Color and Proofs

Color

Our printing process is referred to as “gang printing”. We run many different orders on large sheets of paper. This means that many different designs and varied color layouts print side by side. Although our ink fountains are calibrated electronically by a densitometer, the variations in the files that run along side one another can effect each others appearance. This is unavoidable.

We produce cards that we refer to as “pleasing color”. This means that in addition to electronic calibration our pressman uses his keen eye to adjust the color to produce the best results for all the order on that sheet.

Since our business model is “gang printing” and based on price and speedy turnaround times and not color matching or “top shelf quality” there is often some color variation. How we do them is we gang many, many clients orders on big press runs. The cards that print next to or around your order can influence the output colors. Sometimes the card next to yours might be (for example) bright red on one side and dark rich black on the other. That means each side is influenced by a different color palette. A card with the same solid color on both sides that are more effected than cards that are busier and use a wide variety of colors. Reason being a bit more black, cyan, yellow or magenta influences a solid far more than a splash of random bright color. We aim to get them all right but with our 24 hour scheduling jobs fly through here. Many other shops charge $400-$500 for our $158 4×6 product. Again, we aim for price over quality control. We personally think it’s best to vary the art so it’s not noticeable. For example, have one side with solid background and the other white with colored type or a different background color entirely. Our pressman usually does a good job of matching the front and backs but the issue of “what’s running next to yours” is difficult to control even though we try to pair similar orders on the sheets… some days that’s easier than others.

We print all 4 color process jobs at CMYK (cyan, magenta, yellow, black). Before submitting your files they should be converted to CMYK. If your job is sent in RGB we will convert your files to CMYK which may alter the color appearance. This has to do with the overall color range and spectrum of color builds in RGB vs. CMYK and it can not be avoided. If you are printing a large solid black area please use one of these color formulas: C: 40, M: 20, Y: 20, K: 100 or C: 60, M: 40, Y: 20, K: 100. If you use a formula with an ink density of over 300% your cards will offset or smear due to our fast turnaround production schedule. We are not responsible for over-saturates ink designs offsetting.

Hard Proofs

If color is critical, you must have a color proof done. There is an additional charge of $18.00. The proof must be authorized by the customer before printing. Allow 2-3 days extra time to produce a proof and complete the order. Even with a color proof we do not guarantee color. Our printing process is referred to as “gang printing”. We run many different orders on large sheets of paper. This means that many different designs and varied color layouts print side by side. Although our ink fountains are calibrated electronically by a densitometer, the variations in the files that run along side one another can effect each others appearance. This is unavoidable.

We produce cards that we refer to as “pleasing color”. This means that in addition to electronic calibration our pressman uses his keen eye to adjust the color to produce the best results for all the order on that sheet.

PDF Proofs

If you are concerned about certain elements of your layout/design we can generate a PDF proof for your review. However this will delay the production of your order. This is a free service, but it can take 2-3 days for us to email you a PDF proof. Due to inconsistencies in monitor calibration PDF proofs can not be trusted for color review. They are for content ONLY. Please clearly specify your need for a PDF proof in the comments section of placing an order. If it’s not clearly stated your order may be printed without a PDF proof.