What Printers Need to Know about Barcode Quality

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The learning curve in barcode quality doesn’t end with the acquisition of a barcode verifier. In fact, the learning curve can seem to become especially steep at that point. This is particularly true for printers whose job it is to connect the dots from the verification report to the settings on the printer or printing press. While neither the barcode verifier nor the printing device are unreasonably complex, the way the verifier reports its findings does not translate directly into the way a printer or printing press can be adjusted.

For example, let’s say the verification report downgrades a barcode based on the ISO parameter Modulation; knowing this, what adjustments should be made to a printer or printing press to improve Modulation grading? Even if the press operator knows that Modulation measures and grades reflective differences in the light and dark values of a barcode, how does that translate into a press adjustment? What about problems with Decodability? Or Edge Contrast?

Adding to the challenge is the fact that different methods of printing can require different kinds of adjustments. A flexo or litho press operator will make a very different type of adjustment than a thermal printer operator for a problem with Decodability.

We created a Press Card to help printers navigate these confusing issues—quickly and accurately.

You could literally write a book about these issues—we know because we did. But a press operator needs an actionable solution–bullet points, not paragraphs–to get the barcodes back into spec and get the press running again—NOW.

This is a heavy, one page laminated card, suitable for hanging on a hook in a busy production floor. It covers flexo, thermal and offset printing methods and offers an instant solution for each of the ISO parameters for barcode quality—in plain pressroom English.


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Showing 4 comments
  • Matthias

    Hi John,
    sounds really interesting. How can I get that Press Card?



    • John Nachtrieb

      Thanks, Matthias. You are an early responder! We intend to offer it for free, with $4.95 to cover shipping and handling. Please provide a credit card and your shipping address and we’ll get one out to you today. If you’d rather call us with the credit card number, our phone is 630-235-6077. Thanks again!

  • Cydney

    Hello John,
    I wonder if you can make this available electronically so that one might receive it via email immediately? I am having great difficulty getting my barcodes to pass the modulation & decodability tests. This has delayed my business launch by months!. Many thanks.

    • John Nachtrieb


      How is your project going? Need any help from me? Glad to help if needed.


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