Over-Spending on Your Imposition?
Every issue of a magazine, you have to prove your mettle by seeking the most economical imposition. For some publishers, manufacturing costs put constraints on the configurations ad and edit can create, but at most companies the production department has to print what it has been handed. And, in all fairness, offering flexibility to ad sales is worth some inefficiencies on press. The smarter you are about the costs of imposing the book, the better you can steer the publisher toward the best balance of cost and sales opportunity.
There are three influences on the ultimate economy of your imposition decisions: the number of text pages, the number (and location) of signature breaks needed for inserts, and the cost of each signature. The first two forces change with each issue; the third is a function of your printer’s price structure.
Price and Imposition
The optimum imposition is, theoretically, different from printer to printer; certainly from price list to price list. We start with a baseline assumption: The minimum makereadies and the minimum binding pockets generally result in the least total cost. It’s worth verifying this assumption by picking apart the price list a bit.
Suppose your printer can run your magazine on both a 6x2 and 4x2 press. Check your price schedule—surprises may be in store. Here are some sample prices to chew on:
6x2 press makeready (MR) paper MR total MR thousand (M) paper run/M total run/M
48 pages as 2 24s $3,000 $100 $3,100 $16 $105 $121
48 pages as 4 12s $3,200 $105 $3,305 $17 $145 $162
24 pages two-on as 2 12s $3,000 $100 $3,100 $8.75 $52.75 $61.50
12 pages four-on $3,000 $100 $3,100 $4.75 $26.50 $31.25
4x2 makeready (MR) paper MR total MR thousand (M) paper run/M total run/M