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HP Professional Pantone Emulation (HP PPE)

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What is it?

HP Professional PANTONE Emulation (or HP PPE) is used to enable colours to be matched as closely as possible to the original PANTONE colours - given the characteristics of the printer and the paper type.

How does it work?

When you use a named PANTONE colour in an image, your application will normally send a CMYK or RGB approximation to your printer of that colour.  However, this doesn't always give an accurate pantone as the application does not take into account either the printer or paper type - and each CMYK or RGB approximation will look different on different printers and different papers.

So the HP Professional PANTONE Emulation is used so that the characteristics and paper type are accounted for, which then provide results similar to the original PANTONE colours.  This technology is designed to produce emulations similar to those set up manually by Pre-press Professionals and Professional Graphic Artists, and is available when printing either a PostScript or PDF job.  For those of you requiring a more detailed explanation we suggest that you read HPs own documentation here, covering this subject matter. 

How can I get it?

To use HP Professional PANTONE Emulation all you have to do is turn it on (in fact, it's normally 'on' by default).  Currently this is available on the HP Designjet Z3100ps, Z3200ps and Z5200ps, Z6200 Photo Printers.  If it's not switched on, go to the PostScript driver dialog: select the colour tab (or colour options tab in MAC), then select HP Professional PANTONE emulation.

You can also use the Embedded Web Server to print a swatch book showing emulations of PANTONE colours as made by your printer, together with a measure of the colour difference between each emulation and the original PANTONE spot colour.  The emulation not only provides the closest match that can be achieved on your printer, but also gives clear information on how close the emulation is to the original spot colour.  

To print a swatch book, select the Embedded Web Server's Main tab, then HP Professional PANTONE Emulation.  Choose from the different PANTONE Formula Guide tabs that you would like to print, then press Next followed by Print.  An example Swatch book is below: 

HP Professional PANTONE swatch book example