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  • Moving into a PDF workflow

    Hi....

    Just wanted to see if I can get some answers to PDF workflow systems. I'm looking at prinergy/Kodak, and Heidelberg front end systems currently. I'd like to know what your thoughts are on the 2 systems, and would you suggest something else besides these 2? We do mostly spot color and very little 4 color-process. Business cards, LH, forms, are our main print items and usually contain customer logo's, which can be intricate in their design. What should we be looking at for compatibility throughout the system? I am looking at replacing the image setting device and RIP, also the film processor. We are planning on going direct to plate at some point as well. Right now we send some jobs CTP, and output on Poly-plates. Ok, thats some of our history and what I'm hoping to find out from this thread....Thank you

    jkj

  • #2
    Re: Moving into a PDF workflow

    jkj -

    I hope you'll add EskoArtwork to the list of PDF workflows you are looking at. Please see http://www.esko.com/Web/site.aspx?p=205 , there are some short online demos here about the many features of our BackStage workflow. EskoArtwork has full plate layout of EskoPlato and FastImpose. And we are the Enfocus PDF toolbox as well.
    Good luck with your search. - peter
    "you never know how the past is going to turn out"

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    • #3
      Re: Moving into a PDF workflow

      We use the EskoArtworks product Odystar to do just what you are talking about. It has worked very well for us. Much less expensive compared to Printergy.

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      • #4
        Re: Moving into a PDF workflow

        im currently using a pdf workflow that delivers press ready pdfs around the world. You have got to take a look at Artpro and Nexus. I have saved hours per day using this system. Its pretty unbelievable

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        • #5
          Re: Moving into a PDF workflow

          I strongly suggest looking into Agfa's Apogee Suite.

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          • #6
            Re: Moving into a PDF workflow

            Why would you suggest Apogee?

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            • #7
              Re: Moving into a PDF workflow

              Per PrintPlanet rules about disclosure I won't get into too much detail...

              Check out my profile

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              • #8
                Re: Moving into a PDF workflow

                It sounds like you are only looking at the big name players.... You should look at the GPS workflow from Xitron. It is a Harlequin based RIP so you are not locked into a particular manufacturer for an output device. This would allow you to utilize your current Imagesetter as well as impliment a CTP of your choice in the future. Just have the workflow create a 1-bit TIFF and use a catcher for the CTP. I think you will find the GPS will be well suited for your needs based off the work that you stated.

                Don't get me wrong about the workflows you have already looked at. They are very good, but in your case, they may be over kill. Would you buy a Semi when what you really need is a Van?

                You can go to Xitron.com to find a local dealer that can help you. Feel free to contact me directly if you need further information.

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                • #9
                  Re: Moving into a PDF workflow

                  Thank you for the feedback. I'm currently thinking in terms of compatibility from start to finish. Files being prepared and saved into PDF's, sent through a RIP device, and output either as film or plates. I'd like the two departments (typesetting/Plating) connected by a system that flows evenly. In other words a smooth workflow that all our applications will run through without bottle-necking at one end or the other. The idea of mixing different elements in software, RIP devices, and output devices is something that leads me to think in one way or another that there will be some incompatibilities which will cause work-arounds, patches, and other fixes that are costly or just plain time consuming.

                  If you had a choice of getting one complete system from start to finish, what would it be and why?

                  Thank you
                  jkj111

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                  • #10
                    Re: Moving into a PDF workflow

                    I understand the fact that you have some concerns, but what I have suggested is common. There are no capability issues because they all work off of the same standard. If you want to have a single source for your workflow and output device, be prepared for the $$$ it will cost for the initial move doing it at the same time. Also, don't forget about the learning curve of the new system. If you can step into the workflow first to smooth out any issues before going to CTP or CTPP completely you will find the transition much smoother.

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                    • #11
                      Re: Moving into a PDF workflow

                      jkj-
                      We use ArtworkSystems (now Esko) Odystar system. I have been very happy with the results and I have had no issues with anything that a client sent to us. We are able to use unflattened PDFs as source and output to our platesetter and filmsetter very easily. The nice folks at Esko will be happy to spec a system for you, but you should know that no first-rate PDF workflow is going to be cheap.

                      A few items I would look at:
                      1. What's the additional cost to connect to my output (film/plate)
                      2. How is trapping handled (in Odystar, it's pure PDF trapping. Some other workflows first alter the file format, to CT/LW or other raster format before trapping. I think this is sub-standard)
                      3. What tools can you get to edit the PDF post-RIP. This is what makes or breaks a system. No matter how good you or your client is, there will be some issues with the PDF and you'll need tools to help fix them.

                      All I can think of now. Feel free to drop an email for specifics or just to grouse about this process.

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                      • #12
                        Re: Moving into a PDF workflow

                        i would recommend Artpro and nexus to anybody. they have saved me hundreds of hours over the years and quickened up the work production like you wouldnt beleive.

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                        • #13
                          Re: Moving into a PDF workflow

                          Hi- a bit late here jumping in, but maybe you want some bang for your buck especially if your still in a CTF world moving to CTP. Check out the selection of workflow from ECRM (Workmates) and our line of CTP MAKO devices. Simple, affordable workflow that is scaleable as you need it. Our CTP devices are also simple and inexpensive (not cheap) to own and operate.

                          Contact me for a webinar...

                          Mike Mierjeski
                          Software Business Manager
                          www.ecrm.com

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                          • #14
                            Re: Moving into a PDF workflow

                            Right now from the users that have responded, not vendors or consultants. It seems many of the people like the EskoArtwork Odystar.

                            Are there any disadvantages to using Odystar?

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                            • #15
                              Re: Moving into a PDF workflow

                              I've been using Odystar for half year. I would say I'm very happy about it. No major problem for us. The services and support is much better than other brands.

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