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Paragraphics Inc. wins top print award using its KBA Rapida 105 41" press

Press release from the issuing company

KBA North America, a global press manufacturer based in Dallas, Texas, announces that its customer, Paragraphics, Inc., an award-winning high-quality San Rafael, CA commercial printer, has won the coveted "Best of Show" award from Visual Media Alliance (formerly Printing Industries of Northern California) for its California Academy of Sciences book entitled Evolution at the Academy. The small-format 48-page book, printed for the San Francisco science center, showcases stories on nature's most innovative survival strategies, photographs of both research specimens and live aquarium animals, case studies by Academy scientists, and essays by the Academy's executive director and dean of science and research collections. It was printed on Paragraphics' KBA Rapida 105 41-inch six-color hybrid UV sheetfed press with inline aqueous and UV coater at their facility in San Rafael, CA. The award was presented on May 6, 2010.

"This was an incredibly difficult print job," says Jeff Towner, a principle and sales rep for Paragraphics. "The most difficult part was printing on uncoated stock with the many spreads with dense black backgrounds. The combined black densities are in excess of 240%. You'd be hard pressed to get that saturation even with black paper. Any printer who looks at the book will realize the high degree of difficulty but we're able to achieve these beautiful effects due to our UV capability of our press."

Paragraphics has printed jobs for the California Academy of Sciences before; in fact, the Evolution book is the second in a series of books printed by Paragraphics. While the design team for the academy took a solid year to prepare the book, Paragraphics required about three weeks to print and to handle other parts of the production, such as color enhancement and correction. Paragraphics produced 5,000 copies of the book, which are sold in the Academy's giftshop and online. The uncoated paper used for the book was Mohawk Synergy White 100% PCW, which Towner reports ran beautifully.

The KBA Rapida 105 41-inch six-color hybrid UV sheetfed press installed at Paragraphics is equipped with KBA's Densitronic S, a combined density and color measuring system for quality control during printing. Unlike any other system available on the market, Densitronic S also permits direct measurements within the image. Deviations from defined target densities, color values and other quality parameters (dot gain, trapping, etc.) are recognized and displayed not only reliably, but also immediately in comparison to hand-held measuring devices. With integration for online control, the density and spectral deviations are converted into corrective adjustments for the individual ink keys. The Densitronic S controls the density and spectral parameters of each sheet by measuring along control strips or directly on the image. The Rapida 105 41-inch sheetfed press also features the fast speed of 18,000 sph, a stock range of 48# to 48pt with no gripper adjustments, and the unique mark-free vacuum side guide. By having the press equipped with hybrid UV capabilities, Paragraphics is able to print on a wide variety of substrates and be able to use different effective coating techniques on such work as annual reports and greeting cards.

The award-winning book displays the firm's environmentally-conscious stance. For many years, Paragraphics has been recycling chemicals, inks, and waste paper at its own expense before there was a market for these proceedures. Today the firm is certified by the Forest Stewardship Council and a Bay Area Green Business, recognized for its earth-friendly business practices. Evolution at the Academy maintains the environmentally-friendly focus using "green" paper and printing. The book is printed on Mohawk Synergy White 100% PCW, which features FSC certification, wind-power manufacturing and 100% postconsumer recycled fiber. Paragraphics ran the job with UV inks, which are VOC-free, CMYK plus spot black, with a "special coating" throughout.

Towner says, "With the elimination of VOC's from the inks (UV inks having less than 1% VOC's are considered by the EPA as zero emissions) and the ability to print incredibly detailed and color intense work onto 100% PCW (post consumer waste) papers, our ability to produce on these recycled stocks with UV process helps to differentiate us from our competitors.  Not only are we producing a better looking and more colorful piece but we are also doing this in an incredibly environmentally-friendly process which is becoming more and more important in the marketplace and for our customers. This was especially important to the California Academy of Sciences, which mandates the greenest solution possible. This book is a super green job and looks great too. We've proven the pundits wrong who think that a green job is a step down in quality. This book proves the complete opposite."

The Showcase of Print/Design Excellence celebrates Northern California and Northern Nevada's best in the graphic communication industry. Each year, Visual Media Alliance (formerly PINC) hosts the Showcase of Print Excellence Awards and accepts entries from its membership and local litho clubs. From the entries received, a select panel of judges decides the winner of Best of Show as well as Grand Awards, Best of Category, and other awards. All Gold Award winners are submitted to the PIA Print Award to compete for the coveted Benny Award presented at Graph Expo in October 2010.