What is… a RIP?

advancedpf Prepress, Tips & Pointers

Raster Image Processor RIP is the acronym for Raster Image Processor and is a system that translates computer documents to a printable format. Just like the graphics card in your computer translates digital code into a viewable image, a RIP is necessary to ‘display’ digital content on paper.  Unlike your desktop printer with a built in translator, commercial printing RIPs requires a lot more horsepower and has to tackle far more technical problems. At the heart of the RIP is the screening engine.  Screening In traditional multi-color printing we would expose images through color filters and very fine screens to break the continuous tone image (photograph or illustration) into a series of tiny dots. These dots are visible under magnification but at normal reading distances the human eye will blend the colored dots back into a continuous image. With the image broken down to dots and component colors we can …

Steel Rule Dies / Die Cutting

advancedpf Finishing

A steel rule die consists of various shapes or lengths of steel blades that are formed or bent to cut unique shapes or designs in different types of material. Dies can be made into just about anything imaginable, from a simple shape such as a circle or square to more detailed shapes such as pop ups inside of a book to candy or video boxes.  Metal, Rubber and Wood To make a die, the cutting rule is formed and then typically placed onto a wood block with small pieces of rubber that are used to help with the pressure of the cutting process. The wood block is then attached to the press and readied for cutting.  Measure Twice, Cut Once The press operator will then measure where the paper needs to be underneath the die and cut a series of test sheets to make sure things are properly lined up …