The interaction between image files and your RIP system can leave your clients impressed or your prepress staff distressed. Mandel explains how you can improve the relations between these two critical elements of digital imaging.
The safety net
Every graphics-printing operation should build a safety net of professionals that can be called on when the shop is stumped with a particular RIPing problem. Even with talented people, we all face scenarios that dumbfound everyone and leave them asking one of the most popular questions in graphic arts: How did that happen? The question might as well be rhetorical, as we often find ourselves without an answer.
Luckily, we have a lot of resources at our disposal that can provide support. RIP vendors and the developers of graphic-design software are a great place to start. With today’s technology, many vendors can even remotely access a shop’s computer system, allowing their experts to see and control what’s on the operator’s screen and demonstrate the procedures necessary to solve the problem at hand. Another good resource is technical forums, where we can share our problems and solutions with people facing the same challenges (see “Online Resources for Problem Solvers” on page 32). Collaboration is the key.
Let it RIP
Sending the latest customer files through the RIP shouldn’t make our heads spin or stomachs tighten. By cultivating knowledge and experience, keeping current with hardware and software, and establishing a network of internal and external resources for troubleshooting, we can rein in our RIPs and make them big contributors to the profitability of our digital-imaging businesses.
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