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An Elf Story

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Mercury-LDO turns customers employees into Elfs

The two halves of the Mercury-LDO (mercury-ldo.com) name had very different beginnings. LDO launched its business in the late 1970s as a traditional reprographics shop, serving the architecture, engineering, and construction (AEC) market in and around London, England. “In 1992, owner Ray Martin saw the opportunity with all the construction in Las Vegas and, with his partner, opened an office in Las Vegas,” recounts current operations director Steve Martin. “A couple of years later they, severed all their ties with London.”

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Last-minute Adjustments

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Big-Mountain Imaging masters the art of "same-day and next-day" requests

Big Mountain Imaging started in Philadelphia a little more than 10 years ago. “We began as a grand-format facility with two Vutek 5300s,” recalls president Jason Cardonick. “We were mainly producing billboards for casino clients in Atlantic City. That’s an industry for which speed is a critical component of their buying decisions. At the time, our client was buying from a company on the West Coast that wasn’t able to meet their same-day, next-day needs.

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New Wide-Format Inkjet Test Form from PIA

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Eighteen test elements specifically designed for wide format.

The Printing Industries of America (PIA) has announced its new 20 x 40-inch Wide-Format Inkjet Test Form, the organization’s first test form designed exclusively for evaluating inkjet equipment. The test form comprises 18 test elements, all developed specifically to help printers gauge the performance of wide-format inkjet devices.

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EasyWrappe Gallery Wrap System from Breathing Color

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Available in Pro and Starter kits.

Breathing Color has launched EasyWrappe, a gallery wrap system designed for artists, photographers, photo labs, and fine-art print studios. The system is designed to enable users to create their own professional canvas gallery wrap in minutes.

EasyWrappe comes in both Starter and Pro kits. The EasyWrappe Starter kit has stretcher bars in 1.25-in. widths and in lengths of 8 to 30 in. EasyWrappe Pro comprises stretcher bars in 1.75-in. widths and in lengths of 8 to 60 in. Larger sizes and custom sizes are available upon request.

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MacTac’s New Gruv Media

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Also enhances its PermaColor Colorgard intermediate overlaminate series.

MacTac Graphic Products has enhanced its line of Imagin media with the introduction of the new Imagin B-free Gruv media. An intermediate gloss white vinyl film with all the benefits of air-egress installation, Gruv features a smooth, bubble-free installation for a variety of surfaces – from medium- to long-term full and partial vehicle wraps to medium- to long-term indoor and outdoor flat to slightly curved signage applications, the company reports.

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Piece of Cake

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ABC Imaging, using its HP Turbojet, executes a delectable train wrap for 'The Cake Boss.'

As part of Amtrak’s celebration of National Train Day in May, the rail service partnered with the cable network TLC’s reality show, “Cake Boss” to wrap an Acela Express train running from Washington, D.C., to New York City and Boston. TLC contracted ABC Imaging of Washington, D.C. to produce and install the graphics for five passenger train cars, one café car, and two locomotives.

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The Skinny on QR Codes

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Why they're suddenly everywhere, and how they can turn static content into interactive media.

You’re starting to see them everywhere. They look like jigsaw puzzles, sometimes in color, but most often in black-and-white. You see them in magazine advertisements, on posters and billboards, on business cards, and just about everywhere else. They are quick response (or QR) codes, sometimes called QRCs.

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UltraVision 60/40 UV Window Film from Ultraflex

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Features a 40% open area for optimal two-way viewing.

Ultraflex Systems has introduced a new UV-printable window film, UltraVision 60/40 UV. Based on the company’s existing UltraVision window film, the new 60/40 UV version has been enhanced to accommodate the UV ink process.

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New High-Tack Solvent Media from Oracal

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Designed for long-term, solvent inkjet printable graphic applications

Oracal USA has introduced OraJet Series 3951HT High-Tack cast PVC digital media. Designed for “hard-to-stick,” rough or textured, low-energy plastics or substrates found in kayaks, ATVs, and portable toilets, the 2-mil 3951HT is perfect for long-term, solvent inkjet printable graphic applications requiring a gray, permanent adhesive, the company reports.

Available in a gloss finish, 54-in. width, and lengths of 25 and 50 yards. Recommended for use with OraGuard Series 290, 290F or 293 laminating films.

ORACAL

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Beauty Box Photo Skin Retouching Software from Digital Anarchy

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Photoshop plug-in smooths skin and removes blemishes in photographs.

Digital Anarchy’s new Beauty Box Photo skin retouching software is a plug-in designed to provide an automatic and easy way of smoothing skin and removing blemishes in photographs. The plug-in performs fast, automatic skin retouching and smoothing, automatically identifying skin tones and creating an intelligent mask that limits the smoothing effect to skin areas while keeping facial details razor sharp. This process requires minimal input from the user and, in many cases, is fully automatic, the company says.

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