It’s All About the Color at Amherst College
For any in-plant, color accuracy must be spot on. That was the deciding factor that led Rod Squier, manager of the Campus Print & Mail Center at Amherst College, to replace his in-plant’s Xerox Color J75 digital press with a Xerox Versant 80 digital press. The 80-ppm printer was installed at the Amherst, Mass., operation in January, and Squier has been more than pleased with the results.
“Our school color is a PMS 267. It’s a purple color, which was hard to match on the J75,” Squier says. “The Xerox print server, powered by Fiery, can swap out colors for the correct color. The color, the calibration — especially the on-board color calibration, where we now just press a button instead of using a spectrophotometer to match color — and the whole operating system, was different than our previous model.”
Squier adds that when he saw the color accuracy of the printed samples he was shown and learned of how fast the Versant 80 could print, along with the envelope printing feature, he was sold.
“Having the ability to print envelopes and letterhead on the Versant 80 has been great,” he points out. “Prior to this, we were always having issues matching the color of the college’s purple seal on our envelope press. So now, if we need to, we can run everything right on the Versant.”
Many of the jobs the four-employee shop produces are printed on the Versant 80, and the addition of the digital press has increased its production tremendously. For wide-format work, the company turns to its Canon imagePROGRAF iPF8400 wide-format printer, which it installed in 2015, to print vinyl, polyester and polypropylene outdoor signage, along with draft and blueprint work. The in-plant also acquired two HP Designjet 5500s from the school’s library.
The Campus Print & Mail Center uses the Versant 80 to print programs for the theater and music departments, department self-evaluations and annual reports, open house booklets, large booklets with tear-out pages and perforated pages, business cards, posters, color table tents and course packs.
So far, the in-plant has received positive feedback from college staff on the printed materials printed by the new digital press.
“Most of the printed materials we produce are for the communications department and our alumni development offices,” he says. “The staff there have noticed a major difference in the quality of the color, especially the purples and nice solid fills.”
According to Squier, Amherst College has been a Xerox school for more than 15 years, so it just made sense to purchase another Xerox. The in-plant was able to negotiate the same lease payment as the J75 and extend the lease for another three years.
“So, we just swapped it out and kept the same cost, and everybody was extremely happy with that,” he says.
The in-plant also uses a Xerox SquareFold Trimmer module, which Squier says gives the booklets a nice look.
“The booklets look like a perfect bind without the gluing. There’s still two staples in the spine but the square frame on it makes it look professional,” he says. “We are receiving more requests for that, and it seems like customers like the booklet format. We also have the capability to heat bind and spiral bind.”
Related story: Wide-Format Adds Printing Possibilities at Amherst