User Manual

1.3 Creating a new Substrate

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Administration > Substrate

In the Workflow, you can add and configure different Substrates specifically for your print system. we'll learn more in this article about

  • How to add Substrate Categories, Substrates and Substrate Definitions
  • How to add and configure special Substrate Definitions
  • How to link a Substrate to a Printer

1. General Overview

Substrates must be created in the Workflow because Substrates are a central element in print production to which the Color Setup (Profile) refers. A Profile must therefore be assigned to each Substrate so that it can be used in production.

You can create a Substrate either by importing it or manually creating it in the Workflow. Importing a Substrate is described in the previous article. However, if it is not possible to import the desired Substrates for your printing system, the Substrate must be created manually before profiling.

Adding a Substrate so that it can be used for profiling consists of six steps:

  1. Open Substrate Overview – Open up the Substrate Overview menu via Administration > Substrate [1]. Select the Configure tab [2].
  2. Create or select a Substrate Category – Select an existing category under the Substrate Categories panel [3]. If the desired Substrate Category is not available, it must be created first.
  3. Create or select a Substrate – After selecting the Substrate Category, all available Substrates are displayed under the Substrates [4] panel. A new Substrate can be created for the selected category.
  4. Create or select a Substrate Definition – After selecting a Substrate, all available Substrate Definitions are displayed under the Substrate Definition panel [5]. The user can either create a new definition or select an existing definition for the Substrate.
  5. Link the Substrate to the printer [7] – By linking the Substrate to the printer, the Substrate will be available for use with different printers. When the Substrate is linked to the printer, the Workflow Substrate ID is linked to the printer Substrate ID.
  6. Define defaults – If a new Substrate Category has been created which contain several Substrates and the corresponding Substrate Definitions, one Substrate for the Substrate Category and one Substrate Definition per Substrate must be set as default [6] [8].

After profiling, a default Color Policy must be assigned for each Substrate so that the Substrate can be applied in the Workflow to Articles, Orders, or Production Jobs.

Figure 1: The Substrate Overview page with the three settings panels

Substrate Overview

2. Add a Substrate Category

If the required Substrate Category does not exist, a Substrate Category - e.g. »Paper« - must first be created. To do this, proceed as follows:

  1. Click on + New [9] in the footer area the Substrate Category panel. The Add Substrate Category dialog will open.
  2. Here you can give the Category a Name [10] and add an optional Comment [11].
  3. Click on Save [12] to create the Substrate Category.

Figure 2: The Substrate Categories panel and the Add Substrate Category dialog.

Substrate Categories Panel

How many Substrate Categories make sense?

Try to keep the number of Substrate Categories to a minimum. Large numbers of Substrate Categories will slow down the search for Substrates and Substrate Definitions in the Workflow. We recommend that you create only those Categories that best serve your production needs.

3. Add a Substrate

After creating a Substrate Category we have to create a corresponding Substrate. To do this, proceed as follows:

  1. Select an existing or previously created Substrate Category in the Substrate Categories panel.
  2. Click on + New [13] in the footer of the Substrates panel. The Add Substrate dialog will open.
  3. Here you can enter the Name [15] and the Category [16] for the Substrate. You can enter either the commercial name for the Substrate or a Substrate number as defined in the ERP system.
  4. Optionally, you can also define a RGB color value, which is used for displaying the Substrate color in the Impose Editor, under Display Color [17] or a Comment [18] for the Substrate.
  5. Click on Save [19].


Figure 3: The Substrates settings panel and the Add Substrate dialog

Substrates Panel

Missing "Default Color Policy"

Each Substrate must have a default Color Policy [14] in order to be used in the Workflow. Information on how to create a Color Policy as well as choosing a default Color Policy can be found in the article: Generate a new Color Setup.

4. Add a Substrate Definition

For a Substrate you have to create Substrate Definitions - proceed as follows to do so:

  1. Select an existing Substrate or the Substrate created previously in the Substrate Definitions panel [20].
  2. Click on +New [21] in the footer of the Substrate Definitions panel. The Add Substrate Defintion dialog will open.
  3. Here you should enter a Name [22], the Width [23] and the Height / Roll Length [25] for the Substrate. If you have a Roll Substrate you must activate the Roll Media [24] checkbox. This displays the length of the roll instead of the height and changes the unit of measurement to meters or feet. For the name, either the description of the size and weight in connection with the distortion factor - e.g. 1400 x 1000 | 300g | 98.97% - or a Substrate number as defined in the ERP system should be used.
  4. If a Substrate is distorted due to heat or tension during the printing process, the Distortion [25] for this Substrate should be entered in the Distortion tab. Entering a percentage value ensures that the printed image is adjusted according to a specified distortion. Read more about that here.
  5. Optionally you can enter the Weight, Substrate Thickness, the Printable Sides and a Comment. All this information has no effect on the current production version. However, they will be applied to future versions to send information to the printer or to calculate the roll diameter.
  6. Click on Save [28] to create the Substrate Definition.

Figure 4: The Substrate Definitions panel and the Add Substrate Definition dialog.

Substrate Definitions Panel

Why do several Substrate Definitions have to be created?

When the Impose Editor is opened, the selected Substrate Definition is automatically selected for the sheet configuration. It is possible to change the Sheet Configuration in the Impose Editor at any time. However, if you are thinking about automating your processes' and want to automatically output print production, the size of the Sheet Configuration must be established first to calculate accurate data concerning the total printed area for example.

By defining all possible variations of your Substrates regarding distortion and Substrate thickness in the Workflow we can achieve semi- or fully automated processes in print production.

5. Linking Substrate Definitions with a Printer

Different Substrates can be used on different printing systems. To inform the Workflow which Substrate can be used for which printer or which Substrate ID is used in the printer, the Substrate Definition must be linked to each printer. To do this, proceed as follows:

  1. Select a Substrate Definition under the Substrate Defintion panel.
  2. Click on the Link to Printer [22] button in the footer of the Substrate Definition panel. The Add Link to Printer dialog will open.
  3. Select the desired Printer [29].
  4. Then select a Source [30] either Import from Printer or Custom. For imported Substrates, choose Import from Printer; for Substrates created manually, choose Custom.
  5. If you selected Import from Printer, you can select the Substrate ID from the selected printer.
  6. If you selected Custom, you must check the Substrate ID on the printer and enter the corresponding Substrate ID [31].
  7. Click on Save [32] to link the Substrate Definiton with the printer.

Figure 5: The Add Link to Printer dialog

Link to Printer dialog

Which Substrate ID should be used as default?

If a Substrate Definition is not currently linked to a Printer, a fallback Substrate ID is used for that particular printer. In the case of Rho printers, we use the Substrate ID number »999«.

6. Video Tutorial for Creating a new Substrate

This video was recorded using the v.1.5 Workflow.

Article update: Version 1.16.2, 12/2023

Previous Article 1.2 Importing Printer Substrates
Next Article 2.1 Background Information
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