7 things to know about G7 and protecting brand integrity

Color consistency is non-negotiable

Marc Levine, Director of Enterprise Print Quality for Schawk speaking at the Spectrum Asia Conference in Seoul, Korea in September 2016. Photo PSA

Whether you’re a printer or a brand manager, color consistency is non-negotiable. You need to be sure that your prints are depicted accurately across multiple printing types and substrates—brand integrity depends on it. That’s where G7 comes in.

G7, IDEAlliance’s industry-leading set of best practices for achieving gray balance, is a driving force for achieving a consistent appearance across any of the print technology, substrates and inks that are used for packaging. In essence, G7 raises the bar on the color matching performance to help printers and brands achieve their color quality goals.

If you’re considering ways to improve your printed materials with G7, here are seven things you should know:

  1. G7 is a global specification that is used to consistently hit clients’ color targets, used by more than 1,100 leading print service providers, worldwide. It might sound simple, but historical printing practices did not always do this. G7 does, and as a result, it enables calibrated presses to create a unified, high-quality visual product.
  2. The name G7 stands for ‘Gray,’ plus the 7 primary and secondary solid ink values: Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, Black (CMYK), and Red, Green, and Blue (RGB). By controlling these elements, printers can more precisely control production color.
  3. Photography used gray scales for over a century to balance color. G7 brings the same concepts to commercial printing. Using the G7 method to calibrate a print process produces a balanced print condition that is more repeatable and consistent.
  4. More and more print buyers are making G7 a requirement to ensure consistent reproduction of design intent across marketing collateral, packaging and signage, regardless of the inks or substrates used.
  5. While substrate, gamut and other print characteristics may be different, G7 aligns the gray balance for each, lending all print types a common appearance.
  6. G7 creates a more consistent printing condition across different printing machines, printing technologies and materials. For CPGs, this means greater sourcing flexibility across the print supplier base. For printers, this means greater flexibility in selecting the right tools and processes to meet the client’s price and performance requirements.
  7. Gray balance is a powerful tool for managing print consistency. G7makes it easy to include gray balance as part of a print specification. Without G7, gray balance is a specifi cation nightmare because it is different for every process. Using G7, brand owners can specify a common gray balance value, enabling printers to deliver a common appearance across all the work they produce.

At Schawk, we have embraced the G7 method by assembling a team of certified G7 Experts in the fi eld of color management, process, and quality control for proofing and printing equipment. Our G7 Experts work directly with printing facilities to calibrate their proofing systems and presses, and train them to become qualified G7 Master Printers and provide better service to their customers.

Marc Levine is Director of Enterprise Print Quality for Schawk.

Contact G7 Experts in India and the Middle East through Idealliance India www.ideallianceindia.org or Naresh Khanna editor@ippgroup.in

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