What data should I give for proofing?

A proof is suitable for two types of color control: firstly, during the creation or retouching phase, e.g. to reconcile a color retouched image with the original, and secondly to check the final data directly before printing.

For control proofs during the data creation of a project, the data format usually does not matter. Whether PDF, JPEG, TIFF; EPS, PS or even PSD… Many proofing companies accept a variety of data formats. For a correct evaluation of the result, however, it is important to proof in the color space in which the print product is also created later. Data for a letterhead should therefore be proofed in ISOUncoated or PSOUncoated, while products printed on image printing paper should be proofed in ISOCoatedV2. For yellowish paper, newsprint or gravure printing, there are many other profiles for which a proof can be produced. You can find a good overview of the current proof profiles here. It is also important that the proof format and the final print format do not differ too much. Only in this way is a correct check possible.

When the brochure has been laid out or the catalogue production has been completed, a proof should be prepared again for the final check by the customer. This proof is then created with exactly the same data that is also sent to the print shop. This is usually a PDF X/3:2002 file, as this is the preferred data format for printers. If the pages are delivered to the printer with bleed marks and bleed, then the proofs should actually be created in exactly the same way. The finished proofs can then first be used as approval for the customer, and secondly for checking the OK sheet in the print shop. This ensures that no unpleasant surprises wait for the customer (what does the colour look like????) or the printer (why does the customer make a complaint?????) after printing and bookbinding.

Can spot colours be proofed?

Since many printed matter contains spot colours such as Pantone or HKS, the question often arises whether these colours can be proofed at all. The answer is “no”. Only an approximate simulation of these colors is possible.
The reason: Each special ink is a specially mixed, “real” ink and therefore cannot be mixed from the 4 printing inks (cyan, magenta, yellow and black).

Today, modern proofing machines have up to 12 different printing colours and, in addition to the classic primary colours, also have, for example, orange and green and violet as real colour pigments in the machine. Proof printers such as the Epson SureColor P9000V are therefore capable of displaying significantly larger color spaces than, for example, ISOCoatedV2. The spot color simulation in these devices is therefore sometimes very good when controlled via a Contone driver, which can access the entire color space of the proof printer. Epson himself points out, for example, that “98% of all Pantone colors” can be covered. This may be doubted, but a number of over 90% of all Pantone colors is realistic from our point of view.

In the past, Pantone and HKS colors were simply converted by the proofing systems to CMYK and then simulated in the standard color space, i.e. mostly ISOCoatedV2. The representation of the colors here is mostly completely insufficient. For the reproduction of Pantone and HKS colours in a proof it is therefore immensely important to have a modern proof printer with many colours and a high colour gamut and a modern proofing software which is also able to precisely control the printed gamut.

Differences in the quality of the simulation of spot colors can quickly be seen in the different printing systems: If the proofing service provider prints with an older 6-color or 8-color system (Cyan, Light Cyan, Magenta, Light Magenta, Yellow and Black or Light Black), spot colors are simulated worse than, for example, with a modern 11-color system with Cyan, Light Cyan, Orange, Yellow, Magenta, Light Magenta, Photo Black, Matte Black, Light Black, Light light Black and Green.

The higher simulation quality of the spot colors is generated by the fact that orange, for example, already exists as a separate color and does not have to be mixed from magenta and yellow before the spot color simulation.

Of course, it must be said that there are limits, especially in the area of metallic or fluorescent colours; these colours are currently not reproducible in proofing.

The spot-colour simulation of gradations is also critical

In most proofing systems, only the 100% values of a Pantone or HKS color are underlaid. If, for example, a font logo with 100% color application of a Pantone color is to be simulated, this is precise and is well represented in most proofing systems.

However, it becomes more difficult if the logo contains not only 100% areas but also a 30% Pantone colour area, since this is not defined in the proofing system, but is simulated by the proofing system. In some cases, considerable deviations from e.g. HKS colour fans can be observed.

It becomes even more difficult if, for example, a grayscale TIFF lies on a 100% HKS area and overprints. For the graphic professional it is immediately comprehensible that the HKS surface simply has to become correspondingly darker at this point due to an overprinting 30% black. However, the proofing software must recognize this effect correctly, calculate it correctly and then simulate it correctly with the 11 colors available from the proof printer. It is easy to understand that countless errors can occur. And the supreme discipline: 7-colour Pantone files with lots of overlaying and overprinting Pantone colours or HKS colours with overprinting CMYK elements can at best be calculated even by the most modern proofing systems, but can by no means be colour-accurately simulated.

The bad news is that a proof with spot colors is therefore never as color-binding according to the current state of the art and varies more depending on the proofing system.

But the good news is that spot colors, especially solid colors, can now be simulated well by modern proofing systems. A modern proofing system therefore also offers the possibility of getting a realistic impression of spot color prints at a fraction of the cost of a test print on a offset press.

D50 is not the same as D50: Standardized light and ISO3664:2009

Since 2009, printers and proofing service providers have increasingly encountered a new D50 lighting standard: ISO 3664:2009, which defines how the new D50 standardized light, under which proofs and print products are to be evaluated, looks like. The new standard light contains UV components that address the optical brighteners that are frequently used in offset papers nowadays.

The result: next to a bluish-white glowing sheet in the pressroom, there is a yellowish-pale proof.

What is the reason for this? The standard came sort of as a surprise and was poorly communicated within the industry. All proofing substrates available from proofing service providers contain no or almost no optical brighteners – this was previously a requirement. And under the old D50 standardized light – which did not contain any UV components – the proof and production run looked identical, since the optical brighteners were not addressed in the production run. Proofing and production printing can no longer be compared on all new presses that are already equipped with light tubes of the new standard: This looks completely different, the differences in paper white are absolutely obvious.

Printers and proofing service providers have mostly replaced the old tubes with new ones. However, this is often a complex topic: The old diffusing screens, which are mounted in front of the neon tubes, had so far predominantly once again installed UV filtering in order to ensure that completely no UV components get through. If new ISO 3664:2009 tubes with a defined amount of UV components are mounted behind the diffusors, unfortunately exactly this component is missing in front of the diffusor again… So there are some extra costs for the printers.

In the meantime with M1 and the new proofing Standards Fogra51 upwards, many proofing papers with brighteners havel been launched on the market so that proof and run can be compared cleanly again in the pressroom.

Standardized light and metamerism effect

A proof is only as good as the light under which it is viewed. Just going to the window or switching on the light at dusk is useless: between December and July, between 8 am and 8 pm, between cloudy and sunny days there is a huge difference in the lighting, which makes any colour evaluation impossible. And if you switch on the light, you normally switch on a bulb with 2700 Kelvin – or even worse: an energy-saving neon bulb that somehow shines in any spectra… a disaster!

The reasons for metamerism effects (in short: that two colors look identical under one light, but completely different under another) lie in the different printing technologies. Colors that look the same under a light bulb can suddenly look very different under a neon tube.

In recent years, ink-based digital proofs have established themselves in the proofing sector. Because it is printed in ink, specially coated paper must be used, which is not in any way similar to the subsequent production run. Anyone who has ever tried to print on glossy coated paper with an inkjet printer knows: the ink never lasts! Metamerism is therefore always involved when a proof is to be compared with offset printing.

The light under which proof and production run are viewed is particularly important.

ISO 3664 regulates standardized light, which is important for viewing proofs and prints. D50 is no longer D50: The International Lighting Commission CIE has revised ISO 3664 in recent years and adapted it to today’s circumstances. If UV components used to be strictly prohibited, they are now part of the standard. In the past, the focus was on consistency between slide and print, while today monitor, digital proof and offset printing are important. Therefore, proofs must always be viewed under D50 Standardized Light, so that they are really “colour-binding” in their perception.

If you want to check metamerism effects, we recommend the UGRA colour temperature indicator. With these strips, metamerism effects can be checked very quickly and clearly.

 

Embed fonts, convert them into paths or rasterize them?

To ensure secure data exchange between customers and proofing service providers, fonts must be embedded, converted into paths or rasterized. This ensures that it is and remains exactly the same font and exactly the same style.

How do I do that?

  • With InDesign and QuarkXPress, you select the PDF/X-3 standard when exporting data.
  • For Illustrator and Freehand, select the font and select “Convert font to paths” from the menu.
  • In Photoshop, select the text layer, right-click on it and select “Rasterize Text”.

 

What is the UGRA-Fogra Media Wedge 3.0 used for?

Every print shop in Germany adheres to a predefined standard, the process standard offset printing. This standard defines target and tolerance values for printed products. In order to prove that your proof delivered to the print shop meets these standards or is within the tolerances, the media wedge is measured and the values analysed in case of doubt – i.e. in case of a streak. If these measured values are correct, the print shop is obliged to adhere to and achieve these values.

Practice generally shows the following: If you want to have a 4-page image brochure proofed and printed, it is usually sufficient to have a single media wedge printed under the 4 pages. If the media wedge is also provided with a test report, the colour accuracy for the print shop is directly confirmed as a guideline.
However, if you want to be on the safe side, have a separate media wedge (including test report) printed under each of the 4 pages of your brochure.

How colour-accurate are proofs?

A proof is prepared according to the currently valid ISO standard 12647-7 and is legally binding with a UGRA-Fogra media wedge and measurement report.

How does this check work?

If you need a proof with UGRA/Fogra Media Wedge CMYK V3.0, there are two ways to add the test report to your data.

  1. With proofing devices in which a measuring device is integrated, the media wedge with 3×24 standardised colour fields is printed directly under the proof data. This media wedge is driven directly in the proofing device to a kind of “hair dryer” in the measuring device and dried there. After a few minutes of drying, the media wedge continues and is measured directly in the proofer. This takes a few minutes. The measured values determined in this way are returned to the proof server and evaluated there. If the colour values are correct and within the tolerances of the strict ISO standard, a test report of the measurement is then printed directly under the media wedge, which guarantees you colour accuracy in accordance with the process standard offset printing.
  2. For proofing devices without integrated measuring device, only the standardized media wedge is printed under the proof data. A check takes place subsequently and outside the proof printer. The media wedge is then measured with an external measuring device and the target and tolerance values are output to a label printer. This label is then stuck directly under the media wedge.

What is the advantage of automated creation and checking of the media wedge directly in the proofing device?

  • Measurement is automated directly after proof printing, measurement errors due to manual operating errors are excluded. Since the test report is not subsequently attached, as is often still the case, manipulation is impossible.

Further information on the test report, the media wedge and on the work and responsibility of UGRA/Fogra can be found at www.ugra.ch and www.fogra.org.

Current Proof Standards 2020

Offset and Newsprint

ISO Coated v2 (ECI) / ISO Coated v2 300% (ECI)
Profile: ISOcoated_v2_eci.icc
Standard for glossy and matte coated paper
Paper: Types 1 and 2, gloss and matte coated
Tone value increase curves A (CMY) and B (K) as defined in ISO 12647-2:2004
Characterisation Data: FOGRA39L

ISOUncoated
Profile: ISOUncoated.icc
Standard for uncoated white natural paper
Paper: paper grade 4, uncoated white offset, dot gain curves C (CMY) and D (K) from ISO 12647-2: 2004
Characterisation Data: FOGRA29L

PSOCoatedV3 / Fogra 51
Profile: PSOcoated_v3.icc
The successor of ISOCoatedV2 for glossy and matte coated paper with moderate optical brighteners
Paper: paper type 1, glossy and matte coated paper with moderate optical brighteners (8-14 DeltaB according to ISO 15397)
Tone value increase curve A (CMYK) according to ISO 12647-2:2013
Paper white: CIELAB=95;1,5;-6
Characterisation Data: Fogra51 / Fogra 51 Spectral (M1)

PSOuncoated_v3 / Fogra 52
Profile: PSOuncoated_v3_FOGRA52.icc
The successor of PSOUncoated for uncoated, wood-free natural paper with many optical brighteners
Paper: Paper type 5, wood-free uncoated, with high OBAs (more than 14 DeltaB according to ISO 15397)
Tonal value increase curves C (CMYK) according to ISO 12647-2:2013
Paper white: CIELAB=93.5;2.5;-10
Characterisation Data: PresumablyFogra52L (M1)

PSO Uncoated ISO12647 (ECI)
Profile: PSO_Uncoated_ISO12647_eci.icc
The successor of ISOUncoated
Paper: Type 4, uncoated white offset
Tone value increase curves C (CMY) and D (K) as defined in ISO 12647-2:2004
Characterisation Data: FOGRA47L

PSO LWC Improved (ECI)
Profile: PSO_LWC_Improved_eci.icc
Improved LWC paper, glossy coated, successor of ISO Web Coated
Paper: Paper type 3, improved gloss coated (LWC)
Tone value increase curves B (CMY) and C (K) as defined in ISO 12647-2:2004
Characterisation Data: FOGRA45L

PSO LWC Standard (ECI)
Profile: PSO_LWC_Standard_eci.icc
LWC paper standard, glossy coated
Paper: Paper type 3, standard glossy coated (LWC)
Tone value increase curves B (CMY) and C (K) as defined in ISO 12647-2:2004
Characterisation Data: FOGRA46L

ISO Web Coated
Profile: ISOwebcoated.icc
LWC paper standard, glossy
Paper: Paper grade 3, standard glossy coated (LWC), dot gain curves B (CMY) and C (K) from ISO 12647-2: 2004
Characterisation Data: FOGRA28L

ISO Uncoated Yellowish
Profile: ISOuncoatedyellowish.icc
Uncoated natural paper slightly yellowish (chamois)
Paper: Type 5, uncoated yellowish offset
Tone value increase curves C (CMY) and D (K) as defined in ISO 12647-2:2004
Characterisation Data: FOGRA30L

SC Paper (ECI)
Profile: SC_paper_eci.icc
Paper: SC (Super Calendered) Paper
Tone value increase curves B (CMY) and C (K) as defined in ISO 12647-2:2004
Characterisation Data: FOGRA40L

PSO SC-B Paper v3
Profile:  PSOsc-b_paper_v3_FOGRA54.icc
SC-B Paper, Super calendered Papier, satin-finished
Paper: Commercial offset, SC-B paper (super-calendered, satin), printing condition PC6
Tone value increase curve 2013-B, white measurement base.
Characterisation Data: FOGRA54

PSO MFC Paper (ECI)
Profile: PSO_MFC_paper_eci.icc
Paper: MFC, Machine finished coating
Tone value increase curves B (CMY) and C (K) as defined in ISO 12647-2:2004
Characterisation Data: FOGRA41L

PSO SNP Paper (ECI)
Profile: PSO_SNP_paper_eci.icc
Newsprint
Paper: SNP, Standard newsprint, heatset web offset printing
Tone value increase curves C (CMY) and D (K) as defined in ISO 12647-2:2004
Characterisation Data: FOGRA42L

WAN-IFRAnewspaper 26v5
Profile: WAN-IFRAnewspaper26v5.icc
Colour space: Primary and secondary colours according to ISO 12647-3: 2013
Dot gain: 26%
Maximum paint application: 220%
Maximum GCR: Long black with an early black start

ISONewspaper 26v4
Profile: ISONewspaper26v4.icc
Newspaper
Paper: paper type SNP, standard newsprint, heatset web offset, dot gain curves C (CMY) and D (K) from ISO 12647-2: 2004
Characterisation Data: IFRA26

PSO Coated NPscreen ISO12647 (ECI)
Profile: PSO_Coated_NPscreen_ISO12647_eci.icc
glossy and matte coated paper, FM screen
Paper: Paper types 1 and 2, glossy and matt coated paper, non-periodic screen (NPscreen), 20 µm,
Tone value increase curve F (CMYK) from ISO 12647-2:2004
Characterisation Data: FOGRA43L

PSO Coated 300% NPscreen ISO12647 (ECI)
Profile: PSO_Coated_300_NPscreen_ISO12647_eci.icc
glossy and matte coated paper, FM screen
Paper: type 1 and 2, gloss and matte coated
non-periodic screening (NPscreen), 20 μm
Tone value increase curve F (CMYK) as defined in ISO12647-2:2004
Characterisation Data: FOGRA43L

PSO Uncoated NPscreen ISO12647 (ECI)
Profile: PSO_Uncoated_NPscreen_ISO12647_eci.icc
Uncoated white natural paper, non-periodic screening (NPscreen), 30 μm
Paper: type 4, uncoated white offset
Tone value increase curve F (CMYK) as defined in ISO 12647-2:2004
Characterisation Data: FOGRA44L

Improved Newsprint, INP / PSO INP Paper (ECI)
Profile: PSO_INP_Paper_eci.icc
Commercial and specialty offset, INP paper (improved news print), positive plates
Paper: improved newsprint
Tone value increase curves C (CMY) and D (K), white measurement base
Characterisation Data: FOGRA48L

PSO Coated v2 300% Glossy laminate (ECI)
Profile: PSO_Coated_v2_300_Glossy_laminate_eci.icc
Commercial offset printing, positive copy, AM screen with 60-80 lines/cm, with subsequent gloss foil lamination (typical OPP gloss foil 12-15 μm), white measurement base.
The profile is consistent with the old profiles ISOcoated_v2_eci.icc and ISOcoated_v2_300_eci.icc and shows the matching gloss finished result.
Tone value increase curves A (CMY) and B (K) according to ISO 12647-2:2004
Characterisation Data: FOGRA50L

PSO Coated v2 300% Matte laminate (ECI)
Profile: PSO_Coated_v2_300_Matte_laminate_eci.icc
Commercial offset printing, positive copy, AM screen with 60-80 lines/cm, with subsequent matt film lamination (typical OPP matt film 15 μm with medium opacity ~70%, i.e. brightening ΔL* = 6 on black solid tone after finishing), white measurement base.
The profile is consistent with the old profiles ISOcoated_v2_eci.icc and ISOcoated_v2_300_eci.icc and shows the matching matt-finished result.
Tone value increase curves A (CMY) and B (K) according to ISO 12647-2:2004
Characterisation Data: FOGRA49L

eciCMYK (Fogra 53) – CMYK exchange colour space
Profile: eciCMYK.icc
FOGRA53 is a CMYK exchange colour space and is used for colour communication in print production.

eciCMYK_v2 (Fogra 59) – CMYK exchange colour space New 2020!
Profile: eciCMYK_v2.icc
eciCMYK_v2 (Fogra 59) is the successor of eciCMYK (Fogra 53).

Heaven42
The absolute white tone opens up the greatest scope of colours for design and printing afforded by any coated paper worldwide. The perfect foundation for extreme contrasts and combination with ultra white natural papers. The absolutely white paper shade of heaven 42 impacts on the printing process as well as on the pre-press stage. With the same colouring and dot gain, the printed image can look significantly colder if separation remains unchanged (e.g. with
ICC-profile “IsoCoated_v2”).

We proof Heaven42 on proof paper with optical brighteners and measure the Proof in M1 Standard. Please note: Our Heaven42 proofs represent a good simulation of the original Heaven42 ICC Profile, but are not – as an ISOcoatedv2 Proof – colouraccurate and legally binding.

Scheufelen offers two ICC-Profiles for download, we proof the colour profile of Heidelberger Druck (“_HD”).
Profile: Heaven42_AM_U280_K98_G80_HD.icc (Heidelberger Druck)
Ink Coverage: ~280 % (U)
Black: GCR , 80 % (G)
Black Generation: 98 % (K)
Proofpaper: EFI Proof Paper 8245 OBA Semimatt
Characterisation Data: Made from Reference Data
Measuring method: M1 with optical brighteners (OBAs)

PaC.Space
Profile: PaC.Space_CMYK_gravure_V1a.icc
PaC.Space is the first common color standard for packaging gravure printing, which enables to process an interface from the supplied prepress data or printer-specific requirements.
Paper: Coated substrates and films for packaging gravure
Characterisation Data: FOGRA_PaCSpace_MKCheck11

Rotogravure Profiles

ECI Rotogravure profiles for the Process Standard Rotogravure (PSR)

PSR LWC Plus V2 M1 v2 (2019)
Profile: PSR_LWC_PLUS_V2_M1_v2.icc
The Successor of PSR LWC Plus V2 (PSR_LWC_PLUS_V2_PT.icc)
Paper: Roll gravure, LWCplus glossy coated
Measuring base: unprinted LWCplus paper
Characterisation Data: PSR_LWC_PLUS_V2_M1

PSR LWC Plus V2 (2009)
Profile: PSR_LWC_PLUS_V2_PT.icc
The successor of HWC
Paper: Improved LWC (light weight coated) paper
Characterisation Data: ECI_PSR_LWC_PLUS_V2

PSR LWC Standard V2 M1 (2019)
Profile: PSR_LWC_STD_V2_M1.icc
The successor of PSR LWC Standard V2
Paper: Rotogravure, LWC
Measuring base: unprinted LWC paper (self backing)
Charakterisierungsdaten: SR_LWC_STD_V2_M1

PSR LWC Standard V2 (2009)
Profile: PSR_LWC_STD_V2_PT.icc
Paper: LWC (light weight coated) paper
Characterisation Data: ECI_PSR_LWC_STD_V2

PSR SC Plus V2 M1 (2019)
Profile: PSR_SC_PLUS_V2_M1.icc
The successor of PSR SC Plus V2
Paper: Rotogravure, SC Plus
Measuring base: Unprinted SC Plus paper
Characterisation Data: PSR_SC_Plus_V2_M1

PSR SC Plus V2 (2009)
Profile: PSR_SC_PLUS_V2_PT.icc
Paper: whiter super calandered paper
Characterisation Data: ECI_PSR_SC_Plus_V2

PSR SC Standard V2 M1 (2019)
Profile: PSR_SC_STD_V2_M1.icc
The successor of PSR SC Standard V2
Paper: Roll gravure, SC paper
Measurement document: Unprinted SC paper
Characterisation Data: PSR_SC_STD_V2_M1

PSR SC Standard V2 (2009)
Profile: PSR_SC_STD_V2_PT.icc
Paper: super calandered paper
Characterisation Data: ECI_PSR_SC_STD_V2

PSR MF V2 M1 (2019)
Profile: PSR_MF_V2_M1.icc
Paper: Rotogravure, paper type MF or INP, 55 g/m2
Measuring base: unprinted MF or INP paper
Characterisation Data: PSR_MF_V2_M1

PSR News Plus
Profile: PSRgravureMF.icc
PSRgravureMF is now reffered to as News Plus
Paper: Paper News Plus
Characterisation Data: PSRgravureMF_ECI2002

US / International Proof Profiles

GRACoL2006_Coated1v2
Profile: GRACoL2006_Coated1v2.icc
GRACol interpretation of ISO 12647-2.
Paper: Type 1 and 2, glossy and matt coated paper
Dot gain curves: NPDC (Neutral Print Density Curves)
Characterisation Data: GRACoL2006_Coated1, a derivation from Fogra 39

SWOP2006_Coated3v2
Profile: SWOP2006_Coated3v2
SWOP interpretation of ISO12647-2 for web offset printing on thin coated paper.
Paper: Thin, coated paper
Tonwertzunahmekurven: NPDC (Neutral Print Density Curves)
Characterisation Data: SWOP2006_Coated3, a derivative of Adobe USWebCoated v2

SWOP2006_Coated5v2
Profile: SWOP2006_Coated5v2
Other SWOP interpretation of ISO12647-2 for web offset printing on thin coated paper
Paper: Thin, coated paper with a slightly different white tone to SWOP2006_Coated3V2
Dot gain curves: NPDC (Neutral Print Density Curves)
Characterisation Data: SWOP2006_Coated5, a derivative of Adobe USWebCoated v2

Japan Color 2011 Coated
Profile: JapanColor2011Coated.icc
The new standard of Japan Printing Machinery Association (JPMA).
Characterisation Data: JapanColor

Japan Color 2001 Coated
Profile: JapanColor2001Coated.icc
Printing process definition: ISO 12647-2:1996, sheet-fed offset printing, positive plates
Paper: Type 1, (coated, 105 gsm), screen frequency 69/cm.

SWOP 2013 C3
Profile: SWOP2013_CRPC5.icc or SWOP2013C3-CPRC5.icc
The profile is measured in M1 mode in consideration of optical brighteners and is printed on proofing papers with optical brighteners.
TAC: 260%
GCR: Medium+
Max K: 100%
TVI: CMY 16%, K19%
Paper: Grade #3 paper
Characterisation Data: CGATS21-2-CRPC5

GRACoL 2013 Uncoated
Profile: GRACoL2013UNC_CRPC3.icc
The profile is being measured in M1 Mode taking into account the Optical Brightening Agents in the paper.
TAC: 260%
GCR: Medium+
Max K: 100%
TVI: CMY 16%, K19%
Paper: N.N.
Characterisation Data: CGATS21-2-CRPC3

GRACoL 2013
Profile: GRACoL2013_CRPC6.icc
The profile is being measured in M1 Mode taking into account the Optical Brightening Agents in the paper.
TAC: 320%
GCR: Medium+
Max K: 100%
TVI: CMY 16%, K19,1%
Paper: N.N.
Characterisation Data: CGATS21-2-CRPC6

What is a Contract Proof? Softproof? Validation Print?

Very simple: A proof is the simulation of a later print, either as soft proof on the monitor or as contract proof, validation print or as form proof on paper.

Softproof: A softproof is the color-accurate representation of the print on a monitor. This can be done either at the agency or directly at the printing machine, for example, so that the printer can coordinate the production run with the soft proof.

Contract Proof: The “highest” level of proofing: A contract proof is a very high-quality simulation of the subsequent printing result, and is nowadays actually always produced with special inkjet printers on special paper with special software. The UGRA/Fogra media wedge print makes the proof “colour and legally binding”. In the best case, the media wedge is checked directly during proof production with a measuring device and a test report is glued or printed on which confirms compliance with the tolerances.

Validation Print: A Validation Print has higher tolerances regarding the color deviations from the given standard than a contract proof. It is therefore not “colour and legally binding”, i.e. it does not serve as a contract or “contract” between the designer and the printer, unless both parties have agreed that Validation Print can serve as a colour reference. Validation prints are often used in the coordination process in agencies or as quick templates with good colour matching, as they can also be produced on current laser and LED or other digital printers. Compared to inkjet printing, these printing systems are many times faster and cheaper.

Form Proof: A form proof is often found in print shops; large sheets of paper on which the finished imposed sheets, e.g. of a magazine, are printed. Form proofs are printed with inexpensive inkjet plotters on inexpensive paper and usually look terribly coarse and pixelated, even the colors are terrible. However, the data for the form proof runs through the same workflow with which the printing plates are later produced. This means that what can be seen on the form proof can later also be seen on the printing plate. Thus, the final printing forms can be optimally checked once again to ensure that all fonts, images and embedded graphics are displayed correctly. However, a form proof is by no means binding in terms of colour.

Certified for
Order proofs

You can easily order proofs from our shop:

Contact
  • Proof GmbH
    Gölzstraße 17
    72072 Tübingen
    Baden-Württemberg
    Germany
Approach