GRAPH EXPO 2004 CHICAGO--Oct. 12, 2004-- Quark Inc. today announced the forthcoming release of QuarkXPress 6.5, the newest version of the industry's leading publishing software. Version 6.5 expands the power, versatility, and creative possibilities of QuarkXPress software, with new features, increased stability and reliability. Developed in direct response to user requests, QuarkXPress 6.5 is expected to further enhance its position as the world's most widely used professional page layout software.
"For more than a decade, QuarkXPress has been the single most popular desktop publishing application, thanks to its proven performance with graphics, text, color management, and print output, as well as innovative new features that continue to expand its functionality," said Juergen Kurz, Quark's senior vice president of product development. "This upgrade is all about responding to customer input with features that help you meet your deadlines while exploring your design possibilities."
"We are excited about the release of QuarkXPress 6.5 and its Mac OS X-only features such as QuarkXClusive," said Ron Okamoto, Apple's vice president of Worldwide Developer Relations. "QuarkXPress 6.5 gives Mac users a powerful tool to create and deliver high-impact design for both print and electronic media."
Image effects directly on the QuarkXPress page
One such feature is QuarkVista, a new XTensions module for image manipulation. QuarkVista software extends the capabilities of QuarkXPress to include image editing within the context of the layout. In addition to standard image adjustments such as color balance, levels, brightness, and contrast, QuarkVista lets users apply a variety of common filters to images used in a QuarkXPress layout. QuarkVista filters are non-destructive, so users can change filter parameters at any time without affecting the source image file.
QuarkVista can also optimize images for output by applying transformations such as scale, crop, angle, and skew to the images collected for output, which can dramatically reduce the size of files for output and the time required to RIP for output. Users can also use the software to perform graphic file format and color space conversions, with support for popular image file formats such as EPS, JPEG, and TIFF.
Support for native Photoshop files
Now with QuarkXPress 6.5, users will be able to import native Adobe Photoshop documents (PSD files) into QuarkXPress and exploit the power of multi-layer Photoshop images without leaving QuarkXPress. Once imported, image layers can be switched on and off, opacities and blend methods can be modified, channels can be assigned to be spot colors, and clipping paths can be chosen, right in the QuarkXPress environment.
Powered by ALAP, PSD Import streamlines workflows and expands creative possibilities because it lets users do more in a single application: QuarkXPress. It saves time and hard disk space by eliminating the need to flatten images and saving many versions in different file formats. Users can maintain a single version of their image files.
Variable data printing
QuarkXPress 6.5 will include an upgrade to QuarkXClusive, an XTensions module that puts powerful variable data publishing capabilities in the hands of QuarkXPress 6 users working with Mac OS X. QuarkXClusive lets businesses output customized, database-driven documents on HP Indigo digital presses.
"HP is pleased to be working with Quark as a leader in variable data printing," said Bill McGlynn, vice president, Digital Publishing Initiative, HP. "Both our companies recognize the strength of using variable data for more relevant communications -- personalized mailing pieces grab your attention -- and there are more opportunities than ever before for businesses to capitalize on personalized, design-rich printed material to reach their customers. Together we can help make personalization technology in graphic design ubiquitous."
The new version will add support for PPML-T, allowing it to output to both new and older models of HP Indigo digital presses through HP Production Flow. PPML is an open standard for personalized printing, and one of the technological underpinnings of the personalized digital printing industry. QuarkXClusive presents customers with new opportunities to create uniquely targeted printed materials.
More efficient for large workgroups
QuarkXPress 6.5 includes support for Citrix application deployment software, which is becoming increasingly popular with IT groups, since it allows software applications to be run from a server. In conjunction with Quark License Administrator, which manages Quark software license use, this enhancement makes QuarkXPress the easiest application to deploy and use in larger organizations, and greatly reduces the total cost of software ownership for Quark customers.
Increased stability and reliability
Other enhancements in QuarkXPress 6.5 include support for guides on pasteboards on master pages, table enhancements such as grouping, and the ability to set bleed and OPI settings in print styles using XTensions software. Quark has focused attention in improving reliability and stability of the software, and the feedback from beta testers has been extremely favorable; many are already using QuarkXPress 6.5 in production.
"In the past, we have had issues printing to some devices," said Robert Hossa of Digital Hub, a Chicago-based full service imaging centre. "With QuarkXPress 6.5, using the same documents, I have had no problems at all, and it seems very stable and reliable. At first I was shy about using QuarkXPress 6.5, but now that is all I'm using. I also tested QuarkVista and I was very impressed with the results. I know that this will be a great tool in our workflow."
Beta testers have been impressed with Quark's responsiveness in addressing issues they have reported and as a result of the improvements in QuarkXPress 6.5, Digital Hub is not the only tester to be already using QuarkXPress 6.5 in production.
"Quark reacted quickly to customer demands and has delivered a good upgrade with QuarkXPress 6.5. Due to the enhanced PDF capabilities, we can now output cropped PDF files," said Olaf Buschmaas, IT Manager at Bertelsmann in Germany. "We can use the PDFs -- created directly from within QuarkXPress -- without any problems in our production workflow."
In addition to the features provided by Quark, version 6.5 includes useful software and other tools from Quark partners. In collaboration with Linotype, QuarkXPress 6.5 provides a way to purchase fonts that are used in a project but are not owned by the customer. As an additional benefit for registered users of QuarkXPress 6.5, Quark and Linotype are offering a font bundle valued at $1,000, which customers will be able to download at no cost.
Additionally, a selection of design templates by Stock Layouts is included in the upgrade package. Demonstration versions of Creo Tokens software and Insider Font Agent Pro are also available.
With the launch of QuarkXPress 6.5, Quark and Apple Computer are offering a $300 mail-in rebate on the purchase of QuarkXPress with a Power Mac G5 or PowerBook G4. Customers can enjoy the speed and power of QuarkXPress on a new Apple computer. Visit www.apple.com/promo/quark to learn about this limited time offer.
Availability and pricing
The QuarkXPress 6.5 upgrade will ship in the next 30 days. It will be available at no charge to registered users of QuarkXPress 6. The software will be available for download from www.quark.com, or customers can request that an upgrade CD-ROM be mailed to them by contacting customer service. The PSD Import XTensions module and the updated version of QuarkXClusive will be available for download at no charge shortly after the release of QuarkXPress 6.5.
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