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Calibrating Smart Media (Smart Calibrator)


Customers use Smart Calibrator to return their printer to an OEM's reference state for a specific Smart Media Definition (SMD) file. The steps to use the Smart Calibrator process include:

  1. Set up Smart Calibrator.
  2. Print the required targets.
  3. Scan the printed targets.
  4. Create the updated SPC.

Smart Media Definition files

This documentation assumes familiarity with SMD files and their uses within the Smart DFE workflow. For more details, visit the Smart Media Definition page.


Once connected - see Connecting to Smart Print Controller (Smart Calibrator) - the list of Smart Media is filled. The active media from SPC is also set as the currently selected media. 

When you select an SMD file, the UI updates to reflect settings in the SMD. 

The selected "Smart Media" file is the target of the calibration being created by the process.

White Backing

If your Device Configuration includes a white print bar and you want to print your targets on a transparent film, then you have the option to print white as a backing to the PrintFlat targets:


Please note that we now permit the use of white in Calibrator; it is no longer automatically filtered. When generating SMD from SMM, you must deselect it. This change is aimed at enabling users with the necessary equipment to measure white and calibrate it accordingly.

If the Next button is disabled, the required information has not been set, including scanner and colorants.

The maximum number of color channels supported in an SMD is 16; the maximum nozzle count per channel is 100,000 nozzles.

If more than one scanner is available, select the scanner you wish to use from the “Scanner:” dropdown list.

Output will be changed depending on what value you set in SMM.  For example if you selected "Linerization Only" you will see output be set to "Linerization packages only" 

If "Enable wake up bar" is selected a "Wake up bar" or refresh bar is printed across the page. This can be used to make sure the nozzles are not blocked and jetting correctly.  You can also specify the height of the bar.

Select the number of "Copies" of the calibration target that you wish to print.

  • Using more copies gives a more accurate, more uniform calibration but takes longer to print and scan.
  • If you are unsure of the number of copies to use, then start with three copies and assess the print uniformity when printing with the calibration applied.
  • If the print uniformity is acceptable, try reducing the number of copies and generating a new calibration to determine whether you can reduce the time required to generate calibrations.
  • If the print uniformity is unacceptable, try increasing the number of copies and generating a new calibration, until you reach the point where the uniformity is acceptable.

Select which of the available colorants you wish to calibrate, then press Next.

Print targets

Smart Calibrator targets are required to be printed and scanned. Once scanned, they are processed to create a calibration that returns the press to a reference state.

To print the targets, press Print Targets.

To print targets successfully, the SPC instance must be in External Control mode. For more information, see

The targets are printed using the SPC instance that Smart Calibrator is connected to.

The targets are visible in the SPC queues.

Once the targets are printed and dry, they can be scanned in.

Scanning targets

Cut out the individual panels from the printed target images. The dashed lines act as a guide for cutting.

Place a target panel on the scanner and press the Scan button. Ensure the printed target is correctly positioned using the triangle, making sure that it aligns with the triangle on the scanner (see troubleshooting section for scan problems).

Make sure all targets are scanned once, in the correct orientation.

As the scans are successfully collected, they move from the "To Scan" column on the left to the "Scanned" column on the right.

 The Create button becomes available once all scans are complete (that is, no scans remain in the "To Scan" column).

Create and update SPC

The final step is to process the scans, which creates a calibration that is added to the SMD file selected in the first step.

To start the process, press Create.

Once the calibration is generated, the SMD updates automatically and sent back to SPC.

You need to apply the newly updated SMD file in SPC before the changes take affect.

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