Picnic Print owner Nick Pettaras says purchasing Australia’s first Konica Minolta AccurioPress C83hc high chroma press has dramatically lifted the quality of prints he can produce for his clients.
With the majority of his business coming from the fashion, photography and high end brand sector, the need to retain the smallest of details and colour match with a vibrant print product is imperative.
Pettaras found he was having issues reproducing prints to exactly replicate the images his clients were seeing on the graphic designer’s screen. This problem was compounded as professional photography is shot in RGB format.
He found that when the files were converted to CMYK for printing, the result was flooded, flat and had a general loss of image quality in the printed form.
After continually coming up against this hurdle Pettaras decided to seek out a press that could switch between RGB and CMYK easily without wasting time changing toner.
He also needed a press that had a wide colour gamut and could colour match and work in tandem with his existing wide format offering so he could print full campaigns for his clients, including lookbooks, brochures, invitations, menus and large posters and signs with all having the same colour and image tone.
Pettaras found the answer with the AccurioPress C83hc which he says easily switches between RGB and CMYK to deliver a wide colour gamut that really pops but in an easy and flexible way with no need to physically change toner.
“Konica Minolta have changed the magenta and cyan toner so the press can switch between RGB and high chroma and it can also do CMYK,” Pettaras told ProPrint.
“The way Konica Minolta have done it is rather than switch toners out, which would mean flushing the machine with toner which is a waste of time and money, the press does it all on the Fiery rip software so it happens straight away.
“So it can print normal CMYK and then with a flick of the button it can convert to RGB and then it can convert to high chroma. There are four options on the rip which also include an uncoated Fogra profile and clients these days are going for a matt finish so rather than having to recalibrate and reset, everything is calibrated and on the rip, and then you just click between whichever option you want.
“It’s really important in printing and point of sale that colour is consistent across multiple jobs.”
Pettaras has worked in print for over 25 years starting in offset then moving into digital and wide format.
In addition to the AccurioPress C83hc, which includes an attached online finisher creaser for booklet production, Pettaras also has an Epson wide format press, guillotine, creaser, cello lamination and a digital foiling machine.
He stocks a range of photographic reverse box frames and magnetic poster / banner hanging systems for re-usable window retail POS.
“We can print up to 1200mm long sheets as the press is fitted with the long feeder enabling a banner to be printed in one pass, then flipping the sheet in the bypass tray we can print a six to eight page long brochure, the printing flexibility is incredible.
“We can print a long sheet, then we can print envelopes, we can print all different mediums.
The quality of the print of the Accurio is “spectacular”, Pettaras says, adding the feedback from his clients has so far been incredible.
“The machine can print a sharp clean dot which is very difficult to achieve with digital. It actually prints so sharp that the rip has a setting that automatically prints the dot again so you can match printed offset jobs because the printing and screening is so sharp,” he said.
“So you get a beautiful consistent solid colour. This machine lays the toner down so well it is very easy to match a wide range of Pantone colours.”
Pettaras says it is incredibly simple to match a client’s colour request with a Pantone or spot colour with the first printed page coming out perfectly.
“It’s a bit like going to a paint store where customers can come in with a colour swatch or printed sample and you can check the colour with the presses’ spectrophotometer and the machine will actually calibrate to that colour sample,” he said.
Pettaras can handle most short run work at his Chatswood print shop but once quantities exceed his production capabilities he prepares the files on the Accurio and outsources the work to larger trade print partners which keeps his cost competitive.
“I can run job samples on different stocks to get ideas and proof it until the client is happy. Then I colour match it and send it off to be produced if it is a larger quantity they are wanting,” Pettaras says.
“It allows me to do production printing quickly and efficiently.”
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