Idealliance introduces Global Expanded Color Gamut (ECG) Characterization Target

Idealliance, known for creating worldwide print standards and specifications such as GRACoL, SWOP and G7, has released an Expanded Color Gamut (ECG) Characterization Target for use in characterizing and calibrating multi-colour print processes. The ECG Characterization Target was created by a sub-committee within the Idealliance Print Properties and Colorimetric Council as a part of the Idealliance Global ECG project. The Idealliance Global ECG is designed to make 7-colour process printing as predictable and normal as current CMYK printing specifications, such as GRACoL and SWOP. The target will complement a comprehensive Expanded Color Gamut (ECG) Project Kit that also contains guidelines, proofing control strips and other tools for printers.

The 7-colour test chart contains a scalable number of patches ranging from one to four pages. Most users should be able to achieve acceptable results using the one-page or two-page chart, said Idealliance. The chart was designed with input from across the industry, and has been optimized for multiple printing processes. The team that created the test chart included developers from ColorLogic, Esko, GMG and Kodak, in addition to other industry leaders. Team leaders Hanno Hoffstadt, Thorsten Braun and William Li “worked tirelessly together” and with others for two years to create prototypes and test candidates. Creation of the chart also included flexo and litho test runs to capture data and understand optimal configuration and patch design.

Tim Baechle.

“This chart will help standardize the ECG across the supply chain,” said Tim Baechle, CEO of Idealliance. “It’s another example of how Idealliance helps move the global supply chain. This wouldn’t be possible without the expert volunteers from across the industry who work on these projects, and we’re so grateful for their input, expertise and time that they put into this remarkable project.”

Idealliance now in the final phase of the project. The deliverables of this final phase will be standardized ECG datasets for litho and flexo. “Our goal for ECG is to do for 7-colour what GRACoL did for CMYK,” said Ron Ellis, Chair of Idealliance’s Print Properties and Colorimetric Council. “These standardized ECG datasets will help designers, brands and creatives work with ECG in a global supply chain.” Idealliance has an international membership who have volunteered to print and supply test data for the creation of the Idealliance Global ECG dataset. The organization will collect approximately 30 test datasets from around the world for analysis and possible inclusion in the final Idealliance Global ECG dataset.

Get involved, submit data and download the kit. Idealliance welcomes industry participants in its Global ECG Project. If you’re interested, you can register and download the kit and submission instructions at Registrants will also receive regular project updates.


Tony Curcio is the editor of Graphic Arts Magazine.