RIPPED pdf to send to the client, other internal customers, etc. I can tell that
    PDF to output with 3 pms colors on and the rest off. How about 2 on and 3 off? We do things like that all the time.
    I have trained my customers to send me PDFs with KEYLINE 3/16ths of an inch around all pdfs. I tell TF
    to overprint that color and NOT to send it to plate or proof. Try and get that to happen with Meta. I tried in vain
    for two weeks. I called in BIG GUNS from Heidi. They attempted, but it all came down to the biggest issue
    of them all.
    Ready for this? Hold onto your shorts.
    You are NOT ripping a d#mn thing in the PREPARE station. See, you are preparing it. It is NOT necessarily what
    will go to plate, UNLESS you have a META device in front of it.
    OK, real world. You want a new Epson large format printer. $3,000 - NOPE, not with META. You MUST have a
    META rip in front of it. Trust me. I have worked with both.
    You want a new printer with TF? Spend the $3K and output a RIPPED pdf. Now, send that ripped pdf to that
    printer, to my printer, to yo mama in outer botswana. It ain't changing. It is ripped. It is done. If you customer
    wants to screw you over they can take that ripped pdf and send it down the street to print.
    I am serious. I do NOT have anything to do with Screen. I do not get one thin dime from them if I convince you or not.
    I have convinced three now, PLUS two of our sister company's. They all are happy with the choice.
    Call me (or post your email here and I will contact you).
    I have used both. If you want to sleep at night KNOWING that what hits plate is what you sent your customer -
    buy TF!


    • #3
      Re: MetaDimension vs TrueFlow Workflows --- I need opinions

      Hey, Chris,

      Thanks a ton for the response...I really appreciate it...It's funny you mentioned being in direct mail because that's the exact same industry that I'm in...I really enjoyed the webinars we had with Screen...Heidelberg's was good as well, but it just seemed, if nothing else, the WorkFlow itself seemed better...Trueflow seemed simple to follow, the template maker looked good...I was just impressed with the entire product...

      Heidelberg seemed to have a strong product as well, I just felt like the workflow wasn't up to par with TF...I DID notice that the A74 from Heide is a faster plate maker...but at the rate that we produce film and plates now, time isn't a HUGE issue for us right now...and I believe it was just a difference of like 12 pph with Screen as opposed to 17 pph with Heidelberg....

      Again, thanks for your input on this...If you would like to contact me for whatever reason with any additional information, please feel free to do so at

      BTW, does your company have a website that I could check out...I would appreciate that if so...

      Thanks, again...

      Chris Kinser

      Edited by: Chris on Dec 19, 2007 8:55 AM


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