Less Wasted Media

XML Instructions

A RIP-connected tool that detects exterior cut contours is nothing new, nor are layout tools that handle optimised layouts. But did you know that mainstream RIPs create bleeds by copying and pasting blocks of colour – or mirror copies of them – flush up against an original image’s boundaries? And did you know, every time a RIP adds more data to the file, the increase in that file’s size is slowing your production down … enough to make a difference to your profit margins?

Last-minute amends: New file. Version error: Another file. Imposing the images: Huge file. Even bigger PDFs, and so on and so on. By the time artwork gets to the RIP, every original 1MB file may now be 100MB or more. Especially if you’re adding a last-minute job to a layout – the RIP has to start processing everything from scratch. Except, PrintFactory doesn’t work that way. PrintFactory’s workflow software takes a cutting-edge approach to layouts – giving you faster production, less wasted media.

PrintFactory doesn’t move PDFs. Nor does it make them. Instead, our workflow software makes and reads XML instructions. In other words, with PrintFactory you’re printing faster – you don’t need to worry about the extra time you’d need to re-submit a job. Instead of creating a PDF, our Layout tool writes instructions to describe which file sits where, and the media in use, and what the individual profiles are.

The final RIP then reads those XML instructions, explaining where the source files are on the server; which layout to use; which printer to use; what the profiles are and what the media set-up should be – file by individual file. Mirror bleeds? Nanoseconds. Last-minute jobs? Add less than a couple of minutes to production. A day’s work set up for the wrong printer? Not on our watch. This is a real-time conversation, by workflow software that’s working smarter, not harder. No network lag. No media mistakes, no layout errors, and all-round faster production guaranteed. 

Templates For Success

We have plenty of experience laying out jobs of our own. Doing the same thing, over and over again? That doesn’t seem very sensible.

Our Layout tool lets you store jobs as a template, which lets your team quickly create a ‘mirror image’ for two sides of a building or a vehicle. If you’re printing vehicle wraps, for example, then you need to print one complex image on lots of different substrates. You’re handling low-tack vinyl for metal and high-tack vinyl for plastic parts, like bumpers; plus one-way-vision materials for windows – it’s a complex job. PrintFactory’s Layout tool will take all of those substrates into account and deliver the best possible layout – but with total control, still in your teams’ hands. 

Minimum Waste, Maximum Manual Control

Like many other RIPs, PrintFactory’s nesting tool solves all of your basic layout problems. It’s hard to imagine a wide format printer who’s still laying out every job by hand – although there are many.

How To Get A Faster RIP

Our PDF file-sizes were slowing us down. We needed a faster RIP, so we installed PrintFactory…

“Our RIP was tied to a printer at the end of our workflow. Every time we touched a job, the file’s size got bigger and bigger. The bigger the files were? The slower our workflow. It shouldn’t matter, but the difference between processing 300MB and 3GB was enough to make an impact on our bottom line. We needed a faster RIP. That’s why we chose PrintFactory…”

Printfactory | Wide Format Workflow Software

Most printers want to check each job before it’s printed. The trouble is, every time you open, work on, and save a file, you make a new, bigger file in the process. Last-minute amends? Bigger file. Version error? Another increase in size. Imposing the job? Huge file. In fact, when you’re nesting multiple jobs and adding other features like bleeds, grommets or cutter marks – the size and complexity of those source PDFs has grown exponentially.

If these were small files, you could dismiss this. But by the time final PDFs get to the average RIP, most original jobs of 300Mb are a gigabyte or more. Slowing down the network and – in large print businesses – actually holding up production. PrintFactory is the answer. 

PrintFactory doesn’t create big PDF files.

It uses XML instructions to process original PDFs, faster… PrintFactory doesn’t move PDFs or make them. Tour source job files are never moved, duplicated, imposed, copied or RIPped as multiple files. Instead, our software makes and reads an XML instruction list – at the very last second – before it starts printing. Even last-minute jobs or amends doesn’t slow things down. With PrintFactory you’re printing faster, by default.

Let’s Get Technical

Are there problems with the original file? Our Editor tool will find them and fix them. Then, instead of creating a PDF, our Layout tool will write a list of XML instructions to describe which file sits where, and the media in use, and what the individual profiles are – and all manner of other pieces of information. If bleeds are needed, for example, PrintFactory writes an XML instruction to create them (instead of copy/pasting data and exponentially increasing the size of a job file in the process, which is the way that conventional workflow software works).

The final RIP then reads those XML instructions, taking note of where the source files can be found on the server. The instructions provide direction at the very last moment during the RIPping. They explain which layout to use; how things are nested; if grommets or bleeds are needed and if so, how to set them up; which printer to use; what the profiles are and what the media set-up should be – file by individual file.

Getting those device-link profiles set up is easy. Our Calibrator turns your whole team into profile-ninjas. And as soon as those device-link profiles have been created, the result can be frozen into what we call ‘a golden state’ – so you can be sure of producing the same quality and same colour across multiple printers, every time, even after a significant amount of time has passed.

The software adjusts the ink ratios, without changing the separation or introducing unexpected colour where there shouldn’t be any. It involves an iterative recalibration process, identifying and then using the correct – constantly changing – values to reflect environmental conditions, stock and substrate changes, as well as the wear and tear of equipment. Perhaps best of all, this tuning process is handled completely by the software. There’s no need for specialist colour knowledge, so anyone can do it (which helps the whole business build on all of your colour expert’s hard work). 

Get Perfect Colour, With Lower Costs

XML-driven processing. That’s the key. PrintFactory works in real-time across Mac, PC, and Linux networks, and takes the hold-ups out of production completely.

A whole day’s work, wasted, as a problem means you need to recreate a job?

Not on our watch. Our software handles problems like that for you instantly with XML instructions. It’s workflow software that’s working smarter, not harder. No network lag. No media mistakes, no bottlenecks from last-minute amends, and all-round faster production guaranteed. 

Workflow Reporting Solutions

With PrintFactory’s simple tools and clear dashboards, workflow reporting is easy, keeping clients updated 24/7.

“All sorts of things have an impact on your workflow and your reputation. Missing a deadline, for example. Maintenance issues. Print quality or people just getting things wrong. What our clients care about most, is this: if we do spot a problem, can we get on top of it quickly and easily? We needed simple software with great dashboards and brilliant reporting. So that’s why we chose PrintFactory…”

Printfactory | Wide Format Workflow Software

Life isn’t perfect, and neither is print. If the unexpected happens – such as a printer going offline or running out of ink for example – then you need to tackle the problem quickly, before it has an impact on every part of your production process and before it affects your customers.

If you’re serious about being successful, then you have to work efficiently. Removing potential problems is half the secret to making bigger profit-margins But understanding where and how to get that insight can be a full-time job. You have to measure what you’re using and see how it’s being used, without affecting print quality at the same time.PrintFactory is the answer.

PrintFactory provides confidence, transparency, and 24/7 dashboard reporting

With PrintFactory Automation, you’re getting software that includes PrintFactory cloud as an integrated tool. It provides all the confidence you need to be even more transparent with your customers, It’s a tool that will monitor your production, provide insights and reports in real-time, and reschedule jobs for you if production has a problem.

Our workflow software turns your whole team into profile-ninjas. Anyone can create perfect new profiles in just 3 clicks and maintain the great work your colour experts have already done.

Let’s Get Technical

PrintFactory Cloud does the thinking for you. It uses dynamic algorithms, recalculating constantly, so you’re never tied to a job’s details or a particular layout until the very last moment – nanoseconds away from the actual RIPping process – and its reporting, on those processes, is second to none.

By connecting PrintFactory to your MIS or Web2Print systems, full end-to-end automation becomes an affordable reality. Gathering and interpreting metadata on the fly, PrintFactory uses XML instructions to make the right decisions at speed – at the last minute. You get all the productivity of full automation, and the greater efficiency of zero human intervention. And you can see, instantly, where the files are; what the file specification is; which media is being used; which inks, printer, colour specification, layout, order… it’s all there. 

100% Confidence, For You And For Your Customers

PrintFactory Cloud lets you keep a check on every part of the production process – from media and ink consumption, to which jobs are being printed right now. Customers can log-in to track and trace jobs too, and you can ensure jobs get planned according to customers’ criteria – never missing a deadline, always working efficiently. That keeps production levels up. It takes down your costs. And it gives your customers even more confidence of the print-production you’re delivering.

macOS, Linux & Windows

Our macOS, Windows, and Linux tools were all over the place. PrintFactory made sure *everything* is connected.

“Our team prefer preparing jobs on Windows or macOS machines. Design software works best on those systems, so that makes sense. But we wanted to cluster apps and RIP files on an industrial scale, so we needed a Linux server. I needed workflow software that could cope with three separate systems. That’s why I chose PrintFactory…”

Printfactory | Wide Format Workflow Software

In your end-of-year accounts, you always add a line for bottom-line costs. However, very few wide format printers look at the cost of printing test files, or running productions proofs, and break it down into cost-of-ink, cost-of-substrate, cost-of-people. Is it 5% of the bill? Or 15%?

Either way, sometimes your team won’t trust what’s on a screen. They know your print devices better than that, and they still want to see what something looks like ‘in the hand’. Customers, too, sometimes want to know you’ve created a hard-proof, but that involves using ink, and media, and wear-and-tear on the machines (it does), and then there’s the additional cost of overtime, too, if the job doesn’t print right, first time. It all adds up. PrintFactory is the answer.

PrintFactory handles every macOS, Windows and Linux configuration with ease

PrintFactory is powerful workflow software offering interoperability for industrial scale operations in a way that reflects those environments’ optimum setups.

And if you’re working on a standalone network, with a single (V)LAN, the workflow is automatically configured, acting collectively as one single system.

Let’s Get Technical

Designers usually prefer macOS-oriented software. Your back-office admin packages often run more smoothly on Windows machines. But serious LFP setups (and RIPs in particular) need an operating system that can handle heavyweight processing needs. Hence, Linux.

PrintFactory gets rid of the everyday headaches caused by these complex systems simply not talking to each other in a wide format print workflow. It works. Several printer manufacturers now ship our PrintFactory engine inside their devices in an integrated package, because it’s a plug-and-play solution that truly works at scale… smoothly, off-the-shelf.

When you’re trying hard to edit a file but not waste ink and media, trying to get the colour right… nobody wants extra headaches to handle, like pieces of software that don’t like talking to each other. We know, teams want to use the design software they understand best on a computer or operating system they’re familiar with.

In short, your team won’t need to worry: all of their front-end applications will run smoothly in this mixed operating-system environment. Our support for Windows, macOS and Linux means we cover all the bases. 

The Right Kind of Support

You’ll like PrintFactory.

We do the hard work for you, no problem.

Need a demo?

We’ll get one of our local dealers to contact you. 

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