Studies on image control for better reproduction in offset

Abstract: This research work has focused on studies of image control for better reproduction in offset and has been applied practically. This research work has resulted in a survey of color management knowledge, a communication list concerning ICC profiles, an educational kit, a proposal for a new terminology and a patent concerning image adaptation. The work is divided into following three areas: 1) image classification A better understanding of image processing can avoid misunderstandings in the print and leading to more satisfied customers. To achieve optimal print quality for different images, it is important to adapt the prepress settings to the image category. Images can be divided into different categories depending on their image content, key information and tone distribution. Trials have been carried out in which the IT.8 test chart has been adapted to different image categories. The results of the image adaptation suggest that an adjustment only to low-key images (dark images) is sufficient, as even normal-key images then show a better similarity to the original image. The low-key image showed more details in dark areas. 2) color separation Two studies has been carried out. The purpose has been to investigate the knowledge level in color separation, the use of ICC-profiles and the understanding of color management in various printing houses in Sweden. This was done to identify and suggest new applications and suggested actions. These studies indicate that there is a serious problem in the graphic arts industry. The problem is that there is both an insufficient knowledge of color management and a lack of communication. There is a lack of competence and a lack of literature and instructions which can help printers to better understand the technology, and communication suffers through a lack of a common language. 3) suggested actions and the development of tools Terminology simplification is crucial for the users. A new term for separation “Compensation by Black”, CB, has been suggested. A single term should make it easier for the users to understand and use the different settings which impact the image reproduction. A new tool/kit for the evaluation of ICC-profiles has been created. The goal of this educational kit is to facilitate and exemplify the practical understanding of profiles and their use for the users.