Colour Management

At KMS we have recently invested a considerable amount of time and cost bringing some standards to our colour management. We chose Mellow Colour as our partners and use their PrintSpec system to accurately match our print to ISO 12647 – a common objective for Printers and Clients, or any other international or in house standard.

colour management-KMSSo why the need for colour management?
Our goal was improving colour consistency whilst reducing make-ready times and waste. Our new PrintSpec software is the ideal tool for anybody with an interest in producing high quality print complying with the targets and tolerances of ISO 12647.

It allows us to generate comprehensive ISO 12647 pass/ fail reports generated from a small press control strip placed in the gutters of production CMYK printed work. We measure the data on the strip with a spectrophotometer.

Having taken the readings we are presented with a summary page that gives us data on ISO 12647 pass/fail information about the CMYK inks, the overprinted colours, the Dot Gain (TVI) and Grey balance. A quantifiable BPIF standard ‘percentage of ISO Excellence’ scoring system is built in.

So how does colour management it work?
Using a spectrophotometer the printer measures a colour control strip, which is run along with production work. A comprehensive report is generated, presenting L*a*b* values, dot gain and grey balance values in charts, alongside either the ISO specified targets, or should we wish, in-house targets for comparison.

Key features of the report include:

  • Print Validation The comprehensive Summary Page incorporates a standardised scoring system that includes automatic grey balance calculation depending on what substrate is being used.The software uses spectral data exclusively so that the effects of non-standard lighting can be evaluated on critical colours in proofs and prints.
  • Production Ink Density setting – a simple bar chart guide for the printer to achieve target Lab’s.
  • Press Calibration This is highly comprehensive including iterative adjustment, export of curves for most CTP systems and calibration of digital presses.
  • Print Curves Smoothed curve shaping for TVI compensation including iterative calibration for non-linear plates and digital presses.
  • SweetSpot Allows the user to accurately set press room instrument density targets that accommodates inter instrument differences and the effects of dry back.

A whole range of commonly used substrates are taken into account when defining the target densities that produce the tightest ISO 12647 compliance.

Quality Management
Print run variances which provide an indication of colour consistency during the print run can be compared with the targets in the ISO 12647 standard, an in-house standard or the OK sheet and adjusted / corrected where necessary.

If you’re looking for a printer that cares about the accuracy of your brand colours, then you’ve found the perfect printing partner in KMS Litho Ltd. Please contact us for more information about our colour management processes and why not request a tour of the press room to see our masterprinters in action!