Global Graphics rolls out Harlequin with new machines


Print software developer Global Graphics has partnered with HP and Durst to use its Harlequin RIP to power their label and packaging presses.

Making the announcement at a press conference at LabelExpo today (26 September), the Cambridge-headquartered developer's flagship RIP will be integrated with HP Production Pro DFE for Indigo Labels & Packaging presses, which is also being shown for the first time at the show, and will initially be rolled out with the Indigo WS6800 label press, followed soon by the Indigo 8000, 20000 and 30000 models. It is already used with a number of other Indigo models. 

Global Graphics chief technology officer Martin Bailey told PrintWeek that this was the culmination of several years’ work.

Bailey said: “One of the interesting things for a vendor in a position as a supplier to OEMs is that it takes a while from first engagement with that new OEM to the point where they can actually launch, often several years before we can make this announcement, so it is the culmination of a lot of hard work on both sides and it’s great to see this happening.

“The digital front-end (DFE) for Indigo commercial presses has been built around Harlequin for more than a decade and now we have a very good relationship with them but historically the DFE for labels has been around an Esko Rip so when they came to us and said we would like to consider using Harlequin, that’s a big story for us.”

The HP Production Pro for Indigo Labels & Packaging DFE also incorporates the Esko Color Engine RIP and Taylor added that the teams worked closely together in order to allow for a smooth transition to the new workflow.

HP Indigo product manager Roy Faigenbloom said that HP already has thousands of customers using the Harlequin-based HP Production Pro and that it offers the necessary processing power to drive labels and packaging workflows.

Working with Durst, Harlequin will now also power the Durst Symphony workflow for the new eight-colour Tau 330 RSC, being shown at LabelExpo for the first time and recently taken on by Bradford-based The Label Makers in beta. Bailey said that Durst had approached Global Graphics after plans for the faster version of the machine were laid out.

He said: “You look under the hood and start running the numbers and you realise actually it’s over three times the data required and that was one of the reasons why they [Durst] came to Global Graphics as they need three times the data rate through the RIPs. Ultimately they came for the speed.”

Global Graphics is also using LabelExpo to demonstrate a number of new features it has added to its RIPs this year, including spot colour controls for colour matching and extended controls over PDF layers.

It was due to launch two new screening options at the Brussels’ expo, the Chameleon and Chimera, with its ScreenPro screening engine, but this launch has now been delayed.

Last year, Global Graphics acquired printhead driver system specialist TTP Meteor.

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