How do you calculate the ideal amount positions?


Well-known member
A little background info:
We're a medium to large printer (5 Heidelberg XL and 4 Heidelberg CD presses) doing work for packaging. We do a large number of jobs a day, printing almost 24/7. I recently discoverd that our planning doesn't have a accurate way of calculating the ideal amount of positions on a sheet.

Label 1 - requested amount= 40.000 - colors: C M Y K P280
Label 2 - requested amount= 20.000 - colors: C P485 P106 K
Label 3 - requested amount= 60.000 - colors: C M Y K P877 P872

Availible postions an the sheet = 8
Total requested amout = 120.000
Total colors = 10

We have the choice between different presses: 8 colors / 6 colors / 5 colors

Now are planning department would make 2 runs.
Label 1 printed on a 5 color press
Label 2 and 3 on the same sheet on a 8 color press.

To calculate de division of amounts over the availible positions, our planners use an excel file, enter amounts they think will do it, and then add or substract amounts to get a good division. Problem is every planner will have

I was wondering if anyone knows about a software program that calculates this for you, with consideration of amount colors etc. Or, how do you do it?

Thanks for the input.

Just heard that EskoArtwork has something called PowerOptimizer that does this. Are there any other ways/programs?

Edited by: Kristof on Mar 12, 2008 11:48 AM


Well-known member
Re: How do you calculate the ideal amount positions?

EskoArtwork also has an option in its Plato layout application called Smart Layout. With Smart Layout you select the files you wish to combine in the layout, input the production amount for each, the percentage of acceptable overrun for each, and Smart Layout will compute the best ( most times with multiple choices ) layout possible. Select the layout you wish and Plato will create it for you. These layouts are completely editable even after the fact.


Well-known member
Re: How do you calculate the ideal amount positions?

Hi Kristof,

Heidelberg has an option to our imposition program Prinect Signa Station called Sheet Optimizer:

[Prinect Signa Station|,overview?contentid=373233] .

+"Sheet Optimizer+
+With the Sheet Optimizer, an optional add-on, the Prinect Signa Station lets you calculate how to optimally fit image copies of different sizes onto a press sheet in no time. That means that you get the very most out of each press sheet and can be sure that you have chosen the best press for the job.+

+After you have entered the requirements profile, the optimum sheet configuration is immediately calculated and graphically displayed on the monitor. This optimization process includes all production-relevant parameters, such as the number of individual image copies, their sizes, and the required run length. The number of sheets required, waste and any excess copies are calculated.+

+To determine the optimum press assignment, the program can calculate and directly compare all production versions in just a few seconds. This soon pays out handsome dividends by lastingly minimizing costing operations, make-ready times and waste. "+

Also, look to the right for a link to a video


Mark Tonkovich
Heidelberg USA

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