Since launching at IPEX 1998, Best has spawned many ‘me too’ products – Rips with colour management that drive low-cost inkjet printers, turning them into contract proofers. Now, as part of EFI, Best is benefiting from the big R&D and future-focussed approach of this workflow, MIS, Rip and colour management giant.
EFI ColorProof XF, aims to deliver all options in a modular and cross-platform, client-server environment. This means you only pay for what modules you use, but all functions are on the product CD or website and can be activated via simple low-cost license passwords. XF works on Mac OSX or Wintel (PC) and the software can reside on a central server where all terminals can access it to make contract proofs on multiple cheap desktop printers such as Epson’s new SP4000.
"This is not a new version, it’s a ground-up rewrite to bring contract proofing into the IT world," says Russell Cavenagh of local distributor DES.
"It means that contract proofing can now be integrated into any IT/workflow infrastructure and non-colour management literate operators can perform highly complex proofing tasks by clicking and dragging icons in the simple GUI. It’s a whole new attitude to proofs."
But the XF story does not stop there. Being a ground-up rewrite of a proven digital proofing Rip which has sold around 38,000 copies worldwide, EFI has taken full advantage to introduce new functionality that is not possible by simply bringing out new versions of old software.
"All software has a life cycle," adds Cavenagh, " just look at Windows and Mac. The Windows 95-based operating system lasted 5 years until 2000 and XP, which are totally different core products, based on NT. Apple did the same when it introduced Mac OS-X, which is Unix-based and bears little resemblance to 9x. Most digital proofing Rips are now 5-6 years old in their core architecture and, whilst new versions bring benefits, only a ground-up rewrite will deliver all the benefits that new hardware and workflows offer."
EFI ColorProof XF is JDF-ready and integrates seamlessly into EFI Oneflow and many other workflows. Three output size options are available; ‘M’ for printers up to 17" wide including laser and Fuji Pictroproof; ‘XL’ for printers up to 24" wide and ‘XXL’ for printers 25" and upwards. It is available from August 2004.
DES is offering free cross-grades to new ColorProof XF to all who purchase
EFI/Best software from now to August. Free 30-day trials of Colorproof XF will be
Available from DES and all purchasers of the basic software will have access to all modules for 30 days from purchase to enable them to decide which functionality is needed for their business.