Checking print quality

Check print quality at least once each shift, and also when you do any of the following:

Print quality problems are commonly caused by the following:

Procedure:

  1. Inspect a sampling of printed output. To print a variety of samples, do the following:
    1. Disable protocols on the Manage Protocols panel.
    2. Select Maintenance -> Print Samples to display the Print Samples panel.
    3. Select the type and number of internal print samples you wish to print, and then select Print.
  2. Check for the following in the printed output:
    Note:
    Many print quality problems are directly related to the kind of forms being used and the application being processed. If a particular form or application regularly produces unsatisfactory output, refer the application owner to the Forms Design Reference for Continuous Forms Advanced Function Printers. This publication contains detailed information about selecting forms and designing applications for use with continuous-forms printers.
  3. If the output shows any of the problems mentioned above, see Print quality problems.

Saving Print Quality Settings to a Snapshot

Procedure:

Do this procedure to save a Snapshot that contains your changed print quality settings. You can save your settings to a new Snapshot or change an existing one that you want to use for checking print quality settings.

  1. Select (Forms -> Forms Settings on the touch panel). Select the correct paper weight range for the paper you are printing.
  2. Select (Printer Definition -> Print Quality on the touch panel).
  3. In the Recommended settings field, select the appropriate range for the paper weight you selected in the Forms Settings panel. This sets the print quality settings to the correct values based on the paper weight you selected.
  4. Select the Snapshots panel (Frequent Tasks -> Snapshots) on the touch panel.
  5. Make sure that all printer and forms settings are set the way you want them before saving the changed Snapshot.
    1. Select Show Details... for the currently loaded Snapshot and review the values for the Snapshot in the right pane.
    2. Make any required changes to the printer and forms settings.
      Note:
      Use Table 9 to see which values are saved in Snapshots and where those values are defined on the console touch panels.
  6. Select Save current settings as.... You will be prompted for the name of the Snapshot you want to save. The name field will be filled in with the previously saved Snapshot. You can save it with that name or specify a new name.
    Note:
    Remember that the four default Snapshots can be modified, but you must save them as a new Snapshot if you want to save those changes.
  7. Select OK.
  8. Select Close to return to the Main panel.

Engine print balancing procedures

This section describes the following procedures for balancing the print to match the appearance of the solid black areas and the gray areas between the two printers. The procedures should be performed sequentially.

Balancing print contrast between Printer 1 and Printer 2

Do this procedure to balance the print contrast between Printer 1 and Printer 2. This procedure matches the optical density of the solid areas between printers. The contrast adjustment increases and decreases optical density. Higher contrast values produce higher density.

Procedure:

  1. Select Maintenance -> Print Samples to display the Print Samples panel.
  2. Select Diagnostic from the Source list.
  3. Select Primary and Alternate from the Print Samples list.
  4. Run a Primary Print Sample quantity of 500 to stabilize the print quality.
  5. Run the Alternate Print Sample to compare the front and back sides of the forms.
    Note:
    This Alternate Print Sample is only for high resolution printers. Low resolution printers use a different Alternate Print Sample.
  6. If the print contrast between Printer 1 and Printer 2 is not balanced, do the following:
    1. Starting with a lower contrast value, increase the value until the large black square on the Alternate Print Samples just fills in with solid black on one of the printers. Repeat this step for the other printer.
    2. Compare the samples marked 85 LPI.
    3. Use the Contrast control on the Print Quality panel (Printer Definition -> Print Quality) as necessary to make the black squares of equal darkness on both printers. This may result in different contrast values for each printer.
      Note:
      The contrast values change only for the loaded Snapshot.
Balancing print boldness between Printer 1 and Printer 2

Do this procedure to balance the PQE boldness between Printer 1 and Printer 2. After the contrast has been adjusted, this procedure is used to match the appearance of halftones between printers. PQE boldness is used to adjust the appearance by altering dot gain. The boldness adjustment increases and decreases dot gain. Higher boldness values produce higher dot gain.

Procedure:

  1. Select Maintenance -> Print Samples to display the Print Samples panel.
  2. Select Diagnostic from the Source list.
  3. Select Alternate from the Print Samples list.
  4. Run the Alternate Print Sample at 50% boldness to compare the front and back sides of the forms.
  5. If the PQE boldness between Printer 1 and Printer 2 is not balanced, do the following:
    1. Select the Print Quality panel (Printer Definition -> Print Quality).
    2. Adjust the PQE boldness of the printer with the lighter print to match the appearance of the 85 LPI gray scale of the darker print.
    3. Compare the gray scale appearance of both printers by folding one gray scale sample next to the gray scale sample of the other printer.
    4. Select OK to save the PQE boldness values in the printer configuration.
    Note:
    The PQE boldness values change only for the loaded Snapshot.