TechnologyXerox® Versant® 2100 Press with Ultra HD Resolution
Ultra HD Resolution is new technology that is designed to generate and maintain the highest possible image quality throughout the entire imaging chain, from the print server, through data transfer to the print engine and the xerographic components of press itself. Ultra HD Resolution is a precise combination of increased RIP resolution, a proprietary imaging path through the system, and VCSEL ROS technology (the laser used in the xerographic printing process).
As a complementary set of core technologies, Ultra HD includes features that optimize RIP resolution, color depth, halftoning, and print imaging density. Together, these technologies produce dramatic new levels of image quality for vector images, fine lines, text, and ultra smooth gradients without visible stepping. The Versant 2100 print servers now have the capacity to RIP at a resolution of 1,200 x 1,200 dots per inch (dpi). This is quadruple the resolution of previous-generation presses, and it results in extremely fine lines and sharp text.
Both EFI printer servers available for the Versant 2100 feature the ability to resolve color to a depth of ten bits per color. This means that the print server can resolve up to 1,024 levels of color for each CMYK separation. This is a far greater resolution than in previous generation presses, which used a color depth of only eight bits. The result is extremely accurate color reproduction, and an unprecedented ability to produce smooth, accurate gradients. EFI has branded this technology "Fiery Ultra Smooth Gradients" because of its ability to reduce stepping or banding in a gradient blend and deliver superb image-smoothing.
Color reproduction on a digital press is a complex matter, but there are some key facts that are useful to know when working with customers. The primary job of the print server is to "RIP" the input file. RIP is an acronym for Raster Image Processor. Raster image processing is the process of turning vector digital information, such as a PostScript file, into a high-resolution raster image, or bitmap. On any digital press, the resulting RIP has two important components: resolution (the number of dots per inch) and color depth (the digital representation of the color of each dot). Both the resolution and the color depth on the Versant 2100 is the best in the industry.
With the EFI print server, the RIP resolution is 1,200 x 1,200 x 10. This means that there are 1,200 dots per inch horizontally by 1,200 dots per inch vertically by ten bits per dot. The ten bits per dot is called "color depth" because it defines the exact shade of each dot in the resolution matrix. If you multiply out 1,200 x 1,200 x 10, it means that each square inch on a printed piece is represented by 14,000,000 digital bits of information. This is extremely high resolution and extremely high color depth.
The Versant 2100 uses four primary colors: cyan, magenta, yellow, and black (C, M, Y, and K). Ten bits of color depth means that the halftoning algorithms on the press can print each of these primary colors at the visual equivalent of any one of 1,024 shades, or levels of saturation. Eight bits of color depth would reduce that number to 256 shades (28=256).
When printed at very small physical size and in close proximity, these four primary colors work together to fool the eye into seeing the entire color spectrum on the printed page. The color teal, for example, is produced with a halftone dot that is approximately 80% cyan, 10% magenta, 45% yellow, and 0% black. Orange is approximately 0% cyan, 50% magenta, 100% yellow, and 0% black. Various shades and tints of these colors are produced by varying the percentages of the primary colors.
More than 1,000 possibilities for each primary color provides extremely accurate, lifelike color renditions on the Versant 2100. In graphic communications, beautiful, smooth gradients are now possible that simply could not be printed at eight bits of color depth without noticeable banding.