Ongoing innovations in printing inks and inkjet printheads are creating opportunities to print designs in a wide variety of new surfaces such ceramics, textiles, packages, and labels. So, Adobe has taken steps to ensure that the PDF files you create with tools such as Adobe Photoshop CC, Adobe InDesign CC, and Adobe Illustrator CC will continue to produce the type of print results you envision.
Adobe has announced version 5 of the Adobe PDF Print Engine (APPE). The Adobe PDF Print Engine is a software development kit that converts PDF job content (graphics, text, and images) to rasters for driving digital presses, wide-format printers, label printers, and platesetters. APPE is the leading rendering technology at the heart of prepress workflows in the $900 billion print industry.
Adobe collaborates with market-leading software vendors to bring the Adobe PDF print experience to every type of printing, including commercial printing, publishing, signage, CAD, GIS, photography, packaging, labels, direct mail, textiles, garments, and product manufacturing.
The Adobe PDF Print Engine is deployed as part of prepress solutions deployed by companies such as: Agfa, Caldera, Canon, CGS, ColorGATE, Dalim, EFI, Epson, Esko, Fujifilm, GMG, Heidelberg, HP, Kodak, Konica Minolta, Océ, Riso, Screen, Sharp, Xanté, Xeikon, and Xerox.
New Printers for All Types of Materials
The new version extends Adobe’s PDF Print Engine’s reliable color reproduction with new capabilities to harness the full potential of today’s digital and conventional presses. PDF Print Engine 5 will maximize color impact in the coming generation of textile presses, industrial print stations, and digital presses for label and packaging production.
The Adobe PDF Print Engine 5 is optimized to precisely render graphically rich jobs created in Photoshop CC, InDesign CC, and Illustrator CC for printing on flat and contoured surfaces including paper, plastic, fabric, metal, ceramic, glass, and food products.
The new color features in PDF Print Engine 5 strengthen support for Expanded Color Gamut (ECG) digital presses with ink sets that go beyond the traditional four-color base of cyan, magenta, yellow and black to magnify the visual and tactile effects of brand messaging.
“Brand managers count on accurate reproduction of vibrant designs to connect with customers,” said Adil Munshi, vice president and general manager, Print and Publishing Business Unit, Adobe. “Print jobs that are authored in Creative Cloud, reviewed in Adobe Acrobat DC, and proofed and output by Adobe PDF Print Engine 5 will now deliver the fastest rendering, best-of-breed color imaging and predictable results every step of the way.”
Why Designers Should Care
Printing has changed dramatically over the past 25 years. Despite all of the focus on improving digital channels of communications, printing continues to be relevant. New types of printing can be used to: customize products and apparel; decorate homes, offices, and event spaces; and create interactive branding, educational, and entertainment experiences. Different types of prints can help you win the attention of key audiences and stand out in a crowded media landscape.
When designing graphics, you want to push the creative envelope with the latest functionality in Adobe Photoshop CC, Illustrator CC, and InDesign CC. But sometimes, this results in graphically rich files that are increasingly complex to print.
In an article entitled “Rendering for Creatives,” Adobe experts explain why rendering your PDF file for printing can be one of the most critical stages of prepress. As the text, graphics and images are broken down into press-ready instructions, transparency, knock-outs, and other complex effects will be simplified.
The article notes that,”Your rich palette of carefully selected hues will be funneled into a small number of separated printing colorants, each of which will be screened into half-tone dots. The rendering stage performs these operations at high speeds, producing billions of pixels in a continuous stream that instructs the inkjet printheads or laser beams when and where to apply color to the substrate.”
By enabling your printing firm to use the same algorithms for job management and final rendering that you used for content creation, Adobe is increasing the level of predictability in final results and lowering the chances of discrepancies. They claim that “If your printer uses the Adobe PDF Print Engine, you can rest assured that your artistic vision will print as expected – no surprises!”
Agfa Graphics, which makes wide-format printing equipment that can print on many types of rigid boards and flexible substrates, will be one of the first companies to incorporate APPE 5 into their prepress workflows. (Photo: Agfa Graphics)