The Pixel Suite is a set of tools that let you automate your lab’s production like no other. It lets you create all the expected products - Package prints, Group and Composite Groups, printed books and many other items. What makes the Pixel Suite unique is that it forms an automated production workflow. Rather that you coralling a job through the various production steps, the Pixel Suite automatically steps a job through your facility where it makes sense. If a customer places an order for an image, that image arrives at your QA operator’s workstation for editing. Other images without orders need not be touched to save your production team time.
The products you can create can be as simple or complex as you need. Offer a single pose and set of prints or create complex packs with multiple poses, crops, designs, background replacement and other attractive products. Decide to use a single offer for the season's jobs or provide tailored packages for special clients - it’s entirely up to you!
A mass-portraiture lab needs to track jobs and have ways of tracking interactions with customers. The Customer Service module gives you an extensive tool that lets you track customer interactions, place or amend orders - everything you need to ensure your customers are happy.
Managing a job is done using the convenient Pixel LaunchPad. Select a job, then choose the action you want to perform. You can configure how the LaunchPad appears on each workstation so your operators only have to deal with their responsibilities. LaunchPad guides a job through the poduction workflow, letting your staff create and manage jobs in a natural progression.
Job Management involves creating, sending jobs into the field then merging them back into your facility’s production system. Merging multiple kits is done easily with the Job Merge utility, ensuring you don’t miss or overwrite any data.
Jobs have several distinct production states. For example, a job can’t be rendered before it has been edited. Each job has a Job Status that sets is broad position in the workflow. When initial pre-production has been completed, set the the appropriate Job Status and it becomes available on the Pixel Web Ordering system to gather orders.
In a world where everyone now has an excellent quality camera built into their smartphone, everyone is a photographer. To stay relevant to the current generation, you need to provide interesting and novel products. The days of a single pose, simple print are numbered. The School Portraiture industry has created many novel products. Composite Groups, printed mugs, front projection background systems - anyone who’s been in the industry for a while has seen them come and go.
Today is no different and the new products let you drop in backgrounds, overlay designs and other layout type items are becoming more interesting. The Pixel Suite has always let you create complex designs being one of the first to add design overlays to a mass-production system and Pixel White continues this tradition allowing automated background replacement suitable for mass portraiture.
Many labs today offer printed book products in addition to photographic prints, and this introduces additional complexity to your workflow. The Suite includes tools that let you create pages that form printed books, ID Cards, DVD’s and many other non-photographs products and then funnel the rendered pages to the correct workflow queue. Automatically.
The Suite has a comprehensive set of pre-production tools that let you edit, correct and prepare images for main production. Automation is key to the pre-production tools. As an example, color is managed in several steps. A job might have multiple kits over several days. Color corrections are applied globally to each kit for each day, letting you correct for kit-to-kit, and day-to-day color variation. Cropping images is handled similarly. Sample a set of images, then apply a global correction.
Once you have global corrections done, your operators are fed a set of images that have orders placed against them. If you’re using the Pixel Web Ordering system, an operator will sit down and ask for the latest set of images and they’ll be given the new ordered images to edit.
Web Ordering is deeply integrated to a Pixel Suite workflow. Once a job enters your production system and reaches a particaulr Job Status, images automatically become available on the Pixel Web Ordering system. Once there, customers can preview images, choose packs then customize them with their choice of design. Now, with Pixel White they can also choose a background just as easily.
Customers see a live preview of their selection, complete with the design, pose and background so they will be sure they’ve chosen the right product.
Once an internet order has been placed, it simply appears back in the main job. There’s no manual keying orders, importing order text files - the order is placed directly against the job database.
Rendering production can be distributed across any PC workstation on your network - even your reception PC if you want! When a job is ready to be rendered, your staff add it to the RIP Manager queue and then release it. Any idle RIPs will be given an item in the job and render it to the correct destination, then look for another item. The result is a distributed set of PC RIPs that make short work of your production RIP work.
RIP Manager processes any type of work, not just packages. If your program calls for an ID card, the ID card will be rendered along with the rest of the pack. The same for printed books - every item called for in a package is handled by the RIP Manager. The Mover utility knows about all your different production workflows. It knows that these images need to be printed on photo paper, these in booklets and those on the ID card printers. Once a job has been completely RIPped, your staff run Mover which picks up the various image files and sends them to the correct device queue. So, all the ID cards end up in the ID Card Printer queues. Printed booklets are converted to PDF files and sent to the paper printers and image files sent to your photo printers.
Tracking interactions with your customers requires you to keep records of the interactions. Your customer service staff need to be able to create and edit orders or change Name details.
Pixel Customer Service is integrated to the production system and lets you manage all aspects of a customer’s needs. If an order is created in Customer Service, it instantly appears in the production system. Edit an existing order, see a record of interactions with the client - all live on your production system.