The eXact is a portable spectrophotometer with an intuitive touchscreen interface. Printers and packaging converters use it to control, manage, and communicate color from anywhere on the pressroom floor. It comes in a variety of models to fit every customer need, and can be upgraded as those needs change. We’ve recently expanded our X-Rite eXact family to include a Basic model. With so many to choose from, it can be hard to know which eXact model is right for you. Today’s blog can h...

Posted June 22, 2018 by Christian Benz

We take pride in helping our customers be as productive as possible, which is why we build each of our color measurement devices in an environment that adheres to the highest standards and strictest tolerances. We also pair world-class support with all of our products and solutions to keep them in optimum condition once they leave the factory.   When you trust your hardware to us for service and repair, you can expect consistent and repeatable production and optimized results. Our Service C...

Posted May 16, 2018 by X-Rite Color

If you work in the print and packaging industry, standards can help you set clear expectations for clients, solve problems in your workflow, and improve productivity. They can also bring an independent perspective to production. Printers aren’t the only ones who should keep up with standards. Brands who are concerned with quality, price, and speed to market can also benefit because it allows them to compare print providers and choose the best candidate. The ISO and other standards organiz...

Posted April 18, 2018 by Ray Cheydleur

Color 2018 was a huge success for connecting the dots, breaking down silos, and learning how to gain control of an integrated color management workflow. It offered in-depth sessions including Brand & Design, Print & Production, Standards & Business, and Vendor/Product Demonstrations. I was there to share tips and advice about how closed-loop color control can help you keep up with color. Here are some of the key takeaways. What is closed-loop color control? Closed-loop color can me...

Posted April 02, 2018 by Ray Cheydleur

If you’re measuring wet and dry paints, plastics, cosmetics, or small and odd-shaped samples, you’ll want to take a look at our new MetaVue VS3200 non-contact imaging spectrophotometer. It’s the perfect choice for industrial applications in coatings, plastics, food, cosmetics and more. Today we’ll demonstrate the power of its smart spot and on-screen targeting features and explain how it can integrate seamlessly with your formulation, quality control, and performance opt...

Posted March 21, 2018 by Tim Mouw

Warm weather is just around the corner and spring is in the air!   Fluffy yellow chicks…   Delicate pink tulips…   Soft green sprouts poking through the ground…   And, of course, spring M&M'S®! Advertisers target our springtime emotions through pastel colors. Pastels have a calming effect, and everywhere you look companies are using them to feed our desire to feel a bit of spring. Today we’ll take a look at the psychology of color, how marke...

Posted March 19, 2018 by Shoshana Burgett

To control color, you need to be able to compare very small differences, determine their impact and understand how to address that impact. In this series we’ve already looked at the history of color analysis and the role of light in tolerancing. Today we’ll discuss the difference between a color space and a color tolerance and introduce the most common methods. Color Spaces A color space gives us a way to communicate color. Just like we can find any location on planet earth using lo...

Posted March 16, 2018 by Tim Mouw

When customers are just getting started with color management, they often ask, "What is the difference between a spectrometer and a spectrophotometer?". With such a minute spelling difference, it's easy to make a quick typo and get the wrong answer for this color question. So...what's the difference? Spectrometers vs. Spectrophotometers    What is a Spectrophotometer? A spectrophotometer is a color measurement device that is used to capture and evaluate color on just about anything, in...

Posted March 05, 2018 by X-Rite Color

Have you ever bought something at the store, only to return home and realize it doesn’t match anything in your house? It’s not the color that changed. It’s the way you perceived it. To control color, you need to be able to compare very small differences, determine their impact and understand how to address that impact. In this three-part series, we’re looking at the key components of tolerancing. If you missed part one, The History of Color Analysis, check it out now. T...

Posted March 01, 2018 by Tim Mouw

To control color, you need to be able to compare very small differences, determine their impact, and understand how to address that impact. But words alone can’t give us enough information to precisely describe colors, or the difference between them. In this three-part series we will look at the color science behind tolerancing – the color analysis that paved the way, the role of light, and the difference between a color space and a color model – so you can make ...

Posted February 21, 2018 by Tim Mouw

Printing using extended gamut process colors allows for a broader color gamut – CMYK PLUS Orange, Green and Violet. By adding these three additional base inks into the process, you can achieve a much closer match to traditional formulated spot ink colors. For example, orange will look truer and cleaner when orange ink is used, rather than mixing yellow and magenta to achieve a suitable match. Read more about how the PANTONE® EXTENDED GAMUT Guide helps printers here. Good: CMYK &nb...

Posted February 09, 2018 by Mark Gundlach

Surface appearance can change your perception of color. Think of a glossy magazine. If the light is shining directly on the page, you may need to tilt the magazine and change the reflection angle to clearly see the colors. Likewise, a textured surface may appear to be a different color than a smooth surface of the same object. Since spectrophotometers determine a color’s spectral values by shining light onto the surface and measuring the reflectance, choosing the right instrument and the...

Posted February 02, 2018 by Tim Mouw

The two most common spectrophotometers are the 0:45 and the sphere (aka diffuse/8°). We get a lot of questions about which is the best choice. Here’s the difference in how these two devices measure color, and guidelines for when to use each. 0:45 In a “fixed geometry” or “single angle” device, the first number is the starting point of the light, and the second number is where the light ends up after the reflection off the surface of the sample. In a 0:45 ...

Posted January 18, 2018 by Mike Huda

At the end of each year we enjoy looking back at our most popular blogs because it’s a great way for us to understand what interests you – our readers. As the years go by, we have discovered a few make the list again and again. This year the Top Ten is split down the middle between color theory and manufacturing best practices. Have you read them all? Top Five Color Theory Topics of 2017 1. Color Perception Part 1: The Effect of Light   Remember “The Dress?” Was it ...

Posted January 12, 2018 by X-Rite Color

In the sign and display graphics business, as in many other segments of the printing industry, shorter runs and reduced cycle times can stress even the most efficient wide format printing operations. By implementing a color-managed RIP-to-roll (or RIP-to-rigid media) workflow, these operations can ensure that color is right the first time and every time to help speed work through the shop and meet color expectations. Photo by Peter Saunders Today we are share tips from our Color Experts that c...

Posted January 03, 2018 by X-Rite Color

A senior design leader at a large beverage company recently shared his thoughts on the definition of Design Thinking on LinkedIn, asking other members of the community to contribute their own thoughts alongside his. Hundreds of comments ensued. The post appears to be part of a multi-week campaign to position Design Thinking as a way to approach business problems and garner attention from business executives. And we know that this attention has been hard to capture. A survey of over 600 designers...

Posted December 21, 2017 by Adrián Fernández

For over a decade omni-channel has been a term used to describe digital and physical marketing. While many have strived to achieve an omni-channel strategy, unifying the digital and physical customer experiences have been an ongoing challenge for marketers. However, that may be changing. Advances in augmented reality (AR) can help to bring these two worlds together. Over the next few years, I believe we will see significant adoption of AR technology by brands and retailers as a way to engage con...

Posted December 19, 2017 by Shoshana Burgett

Using a light booth to visually judge color is a great start to a successful color evaluation program. It allows you predict how color will look under multiple light sources so there won’t be any color surprises when the light changes over the life of the product. Introducing a color measurement device to capture spectral data is the next logical step. For a really great color program, you need to use both a light booth AND a spectrophotometer. This dynamic duo offers benefits you can&rsqu...

Posted December 18, 2017 by Mike Huda

The Pantone Color Institute just announced PANTONE® 18-3838 Ultra Violet as the Pantone Color of the Year 2018! This news is always exciting because it sets the stage for upcoming trends for everything from housewares to fashion to packaging design. In fact, we have already seen shades of Color of the Year used in packaging and graphic design by forward-looking brands in the CPG, luxury, and beauty worlds as well as by personalities and artists seeking to stand out. Part of butt...

Posted December 11, 2017 by Mark Gundlach

In a highly competitive marketplace, brands and packaging designers are looking for ways to differentiate their products on the shelf. This increasingly goes beyond color to include embellishment options such as foils, special varnishes, soft touch finishes and more. Designers are also using more intense solid colors, fluorescents and iridescents. And not just with conventional print – embellishment options and special colors and finishes are also available in digital solutions that allow ...

Posted December 08, 2017 by Ray Cheydleur

If you work behind a paint counter, you know customers can surprise you with interesting and unique objects to color match. Many samples are relatively easy to measure, but when a customer shows up with a curved baseboard panel, a square of shag carpet, or a plush toy, things can get a little tricky. A few years ago, we learned just how challenging it was for our retail paint customers to color match unique samples. We took in a bag with textured and multi-colored items and asked the person behi...

Posted December 04, 2017 by Tim O'Rourke

Recently we blogged about how appearance affects color. In this article we look at some of the characteristics that impact an object’s appearance, such as texture, gloss, transparency, and special effects, and explain why it’s crucial to describe appearance in the early stages of the design workflow.  While 3D programs have attempted to address appearance aspects for years, there has been a missing link in virtual product design: the ability to integrate characteristically &ldqu...

Posted November 29, 2017 by Thomas Meeker

You think you’re doing everything right, but your color isn’t consistent. Why? Through the years, designers have used many tools to help them specify color. Color swatches, style guides and product prototypes have been effective, but with the advent of the digital world, these physical tools are no longer enough. To be efficient, designers need to be SPECIFIC. X-Rite Pantone President Ron Voigt recently published an article in MediaPost that explains why. To be effective, designers n...

Posted November 17, 2017 by Cindy Cooperman

Flexible film does a lot more than protect goods on the store shelf. When done right, film packaging design can capture attention and increase product sales. But measuring color on film substrates can be challenging, even for the most sophisticated converter. Here’s why. When you measure flexible film with a traditional 0°/45° spectrophotometer, the way you position the instrument compared to the film’s extrusion direction can cause interference, leading to inaccurate reading...

Posted November 02, 2017 by Ray Cheydleur

Whether purchasing a new car, consumer electronics, or household appliances, color consistency influences the perception of quality. If the color doesn’t match from front-to-back and side-to-side, customers will likely question the quality and move on. That’s where color measurement can help. In today’s competitive marketplace, manufacturers are going beyond color to utilize extreme effect finishes to differentiate their products. But, as manufacturers are quickly learning, me...

Posted October 25, 2017 by Thomas Meeker

Appearance is more than simply color. It’s a comprehensive look at everything inherent to each unique material we come in contact with, including texture, gloss, transparency, and special effects. Each of these characteristics plays a part and has an effect on overall appearance and understanding in relation to a single material. Objects may have several elements that affect appearance, such as the material’s surface texture, construction, overall geometry and micro-surface. The environ...

Posted October 24, 2017 by Thomas Meeker

The World Series starts next week. While players and fans are gearing up for the big event, stadium groundskeepers are preparing, too. You’ve surely seen those meticulous patterns in the grass – crisscross, spiral, plaid – but do you know how the groundskeepers create them? Thanks to a phenomenon called geometric metamerism (aka gonio-appearance), the grass really is greener on the other side. Read on to learn more about this optical illusion that can trick your eyes and wreak havoc on y...

Posted October 17, 2017 by Mike Huda

Color is our perception of reflected light across the visible spectrum. When light hits an object, it absorbs some rays and reflect others. The color of light that reflects back into our eyes is the color we perceive. The more light an object absorbs, the darker it appears. With black, very little light is reflected. Pure black in the presence of light wasn’t achieved until 2014 when Surrey NanoSystems announced the invention of Vantablack. This high-tech artificial substance absorbs 99....

Posted October 13, 2017 by Mike Huda

Whether you manufacture plastics, coatings, or textiles, the reality is the same: If you don’t achieve consistent color, your product won’t sell. In fact, at the shelf, most people decide whether they’re going to purchase a product within 90 seconds, and much of that decision is based on color. We know it can feel overwhelming to make changes to your production workflow, especially if you think it’s “good enough.” But the industry is changing. Brands are demanding more accurate color, fa...

Posted October 03, 2017 by Tim Mouw

We frequently get calls from customers who can’t figure out why their measurements vary, even when they’re using maintained devices. Why would a sample read one way one day, then slightly different another? Many times the culprit is thermochromaticity, and it becomes an even bigger problem as the seasons change. Every kind of material changes color with temperature. These changes cause the material to exhibit a shift in reflected wavelengths of light, which can alter our perception....

Posted September 19, 2017 by Mike Huda
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