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Global Graphics launches the next generation of the Harlequin RIP

Press release from the issuing company

Cambridge, UK; December 9, 2002 — The next generation of the world-renowned Harlequin RIP – the Eclipse Release™, has been announced today by Global Graphics Software, a leading developer and manufacturer of printing, document management and workflow solutions, and a division of Global Graphics (Nasdaq Europe: GLGR, Euronext: GLOG). The Harlequin RIP Eclipse Release provides original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) with a powerful set of processing tools to significantly increase the productivity, quality and reliability of their products for a wide variety of prepress, printing and proofing applications. Important new features include improved color control, native compatibility with PDF 1.4, significantly improved trapping options through a totally new Global Graphics developed engine, and support for additional operating platforms. "In the Eclipse Release we have delivered a RIP which we believe is vastly superior in flexibility and functionality to any other processor," says Jim Freidah, president and chief operating officer, Global Graphics. "As the basis for future Harlequin RIP technologies, the Eclipse Release has been designed to handle the accelerating evolution of demanding production processes and deliver high-level performance in a variety of applications to the quickprint, display print, commercial print, publishing and packaging sectors." In addition to new and enhanced functionality, the Harlequin RIP Eclipse Release is significant in providing the foundation necessary to provide Global Graphics partners with even greater competitive advantage in subsequent releases. The internal architecture of the Harlequin RIP has been enhanced to accommodate functionality that will be required by evolving pre-press and digital printing markets in the near future. Future releases will build on this foundation to provide support for emerging standards, such as JDF. This engineering ‘under the hood’ will bring a broader range of options to OEMs that will not only add value to their products but enable them to differentiate themselves in the marketplace. "Global Graphics is committed to providing our partners with the technology that enables them to deploy competitive solutions with minimal time to market," points out Adrian Ford, chief technology officer. "The Eclipse Release is significant for us and for the market because it raises the bar for all our customers with improvements they can benefit from immediately, combined with the foundation for a broader range of options in the future." Significant new features of the Harlequin RIP Eclipse Release include: Enhanced PDF support: In addition to handling all popular file formats, the new RIP provides full support for PDF 1.4, including transparency, referenced PDF, encryption, RGB output and JBIG2 for high-compression of single-bit images. Native support for PDF1.4 transparency avoids the necessity for inefficient and restrictive ‘flattening’ of jobs prior to the RIP and enables creation of extremely flexible workflows for the broad spectrum of applications. The Eclipse Release maintains Harlequin’s ability to process PDF files natively, without the need to convert to PostScript first, to ensure fast and accurate rendering, and introduces support for professional production PDF/X-1a:2001 and PDF/X-3:2002 standards. As a result, a high level of PDF file integrity, quality and accuracy is maintained throughout digital workflows. New Trapping Engine: Automatic trapping features are unparalleled and a major feature of the new RIP, contributing to its outstanding performance. This ‘best-in-class’ in-RIP trapping solution (available in TrapPro™ and TrapProLite™ versions) is the result of extensive internal development, and brings important improvements in performance and quality compared with Harlequin’s previous trapping solution and current competitive solutions. Capable of supporting multiple digital workflows, TrapPro offers one of the richest trapping feature sets on the market, including the ability to handle: sliding traps, narrowed traps, mitre ends and joins, feathered/anamorphic traps, and automatic small object protection. Improved color control: Color control for accurate proofing and printing applications has been greatly improved with the introduction of SetGoldPro™, ColorPro™ and ProofReady™ Plugin utilities within the Harlequin RIP. With SetGoldPro users can easily optimize the color output of a printing or proofing device to achieve its ‘Golden State’ and be confident of accurate, calibrated, results. Providing full ICC, n-color and gray profile support, and color correction, ColorPro enables consistent and predictable color process control throughout production workflows. Finally, the Epson and HP-compatible ProofReady Plugin enables Harlequin RIPs to drive large format inkjet printers for high quality color proofing and display applications. New operating systems: In line with its commitment to providing OEMs and their customers with support for the latest systems, Global Graphics introduces support for Linux, Mac OS X and Windows XP with Eclipse, in addition to Mac OS 8.5/9, Windows 98/ME/NT/2000 and other Unix platforms.