March 2, 2016

Harlequin RIP transforms design and prepress data into a format that can be printed and feeds pages to the press.

Global Graphics has released the latest version of Harlequin RIP, the software engine that drives some of the printing industry’s highest performing digital presses. Reputed for the quality of its output as well as its speed, the Harlequin RIP transforms design and prepress data into a format that can be printed and feeds those pages to the press.  It’s compatible with a wide range of PDF design tools and compliant with industry standards.

The new version, Harlequin 11, raises the bar in output quality by introducing features to improve inkjet output quality, offers more controls for variable data printing, and contains new features for labels and packaging applications.

Martin Bailey, chief technology officer at Global Graphics Software, says: “These advances in quality follow our extensive research with inkjet press manufacturers. Our new Harlequin Multi-Level Digital Screening Engine(TM) compensates for the quality problems currently faced by inkjet press manufacturers and helps them to achieve their goals of high quality and high speed. This new engine can be integrated into Digital Front Ends based on Harlequin RIPs, but will also work with third party DFEs by the addition of a standalone version to replace the native screening.”

The Harlequin Multi-Level Digital Screening Engine(TM) is part of a new service Global Graphics will introduce to inkjet developers at drupa, which sees technicians measure test prints from single-pass greyscale presses and process the results through Global Graphics’ new Digital Print Quality Optimizer tool. This calculates optimized patterning and overlaps for the various ink drop sizes available to overcome common high-speed inkjet press problems such as streaking and mottling.

The Digital Print Quality Optimizer calculates the optimum drop sizes and screen pattern for particular combinations of press, greyscale/multi-level print heads, and substrate. This  improves the printed quality of photographs and similar image types, especially in highlights and areas of subtly changing tones. Global Graphics measures the printing characteristics of the press and calculates optimal changes in the dot patterning. These mitigate the effect of drops straying in flight from their aim points and possibly then spreading and coalescing on the substrate before they can be cured.

The Digital Print Quality Optimizer allows the Harlequin Multi-Level Digital Screen to be fine-tuned for particular press/substrate combinations, with particular regard to controlling the overlap between different drop sizes as they are used to build up tones from light to dark. Harlequin 11 is available in two editions:  the Harlequin Host Renderer 11, which powers the Digital Front Ends used in high-volume digital production environments; and, Harlequin MultiRIP 11 for conventional and light digital production printing.
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