Printing Partners Glossary of Terms
Printing Partners  Printing Partners Glossary of Terms
Printing experience
Every industry has a collection of words that are unique. The printing industry is no exception.
We have gathered a group of what we consider to be the most important terms in printing and finishing. Hopefully you will find this glossary useful.

The following definitions are offered to provide a common understanding for phrases such as “we’ll print your brochure 4/4 work/turn with satin aqueous coating.”

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Abbreviation for Mega, which is commonly used to mean one million. In computer terms, however M refers to the number 1,048,576 and is used to specify the amount of storage available on a disk or in memory. A 1 megabyte disk can record 1,048,576 bytes of data. Also, abbrevation for quantity of 1000.

Machine Coated
Paper which is coated one or two sided on a paper machine.

Machine Direction
Same as grain direction in paper.

Hue of a subtractive primary and a four-color process ink. It reflects or transmits blue and red light and absord green light.

Magenta Screen
A dyed contact screen, used for making halftones.

Magnetic Storage
Any disc, film, tape, drum or core that used to store digital information.

Unacceptable sheets that come off a press from the start of the run until the first good sheet.

A plate that is remade.

All work done to setup a press for printing.

An intermediate photographic negative or positive used to protect open or selected areas of a printing plate during exposure.

A plate for a duplicating machine.

Film color proofing system manufactured by 3M.

Matte Finish
Dull Paper Finish

The width of type usually , usually exposed in picas.

Mechanical Pulp
Groundwood Pulp produced by mechnically grinding logs or wood chips. It is used mainly for newsprint and as an ingredient of base stock for lower grade publication papers.

A term for a camera-ready pasteup of artwork. It includes type, photos, line art, etc, all on one piece of artboard.

One million character codes on the computer. One million bytes or characters, often written MB or Mbyte. A unit of measurement equal to 1,024 Kilobytes, or 1,048,576 bytes.

Frequency equal to one million cycles per seconds. Measures bandwidth or analog electronic signals.

A method for selecting alternative functions displayed on a workstation screen. Selection via mouse, key or sequence of keys.

Metric System
A decimal system adopted by most countries for solid, liquid and distance measurements.

The tonal range between highlights and shadows of a photograph or reproduction.

Modem (MOdulator, DEModulator)
A device that enables a computer to talk to other computers through phone systems by converting computer signals (data) into high-frequency voice communication signals and vice versa.

Undesirable image produced when two different, or randomly positioned screen patterns overprint.

A thick cotton fabric simliar to flannel used on the dampening rollers of a offset press.

A video screen on a workstation

Several photographs combined to form a composite illustration.

The spotty or uneven appearance of printing, mostly in solid areas.

A hand-held device that moves the cursor on a workstation by moving the device on a flat surface.

Mullen Tester
A machine for testing the bursting strength of paper.

A polyester film specially suited for stripping positives becuase of it's mechanical strength and dimensional stabilty.