Image optimisers also acting as workflow optimisers

With Claro, the software developer Elpical offers a professional image optimiser that optimises more than just images.

Image optimisers also acting as workflow optimisers

Obviously, image optimisers optimise images. They analyse the source material, tune quality parameters including sharpness, brightness, contrast and colour balance, transform colours spectrums, calculate resolutions and export to the preferred file format. If the fully-automated approach is selected, images are conveniently opened via a Photoshop tool. 

Depending on the target processes, automated optimisation of images is often only one part of the task at hand. In addition, the image optimiser also needs to be integrated into complex workflows. 

With Claro, the software developer Elpical offers a professional image optimiser that optimises more than just images. The manufacturer offers a range of options for integrating Claro into production, noticeably increasing workflow efficiency. It can be integrated into an Enfocus Switch flow or via the Elpical XML interface control. In close cooperation with a&f, b.comp GmbH realised such an integration for WoodWing Enterprise: the b.comp ImageOptimizerInterface.

Synergy between WoodWing Enterprise and b.comp ImageOptimizerInterface

The basic functionality is easily and quickly explained: Images placed on the InDesign layout can be sent to Claro, for example via WoodWing status. The b.comp ImageOptimizerInterface then also transmits important metadata in the form of an XML file to control Claro. This guarantees that the optimised images are generated in the preferred resolution and the defined file format and colour spectrum. 

The following 5 benefits of the b.comp ImageOptimizerInterface plug-in for WoodWing Enterprise and Elvis DAM are key for our customers:

1) Automated processing of a great range of images

The level of automation can be drastically increased when processing a large number of publications with varying requirements.

«Our internal customers needed a highly automated and stable image workflow. We are able to realise this comprehensively with Claro in combination with the flexible interface to WoodWing. On average, we process 300 images for five magazine and newspaper tiles a day.»

Reto Styger, Project and Application Manager, Tamedia AG

2) Raw images are easily standardised

It all starts with the raw image. As you will know, raw images often come with different resolutions, colour spectrums and file formats. The combination of b.comp ImageOptimizerInterface and Claro facilitates automated image standardisation when checking into WoodWing Enterprise or Elvis. Your layout artists can already evaluate the image material when placing it. Layout requirements can go beyond standardisation. 

«Our layout artists roughly define a knockout mask for images that need separated from their background, and provide instructions for the repro department by means of keywords. The flexible configuration of the solution makes this easy. If the <Knockout> checkbox in the WoodWing check-in dialogue is selected, Claro automatically calculates a Photoshop file instead of a JPEG file. The relevant specifications then decide how layers are handled.»

Alex Budmiger, Senior Business Engineer, Ringier AG

3) The level of automation can be selected freely

Controlled process – greater efficiency. The b.comp ImageOptimizerInterface automatically transmits adjustments made to the reproduction scale, image rotation and frame in InDesign, as well as instructions to the repro department , e.g. when a defined status is selected. 

If the images should be visualised in Photoshop, they can be evaluated and corrected via the Claro Inspector in Adobe Photoshop. The cropped image from the layout is superimposed by means of guides.

Thus, images can be edited in a fully-automatic manner, or in an intermediate step via Photoshop. 

«We quickly learned that we can process a great proportion of our images in a fully-automatic manner via Claro while achieving the required quality. This translates into significant time-savings and provides us with a clear picture of the process. The image editor can focus on the tasks that cannot be automated.»

Daniel Haberthür, Head of Newspaper Production, Schaffhauser Nachrichten

4) Images can be exported directly to digital channels

One of the many features of the b.comp ImageOptimizerInterface is the option to deliver images on the cropped image defined in InDesign to downstream systems, such as web CMS. When combined with Claro, the b.comp ImageOptimizerInterface facilitates image editing for online media. In addition to the relevant colour spectrum conversion, the images can cropped for the frame selected in InDesign in a fully-automatic manner, and saved in the preferred file format. 

«We process periodicals where the cropped image selected in InDesign is needed e.g. in the publication’s app version. The solution we implemented with Claro automatically crops the images for this frame, and exports an online version each image.»

Simon Mössinger, Head of IT, Vogt-Schild Druck AG

5) The b.comp ImageOptimizerInterface can be tailored to the individual requirements

The combination of the b.comp ImageOptimizerInterface and Claro is highly customisable in accordance to the requirements you or your customers may have. Configuration for this solution is extremely flexible.

«The solution implemented by a&f and configured by us provides maximum flexibility and significant efficiency gains in the production workflow. We use it to offer our customers the option take advantage of automated image optimisation from outside of our system.»

Markus Trachsel, Head of Media Pre-press, Stämpfli AG

Your contact

Martin Wicki

Deputy Head of Applications, System Engineer Applications