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Question Migrating from Flexi to Illustrator

Discussion in 'Flexi' started by Mega-Tech, Apr 4, 2019.

  1. Mega-Tech

    Mega-Tech New Member

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    Jun 29, 2018
    Edmonton
    We're tired of all the bugs/crashing/workarounds in Flexi and moving to Illustrator. Unfortunately we have a bunch of Flexi files we need to migrate.

    We've tried the EPS route, unfortunately for some reason the cut lines don't translate over properly.

    Anyone have any suggestions/tricks for migrating Flexi files over to Illustrator?

    Thanks!
     
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  2. bannertime

    bannertime Very Active Member

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    What part of the cut lines don't move over? If you need contour cut lines then you'll need to save as a PDF and "Include Contour Cut." EPS is typically good for moving to Illustrator.

    Might I ask what kind of bugs you are experiencing and what version of Flexi and Windows you're running? We were on Flexi 12 SP3 on Windows 7 and had pretty much no issues besides regular Flexi complaints. We upgraded to SP5 and quickly had to downgrade to SP4. SP4 is not without fault, but I've not had anything that'd force me to move over to Illustrator completely. Granted I do use Illy much more, but that's mostly due to graphics heavy artwork or small format products.
     
  3. Mega-Tech

    Mega-Tech New Member

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    One update broke production manager where we could not longer run it as a network service. At the same time it would no longer find our printer.

    Flexi created a patch for us where it would see our printer again in designer, but production manager would randomly not see the printer.

    We've had issues with colours changing in Flexi on their own, general crashing, etc.

    We're using the latest version, always.
     
  4. WildWestDesigns

    WildWestDesigns Major Contributor

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    I've never been one to advocate being "bleeding edge" unless there is a very compelling reason for it. Typically there isn't in a production environment unless the hardware that the software is driving is also changing (and changing rapidly).
     
  5. ThatGuy

    ThatGuy Member

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    Hear nor There
    We switched several years ago. We kept 2 designer seats just to use for old files. I export from flexi as pdf to use in illy if needed.

    It is a steep learning curve but I would not go back. Colors are no longer an issue. The only thing I miss is working in full size for large projects but that is not an issue when I remember all the times flexi crashed & held up progress.
     
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  6. Mega-Tech

    Mega-Tech New Member

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    Edmonton
    Our Flexi cloud auto-updates.. came in one day, and it just stopped working after an update. There wasn't a way for me to roll the update back.
     
  7. WildWestDesigns

    WildWestDesigns Major Contributor

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    That's just bad. The choice for updating (especially if it's major "features" updates) should be up to the user. There is no way that a dev can predict everyone's workflow and/or machine/software combinations to figure every bug. Even with a stable release, bugs can possibly happen.

    This is just all around a bad thing, combine that with my vehement hatred of having a production computer connected to the internet (yes I had to work that in there), I'm so glad that I'm on a platform were I have the most control.

    As others have mentioned PDF and/or EPS for moving over to another platform. Those would be your best bet in my mind. It's always good anyway to have a format that's more widely accepted among different programs as well. While there may be still issues on how well it's exported or imported, it gives the best chance to migrate around. I've never been a fan of using the main proprietary format (when I was using those formats) as the only format for everything unless there was just no way around it.

    The older I get, the more I hate vendor lock in and giving the general direction that most seem to be going in with their software, that just amplifies my feelings on the subject.
     
  8. Kendall Woodman

    Kendall Woodman New Member

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    I guess I I the old guy in the room. I run an older version of Flexi pro on a mac. I never have any problems at all with it at all. I love flexi. Maybe If I try something else, I would like it, but 25 years with Flexi, I have no complaints.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  9. Reveal1

    Reveal1 Active Member

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    We have a different perspective; use the best tool for the job at hand. Illustrator for most design because that's what the designers coming out of school are trained to use. We export as PDF for all print, import either directly to print manager or to Flexi Design to apply contour cuts. Use Flexi design for those (many) simple print/cut jobs where you just need a set of truck numbers or a really quick, simple yard sign/banner design. It's easy for our production coordinator to design and go right to print. Yes, we've had occasional color issues, but always in the end it was user error such as not checking the color settings in Flexi Design before sending to Production Manager.

    A word about SAI. They are without doubt the BEST company I've ever worked with to problem solve. Responsive, US based service by people who know what they are doing. Rare in today's software world. Yes there are problems, but keep in mind it is software designed specifically for our business and they have a great set of tools that make us more productive. Try getting any kind of support from Adobe. SAI will no doubt eventually go to subscribe only to eliminate some of the variables that come with supporting multiple software versions and to even out revenue. Let's hope the service doesn't degrade.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  10. Kendall Woodman

    Kendall Woodman New Member

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    Mar 5, 2019
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    Thank you for your reply, I will keep it in mind. I miss the days when "computer cut vinyl" was such a marvel. I still love watching my Roland 1410 cut a bunch of letters. Anyway, best to you and you people,
     
    • I Appreciate You I Appreciate You x 1
  11. Evan Gillette

    Evan Gillette Member

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    I completely agree, most of our workflow still involves flexi and it really does such a nice job of what it is designed to do. I would have a very hard justifying a complete switch without keeping both (or at least a flexi design license). I am assuming you are using a different RIP already. Another thing I am noticing is that we are getting more customers with in house "designers" sending over adobe files but that results in a whole other set of problems/challenges. I would also agree that SAi service is pretty good, I was actually able to sit down with one of the developers at SGIA last year and show him a bug and he worked through some scenarios to isolate the cause and took some notes to work on a fix.
     
  12. Category5

    Category5 Member

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    I use both daily. I came from pretty much a pure Adobe background, and have been using Adobe products for about 25 years now. The shop I took over a year ago did everything in CorelDraw and Flexi. I've gone as far as uninstalling Corel on my computer, (sorry Corel lovers, I can't stand using it) but my ancient Graphtec plotter won't run without Flexi. I've learned to like a lot of the features that Flexi provides, and don't think I could get along without it now. Illustrator is a much more robust design program, but it is really intended for print use, not vinyl cutting. It can do it, but Flexi has some features that simplify a lot of the work I do in Illustrator. Converting raster images to vector, for instance, works fantastic in Illustrator, but it creates a ton of artifacts that I end up having to clean out of an image if I want to cut it. Flexi doesn't always do as good of a job, but it usually creates a cleaner file that can be cut with minimal editing. We're due for some equipment upgrades within the year, and my plans are to maintain a Flexi Design license in order to have access to all the old files and still use some of its design features while running everything through Adobe for output. As for converting Flexi files to Illustrator, the only way I know of is manually opening and exporting them all one by one. I'd love to find a way to do it in batches, but so far, I haven't had any luck with that.
     
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