Global Graphics Software


Labelexpo, Brussels、2013/09/24

Harlequin Digital Hub debuts at Labelexpo providing exceptional color management and screening for label printing

The new Harlequin Digital Hub for label printing makes its debut at Labelexpo by first-time exhibitors Global Graphics Software in Hall 9, Stand 9H12.

Global Graphics Software has worked since 1988 to develop industry-leading front end software for conventional pre-press film and plate-making systems and digital proof printers across many sectors including newspapers, commercial print and wide format. For the past decade it has built on that production-proven expertise to develop technology for digital production printing systems as well, culminating in the Harlequin Digital Hub.

Harlequin Digital Hub has been developed to drive the industry’s inkjet presses and provides all the tools needed to produce consistent, predictable output. It offers exceptional color and screening capabilities, including multi-level and custom screens.

Harlequin Digital Hub excels at handling all label types, even the most complex that require personalization using variable text, image and graphics coverage. It ensures the accurate rendering of PDF files to meet brand managers’ expectations that they can use the same live transparency in label production as they do in commercial print, publication and wide format, and is compatible with Esko workflows. It comprises a range of technologies that can be customized to provide the optimum solution whatever the combination of colorants or media. These include:

Color management

Harlequin ColorPro™ provides excellent color process control, giving accurate, consistent and predictable color reproduction for a wide range of workflows. Harlequin ColorPro provides full support for industry standard ICC profiles, including DeviceLink and N-channel profiles, and fully supports hifi spaces such as CMYKOGV and spot colorants including white and varnish. (See White Paper Color Management for digital label presses)

  • Profiling: Color accurate printing is only possible if printing devices can be calibrated, with profiles designed for a given combination of ink, substrate, screening and resolution. Global Graphics supplies a wizard-based color utility called Harlequin SetGold that is designed to prepare a press for profiling by establishing an optimal “Golden State.” Using Harlequin SetGold together with Harlequin ColorPro allows easy control of ink/toner limiting requirements and helps in maintaining neutrals accurately.
  • Color gamuts and color matching: Harlequin ColorPro includes the ability to emulate a conventional press (or standard press characterization) by using multiple ICC color profiles to specify the color behavior of the digital press on which the labels are being printed, and that of the emulation target.
  • Brand colors: Harlequin ColorPro includes look-up tables for Pantone colors so that a brand color within the PDF or PostScript file can be transformed accurately, in a device independent way so it’s not necessary to develop new look-up tables for every different substrate. Additional tables can be created for custom brand colors. It’s also possible to configure ColorPro to emulate a conventional print process for all of the colors in the job except the brand colors, allowing colors that would have been printed using spot inks on a conventional press to take maximum advantage from the digital press gamut.

Screening engine

A wide variety of halftones are available with the Harlequin Digital Hub, including full multi-level screens, enabling press vendors to maximize the image quality that output devices can achieve. Multi-level screening produces near photographic quality and smooth flat tints, even at relatively low resolutions. Alternatively a press vendors’ own screening technology and IP can be integrated.

  • Harlequin Dispersed Screening™ is Global Graphics’ patented second generation stochastic screening system designed, in particular, for implementations destined for low-resolution output devices, including inkjet and toner based digital presses. HDS creates reproductions with increased sharpness over conventional screening methods and offers complete freedom from both cross screen and object moirés. It addresses many of the deficiencies in other stochastic screening techniques to provide a robust and high quality screening solution for a variety of printing situations.
  • Multi-level screening: Harlequin HDS Multi-level Screening (HDS-MLS) is used with inkjet heads that can apply different amounts of ink in each location (often known as grayscale heads or variable sized dots or VSD), because it can achieve the appearance of a much higher line screen than could be achieved with a binary screen for a given resolution, especially the lower resolutions associated with high speed inkjets. It also increases the level of detail that can be retained in the screened result.

Variable content at speed

In independent speed tests carried out by the Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) in 2012 across a test suite comprising different label types – from the very simple to the most complex – Harlequin digital technology achieved over 20 times the processing rate required by the leading label press with just one RIP.