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FLEXO Magazine : July 2012
ment, unless the converter can show that the process is being monitored and the statistical data is within acceptable ranges. Tools in the marketplace can assist, but any disruptive change to the process will still need a characterization and optimization step. This includes things like plates, inks, substrate, anilox rollers listed in the PRINT Section of FIRST 4.0. FLEXO: What are the densities and what anilox rolls should be used? FRIMMING: Density depends on the color palette chosen, the rollers chosen and the final package structure, or substrate. Finding the correct balance of the roll selection and reproduction capabil- ity is key. The goal is to get the highest density with the least amount of volume. This will help to control the overall gamut and the reproduction of TVI. Calibrated TVI usually means less tonal compression in the images allowing for deeper shadows and whiter highlights. Having this built-in contrast creates a sharper image and brings the product to life on shelf. FLEXO: Would there be a separate curve for CMYK and OGB? FRIMMING: In short, it would not be uncommon for each color on the job to have a different compensation curve. The goal is to set the target dot area or TVI, characterize the process, and decide if you are going to manage the press with profiles alone (with a stan- dard, common curve) or manage the process to a CPC color space, which may require that a compensation curve is needed to hit the intended target. FLEXO: Does process black need to stay in expanded gamut? Is six-color EX, Gamut CMY RGB sustainable? FRIMMING: Process black can help to add strength to a color, without the con- tamination component. It would be dif- ficult to have a hard and fast rule here, but process black can have advantag- es, and disadvantages for ECG printing. If you can recreate the color palette without black, it leaves more options for gamut expansion in a six-color set. FLEXO: What about screen angles? Are you using magenta and orange for example in the same image area? How are you avoiding moire’ issues? FRIMMING: Typical angle sets look like this: cyan-cyan, magenta-magenta, yellow-yellow, black-black, green-ma- genta, orange-cyan, blue/violet, black, or use an angle not currently used in a build. This can get very complex. Process capability will influence the angle family. Additional consider- ations include the subject matter. Your prepress professional can assist in the determination of the angle family. FLEXO: What is the selection process for expanded gamut process colors beyond CMYK? EDWARDS: Choices are based on the needs of the brand involved. Black may not be needed and could be replaced with a red shade blue to achieve the gamut of the brand for example. Stan- dards for the actual ECG printing set are important to step toward a press profile, which would set the center line for dot gain, registration and color gamut. FLEXO: How does inventory manage- ment for an ECG printer differ from that of a traditional CMYK + spot printer? EDWARDS: There is an economy of scale with constant movement of the ECG set gained by the printer allow- ing delivery system optimization, while spot colors are printed periodically and oftentimes change. FLEXO: What kinds of colors do you an- ticipate might be out of gamut for the ECG printer? Are these in gamut when using spots? EDWARDS: Specialty inks are unique, while violets are the most difficult to www.flexography.org july 2012 FLEXO 23