Don't Get RIPed Off
Buying a RIP? May sure you understand all the issues involved. We've assembled a panel of experts to answer some common questions.
Remember back when RIPing a file meant tearing a manila folder in half? Graphic arts terminology has come a long way. Who even bothers to say "raster image processor" any more? It's much easier to say "RIP." If only it were just as easy to buy one.
As RIP technology has advanced, a number of issues have surfaced, forcing in-plant managers to do some deep thinking before opening their wallets. To help you understand some of these issues, we've gone right to the main RIP vendors with our questions. Providing the answers are:
• Steve Musselman, Agfa senior U.S. marketing manager for CTP systems
• Johan Rommelaere, BARCO Graphics marketing manager
• Bill Cotton, ECRM marketing analyst
• Arlene Karsh, Harlequin product marketing manager for ScriptWorks
• George Walter, Heidelberg USA product manager, output systems
• Peter Gorgone RamPage Systems director of marketing
• Tom Yang, engineering manager of the product division of Dainippon Screen Engineering of America.
IPG: What RIP features and functions do you consider important for imagesetting?
Agfa: Although a major task of the traditional RIP has been to interpret incoming PostScript pages, within Agfa's new Apogee workflow, we have moved the interpretation to our Apogee Pilot module which normalizes incoming PostScript and PDF files into a common internal file format: PDF. This now leaves the RIP the task of processing engine-specific tasks.
BARCO: Late binding is extremely important since this feature allows for real last-minute changes. Late binding should be for pages in imposition schemes and images and other objects in the pages.
Screen-based DGC (Dot Gain Compensation). For each screen used in the imposition flat, a dedicated DGC table must be possible.