What is Kick Back?

No, it’s not a bribe… LOL! It’s a real, above board thing in printing.

Many times we use a black built of multiple colors, for whatever reason, but that is another post, we call these Rich Blacks, but they are really only Rich Black if they contain 100% Black ink in them.

Below is an enlarged example of some 12 point text on two different “Rich Black” backgrounds. This is a screen shot of our plate data on the RIP. Notice the rosette pattern that is showing on the #000000 sample, that is not apparent on the Rich Black sample.

Let’s look a little closer. Notice that there are colors and white showing through on the K90, butt on the K100 the black is solid.

Notice at this level of zoom that you can see the black touching the white text, but the other colors stop short. This is Kick Back. It only happens if your rich black includes 100% Black Ink.

Now let’s turn off the black plate and see what we get. WHOA! What’s going on with the extra space around the characters on the K100? That’s the Kick Back! Most modern print workflows will add kick back as a part of trapping. It’s a little safety measure that helps to keep your body copy that is reversed out of Rich Black in register. Read more about registering black text/

When designing, keep in mind that Kick Back is your friend and if your Rich Black contains 100% Black in it, you will get Kick Back on press.

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