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Pacific Southwest Container Improves Press Productivity With Latran's Prediction 2230 Proofing System

Press release from the issuing company

Bedford, MA, October 12, 2005 - Latran Technologies, a recognized leader with the industry's most advanced digital halftone proofing technology, announces that Pacific Southwest Container (PSC), one of the west coast's largest independent paperboard converters, has successfully installed a Latran Prediction 2230 proofing system with Dalmatian spot color proofing software. Headquartered in Modesto, CA, PSC is an ISO 9001-2000 registered manufacturer of corrugated, foam packaging, single face lamination, folding cartons and Point-of-Purchase displays. PSC's comprehensive in-house operation ensures its ability to control all production processes and respond immediately to customer needs. Capabilities include package design and engineering, a prepress and ink lab, flexo and litho printing, lamination, UV coating, foil stamping, embossing, and windowing. PSC is continually searching for new and innovative methods to increase quality for their customers through design improvements, process modifications, raw material selection and total program management. In order to become more productive and cost-effective, two years ago PSC brought their prepress work in-house. As PSC got control of the prepress process—including trapping and step & repeat—they were able to reduce lead times and create a prepress profit center. PSC needed a system to demonstrate overlays, process printing on top of metallics, and the same screening they used on press. Rather than imaging direct to a substrate, PSC had to create a carrier sheet that could be used as an overlay to a thicker paperboard substrate. They needed a proofing system that could accurately predict the press by proofing directly on their heavy board stocks. PSC decided on a Latran Prediction 2230 digital halftone proofing system with Latran’s new Dalmatian spot color proofing software. The Prediction Digital Halftone Proofing System incorporates laser ablation transfer technology, produces real dots, and uses real ink pigments on real press substrates to produce high-resolution proofs that match the press with unparalleled accuracy. Prediction images with a precise 10-micron spot which enables proofing conventional, stochastic and hybrid screening from any screening technology available in the market. Pigment-based ink sheets provide stable and accurate hue, color gamut and color fidelity. The system offers the widest range of industry standard based ink sets for an accurate match to press and faster make-ready. Prediction also renders true color directly on the final press stock, removing the variability of stock color. With its 2540 or 2400 dpi resolution, Prediction matches the output quality of leading platemaking systems, providing an excellent match between proof and press. The Prediction 2230 system works with materials 22" x 29" in size. PSC was most impressed with the versatility of Prediction and ease of printing overlays—such as die lines for foil stamping and embossing—as well as the ability to proof Pantone Hexachrome. Versatility was important, because other systems such as inkjets cannot proof Metal FX and Hexachrome well. It also helped that the Prediction proofer cost half of other devices PSC considered. Implementation was quick and painless; PSC rarely touches the calibration. They regularly conduct tests, but seldom have to adjust the system. Proofing operators spent less than half a day with Latran support team members learning the system. Those responsible for upkeep, RIP settings for profiles, and setups for different materials needed just a little more time. All four-color contract proofing is done on the Prediction proofing system. PSC RIPs one-bit screened TIFF files from their prepress workflow and sends the resulting files to the Prediction system. PSC constantly uses the Latran Dalmatian spot color proofing software, because almost every job they print involves corporate colors and/or metallics. For example, using a Pantone 877 silver ink sheet, Dalmatian can replicate a pink metallic with a magenta screen. "We have swatch palettes on the Prediction system. When we need to match to a specific ink, we dial in a color to provide the match with available ink sheets," remarks Brian Wecht, PSC prepress team leader. "We can come really close. It’s far better than what we were using before, which was limited to CMYK and not accurate. Dalmatian adds red, green, blue, orange, purple, gold and silver to the available color palette for much better results." PSC has also perfected Metal FX printing—a process that incorporates a unique set of process inks on top of specially formulated metallics, allowing a broad range of special effects. Prediction is one of the few proofing systems that can reproduce the process effectively. "With our Prediction proofing system, we no longer go back and forth on proofs. There is very little waste. We can reuse ink sheets and gang jobs," remarks Wecht. "It has improved our process. We have virtually eliminated press downtime caused by a bad match to a proof. Prediction offers different sets of process inks to best match our printing inks, and calibration is rock solid." "The Prediction has been a very versatile piece of equipment for us. We print unique packaging and the Prediction is able to proof everything we do," concludes Wecht. "We could not sell our customers our Metal FX capabilities if we could not proof on silver or gold metallics—nor would we be able to show an accurate proof with overlays with foil and embossing. The Prediction, along with Latran’s service, has been great for us."

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