||In This Issue:
• CTF, CTP and Color Management in China
• Case Study: Software Packaging Set
• CPS News:
— CPS Acquired by Ivie & Associates;
— New Office Location;
— Meet the Staff
• Happy Chinese New Year!
China Printing News & Advice
brief comparison of the traditional film color
separation method and the Computer to Plate
method can be found at http://www.chinaprintingsolutions.com/
China Pre-Press Discussion
CTP AND COLOR MANAGEMENT IN CHINA
Computer to Plate technology and
the workflow and color management tools associated therewith
are becoming more and more prevalent in China. Already
the norm for hardback Coffee Table books, the rest of
the industry has only slowly and more recently begun
to implement a completely digital prepress workflow.
Computer-to-FIlm (CTF), the traditional method of first
creating film separations for each color and then burning
printing plates using a photochemical process, is widely
preferred in China at all but the largest factories,
as the machines are in place and the more labor intensive
process associated with CTF does not represent the great
cost burden it might in Western countries. Due to the
significant investment in equipment for Computer-to-Plate
(CTP) process preferred more and more in the West as
well as the learning curve associated with the color
management techniques it allows, China factories have
been slow to move to CTP.
for CTF is done through the creation of a temporary
proofing plate which is used on a hand operated single
color press. Four of these presses, working in tandem,
create a "Wet Proof" made by real Printing
Ink on a paper substrate. This substrate can be the
actual paper to be used in production.
proofs are run off very quickly, such that color may
only be a near approximation, affected by heavy dot
gain and poor registration. Western companies
accustomed to receiving digital proofs may be concerned
upon reviewing wet proofs that look heavy
or do not demonstrate color with sufficient accuracy.
This can be a shock for those new to China Printing.
traditional film method does offer a few powerful advantages,
not the least among them the ability to proof spot colors
and to gauge surface impression, opacity and general
feel of a piece proofed using much the same materials
as will be used on press. The limited range of papers
used in digital proofing and the inability of most digital
proofers to print on both sides of a sheet of paper
mean that digital proofs themself are only indications
of how the piece will look under idealized circumstances.
Wet proofs, warts and all, show the blemishes which,
if caught at this stage, can easily and inexpensively
be corrected before press time.
more and more print shops in Western countries have
adopted the CTP platform in the past few years, however,
the pressure has been put on Chinese manufacturers to
make the move to the CTP method. Along
with this migration has come the implementation of a
pdf workflow and color management techniques. Here is
an area where even some of the most professional print
operations in China
do lag behind. Because most of the demand is domestic,
the domestic market has on the whole less rigorous color
standards than Western publishers, print factories have
been slow to create ICC Colour profiles for their presses
or even calibrate to a standard like SWOP or GRACOL.
It is not uncommon to find printers in China who have
never used a spectrophotometer.
For Print Management companies like China Printing Solutions,
this represents an opportunity to pair our global clients
with Chinese factories using CTF process for monocolour
jobs or jobs with ‘pleasing colour’ targets
and more stringent budget requirements, while managing
Color in house using digital proofs, international color
standards and a controlled color reviewing environment
for projects requiring a high level of exactitude.
As for workflow, we now encourage clients to provide
locked pdf files. A year or two ago, many China factories
wouldn’t know a pdf file from a ppt file and process
slowdown or mistakes could be encountered handling linked
files and fonts across two operating systems. Today
it is safe to say that virtually any reputable print
or prepress house in China can support a pdf workflow
to some extent. China Printing Solutions takes a best
practice management approach through the use of licensed
software like Enfocus Pit Stop to carefully review and
report on pdf files before making plates. While the
industry as a whole in China still has a ways to go
for that kind of due diligence, CPS has been able to
satisfy our global clients' demanding standards with
the same commitment we have always provided in managing
other aspects of quality assurance.
More Case Studies, Please Click Here
LABEL SOFTWARE SET
Project Name: Nice Label Software Set
Description: Nice Label is a sophisticated
software package for the creation of a wide range of
bar codes. Europlus needed high quality production of
a set of software CD’s and packaging, product
manuals, brochure, outer packaging and mailing envelopes
showcasing the Nice Label brand.
Key Challenges: Because of the proprietary
nature of the software product, particular emphasis
was placed on protection of the Client’s intellectual
property and consistency of color throughout the materials.
While both are part of CPS standard procedure, the latter
is particularly challenging when working with different
materials—in this case an uncoated textured envelope,
a CD printed by silkscreen, Coated paper materials and
UV treated packaging board.
Techniques Used: Offset Printing, Silkscreen
printing, DVD mastering, Spiral Binding, UV Varnishing,
to Visit Ivie's Home Page
CPS’ Shanghai operations
center has moved to a new location.
We are now located at:
Room 1507, You You International Plaza,
No. 76 Pu Jian Road, Pu Dong New District
Shanghai, China 200127
Tel: + 86 (21) 6165-9100
Fax: +86 (21) 5873-4330
Shi Wei joined CPS about 6 months ago as a Production
Before joining the CPS team, he worked for several years
as a quality manager in a division of the Shanghai branch
of General Motors.
Amongst many duties, he is responsible for writing up
quotations, coordinating client samples and managing
shipping. Perhaps more importantly than anything, Shaq
looks after project timelines, trafficking materials
and distributing tracking information to all departments
As his English name would suggest, Shaq is a big basketball
fan who closely follows Shaquille O’ Neil, Kobe
Bryant and our own hometown favorite Yao Ming. He studies
English in his spare time.
New Year Holiday Closing:
Companies in China, including
China Printing Solutions, will be closed in observance
of the Chinese Lunar New Year from February 6 through
During this time we at CPS will be checking email
sporadically at but will otherwise be off duty.
We look forward to working closely with you in this
Year of the Rat!