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Hybrid Software Announces Worldwide Launch of Cloudflow RIP
Hybrid Software has announced a major addition to its Cloudflow suite of software for the packaging and label markets following the development of the Cloudflow RIP. The new RIP will have its worldwide launch at an open house being held by Belgian manufacturer ThermoFlexX, where the RIP will be demonstrated interfaced with ThermoFlexX digital flexo plate imagers.
Hybrid Software's Cloudflow RIP supports native PDF 1.6 files and is available in two modes, either standalone or in a Cloudflow workflow. In the standalone version the RIP is supplied with its own HTML UI, allowing the user to set up presets and then run jobs. A built-in TIFF viewer is provided to inspect output. In a Cloudflow environment the RIP runs as part of an operating workflow, handling functions such as routing files based on metadata and obtaining information from other systems. It can easily be combined with other Hybrid Software products e.g. Proofscope and PACKZFlow.
"Being an integral part of our comprehensive Cloudflow suite of products, the RIP can take full advantage of the distributed architecture of Cloudflow to achieve extremely efficient productivity," says chairman Guido Van der Schueren. "As with all of our Cloudflow products the new RIP runs on the server and the user can control it via a web browser."
Cloudflow is predominantly used in the packaging and label markets and Hybrid Software has ensured its products meet the specific requirements of the flexo industry. The new Cloudflow RIP supports flexo platemaking, providing sophisticated screening and calibration control facilities. In addition to regular AM and FM screening, the RIP also supports object-based screening, enabling users to have full control over the ripping process.
"Our HXM screening technology ensures excellent quality hybrid AM/FM screening output and during trials we successfully produced a wide selection of first-class flexo print samples. The comprehensive calibration feature gives full control when applying both press and print curves enabling, for example, precise application of bump-ups in both highlights and shadows when handling press curves. These curves can be assigned per separation."
The new Cloudflow RIP generates TIFF output and incorporates an integrated dot viewer, allowing easy inspection of the generated output, with tools to measure density, angles and lines per inch resolution. Files can be checked in either separated or composite mode.
Hybrid Software will use the ThermoFlexX open house to demonstrate a range of new features offered by the latest version of PACKZ, its professional PDF editor for packaging and label workflows. The software can be fully integrated within the Cloudflow environment.
"PACKZ supports centralised ink and colour management resources based upon open standards," says Mr Van der Schueren. "When used with Colibri's Match My Colour software, PACKZ can help users design, specify, produce, manage and control brand-based colours at every stage of the global colour supply chain.
"PACKZ can separate designs to allow expanded gamut printing and can convert colours for any digital, flexo, gravure or offset printing process using a fixed ink set, ranging from two to more than ten. Users can also interface PACKZ with multi-channel profiling software, such as GMG's OpenColor, to enable highly accurate colour conversions."
In version 3.0, the PACKZ Warp facility offers new easy-to-use and intuitive tools to create grids, based on numerical information or technical drawings. This solution can be used for simple or complex conical warping, disc shaped metal cans and shrink sleeves. The results can be seen instantly on screen in live 3D, simplifying the process of verifying the final result. PACKZ has a direct link with Creative Edge's IC3D for real-time 3D simulation of shrink sleeves, folding cartons and labels.
The trapping technology in PACKZ has also been improved significantly. The SmartTrapper software calculates automatically how to create the most effective colour traps and even provides guidance to the operator verifying the trap result by highlighting areas where attention may be needed.
Other new features in PACKZ include a seamless tabular step and repeat calculator and creator facility for producing continuous impositions. The nested step and repeat feature for folding carton work can flip the structural data in order to generate a step and repeat for the reverse side of the carton. The quality assurance functionality allows simultaneous previewing of back and front impositions on top of each other. PACKZ can also be used to view content in a CFF2 library without having to import the files.
Using the new 'analyse and fix' feature an operator can perform checks on a design and amend issues, such as verifying the text height according to European regulations, converting Illustrator blends to images, detecting font issues, verifying colour information and image quality and removing redundant paths. PACKZ can save changes incrementally and the application can show previous edit sessions of the document history.
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