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X-Rite unveils new InkFormulation 6 software

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Press release from the issuing company

Grand Rapids, Mich. – X-Rite Incorporated, the world leader in color management, measurement and communication technologies, today announced version 6 of its InkFormulation software. Developed for ink manufacturers and printers who formulate their own ink, X-Rite's InkFormulation provides a fast, accurate and consistent ink formulation, formula creation, storage, approval and retrieval solution for offset, flexographic, gravure and screen-printing inks. The new InkFormulation 6 software gives ink suppliers and printers more flexibility over recipes and assortments, improves basic materials handling, automatically determines the right ink film thickness and helps to eliminate hazardous waste. 

Thanks to a sophisticated math engine that provides better prediction of ink interactivity with substrates, InkFormulation 6 is able to rapidly calculate the optimal and most cost-effective recipe based on the printing process, ink, illumination, pigment pricing, and number of components and materials to be used. InkFormulation 6 helps printers and ink suppliers speed up the ink formulation workflow process (including special inks), with consistent, reproducible results on a broad variety of substrates and ink film thicknesses, including transparent films and metalized substrates.  It also increases color accuracy, helping to meet color specifications better than ever before.

With version 6's newly improved Basic Material Module, users can work with a variety of additives within one assortment, allowing them to change a single additive in a recipe without having to re-do the draw down or create a completely new assortment. This new enhancements of this module significantly simplifies the handling of assortments and recipes, giving users more control over their ink database.

The new Film Thickness Calibration Module allows users to quickly and precisely determine the right ink thickness for flexo, gravure and screen-printing. Users no longer need to re-measure known recipes for different line screens or rollers and adjust the film thickness manually; they can simply enter the roller or screen as a parameter. The software will automatically calculate the required film thickness and apply it to the whole assortment. InkFormulation 6 automatically calibrates a roller with a single recipe, thereby eliminating the need to create separate assortments for each roller.

"The new and improved basic materials module of InkFormulation 6 will give us the ability to change the combination of additives, solvents and technical varnish in a recipe, which is a critical added value for differing customer requirements and is perfectly suited to modern liquid spot-color ink formulation. We particularly like the new formulation wizard, as it allows us to take a step back in the formulation process at any time. The new print layout editor with InkFormulation 6 will allow us to add customization features to the printouts for providing product or customer specific Certificates Of Assessment (COA). We are looking forward to using InkFormulation 6, as it will bring us more flexibility and usability improvements, which will help us in saving time and costs," commented Dr. Danny Rich Color Physicist at Sun Chemical Corporation

"We have been testing the new InkFormulation 6 for a while now, and are confident that the new features will help us significantly simplify and automate our workflow. In particular, we are excited about the flexibility that the new print layout will afford us, and with the improved basic material module, we will be able to reduce and simplify our handling of assortments and recipes," commented Marcus Gampper, Manager, Technical Service Packaging Inks, Flint Group Germany GmbH.

"The automated feature for thickness calibration is easy to use will save us a great deal of time. The improved Basic Material Module gives us more control and will really simplify our workflow. The new InkFormulation software is a fantastic tool for us and our customers. We are looking forward to are working more efficiently and accurately while saving money in the process!" commented Rainer Jentzsch, Team Manager Color Service, Flexible Packaging, Siegwerk Druckfarben AG.

X-Rite's renowned Leftover Management feature, also included in InkFormulation 6 allows leftover inks to be reused in new recipes during the formulation process. InkFormulation provides recommendations on how to reduce the amount of leftover inks and allows for any leftovers to be reworked into new formulations, reducing inventory and waste, lowering disposal costs and providing a rapid return on users' InkFormulation investment (typical ROI for spot color printers, especially in flexo, gravure and screen printing is less than 6 months).

InkFormulation 6 offers unsurpassed flexibility of data exchange with networked databases and Internet communication features so ink suppliers and printers can efficiently share color data with locations across the globe. The new version now also supports the latest generation of CxF (Color Exchange Format), the universal file format for color communication, allowing them to accurately and unambiguously communicate all commercially significant aspects of their ink's formulation requirements. At each step of the process, colors are defined and stored as CxF files so that they can be seamlessly and faithfully exchanged between instruments and applications throughout the printing workflow. InkFormulation 6 data can also be seamlessly integrated into other business management processes. The data can be accessed through third-party applications, allowing customers to import recipes and other data into their ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) system, such as SAP.

Current users of X-Rite's Color Master software who choose to switch to InkFormulation 6 to take advantage of these new ground-breaking features will also be able to easily import their existing databases.

InkFormulation 6 also features a number of usability enhancements including: more flexible sorting criteria for recipes; direct and simplified substrate database access; a new Print Layout Editor to allow users to define and customize their print layouts (logos, bar codes and labels can be inserted and printed to label ink cans and simplify inventory creation); a new 'undo' function to allow users to return to the preceding step within the formulation workflow rather than having to begin all over again; simplified user administration tools. 

InkFormulations's advanced matching algorithms improve results, especially in highly opaque applications or when formulating for use on different substrates such as metallic foils and transparent films. Final color correction is quick and easy, and can even be done on-press.

InkFormulation 6 will be shipping in November, 2010, from X-Rite and its extensive global network of authorized resellers. Anyone purchasing InkFormulation between now and November 2010 will be entitled to a free upgrade to InkFormulation version 6.




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