Companies often want perfect colour matching across stocks, especially for their logos and brand colours, which can cause headaches for printers. It’s worth noting that identical toners and inks can still produce slightly different results on different presses and different stocks.
Where brands require specific spot Pantone colours, litho has previously had the edge over digital because it could match certain colours (including bright oranges) more accurately than its digital competition. This is because larger presses can use more than the standard four colours (CMYK).
CMYK printing, aka Process Colour, can replicate thousands of Pantone colours. Still, some colours match their Pantone equivalents better than others and some Pantone colours are not achievable using only the 4-colour CMYK process. For example, oranges have traditionally been particularly tricky to match through mixing Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Black.
In response to this challenge, digital press manufacturers have introduced additional colours to increase the colour gamut of their devices and, concurrently, the number of colours they can accurately match.
What are the benefits of increasing gamut on digital presses?
Being able to match more Pantone colours consistently on digital brings the benefits of digital presses to more jobs: shorter runs, less waste, lower-cost low volume jobs, variable data and personalised printing.
Digital printers can take on more work than ever before as they can tackle jobs that might otherwise have gone to offset.
Printing oranges on the Xerox iGen 5 Press
The Xerox iGen 5 Press has a fifth print station supporting the addition of Orange, Green or Blue Gamut Extension colours (you can also utilise the fifth station for White, Clear or Fluorescent Yellow Dry Ink special effects).
The extension colours allow for more brand-accurate colours and according to Xerox can match up to 93% of Pantone Plus colours . Xerox’s iGen 5 Press Gamut Extension Tool automatically determines if a fifth colour is needed and tells you which one.
Suppose a customer comes in wanting you to match a colour without a known Pantone. In that case, the iGen 5’s powerful print server tools and a spectrophotometer can identify the best way to reproduce it.
The Xerox iGen 5 Press is the top-of-the-line Xerox toner-based device, offering flexibility, productivity and tight registration (on a wide range of stocks) . Learn more on our Xerox iGen Family page.
Printing oranges on the Xerox Iridesse Production Press
The Xerox Iridesse has a different solution to printing accurate oranges: Fluorescent Pink Dry Ink. Adding pink into parts of an image extends the colour gamut by 18% across a broad spectrum of colours, including oranges.
The video demonstrates how to use Fluorescent Pink to create brilliant pinks, purples and oranges.
A recent edition of Print Solutions showcased Fluorescent Pink and deep orange on its covers, also featuring Touch7 Neon, which makes the process of adding pink to your designs simpler and faster.
‘Highly Visible Packaging’
Bright colours are also important in digital printing for another reason besides brand recognition and matching. Highly visible packaging is just one part of a fast-growing digital packaging industry, thanks to demand from end-users. With companies wanting to differentiate their products from others on the shelves, it’s expected that highly visible packaging will see significant growth over the next ten years.
The Xerox iGen 5 Press is an excellent option for digital packaging, and with its gamut extension colours, offers even more value for printers and their customers. The Iridesse and Versant presses, too, provide great options for bespoke packaging and CLPs (Classification, Labelling & Packaging).
Conclusion: has digital ‘solved’ orange?
Yes…at least 93% of the time! Digital printing technology shows no signs of slowing down when it comes to innovation in additional colours, quality and turn-around time.
To talk to us about particular colours and projects, click here to discuss samples and opportunities; our specialists would be delighted to hear from you.