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News & Announcements

master print article Moving Towards a Greener Printing Industry

Category: Print

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Keywords: green fespa, economy, hp, hewlett packard, print provider, green printing

Posted on Feb 03, 2010.

master print article NewPage Corporation Introduces EcoPoint Plus

Category: Environment

NewPage Corporation,  the largest coated paper manufacturer in North America, introduced Eco-Point Plus, a high performance bottle label paper that features 10% post-consumer waste recycled paper.

Plastic water bottles are one of the most toxic and environmentally hazardous materials on the market. In 2003, 40 million bottles a day were recorded as being sent to the landfills as litter. These billions of bottles took up available landfill space to leak toxic additives into the groundwater. If these water bottles ever biodegrade, it will take well over 1,000 years. That said, every component from the manufacturing to the labeling process of this product should be well analyzed.

These labels were designed to assuage the growing demand for recycled fiber content label papers. They are third party chain of custody certified to the FSC , the Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI ) and the Program for the Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC). This tri certification reflects New Page Corp's commitment to sustainability and validates the ethical life-trail of their product.

So, what's so great about these labels other than the eco-stamp of approval? Well, in addition to a bright, white and high performance print surface, EcoPoint Plus is suitable for high-speed converting and labeling processes that feature reverse-side coatings engineered for hot melt adhesives.

Remember, there are environmental choices available for all sorts of projects. Ask questions to understand your purchases!

Posted on Feb 01, 2010.

master print article What determines a productive relationship between a designer and a printer?

Category: Print

It is no secret that designers have been driven to new heights with technology. The growth of the print industry has established relationships with designers that capture the fresh and creative control equivalent to that of traditional print. The works of graphic designers, when integrated with the world of digital are broken down to an art and a science. So, the ultimate question is, how do we achieve optimal digital color print quality?

Well, most importantly there are eight key issues. Let's take a look at them,

Aggressive proofing will give the designer unprecedented control over the project. Proofing early and often is an integral component of a successful process because a digital proof is not a simulation-rather, it is printed on the actual production device. This way, the designer is able to see exactly what the piece will look like.

The blackest black on the digital press is produced using black dry ink. When colors are added to this highly saturated and clean black, rich and colorful ranges of black can be produced. This makes black a creative application, rather than just a necessary attribute.

While image compression will allow files to be downloaded quicker and more easily, they can cause the loss of valuable image information. This information cannot be restored. Avoiding compressed file types like JPEG's, and if they must be used over an uncompressed file like a TIFF or EPS, open the image in Adobe Photoshop and save them as uncompressed TIFF or EPS files.

In terms of type sizes, digital type production differs from offset. Smaller type is generally more challenging on a digital press, but knockout type on black should work well Again, by proofreading, your typeface selections will be readable and effective.

Resolutions will fluctuate with text and images. Increasing a resolution will have a minimal impact on continuous tone images, but through Adobe Photoshop you can use the "image size" tool and calculate the resolution at various sizes. A scan for reproduction size for text and line art should be produced 600 to 1,200 dpi, and at 300 dpi for a continuous tone image.

To avoid unevenness in color, especially with mid-tone tints and long blends, choose a lighter or darker percentage. You can also use Adobe Photoshop to add a noise filter or texture to create a tight pattern.

To ensure optimal color reproduction and greater flexibility you should maintain a RGB color space for your images. The RGB images have a larger color gamut than the CMYK images.

Lastly, connect with your printer to further understand their capabilities. A consultation with the printer will assist you on improving your proofs and may be the ultimate determinant of producing a fantastic project.

Posted on Jan 29, 2010.

master print article Digital Printing in Direct Mail is Analyzed

Category: Print

According to an extensive study from INTERQUEST, a leading market and technology research firm, direct mail producers generate nearly 20% of the total digital direct mail impressions produced in the United States.

This study on the use of digital printing in the direct mail market, takes a look at the advanced digital printing technology and examines how it is being used in direct mail. In addition, the analysis evaluates the future of the latest generation of equipment, forecasting that in the next three years, full color digital output will account for nearly one third of digital direct mail impressions.

While direct mail is not invulnerable to an economic downturn, digital macro trends providers had reported an increase  in customer segmentation and targeting, full-color personalized direct mail and shorter print runs. Moreover, the study forecasts that a challenging economic environment makes mailers more aware of the higher return rate of advertising.

Among the findings, even though 75% of the respondents have full-color digital equipment and keep it high on their acquisition list, over 90% of the digital printing in direct mail involves overprinting monochrome elements on pre-printed offset shells.

Albeit the high rate of black and white output, color digital printing is growing about two and a half times faster.

Posted on Jan 28, 2010.

master print article A Closer Look at the Environmental Sustainability of Communication

Category: Environment

The proactive management of digital media unveils the energy intensive technology infrastructure and emphasizes the carbon footprint.

Those invested in commerce and communication are increasingly measuring the environmental impact of print media and digital communication. While some stakeholders are out to make a buck with the oh-so-popular "green washing", it is the 2010 New Guidance from the FTC's Green Guides that encourages businesses to tighten their language usage and strengthen their ethics. Some popular trends reveal these eco "stand-ins", including hidden trade offs, where the product life cycle jeopardizes it's environmental attribute, or the use of broad, loosely defined claims aimed at confusing the customer, stating blatant falsehoods and not verifying green labels.

The supply chain in print communication is continually striving for environmental performance. From recycling and waste management to forestry, harmful practices are heavily regulated through legal compliance. Regimes continually emerge to document forest sustainability, ensure program implementation and conduct third party verification.

For print buyer's, avoiding illegally harvested wood products means verifying legality. This is of particular concern as paper markets have become global through free trade. Operating and cooling data centers, along with the actual composition of equipment like computers and print machines are of environmental concern as is their recycling and disposal post-life. Ultimately, these concerns encourage management like electric recycling and ENERGY STAR programs, both of which support efficiency and sustainability.

The escalating number of data centers is impacting the nation's power grid, and it is becoming more and more of a priority to find sustainable power sources and conserve energy. Choosing between digital and print media, does not make a difference nor does it opportune an environmental advantage. Brands must target their consumer with fact based approaches that investigate, inform, educate and measure the impacts of production and communication.

Posted on Jan 27, 2010.

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