Mar 012013
 

FlexicloudSA International (SAi), the leading provider of solutions for the professional signmaking, wide-format digital printing and CAD/CAM for CNC machining industries, has extended two of its most popular software packages to include useful web-based tools that enhance the way sign and print providers do business. SAi Flexi Cloud and SAi PhotoPRINT Cloud bring state-of-the-art, Internet-based capability to SAi’s best-known brands, while adding many useful functions.

SAi Flexi Cloud adds a new dimension to the feature-rich attributes of SAi’s leading sign making software, Flexi, which provides easy text layout and vinyl cutting packages that offer high production capabilities with cutting and printing tools. In addition, the new SAi PhotoPRINT Cloud increases the functionality of SAi’s PhotoPRINT RIP software, which offers an affordable, easy-to-use print-and-cut solution for wide-format print businesses.

Easily accessible via a Cloud Web Window that sits on a user’s desktop display, SAi Flexi Cloud and SAi PhotoPRINT Cloud have been introduced to meet the changing needs of sign and print providers. Both programs offer three important tools that enable users to enjoy greater versatility across production and job tracking, wherever they’re working:

  • Local and remote production information through Job Reports – a valuable feature that offers an easy way for business owners to view production information and trends. The Job Reports tool provides summary production information on completed projects, providing critical analytics on print-and-cut jobs, printer and media usage, as well as total production time on each job.
  • Cloud Storage – an on-line data hosting facility that provides sign and print businesses with 1GB of free storage for uploading and archiving design jobs for backup, sharing and retrieval as required. Accessible via an icon within the Cloud Web Window, this convenient feature also provides the platform architecture needed for future cloud-based business growth capabilities.
  • FlexiQuote™ – an innovative web-based tool that allows sign and print businesses to quickly and effectively create customer quotes for new jobs. FlexiQuote features a simple, user-friendly design, which comes pre-loaded with a database of standard media and their costs to rapidly and accurately configure pricing, while factoring in materials, labor, commissions, discounts and taxes. As such, the handy FlexiQuote ‘wizard’ overcomes the occasionally troublesome and time-consuming job quoting process faced by sign and print providers, and can give a customer quote within 30 seconds.

Information on the Go
In addition to Job Reports being viewable through the Cloud Web Window within SAi’s Flexi Cloud and PhotoPRINT Cloud solutions, SAi has created a free, companion mobile application that also provides businesses owners with remote access to valuable production information while on the road or away from the office. Known as the SAi Cloud mobile app, SAi is the first RIP manufacturer to offer such a mobile application, which is compatible with both Android and iPhone devices.

SAi’s Cloud Web Window also provides useful links to a growing number of other resources and content. These include media profiles, software updates, support information, and SAi’s dedicated social media channels, which feature informative training materials and videos.

“Our customers know us for simplifying and improving the way they do business, so we are delighted to once again lead the way when it comes to delivering innovative tools that meet these objectives,” says Dean Derhak, Product Director at SAi. “Providing vital, instantaneous information, whether in the office or on the go, SAi Flexi Cloud and SAi PhotoPRINT Cloud reflect the fast-pace at which business owners operate today.

“The result is design-through-production software that enhances efficiency and builds on the heritage of our best-known brands to deliver information to users, wherever they’re working,” concludes Derhak.

Jun 272011
 

We have found a couple of our customers loading the HP Designjet L25500 Latex printer incorrectly, and have found that the media sometimes unwinds after load or at the first print.

Another variation of this is that the printer may say the “substrate may be detached from the core”

This situation is created by loading media in a way that tricks the printer.

Continue reading »

Jun 272011
 

We have found it a common problem for people to have trouble for the first while to become familiar with the right workflow for Print to cut when using a separate Mutoh vinyl cutter with a barcode workflow. For Cielab this is usually with the Mutoh Kona vinyl cutters but will also be relevant to other Mutoh cutters from Flexisign.

Please follow these steps for best results and if you are still having trouble please comment below.

Prior to following these steps make sure you have these things ready to go:

  • Make sure you have installed the Mutoh Cut Server
  • Set the folder for Mutoh Cut Server to read it’s jobs from
  • within Flexi – Production Manager (Photoprint) make sure you have added your Mutoh Cutter in and called it “Contour” for reference and make the port when setting this device up for it is set to go to “File” and browse to that folder you set the Mutoh Cut Server to read from

Continue reading »

Apr 182011
 

I see and get asked very regularly why sometimes in digital printing you get a different colored box around drop shadows, transparencies and sometimes masks.

The reason is because sometimes the printer rip software allows a different “rendering intent” to be selected for images (bitmap) to vector (spot colours) and quite often the rip software will even default these to be different settings for the 2 things.

Continue reading »

Apr 142011
 

We have seen a few instances where our customers are running a print from one device to cut contour workflow via Mutoh Cut Server that takes advantage of the job barcode system only to find that on occasion the barcode does not match the print job.

This is almost always caused by a change being made after the print was made but before the cut contour was made to Mutoh Cut Server. If the change was only minor and you are confident that the cut path will still be accurate to the print then the Mutoh Cut Server job folder will contain the cut job with the wrong barcode details Continue reading »

Apr 142011
 

We have seen a couple of occasions where HP Designjet L25500 customers have had the following error but there is no visible jam:

HP device alert:
Event:Non-continuable error – Possible substrate jam

In these examples we found it was due to the carriage rail not being sufficiently lubricated and after extended or high volume use the carriage tension on the drive motor is strong enough that it suspects a possible media jam when this is not the case.

Continue reading »

Apr 142011
 

Cielab is posting these codes to offer some initial support in the event of one of these codes occurring perhaps out of hours when HP may not be contactable. Please note this is taken directly from the User Maintenance & Troubleshooting Guide that you received with your printer, this information being on the Cielab website is just an easier searchable form of that information.

Please note that by offering this information we accept no liability, and it is important that you call HP support (ph 13 10 47 within Australia) to book a technician callout as required.

 

When a system error appears on the screen , the best practice is to :

Note what occurred at the time of the error and the position of the Carriage / Substrate and any other behaviour and the Job type & parameters.

If printer is still functioning , then please gather the Printer info

Access via the Embedded Webserver : Enter the IP address into a browser:   Select    >Support>Printer Info>All Pages & Save as *.mht file if possible (web archive). This fie can be emailed for reviewing by Cielab or by HP.

Continue reading »

Mar 222011
 

Flexisign can communicate with Production Manager (also known as Photoprint) both on the same computer or across the network to another computer. It’s important you understand what Production manager you are trying to connect to.

If you are connecting to a computer across the network then when you select the “rip and print” button of the top menu it should open up a new dialog box asking if you want to connect to the local computer (the one you are working on now) or across the network. If you select the network you should be able to see any running versions of Production manager on the network, select that computer and send jobs directly to that computer.

Couple of things to check: Continue reading »

Mar 182011
 

We note here there is a bug with the cutters on Canon IPF8000 printers (and potentially other similar models).

The bug is that somewhat randomly the cutter works and other times doesn’t cut. This has been reported to us by a number of customers to date.

Our customers have reported this fault to Canon and are all in the same situation, waiting for something to be done to rectify the problem.

Mar 182011
 

Because we generate profiles across very much all printer brands we quickly notice things like Bronzing (a colour appears a brown/gold colour when light is on a particular light reflection).

I have found the Blue ink on this printer to be particularly bad, this is very visible during profile calibration steps on photo papers.

Bronzing is particularly a problem for photographic reproduction on glossy photopapers and as such I can not recommend this printer where a high quality of print is expected

If you would like to know more about bronzing, search for it in the learn section of the menu

Mar 182011
 

I find it very frustrating as an independent colour management specialist that with Mimaki’s Raster-link Pro software it is impossible for anyone to even calibrate a printer wihtout paying to upgrade the rip so that you can generate Mimaki software generated profiles.

Every other rip I can think of will allow the printer to at least be calibrated, and usually for a 3rd party generated ICC profile to be loaded. In our situation this means that we almost always are forced to trade in the Mimaki rip to an alternative product so that we can generate high quality media calibrations and profiles for these printers.

If only Mimaki didn’t try to lock everyone into their platform, perhaps they would realise they’re only forcing people away from their solution.

Mar 182011
 

In everything that cielab promotes we always suggest to customers to move to Pantone standards with properly generated media and profiles, this is an excellent workflow that works really well when your system is properly configured.

Roland Versaworks however does not support Pantone in the way that most other Rip’s do with either included, or user loaded look up tables “LUT”. That said, we still find very good accuracy results when using Pantone within Versaworks but ONLY when a very high quality colour profile is used.

If you need accuracy, make sure that you have custom profiles generated onsite. If you already have this remember that not all profiles are equal and the accuracy also has a lot to do with experience and quality of equipment used to generate the profiles. If you have all of this organized and are confident that the media settings that you are using perhaps you should look into a Rip software that does support Pantone properly such as Flexisign or Photoprint.

Mar 182011
 

In older Onyx v7.0 versions there was a severe problem we found when generating new colour profiles that created a problem with GCR (Gray Component Replacement).
When selecting a lower ink restriction within Media Manager the gray and black sections of the images being produced came out very green. In later versions this became better and more neutral although not correct.

If you are experiencing this problem please upgrade to the latest version available of Onyx v7 (anything after about v7.0.5 should be ok)

UPDATE:

In testing the latest revision of Onyx Postershop/Productionhouse as at this post date, I have found that the advanced Grayscale still demonstrates a similar GCR problem.

Our testing has been on a 12 colour Canon IPF8000 with RGB N-colour inks (please comment if you have found other printers to be ok).

I suggest only doing a simple linearization within media manager while they sort out the problems.

Mar 182011
 

We have found a bug within Photoprint v6 that has existed since the release of this version 6 relating to calibration when using multiple same printers. This problem will most likely exist in Flexisign although we have not at this stage tested this. I will post back to update as I know more.

When you have multiple printers using the same media or paper types it’s important to calibrate the media to each printer. We have however found that Continue reading »

Jun 182009
 

In older Onyx v7.0 versions there was a severe problem we found when generating new colour profiles that created a problem with GCR (Gray Component Replacement).
When selecting a lower ink restriction within Media Manager the gray and black sections of the images being produced came out very green. In later versions this became better and more neutral although not correct.

Updated:

In testing the absolute latest revision of Onyx Postershop/Productionhouse as at this post date, I have found that the advanced Grayscale still demonstrates a similar GCR problem.

Our testing has been on a 12 colour Canon IPF8000 with RGB inks (please comment if you have found other printers to be ok).

I suggest only doing a simple linearization within media manager while they sort out the problems.