Auraia HD screening offset litho printing for newspapers : La Voz de Galicia 17


La Voz de Galicia, Spain

The Company

La Voz de Galicia (English: The Voice of Galicia) is the highest-circulation newspaper in Galicia and the eighth highest-circulation general-interest daily newspaper in Spain. La Voz stands apart from its competitors as it produces regional editions each of which features local news as well as covering the international and national stories and prints 14 different editions daily.

Jose Angel Cabezon Rico began working at La Voz in 1991 and is the newspaper’s Production Manager, responsible for managing customer relationships, overseeing the nightly production run, and ensuring that everything is running smoothly.

“Our printing business is owned by the newspaper corporation but, in addition to printing our own titles, we are a contract printer for other newspapers, both local and national.”

“Between our two ManRoland presses, we run a total of 25 different publications every night. These run lengths are very short, typically 800 copies for local editions and 20,000 for national papers. In total, we run 100,000 copies across all products.”

“We have a team of 65 people working across different shifts. In the morning, we have the press cleaning and maintenance team; during the afternoon, the stock is checked, and through the night, we have the press running. There are 16 people in the press room and 10-12 people in the mailroom, managing inserts and loading the trucks.”

Consistency is key

“In 2010, we began a project to increase the plant’s space to incorporate a second press. We planned to extend the plant and prepared to make significant investment in both the new ManRoland press and in the modern mailroom.”

Once La Voz had agreed on the capital expenditure, it then looked at making decisions on prepress spending.

“We had worked with another prepress company since 1989 and were pioneers using Agfa Polaris; however, the screen that we used would run erratically, wasn’t consistent, and we found that changes in humidity and temperature frequently affected the results.”

“As part of the press room expansion plans, we would also address the problem of stability to help us achieve consistent print.”

In 2010, La Voz worked with Kodak and invested in new trendsetters and thermal plates.

“We had made the decision to switch to Kodak thermal plates and did look at Kodak’s screen, but at the time, it was costly and production costs at La Voz were rising.”

“We began discussions with various vendors about RIPs and screens. Not being wedded to any one supplier gave us the flexibility to look at the range of options available in the market.”

One of the companies with which La Voz engaged for the supply of RIPs was using Auraia Digitally Modulated Screening (DMS).

“We spoke to our RIP supplier about screening, and they introduced us to Hamillroad Software and Auraia DMS.”

Switching screens

“I received Auraia print samples to look at and, the moment I saw the prints, I knew that we should investigate further. A representative from Hamillroad flew over to Spain to meet me and get on press. The main concern that we expressed to Hamillroad was stability; at that time, we didn’t have any idea about the other benefits which we would come to realize.”

“Working with Hamillroad, we put a test job on press using Auraia. We were impressed. We knew that if it worked on that job, it would work for everything, and we will use Auraia across 100% of jobs.”

“It worked from day one – very nice! The combined change of the plate, the RIP, and the screen made a big improvement - it was a rewarding experience. From its very first day, we could see that the image was cleaner and smoother and gave a significant improvement in the image quality. Now we have high-definition newspapers!”

“The transition to Auraia was easy; we started to migrate all our titles, beginning with the local editions. We would send copies over to the managers of the newspapers to approve the results, and once they saw the difference, it was an easy decision to switch all jobs to Auraia. The project started in June, and by the end of September that year, all jobs used Auraia.”

Jose admits that as there were so many changes taking place that summer, he wasn’t able to analyze ink savings before or after Auraia: “we think we save a lot of ink but we didn’t measure it carefully so we can’t quantify the amount.”

“The company likes to have clean print and clean issues with no ink on fingers and less paper see-through. We attribute our putting down less ink to our use of Auraia. We try to run with the minimum amount of ink but still achieve vibrant, bold issues – high densities 1.3 – 1.4 on 40 - 42 gsm stocks.”

“Contract customers are delighted with the print results on Auraia; we have won many new contracts because of the higher-definition print quality. The national newspapers are very proud of the issues that they print in Galicia because it is clean and smooth with HD images.”

“We have a supermarket customer who places adverts in the newspapers; they always commented on how they didn’t like the look of their adverts in the newspapers compared to how the advert looked in magazines. When we started printing with Auraia, they commented on how much nicer it looked and were suitably impressed. We told them that we could prepare a special product for them on newspaper stocks and they agreed to let us print their supermarket leaflet with Auraia, and we now print 200k copies every three weeks. We’ve had this contract for six years now.”

Working with Hamillroad, Jose comments: “I’m more than happy with the support we’ve received from Hamillroad. The three days that Hamillroad spent with us at the beginning to oversee the installation and the initial print tests, plus the continued review and contact over the first few months getting started to check things were very reassuring.”