9. Don’t focus too much on small Delta-E values.
Vendors frequently claim that their systems have an average measurement of difference between two colors, or Delta-E, of 0.5 or less. However, the devices used to measure targets have only a claimed accuracy of +/- 0.5 Delta-E. The maximum real-world accuracy is limited by accuracy of the measuring devices. In addition, most output devices cannot achieve consistent Delta-E values less than 2.5. Note that the largest Delta-E errors often occur in the dark shadows where they are invisible to the human eye.
After examining the results of the recent IPA shootout, Abhay Sharma, judging member of the IPA Board and chair of Ryerson University School of Graphic Communications Management, said, “Achieving low Delta-E values is no longer an issue for proofing technology today. Now it is more about workflow and ease of use.”
10. Invest in software and hardware, and train employees.
The software and hardware (and possibly training) needed to get started would cost between $500 and $6000 during the first year. Recurring costs are maybe $100 to $1000 for upgrades and new color targets. Also, be sure to stay educated about color management. Although there is no single source for everything that is required to implement a color-managed workflow, the International Color Consortium (www.color.org) is a good place to start.