Building on its unique set of features as a true “production hub,” Apogee v11 “takes print production to the next level by automating all prepress tasks,” said Agfa. The new release also includes multi-product support to increase printing efficiency, while the integration with PressTune supports Agfa Graphics’ ECO³ market approach focused on economy, ecology and extra convenience. Apogee v11 combines print jobs in an intelligent way to optimize press time, while also keeping track of the actual order. With this new feature, it caters to the needs of printers faced with shortening run lengths, while looking for ways to keep their presses running as efficiently as possible to maintain profit margins. The challenge of combining orders on a single press sheet doesn’t lie in the actual placement of the various orders, Agfa pointed out, but in keeping track of the separate orders and allowing for proper finishing. With Apogee v11, collation marks, signature barcodes and all other marks remain in place and refer to the original order, said the OEM.
“This is a major step forward in production efficiency,” said Erik Peeters, Global Marketing Manager of Software Solutions at Agfa Graphics. “Combining orders reduces plate changes and lowers production costs. As paper waste is significantly less, the ecological footprint decreases too. As always, Apogee looks beyond pure functionalities and takes the full production cycle into account.” In addition, Apogee v11 functions as the ideal production hub, “guaranteeing reliable content reproduction independent of output devices, including digital presses.” As such, it allows printers to increase their production efficiency and tackle the thinner margins on low-copy-count orders. Apogee v11 handles all necessary preparations, including specific production requirements such as cut ‘n’ stack or booklet printing. To reduce the manual job preparation even more, orders can be processed in a fully automatic way using AutoImpose, a new function of Apogee Impose. This simplifies the workflow and reduces production costs as digital press operators now only need to manage and control devices and output quality. “The automatic imposition feature in Apogee v11 is a key feature for digital print production,” Peeters added. “Combined with Agfa’s cloud-based automation solution, PrintSphere AutoPilot, which uses XML or JDF information to intelligently route orders to the appropriate output device, it becomes a very powerful tool to increase the overall efficiency of a printing company.”
Apogee WebApproval, the online portal that lets print buyers access their jobs for file upload and page approval, also gets an update. Firstly, printers can now allow their customers to create new jobs directly, limiting the workload of prepress operators for repeat jobs. Secondly, the new ‘Guest’ function makes it easier for print service providers to offer the easy-to-use WebApproval service to print brokers and one-time users. Thirdly, users can now also preview foldouts and check the size and position of layout elements. Apogee WebFlow is a new module that gives customer service representatives, press and finishing operators (or others within a printing company) access to prepress job data. It makes it easy to check job status, visualize page content and check which signatures are ready for output. WebFlow also exchanges job information with Agfa Graphics’ ECO3 software solution PressTune, enabling CSRs to quickly review the print quality of their customers’ orders – and as such avoid the cost of re-runs due to print quality rejection by the print buyer. Apogee Version 11 is scheduled to be available starting October 22, 2018, and will be offered both as an on-premise and a cloud solution. The on-premise version will also be available via a subscription model for customers who want to more easily transition to this prepress workflow solution. Agfa Graphics Canada is located in Mississauga, Ontario.