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Hi David,

 

Not at present - but it is in the works and will be done after initial launch. There are a number of features that go hand-in-hand with adding Pantone colours; adding one but not the others would feel wrong, so we're planning to add them all as a single unit of work soon after launch.

 

Thanks,

Matt

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Hi Matt. Pantone is a must for print designers, still today. Without it, I'm sure you appreciate your apps will be no-go for print designers. Might be an idea to add some sort of "coming soon" into the swatches pallette? Otherwise designers might write you off, never to return, because they don't realise it is 'coming soon'.

 

When communicating with third party output, it's still Pantone references predominently, and of course if one dutifully specifies a Pantone reference, supplying artwork not using the colour one has specified.... Sorry if you know all this, I don't know what you know and don't. Please understand I'm trying to be helpful.

 

I'm having an intial scan through your app now and it's the print-ready artwork output end I'm interested in as it's the critical end, hence my search in the forum for 'Pantone' and picking up this topic.

 

Regards

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Hey guys,

 

We can add Pantones very easily - we have the licenses etc. We would have to get the UI passed, but we've done that before and know how it works.

 

My question is, what else would we then need to do? Is PDF-X1A absolutely essential? Is trim / bleed / crop / registration absolutely essential? Coverage warnings?

 

I'm trying to decide what to do.. I can put Pantones in the swatches panel for you, no problem - but is it valuable without those other things?

 

We were planning to hold back Pantones and process spots until we had all of that stuff - but if you want it anyway, without all that stuff, we can just do it..

 

AndyS

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Hi Andy, yes I would say it is still valuable without all of the other bells and whistles. A lot of designers/illustrators will hand off files to printers that deal exclusively with the print end of the job. But having the right colour from the get go is essential. Perhaps some of that other stuff could be handled at "save as" or "export" time depending on the type of output required...?

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...My question is, what else would we then need to do? Is PDF-X1A absolutely essential? Is trim / bleed / crop / registration absolutely essential? Coverage warnings?...

We were planning to hold back Pantones and process spots until we had all of that stuff - but if you want it anyway, without all that stuff, we can just do it..

 

 

 

 

 

Well, PDF/X-4 is preferable to a flat PDF file format. At minimum one should have the PDF types available currently in PagePlus. With, of course, the ability to save a PDF configuration for later choice. And the use of ICC profiles for the PDF...

 

Process spots can serve in place of actual Pantone palettes...as long as one knows the values in the current color model for the display of those Pantone colors. LAB is the now current standard for the display and conversion to process color when and if required.

 

Sorry if some of the above has been covered.

 

Mike


My computer is a nothing-special Toshiba laptop with unremarkable specs running Windows 10 64-bit.

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I need Pantone, HKS and the possibility to add full tone colors with self defined names for special print products.

the PDF format I use very often is: PDF X-3

regards

Heike

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Just wanted to add my 2¢. We would love to have any viable replacement for Photoshop and Illustrator, especially since they went to CC and can extort any amount of $ from us per month to maintain access to our existing files.

 

And if this becomes viable, we'd gladly pay well over the $40 or $50 asking price... we currently pay that per user per month to Adobe, and we only use Photoshop and Illustrator.

 

But there are two absolute requirements we'd need here: spot color support, and scripting/action support. As a production prepress art department, nothing is a replacement for Photoshop/Illustrator without these. We have thousands of line of customer scripts. We will hire someone to rewrite them all for Affinity Designer if the feature set meets our needs - we could make back many thousands in programmer time on the cost savings, plus we're just sick of Adobe's terrible customer support, bug ridden applications, and subscription-only plan. But we can't use this until we can use this to do what we do...

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Hi tom_tshirts,

 

Professional print is on the roadmap, so you'll get spots/Pantone support in the not-too-distant future. Can I just quickly ask what kind of things your scripts do?

 

Thanks,

Matt

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Hi tom_tshirts,

 

Professional print is on the roadmap, so you'll get spots/Pantone support in the not-too-distant future. Can I just quickly ask what kind of things your scripts do?

 

Thanks,

Matt

 

So sorry I didn't see your reply! I was just trying out Affinity Designer again to see what's new, did a search for "Spot Color" online to see if you had that yet, and ended up here and saw your response.

 

I'd be glad to go over our actions and scripts more thoroughly. We're talking about dozens of scripts and thousands of lines of code. Many actions and short scripts just automate a small part of our workflow, but then there are big scripts running into thousands of lines themselves.

 

Some examples of essential scripts:

 

One script reads the currently open Swatchbook in Photoshop (with some logic, it'll interpret certain swatch names to divide up the presentation of swatches, and to stop reading them if it hits a certain swatch) and then presents a UI with a button of each swatch (with the button in the swatch color, with the swatch name on it). Whatever button is clicked is then assigned as a "Color Overlay" layer effect to the current layer, and the layer name is re-named to the swatch name. The layer effect is applied with a blending mode based on what the RGB value of the swatch is, so different blending modes are used with some logic to which mode we need for which color. That alone saves us a mountain of time and mistakes.

 

Although we only rarely run that script by itself - it's usually run from an Action, different actions take different first steps before running the "Color Overlay" script. The most common action creates a new layer, fills the current selection solid black in the new layer, then runs the Color Overlay script.

 

Our biggest two scripts save out our files and create our customer proofs.

 

The save script checks the URL's of all open Chrome tabs and parses the order number out of the URL, for any tabs that are for an order in our CRM. Then a JSON gateway is queried to get information on all the print areas for each open order. A UI is displayed to allow a user to easily associate which open order/print location their current file goes with. The script then performs dozens of validations on the file to be sure it's constructed properly, and then... well, then it does a lot of things. It checks when it run whether Photoshop or Illustrator was the frontmost application, and it runs different things depending on which it was in, but it always saves a Master File, a Production File, and a small file for the mockup proof for each piece of art. There's a lot of logic that goes into what constitutes the "production file" based on the Master and the production process for the order. Rearranging layers, deleting non-printing assets, etc. From Photoshop, it actually moves the data to Illustrator and generates a press-ready spot-color raster EPS that's recognized by RIPs for auto-trapping and separations off the Photoshop Layers. It also reports data about the saved files (size, ink colors used) back up to our CRM through a JSON gateway.

 

The proofing script also queries a JSON gateway, and and then updates a bunch of information fields on our blank proof, uses CURL to grab product images off the web and place them on the proof, import the mockup images for the order saved by the save script from our network drive.... changes the visibility of lots of layers based on the order info. Then it saves the Master (editable) proof and a JPG of it for the customer.

 

There are several dozen short scripts/actions too.

 

Let me know if you want any more information, or a demonstration or anything.

 

I have not gone through our workflow and the tools we use thoroughly comparing everything to the features of Affinity Designer and Affinity Photo yet. But I did spend a while trying to check. So far, the things Affinity does not have that caught my eye are:

 

- Spot Color Support (both programs - arbitrary Spot Color channels in Photo, Spot Color swatches in Designer)

- Scriptability

- Designer would need an equivalent of "Recolor Artwork" in Illustrator. (Edit -> Edit Colors -> Recolor Artwork). Although honestly, if there were scripting access... that entire piece of functionality could be scripted. I've heard Corel Draw has a real equivalent now, but as of X6, Corel Draw's "Recolor Artwork" equivalent was still a script - Oberon Color Replacer, and variants based on that tweaked by other scripters.

 

That's one thing about implementing scripting support... once you've got it, other people will implement missing functionality for free.

http://dev.oberonplace.com/draw/drawscripts/index.htm

http://design.tutsplus.com/articles/20-free-and-useful-adobe-illustrator-scripts--vector-3849

 

Or with a plugin architecture, even much more ambitious stuff for sale:

http://www.astutegraphics.com/

 

Can you guys, just, like, buy Astute Graphics and put all their Illustrator stuff into Designer? That would be a dream come true.

 

Thanks,

 

Tom.

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The items you mentioned (printed below) are essential. Most of the printers I deal with still want to see PDF-X1A. They also request created documents at their finished size and letting InDesign add the bleeds, etc. I think that anything you can add to help the professional designer should be included.

 

Keep up your fantastic work!

 

[We can add Pantones very easily - we have the licenses etc. We would have to get the UI passed, but we've done that before and know how it works.

 

My question is, what else would we then need to do? Is PDF-X1A absolutely essential? Is trim / bleed / crop / registration absolutely essential? Coverage warnings?

 

I'm trying to decide what to do.. I can put Pantones in the swatches panel for you, no problem - but is it valuable without those other things?]

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I have played with this app a little today, purchased it and Affinity Photo. Very nice app, looks well laid out, but the lack of pantone support really makes it unusable in a professional way. Working in print, pantones are a part of daily life. Looking forward to an update to bring the pantone library to Designer.

 

Would be nice to have an option for bleed and even multiple pages in a file like illustrator, not sure if that is possible with how the app is laid out. 

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Hi wonderings,

I'm sorry but it's really complicated to give an estimate for this. We have already missed a few and some users weren't happy about it. There's too many variables, not only from the development part itself (there's always bumps on the road!) but also from the resources and support needed when there's such spikes in requests/bugs reports around new product launches/new betas etc. I know it's not exactly the answer you're expecting but i hope you understand the reasons behind it.

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Spot colors are also useful for printing Mono- Duo- Tri- Quad- tone materials.


Best regards,

Petar Petrenko
Typesetter, Graphic Designer, Photographer
Skopje, Makedonija

Windows 10 x64 Pro
Dell Inspiron 7559 i7
Intel Core i7-6700HQ (3.50 GHz, 6M )
16GB Dual Channel DDR3L 1600MHz (8GBx2)
1TB HDD + 128 GB SSD Hard drive
UHD (3840 x 2160) Truelife LED- Backlit Touch Display
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 960M 4GB GDDR5

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Pantone and spot colours have some support in the current Customer Beta, but it's still a bit buggy and incomplete. The next beta will be a lot better, and hopefully not many days away now.

 

The Mac App Store version should have this by Christmas. It will also include PDF/X-1a, PDF/X-3, PDF/X-4, but not scripting. Until then, if you have the Mac App Store version installed, you can download and use the Customer Beta from here. Please do! We would welcome the feedback.

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As a Creative Dept. manager, I definitely echo the feature requests noted above. In the past when shopping for Adobe alternatives, I rejected software that lacked CMYK and Pantone support. Which meant passing on everything I found. They had no production value. (Except Quark Xpress, which is another topic altogether). Both Designer and Affinity needs full spot color support. (Pantone and other spot color swatch companies, with monotone and duotone options.) Having the ability to print out spot color separations that trap correctly is SO important in the print world. It must work correctly tho. Print is expensive, and buggy software will be thrown out and forgotten especially if things go south in prepress.

I think a great feature would be the ability to visually display spot overlays of metallic or varnish that high-end printing clients demand. In CC, there is no way to know how things will print with spot overlays so there is guesswork involved. Maybe some kind of rendering option to see how varnishes or metallics appear on the project. A great up-sell for designers and printers.

As for Designer, you may want to look at how the old Aldus Freehand handled vector work, especially its masking ability. I was so bummed when Adobe bought out Aldus and dumped Freehand.

 

Finally, if Serif can develop a killer app that equals Indesign, then you will be a major player in the creative world.

I have an idea...let the creative community crowd-fund you! I bet you could create the entire project that way!

The Revolution has begun... :ph34r:  :) 

 

 

Not ready to jump in yet, but will with both feet if you pull this off!

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