CTP Round Up
Over the past 10 years, visible light and thermal CTP acceptance by printers has moved at a snail's pace. Fewer than 4,500 individual CTP systems exist worldwide, representing less than two percent of 229,000 printing businesses, reports Citiplate (www.citiplate.com). But because CTP technology is not a complete solution, a digital workflow must also include copy-dot and imposition software, plates and platesetters. Below is a round-up of related technology with which print media executives should be familiar.
Besides offering a Mistral line of plates, Galileo, Polaris and Xcalibur VLF families of platesetters and copy-dot software, Agfa also began a series of free Webinars designed to educate publishers and printers about CTP. "Small- to mid-sized printers are under a great deal of pressure to reduce costs, increase productivity and raise quality. CTP can help them do that," says Dave Costa, Agfa's vice president of output systems worldwide. In conjunction, Agfa debuted ApogeeX workflow software with single-job ticketing that drives
CTP imaging and proofing.
Barco Graphics (www.barco.com)
Barco's mission is getting publishers, prepress shops and printers on the same page. IMPOSE software enables interactive imposition of pages on the front-end, whereas FASTLANE, a digital prepress system, allows universal file input from desktop to press.
Citiplate's research into UV-sensitive plates extends back 15 years. As a plate manufacturer, the company promises that dual analog and digital workflows cost more money than converting to CTP by reducing film costs and cutting press time. Citiplate offers a line of Aqua plates designed to satisfy environmental codes and spatial limitations in printing facilities. The company also features quite a bit of educational material online for both printers and publishers.
Creo introduced Brisquev4 workflow to simultaneously drive multiple devices, including digital blueline proofers and Iris contract proofers. Later this year, the company will update Brisque to support Dolev 800v3 and 800v4 imagesetters. The benefits of adding Spire, explains Ronen Cohen, company vice president of print on-demand systems, is that "if you need 50 rush copies ahead of the full 10,000 production run on the offset press, you can print it digitally without reprocessing the files."