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Alternate RIP package for Roland Printer

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Post Mon Nov 25, 2013 10:00 am

Alternate RIP package for Roland Printer

I'm having nothing but problems with versaworks at present, mainly to do with mis-printing pdf files (look fine in preflight but print incorrectly in versaworks)

Can anyone recommend any alternate packages I could look at?

Andy
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Chris Wool

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Post Mon Nov 25, 2013 10:36 am

wasatch because i started with rolands and colourrip, never tried others.
print and cut well integrated.
still prefer colour rip too vesaworks i have a one printer only wasatch special price upgrade from colour rip, for the new type pdfs etc. works very well just colour rip like putting old slippers on.
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Alan Drury

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Post Mon Nov 25, 2013 11:13 am

The guy I use uses Versaworks but he always exports from Draw as an eps. He says the files are much bigger but the results are more reliable especially anything with transparencies and lenses.
If you want to continue with pdf then export as PDFX!a set with all colours to cmyk
alan d
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Post Mon Nov 25, 2013 12:55 pm

Unfortunately this is generally all customer supplied pdf files so I dont have the option to open/edit/re-save.

I have ran preflight and even tried flattening transparencies in acrobat but the results are still screwy to say the least. We save all files as x1a compliant so I'm stumped.

I've emailed both wasatch and onyx and I'll report back with findings. I'm also keeping a catalogue of the problematic files so I can test any new software with the same.

Andy

Alan Drury wrote:The guy I use uses Versaworks but he always exports from Draw as an eps. He says the files are much bigger but the results are more reliable especially anything with transparencies and lenses.
If you want to continue with pdf then export as PDFX!a set with all colours to cmyk
alan d
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Joe Wigzell

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Post Mon Nov 25, 2013 12:56 pm

Hi Andy,
When you say 'mis-printing' pdf files what exactly is happening? Do you understand the differences between the colour management presets? - these will give different results depending on input/output profiles etc.
When exporting your pdf files what colour settings do you use?
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Post Mon Nov 25, 2013 1:03 pm

Tends to be things like odd coloured boxes around images (which I suspect is to do with transparency, even when flattened this is evident)

Had a problem file last week, green text was dropped and printed as white. We preflighted the file and saved as x1a but it still did it.

We just need to solve this as its costing us a bit on time and materials. These are generally files submitted by my client so we dont have the option to resave as other formats.

Andy
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John Thomson

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Post Mon Nov 25, 2013 1:14 pm

Andy Blackett wrote:Tends to be things like odd coloured boxes around images (which I suspect is to do with transparency,

Andy


I have had this in Flexisign with a pdf in the past....I know it doesn't help you but it is not just Versaworks that can have issues with pdf's.

John
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Joe Wigzell

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Post Mon Nov 25, 2013 1:16 pm

Hi Andy,

Even if the artwork is submitted by a client how come you cannot open and save in a different format? What artwork software do you use?

Flattening transparencies as you mentioned should help, also changing your transparency settings when exporting/saving (deselect the 'convert all strokes to outlines box').
Using spot colours can help, and keeping CMYK, white and special colour data on separate layers.
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Post Mon Nov 25, 2013 1:28 pm

Using Corel X6, I've found opening the pdf in draw can cause additional problems.

Just tried it again with a particular file, theres one line of text that gets dropped when I add it to the queue. I've saved as an EPS and it still does the same!?!

Andy


Joe Wigzell wrote:Hi Andy,

Even if the artwork is submitted by a client how come you cannot open and save in a different format? What artwork software do you use?

Flattening transparencies as you mentioned should help, also changing your transparency settings when exporting/saving (deselect the 'convert all strokes to outlines box').
Using spot colours can help, and keeping CMYK, white and special colour data on separate layers.
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Post Mon Nov 25, 2013 2:52 pm

We use Onyx, which is very good. One option would be to open the file in Photoshop,
and save it as a high res JPG. This usually sorts out transparency issues.
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Andrew Blackett

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Post Mon Nov 25, 2013 4:25 pm

I dont have photoshop but have been using a website called, http://pdf2jpg.net/

Which does what I think photoshop does, opens it and renders it as a jpg before offering a link for download.

Whilst this works its just another step before pressing print which I'd rather do away with. The flipside of the software is that if something goes wrong with it the client will be blaming me as I flattened it.

Andy
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Alex Crosbie

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Post Mon Nov 25, 2013 7:02 pm

Versaworks uses an eps rip rather than a PDF rip so there will always be issues.
I've tried other rip software but versaworks is the one I always come back to.
The easiest way I've found to faultlessly print PDFs is to open in illustrator and export as an eps or print directly to the print queue.

Preflight checking in acrobat reader can be problematic as it doesn't always show hidden issues. Just something to bear in mind if you're planning on preflighting in reader and then putting it straight to the rip for printing.
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John Hughes

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Post Mon Nov 25, 2013 7:33 pm

Andy, we've been having the same issue recently !!

As with you, we prefer not to mess with the customers PDF sent and put it straight in the RIP (versaworks).

We also use X6 but opening/re saving can cause loads of problems.

Recently we've also had text dropping out. I wonder if this is a new problem with versaworks because it's never happened before.

John
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Andrew Blackett

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Post Mon Nov 25, 2013 8:23 pm

alexc40 wrote:Versaworks uses an eps rip rather than a PDF rip so there will always be issues.
I've tried other rip software but versaworks is the one I always come back to.
The easiest way I've found to faultlessly print PDFs is to open in illustrator and export as an eps or print directly to the print queue.

Preflight checking in acrobat reader can be problematic as it doesn't always show hidden issues. Just something to bear in mind if you're planning on preflighting in reader and then putting it straight to the rip for printing.


Next question then how do I print direct, cant see a print driver installed on the system. We're running two printers from one versaworks install. Any ideas?

Andy
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Andrew Blackett

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Post Mon Nov 25, 2013 8:23 pm

John Hughes wrote:Andy, we've been having the same issue recently !!

As with you, we prefer not to mess with the customers PDF sent and put it straight in the RIP (versaworks).

We also use X6 but opening/re saving can cause loads of problems.

Recently we've also had text dropping out. I wonder if this is a new problem with versaworks because it's never happened before.

John


So pleased its not just me then!! Just need to get to the bottom of it :-?
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Andrew Blackett

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Post Mon Nov 25, 2013 8:41 pm

Have managed to install the "print direct method" but the file exhibits the same fault as before (dropping some text out)

Andy
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Alex Crosbie

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Post Mon Nov 25, 2013 8:57 pm

Hi Andy
Are you trying to print from Corel or illustrator?
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Andrew Blackett

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Post Mon Nov 25, 2013 9:05 pm

Printed the pdf file from within acrobat Alex

Andy
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Alex Crosbie

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Post Mon Nov 25, 2013 9:18 pm

You'll need to open the PDF in illustrator and then print it, printing from Acrobat gets the same issues as you've found!
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Andrew Blackett

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Post Mon Nov 25, 2013 9:22 pm

We dont have illustrator unfortunately

Andy
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Andrew Blackett

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Post Mon Nov 25, 2013 11:12 pm

Been striving to find a resolution (at least a temporary fix if nothing else)

I've used a few of the suggestions listed and cobbled together with something I googled.

Open the client supplied pdf artwork in acrobat
File - Print - Choose Versaworks Virtual Printer
Click Advanced on acrobat screen and tick "print as image"

File magically appears in versaworks queue and doesnt exhibit the fault that I have been struggling with using "File - add to queue"

Whilst I've only tried this with one single file it does seem to have fixed the immediate fault. It does seem to be something to do with overprinting of objects

Andy
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Post Mon Nov 25, 2013 11:13 pm

You'll need to open the PDF in illustrator and then print it, printing from Acrobat gets the same issues as you've found!


Hi Alex. Why would you need to open in illustrator or any programme.

We put the customers PDF straight in the rip and 99% of the time all is good and only recently has text started dropping out as per Andy's problem.

John
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Alex Crosbie

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Post Mon Nov 25, 2013 11:54 pm

To convert from a PDF to an eps so that versaworks knows how to correctly interpret the effects such as transparencies that Andy is having problems with.

Like Andy says "knock-out" or "over print" is another possibly issue you from some designers, you can check for and amend in illustrator.

I'd recommend illustrator over any other design software for PDF work as it's an adobe product so will correctly display PDFs and let you edit them.

If you've only just had the problem then you've been lucky, it's been an issue since PDFs have been used in versaworks, Roland are aware of the issues surrounding PDFs, the answer I've had in the past is "it's a postscript rip and not a PDF rip".... It's probably becoming more apparent recently as more designers take advantage of certain effects in later versions of software.

Hope that helps :)
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Post Tue Nov 26, 2013 12:40 am

Hope that helps


Yes it does. Thanks Alex.

John
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Post Tue Nov 26, 2013 10:13 am

Andy Blackett wrote:I dont have photoshop but have been using a website called, http://pdf2jpg.net/
Andy


Just a bit of a heads up - Adobe are now doing Photoshop CC for £10 per month
ongoing, which includes Lightroom. May be of interest to those who don't have it.
They have dropped the previous version requirements, so this offer is open to all.
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Post Tue Nov 26, 2013 5:25 pm

RIP and Pdfs

We use wasatch but have versaworks as well, from customers pdf we always create an eps otherwise you gonna get problems, I think latest version of the rips have solved this problem
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Andrew Blackett

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Post Tue Nov 26, 2013 9:22 pm

Re: RIP and Pdfs

Adrian Hewson wrote:We use wasatch but have versaworks as well, from customers pdf we always create an eps otherwise you gonna get problems, I think latest version of the rips have solved this problem


Sorry Adrian do you mean the latest versions dont require a seperate eps file to be made?? I've been printing from acrobat using the steps above which has worked well today but I've not really had anything too complicated to test it fully.

Incidentally neither wasatch (head office)or onyx (perfect colours) have bothered to get in touch following my initial contact :roll:

Andy
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Post Tue Nov 26, 2013 10:07 pm

RIps

Hi Andy yes I think the latest ones have sorted this, this has been a known problem for years
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Post Wed Nov 27, 2013 9:38 am

Robert Horne sell Onyx as well. It isn't cheap....
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Post Wed Nov 27, 2013 12:57 pm

Andy,

I have had the same problem. It appears to be with one of the transparency layers within the file. It also seems to be specific to pdf files created with InDesign.

I tried flattening them, resterizing the elements I thought were at fault and the list goes on.

The only way I found round it was to open the file in Flexi Sign and then created a clipping Mask for all the elements to be printed and group them together (or merge if they overlap). I then masked it off and printed fine.

Previous versions of InDesign generated file seemed to have worked fine, But files created within the last 3 to 6 months as pdf's within InDesign all seem to have this problem.

This may be something Roland need to have a look at to see if their is any way it can be dealt with within VersaWorks.

I do know that some Illustrator files have funny results when transparencies are involved.
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Joe Wigzell

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Post Thu Nov 28, 2013 10:42 am

Hi guys,

As Neil just mentioned InDesign does seem to be the main culprit in creating these pdf's with awkward transparencies and disappearing bits and bobs.

InDesign is a press design programme-not meant for wide format. InDesign creates all sorts of clipping masks and layering that will inevitably cause problems as the output is not meant for the type of print you are doing. The amount All RIPs will have problems with some form of file, even the dual processing type RIPs.

In terms of using different art-work software, I would recommend that you have all of the necessary software to open customers work. You would not expect to send your BMW to a Vauxhall garage and for them to have all of the correct parts to fix it.
Some art-work programmes will not be able to deal with the correct file types as previously mentioned in this post. And customers will always give you work in different formats and produced in different programmes. Best option is to have the software that it was created in so that you can manipulate and edit as appropriate.
There is a bit of software called NEO by ESKO, that is a proper pre-flight. But it is very expensive. However this will give you the option to edit transparencies, check for different print outputs etc and change accordingly.
Most of the time people are trying to keep costs down initially by buying cheap art-working software, however you may come unstuck if your customers have not.
Asking for files created in Illustrator/Corel will help instead of InDesign, but designers love to add multiple masks and layers and cause problems don't they!
Another advisable option is to proof print all large jobs to ensure that the job runs as expected. Just a small proof will help and aoid unwanted disasters such as when somebody has given you a corrupted file.
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Jason Xuereb

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Post Thu Nov 28, 2013 11:55 am

Look into Onyx Thrive it uses a Adobe PDF Print Engine.

http://www.onyxgfx.com/products/workflow/thrive-211/
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Joe Wigzell

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Post Thu Nov 28, 2013 12:14 pm

As mentioned you may still have problems with other file types-even with an Adobe PDF RIP engine. for the price you may be better off updating your art-work software?
I don't think that the RIP is the main problem, but the input (?).
That's a lot of money for a RIP, and normally you will need to pay for updates etc - although not sure if this is the case with Thrive?
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Post Thu Nov 28, 2013 2:19 pm

Joe Wigzell wrote: for the price you may be better off updating your art-work software?


Doesn't really answer the question for those of those that are printing from client supplied pdf files. We dont include any artwork charges on our products if they supply their own files.

For me it would be better to have a system (or solution) that handles client files without a major headache, without the expense of wasted materials and more importantly time.

My temporary solution printing from acrobat directly to versaworks (as a bitmap) seems to be working for us. I am looking into alternatives and will report my findings on here in due course.

Andy
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Post Thu Nov 28, 2013 5:01 pm

A simple fix I've used for pdf files that Draw struggles with is Pstill, it can sort font issues and flatten files with transperencies. It is available from www.pstill.com as a trial and costs less than £40.00 for the commercial version, I personally would not want to be without it.
Alan D
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Post Thu Nov 28, 2013 7:29 pm

I'm pretty sure this is the same problem Shiraz had back in the days of a JAWS engine. Since the move to Adobe it was a lot better (it's still not the most featured RIP for Roland printers so please don't think this is a sales post :lol1: ).

I found that by opening the PDF file in Acrobat Pro or similar and saving the job as an 'as early a version as possible' PDF (v1.3 was quite common from memory), the file was then flattened and worked better. Alternatively, you could open the job in Photoshop or the likes and save it as an EPS or TIFF. Obviously the file size will be a lot bigger and the colours may change slightly but it should then print properly.

I hope that's of use.

Stafford
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Andrew Edwards

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Post Wed Dec 18, 2013 10:41 pm

Onyx Thrive

As I'm selling Onyx I'll back up Jason here obviously and say Onyx Thrive is the solution for automatic submission but there's something that's often overlooked which might be of interest.

It's the only Adobe rip that also uses Adobe Normalizer - this acts like Distiller and automatically converts all postscript file types into the same stream as PDF so they all output the same - Joe's correct if you don't also have Adobe Normalizer - just having an Adobe rip won't be a complete solution.

Most shops that take Thrive do so for reliability on non-assessed postscript submission direct from customers and its the Normalizer rather than just the Adobe rip that seems to be a driver for them. Ok it's not cheap but its one of those time/wastage things you need to do the maths with.

Andrew
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Stafford Cox

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Post Wed Dec 18, 2013 11:08 pm

That's interesting stuff Andrew, thanks for your input. I just had a training day on Onyx 11 and now I understand it more, I'm a lot more fond of it. It wouldn't be my first choice personally but I can see why people like it. Spot colour replacement by the way is better than I've seen on any other RIP in all my time!!

Stafford
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Dave Harrison

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Post Thu Jan 09, 2014 11:19 pm

Can anyone shed any light on contour cut paths in pdf's created by adobe indesign ?

Unfortunately 99.9% of artwork I have to print which comes from london design agencies is created in indesign. Suggesting they use illustrator instead would be like suggesting they swap their pretty Mac's for PC's !

The artworkers are importing the roland cutcontour swatch 100% spot colour, but it is never ever recognised in versaworks.
This means I have to open their artwork in illustrator, check the layer stack assign the correct spot colour to the path, resave.. blah.. blah..blah...

Then half the time fonts haven't been converted to outlines so are substituted..... which means a phone call to hassle them etc etc etc......

there must be a simple solution ! !

nightmare.... (hot)
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Jon Marshall

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Post Fri Jan 10, 2014 10:38 am

I saw a good tip somewhere with files that dont have the fonts. 'Place' the file in Illustrator rather than opening/importing and you then get the option to flatten transpaerancies and convert fonts to outlines.
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Andrew Weaver

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Post Sat Jan 11, 2014 3:08 pm

Hi all,

I guess most versawork users have this problem at some stage or another.
I have had pdf files with no worries then others with lettering that is no longer there or a different colour square around pictures due to transparancies etc.
These files have always come from the same graphic designer.
I have since explained that they need to flatten everything and be very careful with integrated png files.
The only solution I have found that cures it is by opening the pdf file in illustrator and then saving as illustrator10 file.
This is obviously a pain as it is a time wasting, also if the text is not vectorised I sometimes have to first of all find the fonts.
Since showing and explaining the troubles to the graphic designer I still get pdf files but don't seem to have any more troubles so I do think that it also depends on the way the person integrates images and saved the file as a pdf.
I will try and ask what they have changed since.
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Dave Harrison

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Post Sun Jan 12, 2014 2:19 pm

Hi Jon thanks for the reminder about placing PDFs in illustrator, I do use that method.

The main problem I have is that so much time can be taken up by having to open everything in illustrator checking and resolving etc etc...

Indesign is an adobe product, so why can it not produce production ready .pdfs the same way illustrator can ?

I'm sure there must be a way. Unfortunately I'm not familiar with Indesign, In fact I don't even see why it exists... Anyway back to flattening transparencies on a Sunday afternoon.

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