Metallic Color CMS (Color Management System) Technology
Producing vibrant metallic colors
In response to demand for printed material that maximizes the potential of specialty spot-color toner, Fuji Xerox has worked to develop a new CMS technology capable of meeting these needs. As opposed to simply using gold and silver toners individually, this new technology combines these spot colors with CMYK toner to deliver a wide gamut of metallic colors. In earlier production printer models, gold and silver toner was printed on top of CMYK toner. This consequently concealed the lower layer, making it impossible to accurately recreate the luster and shine inherent in metallic colors. However, by enabling our production printers to reverse the ordering of layers (printing CMYK toner on top of the specialty toner), this new technology has made it possible to recreate vivid, bright metallic colors.
Metallic colors of the PANTONE library and the Fuji Xerox-unique swatch table
In initial attempts at combining CMYK and silver toner to reproduce metallic spot colors such as those colors found in the PANTONE library, issues arose in that the metallic colors being produced differed depending on the direction from which they were observed. Conventionally, color management technology uses values taken at a diffuse reflection angle of 45 degrees to measure and manage colors. However, when the printed metallic colors were observed from an angle of 15 degrees (close to the specular reflection angle of 0 degrees), they differed from the target metallic ink colors, not only lacking in luster, but also differing in the way they were perceived by observers (Fig. 2). To address these issues, Fuji Xerox worked to create a new color management technology that took into account the effect of the viewing angle on the way metallic colors appear. With this technology, Fuji Xerox succeeded in increasing the amount of luster and in reproducing colors that closely resemble those of metallic ink. Not only can we now produce a wide range of metallic colors through varying combinations of silver and CMYK toner, but we have also made great leaps forward in our capabilities to reproduce the colors of the PANTONE metallic color library.
Furthermore, using our knowledge of color management technology and incorporating feedback from our designers, we have created a swatch table designed specifically for use with our production printers. With this table, it has become a simple task to print metallic colors such as silver toner based colors (metallic blue, metallic red, etc.) and gold toner based colors (bluish gold, reddish gold, etc.) with optimal luster and brilliance, opening a new window of color to the printing world.