Our A to Z of Wide Format – S is for Software
Applications, Bleed, RIP Software…. We get asked lots of questions about the world of Wide Format on a daily basis. At Signmaster we are here to help and our lovely team of experts have pulled together a handy A to Z guide answering the most frequently asked questions.
Introducing the Signmaster A to Z of Wide Format.
This is a series of helpful blogs, guides and articles that we hope you will find useful. We will post a new blog every fortnight and we’d love to know what you think so please comment or drop us an email. We’d love to hear from you!
This week it’s all about S is for Software
Our Technical Manager, Matt Wright runs us through the Signmaster Guide to Software
Software plays a big part in the print industry and can cover a large part of the day to day work flow of a printing business. Software is not only a tool for the production end of the job but also for the front end of the job too.
The software used in this industry can be split into a few different groups:
Day to day business Software
This can include packages such as Sage Accounts, QuickBooks, Microsoft Excel and Microsoft Word.
Job Design Software
This would include Corel Draw, Adobe Illustrator, Adobe Photoshop, Cadlink SignLab and Flexi Sign.
Job Production Software
This would include the software packages that help you produce your end product. These could be programs like: Roland VersaWorks, Mimaki RasterLink, CutStudio or Cutting Master.
Day to Day Business Software is integral for the smooth operation of the business, investing in these software packages will allow you to manage quotes, accounts and customer payments, which, in theory, will give you more time to focus on the production side of the business. This is very important for small businesses, as it will free up staff members who might hold dual roles.
Job Design software, is the software that is used to create the job itself. Some companies will design from scratch and other companies will just use it to alter design jobs and get them ready for the print process. Either way, it is important that you invest in this software, even if you have no plans to create design jobs in house, you will always need to access and amend artwork and it can save you a lot of time if you can do it all in house! The best thing about the well-known design software brands is that you will get a massive support network behind them. Sadly, this is not something that you get with the lesser known software packages and this could cause you issues down the road.
Production Software is a little more specialist (see our blog on RIP Software); this is the software that is used to send your job to the printer or plotter, and this type of software will either come with your hardware or you can buy other solutions with the intention of increasing your workflow.
As an example, a customer could buy a Mimaki CJV150-160, which comes with its own dedicated RIP Software (RasterLink), but the customer may decide to run the printer using Cadlinks Visual Production Manager software as this type of software has more options for multiple printer support, meaning that the customer can also run their other printer (a Roland) from the same software solution!
We offer a wide choice of software solutions and we are always on hand to recommend the best solution for your set up. Give us a call on 01948 662669 to discuss the options available to you.