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Artink
03-01-2010, 05:54 PM
Just wanted to introduce myself as a new member here on the EFi forum. I'm running a Xerox 700 with EFi Splash 3.1.3, controller 1.5, here on the west coast of Canada. I print and reproduce fine art exclusively for artists and galleries.

Generally I'm getting fabulous results from the combo and love the colour control and consistent colour, again and again. I've challenged the colour in Splash with extensive testing of tweaking, screens, imposition and the colour workflow. I'm very fussy about consistent colour results and so are all my clients.

Just thought I would ask a few questions that have come up in the past year.

1. Magenta - Getting a wide gamut in vivid magentas is the most difficult colour to match, I've found better magenta gamut straight out of CWS. Any tips to possible get a bit more out of the magentas?

2. Full resolution Splash previews in tweak and tuner, is it possible?

3. 90% of my digital press work is fine art paintings, but still have some troubles in solid colours reproducing smooth colours, often solid colours seam mottled (dirty) or I get strobing (banding) down the sheet if I reproduce longer runs of solids.

4. Saving or printing tweak or tuner settings would be a nice feature once a job is calibrated.

Any tips from any of you experienced users or EFi staff?

Hope to see more and more Splash users.

Cheers eh,
Scott W

Craig M
03-04-2010, 09:24 AM
Thank you for joining the forum. I have passed your questions on to our Splash expert. I would hope to hear back from him today.

Thanks, Craig

Craig M
03-04-2010, 10:23 AM
1. Magenta - Getting a wide gamut in vivid magentas is the most difficult colour to match, I've found better magenta gamut straight out of CWS. Any tips to possible get a bit more out of the magentas?
If the issue is in the mid-range of Magenta, then editing the Magenta curve of the output profile can provide a little extra Magenta. You do that in ColorCal Expert mode. Save the output profile with the edits to a new name, then go to the Output Profile preferences and select your new output profile as the default for either Plain or EHW(Extra Heavy Weight, anything greater than Plain, really).

Some people have also switched the copier line screening on the Color pane of the server preferences to 200 line to get a slightly punchier color, especially in Magenta.

If the issue is that the top end of Magenta, getting a higher Dmax, that is not easy to achieve. For Plain paper you can try telling the copier that the paper is Uncoated 106-128 gsm which will cause Splash to treat it as Heavy stock with a higher Dmax, but this could cause other undesirable color changes.

There is no way to boost the top end of the curve.
One of the reasons we don't save settings for Tweak is that you can accomplish the same thing by editing the output profile curves. If you are making changes for a single job, Tweak is easy and fast. If you're making the same curve edits to lots of jobs it's better to edit the output profile and print using that.


2. Full resolution Splash previews in tweak and tuner, is it possible?

In ColorTuner you can zoom in as far as you wish. You cannot zoom in Tweak. You can expand the preview window to almost as large as your screen, but that's it. Tweak is intended for quick but rough corrections while Tuner is intended to allow quite detailed editing and has a far more extensive tool set and allows greater control.


3. 90% of my digital press work is fine art paintings, but still have some troubles in solid colours reproducing smooth colours, often solid colours seam mottled (dirty) or I get strobing (banding) down the sheet if I reproduce longer runs of solids.

This is a common problem with copiers when trying to print large bands of solid colors. There a couple of ways of dealing with this. First, if it's acceptable for the job, try printing with Screened selected on the Color pane of the job options. This causes the job to be printed as 1-bit data and the screening breaks up the large band enabling the copier to produce a smoother pattern. Second, run the job in ColorTuner, select the solid area with the selection tool, select filters, and Add Noise to the solid area. This also has the effect of breaking up the solid region, enabling the copier to produce a smoother pattern. It is unfortunately necessary to repeat this for every solid pattern that shows a problem in the job, unless it happens to be in the same area on each page, in which case you can just choose to apply the edits from the first page to all pages.


4. Saving or printing tweak or tuner settings would be a nice feature once a job is calibrated.

Tuner settings can be saved by saving a Tuner Set. Those can then be applied to other jobs on the Quality pane of the job options or Hot Folders/Virtual Printers. Tweak settings cannot be saved. Tweak is intended for quick but rough corrections while Tuner is intended to allow quite detailed editing and has a far more extensive tool set and allows greater control.

One of the reasons we don't save settings for Tweak is that you can accomplish the same thing by editing the output profile curves. If you are making changes for a single job, Tweak is easy and fast. If you're making the same curve edits to lots of jobs it's better to edit the output profile and print using that.

Artink
03-04-2010, 04:47 PM
Thanks for the tips Craig.

1. I figured so about the magenta, not an unusual problem in the print industry indeed. I've worked many a screen setting in Splash to get the perfect dot and colour consistency in which a rotated 200 line screen works the very best for my application in fine art reproduction. It's not the amount of magenta, more the gamut (dmax).

Each piece of art is unique, which requires individual adjustments rather than a generic curve. I'd have thousands of them at the end of a year, which is one main reason I went with the Splash option over the basic CWS. I love the tweak and tuner in Splash, so don't get me wrong. I lean towards tweak as it's been much more stable for me and you are right, it's a great quick fix.

2. Okay, I hear you about the zoom in Tuner, how about a Photoshop style way of moving around the image (space bar, drag), that would be real fast compared to scrolling using the bars at the side and bottom. Just on my wish list.

3. Screened 1-bit prints eh, holy cow, what a mushy output, not good enough, too strong. Add noise eh, yup, tried that one too, way too strong, even at the lowest setting. I'm getting okay results from adding noise in Photoshop though.

4. Yeah, Tuner setting can be saved, and has better control, but I still get crashing and errors using Tuner from time to time and Tweak is so stable for me.

On a whole other note I've had a number of jobs (rgb, line art or pointillism) in which the magenta will mis-register and create a halo of red around greyscale/low saturation like images. First print is perfect, 2nd and so forth are halo'ed with mangenta. Xerox ran with my samples and files but have yet to come up with a solution. CWS, doesn't have a problem with the same file, so something in Splash or the communication between the two. It's stumped the local techie too.

Glad see the forum up and running! Nothing like asking those using the same equipment.

Cheers from the west coast of Canada, eh!
Scott