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Roland / Summa workflow - Do all roads lead to Onyx??

Discussion in 'RIP Software & Color Management' started by White Haus, Mar 28, 2019.

  1. White Haus

    White Haus Formally known as RJPW..........

    Apr 6, 2018
    I've got an opportunity to buy a used Summa S140 T Series plotter for a good price. I've been wanting to try one of these out for a while to help out our Rolands to keep up with shape cut requirements. Looks like it's a couple of years old but seems like a good plotter still. Has OPOS but not OPOS-CAM. (Is that a big deal?)

    My main concern is workflow. From what I've read here, you can't simply print to Roland printers from Versaworks and then cut to a Summa (from Versaworks). I take it this is still correct?

    I'm not interested in Flexi, or even Winplot really as I don't want to add more software to our list, and to be honest saving a print file for one program and a cut file for another sounds like a pain in the a$$.

    We are running Onyx Thrive (single license/machine) to drive our flatbed already and have been considering upgrading so that our whole shop runs with Onyx (2 more Rolands to add, and now possibly a Summa). One of my concerns about taking this plunge is how cumbersome Onyx can be even for simple flatbed prints. Unless we're missing something it seems like it takes a lot of steps for simple functions....but I digress.

    So I supppose my question is, assuming upgrading everything to Onyx is the simplest solution to incorporate the Summa plotter to the mix.....how simple is the print/cut workflow with Onyx? If we're used to using Versaworks to print/cut on the Rolands, will this be a huge learning curve? I believe I do have a trial copy of Onyx 12 somewhere around here and do intend to play around with this idea, but real world feedback would mean a lot more than a brochure.

    Thanks for reading my rambling post and for any insight you guys can provide. I feel like this could be a step in the right direction for the company and can help us streamline production but also don't want to re-invent the wheel just to accommodate a plotter.
  2. FatCat

    FatCat Very Active Member

    Feb 12, 2007
    Columbus, Ohio
    I would give some thought to Wasatch Softrip. We've been using it here for 9 years running 3 Mutoh printers and a Summa 140 cutter and have no complaints. Wasatch will control 4 devices with options to upgrade to more. Certainly not cheap software, but it works seamlessly for print and cut jobs.
  3. White Haus

    White Haus Formally known as RJPW..........

    Apr 6, 2018
    Thanks Sean, will definitely look into that. Either way we'll have to spend some money to upgrade from current version of Onyx so it doesn't hurt to consider switching to Wasatch. I supposed Caldera is another option but don't want to switch to Mac or even VM for that matter.

  4. FrankW

    FrankW Very Active Member

    Oct 19, 2008
    You will find recommendations for every RIP-Software in the market, from people who uses them for a long time and are familiar with. And all of them are right, depending on the needs every software have it's pros and cons. For example for single contour cutting jobs, FlexiPRINT is a good choice too, because it have the option to create cutcontours in an own editor. For automated contour cut batch processing Onyx is better.

    You should check your own needs, name them and ask again. Contour Cutting with Summa is a very common application, it can be handled with nearly every software.
  5. rjssigns

    rjssigns Major Contributor

    Jun 4, 2007
    Home Office
    Just upgrade Onyx. You already have it and are familiar with it's operation. No point adding unfamiliar software and the requisite learning curve/bugs.
    • Agree Agree x 2
    • Like Like x 1
  6. unclebun

    unclebun Very Active Member

    The Onyx print/cut workflow is pretty simple. When you design your file you use an appropriately named spot color (CutContour) to define the cutlines. When you import the file into Onyx you use a Quick Set that includes cutting. When you RIP the file you make sure you have the correct cutter selected for the job. It then puts the registration marks on the print job for that cutter automatically. There is a separate application for the cutting which doesn't require the dongle to use, so it can be on a different computer on the network that is attached to the plotter. You find the cutfile in that application, set up the vinyl in the plotter however its registration system requires, and press the cut button in the application.
    • Like Like x 1
  7. White Haus

    White Haus Formally known as RJPW..........

    Apr 6, 2018
    Yeah that's what I'm thinking!

    Thank you, that doesn't sound so bad!
  8. White Haus

    White Haus Formally known as RJPW..........

    Apr 6, 2018
    Quick question regarding the barcodes/crop marks - will Onyx print the same marks regardless of it you're sending a cut to a Roland or Summa?

    I'm supposed to be getting this Summa plotter on Monday and would love to cut some jobs on it right away. If I print some jobs on our Roland on Monday - is there a way to print crop marks that could be read by either the Summa or back on the Roland (print/cut) - or will it assign different marks based on the selected plotter.
    Just in case I can't get it up and running in a day, don't want to backlog production in the meantime. And yes I realize the smart thing to do would be not to consider the new plotter until it's set up but have some small detailed cuts that we all know the Roland drag knife plotters suck at.

    Summa will be OPOS model, not OPOS-CAM if that makes a difference.

  9. methogod

    methogod Member

    Nov 15, 2013
    Baltimore, Maryland
    using onyx 11 with roland xf640 and a graphtec 8000 - workflow is great, and consistent. Just have to make sure cut lines are setup right or you can get double cuts. And cutserver doesn't allow any real edits.
    Flexi is another workflow that we have if we need to nest tighter or have a more budget job.
  10. AF

    AF Active Member

    Dec 8, 2013
    Ventura, CA
    The Summa should use PostNet barcodes (like what you see on bulk mail envelopes). Older versions of Onyx defaulted to a different type of barcode requiring a change in the quickset settings. OPOS works great for most materials and there are workarounds for some materials that give the sensor a run for its money.
  11. unclebun

    unclebun Very Active Member

    Onyx makes the marks that each printer uses. You set the cutter make/model in the RIP before printing the file.

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