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Thread: 1-Touch Laser Photo Issues (NEED HELP)

  1. #1

    1-Touch Laser Photo Issues (NEED HELP)

    Hello All,

    I have been a mamber of SC for a while now but have not posted many threads. I have always found what I've needed on here and am hoping that someone can help me now.

    I recently installed the 30 day trial of the 1-Touch Laser Photo software and am quite impressed with it's capabilities except for one flaw. Everytime I engrave anything the shaded areas of the image contain large vertical and horizontal lines like that of a plaid jacket. I will attach images also for reference.

    So everyone knows, I am running an older model of the Epilog, the Legend 32 100 Watt system (Water Cooled). I spoke with someone at ULS about the possible issues of using their software on an Epilog machine and was told that not only was that not a problem but that they too used Epilog machines in ther offices to verify that it works. I'm not sure if maybe my machine is just too old and cannot keep up with the high tech software that I am using or if there is something that I am missing that someone else can point out.

    The order in which I use the 1-Touch software now is as follows:

    1: Import Image into Corel Draw
    2: Position, Resize, and Resample as desired
    3: Export as Bitmap to desktop
    4: Load into 1-Touch Software
    5: Filter image based on material type
    6: Export back to desktop as Bitmap
    7: Re-Import newly filtered image into Corel and reposition
    8: Print to Engraver

    Any help would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by Joshua Hopper; 08-26-2010 at 6:17 PM. Reason: Forgot to add pics

  2. #2
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    So Joshua, have you tried anything to try and fix this? The image on the left is not a photo, that is clipart and it may be handled differently by the software. What type of files are you starting out with? What resolution etc?
    I have to tell you, I can get some really decent photos on granite and acrylic using Corel and Corel Photopaint. I was using Photograv 3.0 and I just wasn't getting what I wanted, so I dug into the nuts and bolts of photo preparation. What I like about Corel Photopaint is that when you convert to a 1 bit image, you have several dithering choices available including Floyd Steinburg, my favorite. Give us a little more info and we will try and help.
    Epilog Legend EXT36-40watt, Corel X4, Canon iPF8000 44" printer,Photoshop CS6, Ioline plotter, Hotronix Swinger Heat Press, Ricoh GX e3300 Sublimation

  3. #3
    Larry,

    To be honest, I have used the Corel PhotoPaint and I am not a fan. I used it for a few years now and due to my high demand in walk-In customers who want portrait work done, I gravitated toward the 1-Touch software. The 1-Touch laser photo software has settings for many different material types and allows for a very easy "1-Touch" application process which makes my job easier and saves me time. I want to get away from having to process images entirely by eye and need help with the 1-Touch software. Have you used this software? The 1-Touch software is made by ULS (Universal Laser Systems) and states that it can be used on any brand engraver, but I am still finding some problems with there being lines in the shaded areas of my final products. I found a setting in the Epilog print driver screen that is titled "Rasterize Entire Page", but it will not allow me to print the job to the machine when using specific material filters from the software. Both images are, and are run at 600 dpi, and the files are both Bitmaps. I have no problems running this software for acrylic now but for the granite/marble settings and the tile settings in the software, I cannot get the job to print to the machine.

  4. #4
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    Basically any photo processing software is going to convert the image to a 1 bit image and add a dithering pattern. No, I do not use this software, but the point I am making is that it does pretty much the same thing as others. In order to get decent output from a lasered photo, one has to start out with good input. Maybe one of the Universal Reps that are members here will chime in with some help. I'm probably not qualified to troubleshoot your software as I don't use it.

    As to Corel Photopaint, I agree to an extent. I am an avid Photoshop user, but after seeing some tutorials by Roy Brewer, I thought I would try it again. I did, and after working with it for awhile, I found some things I like about it better than Photoshop. Some things I don't. I had been trying to automate my photo process also with the Photograv product, but I just didn't find I was getting the output I was after.So I went this route and actually enjoy the process of making it work on my own.
    Epilog Legend EXT36-40watt, Corel X4, Canon iPF8000 44" printer,Photoshop CS6, Ioline plotter, Hotronix Swinger Heat Press, Ricoh GX e3300 Sublimation

  5. #5
    I do not know the epilog system, but if it is doing any processing tring to improve the image it might cause this. Turn off any image enhancement features that might be in the software.

    Again...I do not know your system. Just a guess to try and help.
    ______________________________
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    Avid Pro CNC

  6. #6
    Larry,

    I appreciate your trying to help. I have tried a number of different methods and softwares that require I do the work by eye, and I enjoy doing so, don't get me wrong. I just don't have the time anymore to realy sit and do that now. I have on average of about 2-3 portrait jobs a day as well as about 5 walk-ins a day of all different styles. I have not had any complaints so far as far as my doing it by eye and I don't want to use this 1-Touch software to keep from being involved in the process or anything, I just was a way to move the high detail jobs (portrait jobs) through faster to keep my work orders from piling up. When it takes me too long to do each job, the jobs get backed up, then eventually I'll get to a point where I'll have to tell people that their product wont be done for 2 or 3 days and to come back. The main reason why I have so many dedicated customers that keep coming to me is because I get them in and out, don't charge an arm and a leg, and offer the same quality as other local engravers here. I try as hard as I can to keep up but I'm a single father of a 2nd grader, I also own a property maint./pre-sale home renovations company, and am a full time student at night. Just seeing how much this software could save me in time alone is driving me to find a sollution to the issues I'm having with it.

    I really appreciate your input, and I'm sorry if I seemed a little snippy. It was not you, I'm just getting tired and frustrated that my old machine is begining to cause my business problems and now this software is giving me a hard time.

    Thank You again.

  7. #7
    Paul,

    My system is an Epilog Legend 32 (old model, no longer in production) 100 Watt, water cooled system. When Epilog came out with it about 5-6 years ago it was the cream of the crop. Now it is out dated to the point where Epilog will not even service it anymore. It's OK though because I have been the serviceman for it the whole time anyways.. Alot cheaper.

    As far as the software is concerned, the 1-Touch Laser Photo software does not have very many functions within it. In fact, the only functions it has are; Uploading (Importing image from disc/computer), Resizing, Croping, Filtering for specific materials (changes dithering based on specific material type chosen), A save feature, and a Print feature. That's it. This software is not like CorelDraw where you can change specific details of the image manually. It has a very precise use and because of how powerful it is, there is no need for the other features.

    In all honesty, I am quite certain that the issue is not the software but rather my machine, or actually a combination of how the software is functioning with my old out of date machine. I only wrote a thread on here to see if maybe, by chance there was someone on here who has experienced a similar problem and could help guide me to a solution. Because to be honest, even though my machine is old, out of date, and un-supported by it's own manufacturer anymore, I am still producing high quality images and making my customers happy. Why go out and spend $10-50k on a new machine if I don't have to. Right?

    Thank you for your comments and help, I will double check the software to make certain that there is no additional features in play but I'm fairly sure that there isn't.

    Thanks Again,

    Joshua

  8. #8
    Joshua, where did you get those images? What size were they? To me, it looks like the image resolution at the size is not good enough, or maybe the photos have been resized to be larger than they originally were, which can cause all sorts of weird patterns to come up.

    Can you verify what size the image was when you started (size and PPI)and what size you resized them to (size and PPI)?
    Lasers : Trotec Speedy 300 75W, Trotec Speedy 300 80W, Galvo Fiber Laser 20W
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    Real name Steve but that name was taken on the forum. Used Middle name. Call me Steve or Scott, doesn't matter.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Joshua Hopper View Post
    Larry,

    I appreciate your trying to help. I have tried a number of different methods and softwares that require I do the work by eye, and I enjoy doing so, don't get me wrong. I just don't have the time anymore to realy sit and do that now. I have on average of about 2-3 portrait jobs a day as well as about 5 walk-ins a day of all different styles. I have not had any complaints so far as far as my doing it by eye and I don't want to use this 1-Touch software to keep from being involved in the process or anything, I just was a way to move the high detail jobs (portrait jobs) through faster to keep my work orders from piling up. When it takes me too long to do each job, the jobs get backed up, then eventually I'll get to a point where I'll have to tell people that their product wont be done for 2 or 3 days and to come back. The main reason why I have so many dedicated customers that keep coming to me is because I get them in and out, don't charge an arm and a leg, and offer the same quality as other local engravers here. I try as hard as I can to keep up but I'm a single father of a 2nd grader, I also own a property maint./pre-sale home renovations company, and am a full time student at night. Just seeing how much this software could save me in time alone is driving me to find a sollution to the issues I'm having with it.

    I really appreciate your input, and I'm sorry if I seemed a little snippy. It was not you, I'm just getting tired and frustrated that my old machine is begining to cause my business problems and now this software is giving me a hard time.

    Thank You again.
    What town are you in..I'll move there..get a place next door and catch your overflo LOL
    Epilog Legend EXT36-40watt, Corel X4, Canon iPF8000 44" printer,Photoshop CS6, Ioline plotter, Hotronix Swinger Heat Press, Ricoh GX e3300 Sublimation

  10. #10
    Scott,

    The ClipArt image on the left was originaly 400 dpi and approx. 5" X 6.5 or 7"... Not 100% sure though. I resized the image from there to about 7.5" X 6" or so... I've already deleted the source file and CAD file. I have already attempted to only se the highest quality images without altering the size at all with no success either. After all of my tinkering with these issues, I have wittled the problem down to the software in connection with my equipment.

  11. #11
    Larry,

    Thanks but I think I'll pass. HAHA! Actually business is about to start slowing down for me. I have noticed over the last 2 years in this location, that my high business points are during spring and summer just until early to mid fall. After that, I actually work with my property maint. crew just to keep myself working. That's also a terrifying time because you can never be too certain that business will pick up again the next year. I spend alot of money during the mid to late winter preparing for sprig marketing. I hold BBQs at my shop, free catered food for a two (2) hour time period, free samples on any material that the person brings with them, and even give away raffles durring the two (2) hours at the end of which the winning ticket gets a $50 gift cert. (good for 1 year), towards any engraving service. I enjoy the marketing I do, it's fun and brings in alot of customers but I do not play games or lie to the customer to get them to buy. I can't even begin to count the number of customers I have sent over to my competition simply because I knew I could not do what they wanted. The honesty usually brings them back to me for other work later.

    In all, as a business owner, you're not selling a product or a service bu ultimately you're selling yourself and your honor and integrity. At least this is how I've been so successful.

  12. #12
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    Am I missing something? When it was being introduced, I was told that 1-Touch was "ULS-specific" to the extent that, not only would it not work properly with another brand laser, it wouldn't even work properly with my older ULS driver. The explanation was that it passed certain parameters to the laser's driver to make sure the device settings matched what the software was doing.

    (I'm not sure how much I believe that, but that's another topic.)
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  13. #13
    Joshua - I've seen horizontal, vertical and diagonal banding but this is the first time I've seen plaid banding This looks like it could be chatter in the motion system and I would check to make sure the bearings and belts on your system are in good shape. It could also be a filter in CorelDraw and the way to check that is to open the photo in another software such as Adobe Illustrator and print it from there. If it goes away, then it's CorelDraw and I am told we have seen some issues like this with earlier versions of CorelDraw.

    Lee - The image created in 1 Touch can be saved and then imported into a software program such as CorelDraw and then printed to any laser from there.
    Mike Ireland
    Universal Laser Systems, Inc.

  14. #14
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    A pattern such as what's on the dragon image is indicative of using two different screens/dithering patterns...
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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dan Hintz View Post
    A pattern such as what's on the dragon image is indicative of using two different screens/dithering patterns...
    Agreed. Perhaps the Epilog driver is attempting to dither/resample the 1-Touch output.

    Mike - I would not expect motion-system artifacts to be symmetric in both directions.
    Yoga class makes me feel like a total stud, mostly because I'm about as flexible as a 2x4.
    "Design"? Possibly. "Intelligent"? Sure doesn't look like it from this angle.
    We used to be hunter gatherers. Now we're shopper borrowers.
    The three most important words in the English language: "Front Towards Enemy".
    The world makes a lot more sense when you remember that Butthead was the smart one.
    You can never be too rich, too thin, or have too much ammo.

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