German print service and media provider transforms its prepress with KODAK PRINERGY CONNECT Workflow System, KODAK INSITE Prepress Portal System, and KODAK PRINERGY Rules-Based Automation Software
Bosch-Druck, has increased productivity and its capacity to take on more jobs after investing in the KODAK PRINERGY CONNECT Workflow System, KODAK INSITE Prepress Portal System, and KODAK PRINERGY Rules-Based Automation Software.
Bavaria-based Bosch-Druck offers made-to-measure solutions – from web-to-print through to warehousing and fulfillment – for publishers, advertising agencies and top enterprises in a range of industries.
Roger Diekmann (left) and Christoph Siebeneich at the CTP line with the fastest KODAK MAGNUS 800 QUANTUM Platesetter.
A large part of the company’s business is creating customized products on demand, either digitally or via a hybrid offset-digital printing process. For example, customized user manuals and sales literature for premium brands, as wells as personalized books, photobooks and calendars designed by individual customers.
Streamlining the company
The PRINERGY CONNECT Workflow System and INSITE Prepress Portal System are cornerstones of Bosch-Druck’s integrated production philosophy. The systems are helping the company realize its overarching objective of boosting efficiency by streamlining processes and increasing automation in all areas.
Creating a unified prepress
Before the KODAK Systems were implemented, Bosch-Druck’s prepress department comprised a whole series of production islands, such as an imposition station, imposition proofer, RIP and platesetter. The files needed for the various processing steps were manually transferred back and forth between these stations via the network.
The PRINERGY CONNECT Workflow is the central production hub in the Prepress department while the RBA Software automates this workflow behind the scenes; a rule visualized in the Rule Builder is shown here.
Roger Diekmann, Technical Director, explains the impact of the PRINERGY CONNECT Workflow System at Bosch-Druck. “Previously, we didn’t have a complete, end-to-end prepress solution. Switching to the PRINERGY Workflow System has completely changed the way we work. Each prepress operator can now process their job from start to finish.
“We’ve achieved a very high level of automation with the PRINERGY System, and have speeded up our processes enormously.”
The operators in Bosch-Druck’s prepress and digital departments access the PRINERGY CONNECT Workflow via 15 workshop clients. The system communicates with various upstream and downstream systems using JDF. The data interchange with the company‘s Hiflex Management Information System (MIS), for example is controlled by KODAK PRINERGY Business Link Software developed to provide real time data collection.
The PRINERGY Workflow System automatically picks up new jobs from the MIS, providing status updates and information on material usage. It also shortens make-ready and rollup times by providing automated ink-key setting information to the sheet-fed offset presses. KODAK PRINERGY Business Link Software.
The plates are imaged on a fully automatic KODAK MAGNUS 800 QUANTUM Platesetter, which has a throughput of 60 full-sized plates an hour. The multi-cassette unit (MCU) has five trays for up to 500 plates, which it feeds to the thermal CTP system. The imaged plates are transferred direct to a processing line, where they are processed, punched and stacked.
Bosch-Druck also uses KODAK ELECTRA XD Thermal Plates, which offer excellent imaging properties and a very high resolution.
Going all out for automation
After seeing the benefits afforded by extensively automating its prepress operation, Bosch-Druck decided to streamline the department further using PRINERGY Rules-Based Automation Software (RBA).
RBA automates processes by taking a defined action in response to a defined event. As soon as an event is detected, the corresponding action is triggered and automatically executed by the workflow. The potential benefits of RBA include faster processes, fewer human errors and less time wasted waiting for operator actions.
“We currently use about 40 different RBA rules in the PRINERGY Workflow System,” says Diekmann. “The software has accelerated our processes dramatically – something our customers have certainly noticed.”
Prepress Manager, Christoph Siebeneich, oversaw the introduction of the PRINERGY CONNECT Workflow. He says Bosch-Druck’s prepress processes for certain job categories are now almost totally automated: “Today, all an operator has to do is make sure the PDF file doesn’t conflict with the naming conventions, match the Trim Box to the spine, and drag the file to the appropriate hot folder. Everything else is automatic and controlled by RBA.
“Page sequences are created following the preflight and refine processes. The content and cover pages are separated, and these sequences assigned to a pool of impositions.
“If production takes place in offset, the PRINERGY System then drives the CTP line directly for platesetting. It generates an assembled, press-ready PDF for the digital printing step and sends it to a digital RIP.”
Smooth interaction with the INSITE Prepress Portal System
Bosch-Druck is also using RBA in conjunction with the INSITE Prepress Portal System, which lets customers send files to the company’s production department at any time, see pages in progress, and control the approval processes. “Everything is much faster,” adds Diekmann. “Our more transparent way of working has proved very popular– customers love being able to see the progress of their job at any given time.”
Christoph Siebeneich is in no doubt regarding the impact of automation at Bosch-Druck: “We’re saving so much time, which means we can take on more jobs. And it means our staff spend less time on mundane tasks, and more time supporting customers.”