Welcome aboard to the Electronic Prepress Area. The EP departments function is simple in theory: Take electronic documents in and produce plate ready films for the printing of your book. In reality this production process can be complex, bewildering and time consuming. Hopefully the information we provide here can help you better understand this process and make your EP experience enjoyable. We intend to keep this area current, so stop back often to check in on new updates.
Let's take a quick look at the desktop-to-print process.
The Customer - It all starts here with a concept for a printed piece, the book. Armed with desktop tools, one can design, typeset, layout and laser proof the job.
The Printer - At Thomson-Shore we can assist, consult and provide technical services to help aide our customers in the electronic production of a book. Contact us early in your production process and we'll put you on the right track. We will even offer to run a "test job" through our department to ensure compatibility. Your "live" job should then proceed smoothly once when we receive it.
PreFlight - Once an electronic job is received, it is quickly reviewed in our Preflight Department. This area's function is to ensure that all the components of the job are in place to produce a high quality finished book before we forward the job to the EP department for high resolution output.
High-Resolution Output - Electronic documents are received after clearing Preflight and are prepared for output. Imposition software is used to properly position each page in the correct order for printing and bindery. The pages are imaged direct to plate by a high-resolution digital image setter. The resulting plates are ready to go on the press.
Of course, these three steps are a vast oversimplification of the desktop-to-print process. There are many issues and options at each step and the job's specifications often determine what happens in production. The main point here is that we (the publisher, typesetter, designer, and printer) all need to be working with the same set of guidelines and procedures to successfully process and print electronic documents. Our EP guidelines are available here for either viewing or downloading.