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wholesaler with CMYK issues

Discussion in 'Digital Printing' started by wildside, Jan 25, 2013.

  1. wildside

    wildside Very Active Member

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    I have had the absolutely infuriating experience the past two day.

    I was sent a CMYK vector PDF file from a client

    I send this file to a wholesale printer which i have never had issues with to have a lot of yard signs printed

    the moment they come in and i open the box, the background is purple, i check the file, is shows 70% K, 50% K, 20% K and no CMY colors, i call them on it and they blame me, saying i didn't specify PMS colors

    it is a fricken vector CMYK file!!!!!!

    i open the exact file, RIP and print on our printer, and comes out with the proper greys, i didn;t have to tell my printer it was a PMS color, why should i , it is a fricken CMYK file!!!!

    they converted my file into a RGB jpg for whatever reason and then blame me for not specifying the PMS color, they blame me for their mistake, they will not refund, they will not reprint un less i pay half to reprint which is BS in my book.

    am i way out of line with this? or is it now standard practice to take good CMYK art and turn it into a crappy print? i am out a decent amount of money on this, i offered to send them back, but nobody is listening!!! they say to just "push" them on my client as they are "just voting signs"....:frustrated::help:help:help

    yes i am a little pissed over this.......
     
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  2. omgsideburns

    omgsideburns Very Active Member

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    It sounds like they are .. special.
     
  3. Gino

    Gino Premium Subscriber

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    Did you give them a hard copy, so they knew the actual colors your eyes saw ??
     
  4. wildside

    wildside Very Active Member

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    in their system, where it shows the file that is uploaded, the colors look correct, i just can't understand why they changed my CMYK vector file and then blamed me for the result, the customer service is horrible on this and i refuse to have them reprint them especially when i would have to pay another $7-8 hundred for "my half"....

    i will not name them, they are very well known around this forum, and they have definitely lost my business forever just over the way it is being handled on their end

    i just needed to vent, my blood pressure still has not come down on this, if it was handled with them seeing their mistake and just reprinting the job which is what i would have done for sure, this would of been a non issue as mistakes happen, but blaming me for what they did is aggrevating
     
  5. BlueFishDesigns

    BlueFishDesigns Very Active Member

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    We require PMS colors for jobs coming off of one of our printers. If someone sends CMYK, we use the converter in Illustrator to convert them to PMS and send the proof to the customer indicating the PMS colors so they can make sure they're correct or at least close. That's what we would've done for you. We would NOT have just printed whatever you sent and tell you to deal with it.
     
  6. John Butto

    John Butto Very Active Member

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    You mean your vector cmyk colors are broken down in % and not specified pms color. If that is the case it is your problem because when you break pms colors down to a % they will print different. Even though they look the same on the screen, some colors and with the printers I use, will print different.
     
  7. wildside

    wildside Very Active Member

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    we have a CMYK workflow, our printer prints in CMYK, when i take any CMYK file and rip it in postershop and them print it on our mimaki, the end color is exactly the CMYK that is should be, we don't print PMS

    is the file shows O%C 0%m 0%Y 70%K, the end result is a 70% grey, not a wierd purple

    i took the same exact file, and ran it through our system as is without any changes or modifications and it came out exactly as expected, i know all printers print different, i know that my printer will print a slightly different color tomorrow than it does today, but this is sooooo far off it is obsurd.
     
  8. John Butto

    John Butto Very Active Member

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    Match the 70% gray to a pms color, that is where the problem is. It might be 419c or some other pms color. Their process for printing is different that yours, printer, RGB jpg, RIP etc. Like Gino said, did you send them a proof. Since those printed colors are not going to change magically overnight, talk to your customer and tell him you made a mistake on the printing and give him a discount. If he is in politics he will respect your honesty.
     
  9. HDvinyl

    HDvinyl Trump 2020

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    halfway house.
    :clapping:
     
  10. insignia

    insignia Very Active Member

    70% gray, or any gray should print neutral, not purple. Normally I'd say if you didn't specify PMS colors, it's a tossup if the printed colors are going to match your expectations because there is no way to exactly reproduce a CMYK or RGB value from one machine to another, everything from ink type to humidity in the print environment will affect that. And if you specified a CMYK mix for a random color an it came back a shade or two off, you have no real right to be upset, that's the nature of process printing.

    But gray is another matter, gray is gray. You might get 67% or 72% gray instead of 70%, because we're still talking about CMYK values and not spot color matching, but gray should not be blue, or purple, or green, or magenta. If your file was set up 0/0/0/70 and you got anything but a neutral gray the problem lies in their color management, end of story.
     
  11. John Butto

    John Butto Very Active Member

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    "But gray is another matter, gray is gray. You might get 67% or 72% gray instead of 70%, because we're still talking about CMYK values and not spot color matching, but gray should not be blue, or purple, or green, or magenta. If your file was set up 0/0/0/70 and you got anything but a neutral gray the problem lies in their color management, end of story."
    Then why do so many people on here write about their grays being green or red. Don't respond with color management argument. From years ago before computers, you had to use the pms system when getting print work so you got what you wanted. You just could not say give me red or gray unless you left it up to them and accepted it when it was finished and that is what basically happened in this case.
     
  12. insignia

    insignia Very Active Member

    If you don't want a color management argument I don't really know what to say. If you print a file that's 0/0/0/70 and you get anything but a neutral gray with no color cast to it, your color management is off, period. If your gray prints with a magenta or cyan hue, your RIP is trying to add in too much magenta or cyan to balance or neutralize the gray because the profile is not that great. If your color management is good and your profile is good (the profile is key) your RIP will balance the C, M, Y, and K inks it lays down to produce gray, not purple. All CMYK printers print gray as a combination of all four colors, regardless of whether the file is 0/0/0/70 or not. That is the job of color management, to take that 0/0/0/70 and turn it into a proper gray using all four channels.

    You're missing what I'm saying though, we're not talking about matching a red. If he wanted to match PMS 485 red but sent the file as 3/100/98/6 he couldn't complain if the red wasn't a dead match to 485 because he didn't specify a PMS. Grays are a different animal. Technically, specifying a CMYK formula for gray vs. "PMS Cool Gray 7" means he cannot reasonably expect to get a gray that will accurately match the gray produced by another printer, but he is absolutely within his rights to expect that gray to be gray and not have a cast.

    So, you're right, sort of, but you're also wrong. At the end of the day, he sent a file that was a neutral gray CMYK formula. His vendor's color management isn't up to par because it produced a tinted gray. The exact same thing would have happened had he specified a PMS number. In the 4-color process world, a PMS is only a reference target, it's still being reproduced with C,M,Y and K inks, and if the profile isn't up to snuff it's going to miss the target.

    Technically, had he specified a PMS he MAY have had a little more of an argument with his vendor because the gray he got clearly wouldn't match said PMS color. But his vendor should also see a gray mix like that and know it should print neutral. It's sloppy on their part to not catch that, and it's poor customer service to not say "you know what, you did specify a clearly neutral gray color and our color management is clearly not able to interpret that and print it neutral, and we clearly failed to bring this to your attention, so what can we do to make it right?"

    I guess the whole thing is a gray area, no pun intended. If it were me, I'd step up to the plate and admit my gray sucks and make it right.
     
  13. Bly

    Bly Very Active Member

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    50%K is never purple.

    Interesting take on customer relations trying to blame you though..

    So who is the vendor?
     
  14. wildside

    wildside Very Active Member

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    Like I said I will not publicly bash their actual name as my experience will be different than yours I hope

    Insignia is correct. If I expected a particular red blue purple yellow orange I would use a pms number as that is easiest to a color match. I did not specify a color match due to the fact that at cmyk the colors were coming out good on our end so there was no need or concern for the color to be different than what I was seeing. This job was large enough that producing in house didnt make sense.

    I have used thus vendor without any other troubles therefore expected the usual end product. This is my first experience with a bad print and not at all happy with their response to it all.

    Picture it this way. Say you are expecting a color in the 50 - 70% gray scale and when you open the box what u see is a similar but lighter version of the mimaki purple of the machine......if it was reasonably close no issue. But so far off it caught me off guard and thentheir response just nailed the coffin on the business relationship.
     
  15. wildside

    wildside Very Active Member

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    Like I said I will not publicly bash their actual name as my experience will be different than yours I hope

    Insignia is correct. If I expected a particular red blue purple yellow orange I would use a pms number as that is easiest to a color match. I did not specify a color match due to the fact that at cmyk the colors were coming out good on our end so there was no need or concern for the color to be different than what I was seeing. This job was large enough that producing in house didnt make sense.

    I have used thus vendor without any other troubles therefore expected the usual end product. This is my first experience with a bad print and not at all happy with their response to it all.

    Picture it this way. Say you are expecting a color in the 50 - 70% gray scale and when you open the box what u see is a similar but lighter version of the mimaki purple of the machine......if it was reasonably close no issue. But so far off it caught me off guard and thentheir response just nailed the coffin on the business relationship.
     
  16. dypinc

    dypinc Very Active Member

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    In all this you have never mentioned one time if the CMYK vector was assigned a profile. If it wasn't there is a lot of guess work going on. 70% K in one profile is not 70%K in another.

    PS: There is nothing that pisses me off more than someone sending me a file, vector or bitmap without assigning a profile to it. In fact at times I will flat out refuse to print it until they do it correctly.
     
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