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Buy it or Build It? - That is the Question

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  • #16
    Re: Buy it or Build It? - That is the Question

    I found the process in which it takes to calibrate and tune the RPD is not very user friendly. The whole thing with having to figure ink splits and chorma hooks !! Relinierzation is something not easily accomplished either IIRC. EFI and GMG both have much eaiser and faster interfaces for this. I've always said RAMpage would have been better off to integrating and bundleEFI than to have to developed thier own. I am however a 9.4 user and it your results may vary if you have a newer version.
    Matthew "LAMMY" Lamoureux
    918 Printery - Ad artem artium conservatricem conservandam


    • #17
      Re: Buy it or Build It? - That is the Question

      You are correct about the convoluted way to initially set up the device, however I have found that the epsons tend not to drift far from the initial calibration.
      We use ColorMetrix to monitor the DeltaE of the proofs and after 1 year the DeltaE has barely moved, so little in fact a customer could never tell the difference.


      • #18
        Re: Buy it or Build It? - That is the Question

        First of all you should consider what you are really looking for.
        Workflow is the utmost misused phrase in our century. There are so called workflows from Heidelberg, Agfa, Kodak and so on but all of them are only built to serve themselves. If you want a real front - end workflow you should build one yourself and for your own purpose. There are some "ready made" ones but they will not fit you and the customizing will not only eat your money but it will also eat your brain.
        My advise: Make a plan how you want it and then look around to find the items that fits your requirements. Build it in an open way, means that you can add or change items according to the future growth of the company.
        When I built workflows I did like this and I always succeeded.


        • #19
          Re: Buy it or Build It? - That is the Question

          I think it depends on the competency level of your prepress operators.

          *High competency* = Build it or Buy it ... the operators can handle it.

          *Low competency* = Buy it ... better support for the workflow from the single vendor.

          If you buy a complete workflow you will have a better support system with that one vendor. If it's a piece-meal then you have to rely on your operators to figure out the problems. The vendors will just point fingers because they don't know the other system well enough to determine where the problem is.


          • #20
            Re: Buy it or Build It? - That is the Question

            Workflow is something more than just a Prepress RIP. Workflow is the entire process of a job, from how it is created to how it is handled and produced. There is no way to buy one piece of software and expect it to be your workflow. Procedures are also part of the workflow too.

            What you can do is buy the MIS system, Prepress RIP, Imposition software, Presses, cutters, and folders that support JDF and CIP4. This would just be the technical part of creating a workflow. You have to get all of your systems connected and talking with each other correctly. Then comes writing or modifying the procedures to make it more efficient and more consistent from one person to the next.

            A workflow is about automating as much of the process to make the job go through the shop easier, faster, more accurate, and with less problems. If the workflow solution that you come up with doesn't improve the four items above, then you need to look at your workflow again.

            Bottom line, you can buy the most expensive systems on the market and still not have a workflow if you have not made them work together with your other systems and have not written the procedures to follow suit.

            Buy and Build

            Brian Cupp


            • #21
              Re: Buy it or Build It? - That is the Question

              This is where Gradual FullSWITCH and PowerSWITCH really shine. They let you build a workflow using the different pieces of software/hardware that you've already invested in and tie them together. I have a lot of customers who already have "integrated workflows" that are "integrated" in that it's Xitron, Prinergy, Screen, etc. But they aren't necessarily "integrated" with the rest of prepress or other operations. SWITCH allows us to do that and extend automation in a meaningful way further upstream and downstream.

              If anyone is interested in more information let me know.
              Matt Beals
              The views expressed here are my own personal views and are not those of my employer.


              • #22
                Re: Buy it or Build It? - That is the Question

                There are some amazing systems out there that are very elaborate with hot folders here, Applescripts there, perl scripts here, VB thing here, with a nice picture to the iPhone.

                Who do you call when something busts? What happens when the new CS4 with Sparkles and scratch and sniff comes out? Who tests all this when you put in that new Polar cutter? What will it cost you to recode your webpage in Spanish?

                What happens when the one nerd that put this all together bails and decides that the Canadian dollar looks pretty rosy and we have better beer in Canada?

                Look at the vendors from a worst case scenario mode. Hard down service issues. Major upgrades to standard software. Look at the R&D budgets and numbers of bodies that test everything not just RIP, Trap, Plate timings.

                It's like building a sweet car in your garage. You could buy the engine from this catalog, the wheels from eBay, the paint from your brother in law, the stereo from Craiglist, the drivetrain made on your lathe. But when you are flying down the highway and a piston comes through your hood, who ya gonna call?


                • #23
                  Re: Buy it or Build It? - That is the Question



                  • #24
                    Re: Buy it or Build It? - That is the Question

                    I'd build it / fix it myself rather that to get Ghostbusters in here...


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