TAC Total Area Coverage and Preflighting

TAC and Preflight

Total Area Coverage (TAC) refers to the ink coverage (also known as TIC or Total Ink Coverage) used in any one area of your layout or within a used image in a file destined for print. It is very important to preflight, as too much K (black ink) can cause certain materials, such as newspaper, to seep through to the other side. Markzware FlightCheck handles TAC checking, which we call Ink Density checks, during preflighting. You can find more information on how to preflight color below the following quote. Here is a great explanation of this term and process, with link:

The combined value of all CMYK inks for a particular area or object cannot exceed a specified amount, or ink may not transfer effectively and printed sheets may not dry properly. This specified amount, referred to as Total Area Coverage (TAC), typically is limited to 300% for offset lithography using coated paper.” Source

Markzware preflighting solution, FlightCheck, can assist with your preflight needs on TAC. We have two places where you can set this up within the Markzware FlightCheck Ground Controls, which are like the preflight profiles for FlightCheck. One is in the images section, via a check called Ink Density Too High.

The other GCC check (Ground Controls Check) in Markzware FlightCheck, preflight solution, is in the color section. You see it here labeled as C+M+Y+K Too High and you can fill in a variable percentage to check against, for both maximum and minimum ink coverage:

As you can see, Markzware FlightCheck preflighting solution provides a deep check for many very important items before exporting or trying to RIP during print’s prepress stage.

Try the 30-day demo on that link to see for yourself how powerful this preflight de-facto standard is. FlightCheck for Macintosh is a stand-alone app that can preflight not only InDesign and Quark layouts, but also Adobe Illustrator, Photoshop, EPS and PDF documents; even collecting or packaging them for archiving or delivery.

That was your tip for today on Total Area Coverage and Preflighting.