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XMPie XLIM high-speed composition engine ready for embelishment & labels?

As we sometimes say in French "you cannot get the butter, the butter money... and the creamer's laps " - yes: I know that it's a little bit rude, but we say it... quite often actually...

Now, is this statement valid for our industry? Per instance, can you have all the features of an XMPie "Pro " platform, only for the price of a "non-Pro " platform? The answer is obviously: "no: you cannot " (it's like about the creamer's laps).

A piece of bread with a thick layer of butter Image credit

Indeed, Adobe InDesign Server is integrated to PersonalEffect "Pro ", XMPie's high-end production platform. To say it short: driven by XMPie, InDesign Server can do on a server everything that Adobe InDesign can do on a workstation... plus the multiplied throughput, efficiency and automation! Per instance:

  • transparencies in variable data
  • dropped shadows in variable data
  • spot colors (AKA Pantone or "PMS") in variable data
  • unusual kernings in variable data
  • uppercases in variable data
  • variable character styles
  • overprint applied to variable objects
  • horizontal compression on variable texts
  • etc.

...all these nice features, that a graphic designer uses everyday and wants to see supported by an automated composition engine. To eventually output 1-sheet personalized Graphic Arts documents, large Direct Marketing print jobs or thousands of personalized interactive PDF files.

The point is that, Adobe InDesign Server has a cost that not everyone can afford. For this reason, some of our customers use an XMPie "non-Pro " production platform, with only "XLIM ". XLIM - an acronym for "XMPie Less is More " - is XMPie's home-made composition engine; all XMPie servers come with XLIM - even the "Pro" platforms; whereas only the "Pro" platforms also come with InDesign Server... Understood?

So what? Can you implement all InDesign features with XLIM? "No: you cannot " (cf. the creamer's laps).

Fast enough, but...

However, XLIM is extremely fast - even way faster than InDesign Server, if you compare similar document: it produces print files that can feed very powerful presses, such as these ink-jet, rol-fed machines you like, if you are involved in the transactional printing industry, per instance. Or high-speed cut-sheet laser/toner presses. But let's make it clear: XLIM will not try to implement all InDesign features, simply because some of them are rarely required in this industry. It's by design.

So what? (again). Does this mean that, if you haven't the money for a "Pro" configuration, you will be only limited to ugly documents for non-profitable markets? Per instance, if you invested is a brand new digital press with a fifth color (to embelish documents with a golden color, a silver color or a varnish - all applied to variable texts or vectors in your document); or, if you want to succeed in the Label market - where overprint is often a must. If you only have XLIM, that's true: it will be difficult, or impossible.

Did you say "Integration "?

But by chance, XMPie has integrated a great prepress automation software to some of its platforms, namely: FreeFlow Core. And FreeFlow Core can apply preflight profiles made in Adobe Acrobat Pro or Callas PDFToolBox, that make it possible to "convert" specific CMYK values into specific spot colors, along with enabling overprint. This way, even the extremely fast XLIM composition engine can be used with high-end print documents or Labels. Without mentioning that FreeFlow Core also comes with some Imposition features, that you can use to try placing as many Labels as possible on a sheet or on a reel.

Illustrating this will cost us only a few screenshots; first of all: the Acrobat Preflight tool, to arbitrarily define a specific CMYK combination, with the related spot color + overprint:

Acrobat Pro Preflight Mapping tool Image credit Adobe

Then, the color settings in the InDesign Color Swatch tool - that the XMPie XLIM Preflight tool will accept without grouching:

InDesign Color Swatch with a specific CMYK combination Image credit Adobe

And finaly, once the XMPie XLIM super-fast composition engine and the FreeFlow Core Prepress Automation platform have produced the final output file, we can check it (per instance in Acrobat Pro, again) and realize that the spot color and overprint are perfectly there:

Acrobat Pro Output Preview tool Image credit Adobe

So, with XMPie, it's almost the butter, the butter money... and the rest!

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© 19/10/2023 - Ce billet a été rédigé sans utiliser aucune intelligence artificielle - ça se voit ? 😜