Please troubleshoot problems by reading this section before calling for technical support.
The most current T-Seps installers for both Mac and PC have been updated on February 18, 2013 to install the proper version of T-Seps in all versions of Photoshop from the older 6.0 to the latest CS6 in both 32-bit and 64-bit mode. If you have an older version of T-Seps and upgraded your Photoshop you can download a Free Trial as your upgrade from the Downloads Page. You may be asked to be unlocked again.
Common Problems and Solutions
Problem: I keep getting a “can’t find T-Seps” or “can’t find FastFilms” error.
Solution #1: (MAC Only)
There are two Mac versions. One is for the older PowerPC and one for Intel based Macs. With Apple walking away from the PowerPC platform we were not able to make one plugin that worked on both. And we had to use the older “FastFilms” core separation engine for the PowerPC version. There is NO difference in the function or routines. But, it means that you MUST load the correct ATN file into the Actions Palette in Photoshop. The ATN file with “CS” in the name is the one to load if you are running a PowerPC. The file without the “CS” in the name is the one you load for Intel based Macs.
BUT…. due to the changed both Adobe and Apple made – if you are running an Intel based Mac with CS or CS2 Photoshop you will need to install the PowerPC version and load the “CS” ATN file.
Solution #2: (MAC and Windows)
This is the most common error you can get and it simply means that for some reason the installation routine did not put the plugins in the Adobe/Plugins/Automate folder. The details about what files need to be where are outlined in the Reference Manual. Take a look at the Installation section of the manual.
If these files are not found by Photoshop you will get the error “Command T-Seps is not available” or other “not available” errors immediately upon running a routine. Section 1 Explains this in detail.
Solution #3: (MAC and Windows)
For some reason Photoshop CS4, CS5 and CS6 will not find certain plugins even though they are in the proper Plug-ins/Automate folder. And,if you have upgraded to CS5.1, Adobe decided to change the installation path. During the installation of T-Seps a folder is place on your Local C: drive (Windows) called TSEPS, and on you Mac Hard Drive called TSEPS. In this folder is a folder called Actions. You can point Photoshop to this folder.
On Windows go to the Edit menu and then Preferences. On a MAC go to the Photoshop logo and then Preferences. Select Plug-ins. Check on Additional Plug-in Folders. Click Choose. Find the folder called TSEPS/Actions and select Choose (or OK). Click on OK in the Preferences window and then close and re-start Photoshop. This forces Photoshop to find the T-Seps plugins regardless of the version of Photoshop you are running.
Problem: I can’t get T-Seps 1.0 to work in Photoshop CS4 or CS5 on Windows.
T-Seps 1.0 will only work in 32-bit mode (Photoshop CS4 and CS5). T-Seps 2.0 is compatible with all versions of Photoshop on both Mac and PC platforms. If you have T-Seps 1.0 you simply need to run Photoshop in the 32-bit version which is automatically installed with CS4 or CS5. Adobe creates two versions of Photoshop when you install it. The 32-bit version can be found in C:\ProgramFiles(x86)\Adobe.
Problem: I can’t change the halftone line count or angle in CS5 or CS6. The “Screen” button is missing.
For years Adobe Photoshop has had a feature called “Screen” where you were able to change the halftone line count and angle before printing to a software RIP. Adobe chose to REMOVE this feature from CS5 and CS6. Outlandish! They now force printers to take a separation done in CS5 or CS6 and place the image in In-Design or Adobe Illustrator to print. Or, you need to have a software RIP that allows control of the halftone dots in the RIP. If you are upgrading from an earlier version of Photoshop to CS5 or CS6, keep the older version installed for film output.
Problem: General File Errors when running routines.
“can’t perform command” “command not available” “object not available” etc.
If you get continuous errors such as “commands” can’t be found, it usually means the file is not in the correct format. Make sure the original file is RGB, No Layers and Flattened (must say “Background”) and has no additional channels other than the RGB composite and individual R, G, B (four channels total). Even if you think the file is OK, take time to open the file and double-check these issues:
Checking for RGB:
1. Open the file.
2. Open the Channels Palette (Window/ Channels).
3. The file MUST have four channels – RGB, R, G, B. There can be no additional “alpha” channels, channel masks, etc. Sometimes if you stop a routine in the middle and save the file, these extra channels stay with the file. Also, when getting files from customers, there are often mask channels that they forgot to delete. NEVER run a file without opening it first to check it out.
1. Open the file.
2. Open the Layers Palette (Window/Layers).
3. There MUST only be ONE layer and it MUST say “Background.” If there is more than one layer or if the single layer says “Layer 1″ or anything else, the layers are not flattened. To flatten the layers, go to the upper right arrow in the Layers Palette and click on Flatten Layers, or save the file as a .JPG – since this file format will not allow additional layers or channels.
Check file Bit Depth:
Adobe has disabled certain commands when the file is 32-bit depth. If you get errors running routines check the file bit depth and if it is 32-bits change it to 16 or 8. Go to Image/Mode.
NEW CS5/Mac Bug – Problem: When running the Custom Index routines there is no way to pick colors from the design.
This is a bug in Photoshop CS5 on a Mac. It is documented in online forums but there is a fix for it. When running a Custom Index routine there is part of the routine that tells you to choose a Custom Palette and then select the key colors from your design. When you go to click on the actual image with the eye dropper – nothing happens. You can select a color from Color Picker but to do it right you MUST select colors from the image.
The simple fix – when you are at that point and Color Picker is open is to FIRST click on the gray area of the color picker and THEN select the color from the image. Here is a link that explains this problem and the fix in more detail. See Fix here.
Problem: The channels do not look right when separated.
The image MUST be in RGB mode and there cannot be any layers except a locked (lock symbol on the layer) or any additional channels besides RGB, Red, Green, Blue. This is the most common support issue. Check the mode of the image (Image/Mode) and open the Layers Palette to verify that the image is flattened. It MUST say Background in the Layers Palette. Make sure the program was not stopped in the middle of a routine. If ANY action button is RED, the program was stopped and the Actions Palette must be reset. In this case, click the yellow Reset Menus button near the top of the T-Seps action list. Also, this could be caused by memory errors. Photoshop has a “memory leak” that allows it to build very large temporary files that are not always deleted as you close work files. If certain channels do not look correct, close and re-start Photoshop and/or re-boot your computer.
IMPORTANT NOTE to Photoshop CS4 and CS5 users. If using CS4 or CS5 you need to go to View and check Gamut Warning after you have run a routine. This seems to be either a flaw or bug in Photoshop as it is NOT consistent. In older versions and even in these version you normally should see the image with dot gain applied if Gamut Warning is NOT checked. But, it appears some versions of CS4 and CS5 need Gamut Warning checked to see the image bright with dot gain applied to the preview. This apparent “bug” has been fixed in CS6.
Problem: The separations are not dead on – the job doesn’t look like the original.
It is very difficult to take an image with thousands of colors and have them print with only a handful. Many designs will be extremely close. Other images may need a little “tweaking” to bring them around to match the original. Sometimes your first few jobs will be a learning experience – especially if you have never done this type of work. You will learn to trust what the monitor shows you and to trust your screen printing experience when “tweaking” the separations. Color Settings (Edit/Color Settings) can also effect this. Make sure you have followed the T-Seps Manual directions for setting Color Settings correctly. Most of the time, one or two minor adjustments is all it takes. T-Seps will generally get you within 95% of where you want the separations to be. Without a program like T-Seps it can take hours and hours of work, even for a Photoshop professional, to do the separations and many failures at the printing press. With T-Seps as a tool, it generally takes less than 5 minutes on most modern systems to run a basic routine and then just a few more minutes to do minor adjustments.
Problem: The separations on the monitor look great when the Black Channel is turned on but when I turn it off, the image looks flat.
This is not uncommon. If you have areas of solid black in the image, they must not have any color. This means if you use the Info Palette and do a reading, they should be at 0 levels for RGB. If these areas are NOT dead black, T-Seps will “think” you want color where you actually want it to be the color of the black shirt. When you display the Underbase Channel without the Black Channel on, you will be seeing a small 1% or 2% dot pattern. Obviously you won’t be able to burn this on the screen, but it will show on the monitor. To clean up the Underbase, simply press the button marked Remove Black from Underbase. This removes all areas on the black channel from the Underbase and helps the image display better. You can also take a Tone Curve (Image/Adjustments/Curves) and adjust the Highlight end slightly give the Underbase a higher contrast.
Problem: I can’t get the Registration Marks routine to work on a Mac.
This is a problem depending on what the Mac Hard Disk is called. The program is hard coded to look to a certain location for the targets. If you get an Open window when running this routine simply find your Mac Hard Disk and the folder called TSEPS. There are three files. “regmark15.png” (.25 inches), “regmark1.png” (1 inch), “regmark 5.png” (1/2 inch). Simply choose the the file you want and follow the rest of the prompts. This minor issue has been fixed in the latest version of T-Seps.
Problem: The underbase and highlight channels are blank.
There is a known but not well documented bug in CS3 and CS4 of Photoshop where the commands “copy and paste” are disabled. This can happen when there is a software conflict or if your scratch disk space is low or when you have had Photoshop open a long time. You can work for months and never experience this problem and then all of a sudden it happens.
1. Shut down Photoshop. Quit it all the way and re-start it. It builds huge temp files and it is not good at clearing these out as you close files. It is not uncommon to check your hard disk when Photoshop is open and see the “temp” file it has built over 2gb.
2. Re-boot your computer. This can also free up space.
3. Make sure you have a minimum of 3 to 4gb of free hard disk space. If you have an external drive, select it as a secondary Scratch Disk. In Photoshop go to Preferences and Scratch Disk.
4. Upgrade to CS5. This problem seems to be a non-issue in CS5.
Problem: The prints at press look muddy and are not bright.
It is critical that you have a good clean Underbase. Low tension screens will give a mottled look to the white. Increase the screen tension and make sure you are on the correct mesh. The top colors need a clean and fairly fast stroke. You MUST follow the recommended screen mesh. Most great work is done with 230 to 305 mesh. This means that using a 156 instead (because that is all you have) will give massive dot gain causing the image to be muddy.
Problem: Process color prints look muddy on the shirt.
If you are experiencing too much dot gain (from low tension screens, soft shirts, poor printing conditions, etc.) apply 10% more dot gain to the image before running the routines (make it 10% lighter) by using Image/Adjustments/Curves.
Problem: The original design has solid spot colors of text and the program made the colors halftones.
T-Seps uses a pre-determined palette of colors. If your image has a light red, T-Seps will have to make the red (Scarlet Pantone 185) from it’s palette lighter by using halftone dots and other colors. If you want the red area to be 100% color, simply be agressive with a Tone Curve to that particular channel. If you need to do 100% solid Pantone matches through-out the image, it is better to run the Custom Index Color routine where YOU pick the colors from the image.
Problem: Index images do not look correct if resampled.
Some of the users have created Index Color Separations and then decided to upsample the image to a larger page size. DO NOT DO THIS. When upsampling an indexed image, Photoshop places grayscale pixels of various shades around other pixels causing the pixels during printout to be very soft. Make sure to be at the final resolution and size before running the Index Separation routines.
Problem: White underbase is not heavy enough.
The white Underbase has been carefully created to make a soft Underbase where there are gradations in the image, and a solid Underbase where there is solid text and graphic elements. If this Underbase is too weak, simply select the Underbase channel and apply a Tone Curve adjustment to it (Image/Adjustments/Curves).You cannot adjust the white Underbase in an index image once it has been indexed. (Except in the Custom Index – Halftone Base routine, where the white channels are halftoned). If the Underbase it too weak in an Custom Index – Index Base routine or any of the standard index routines make the version of the file that has been masked (the first one to load) lighter than normal before running the program routine.
Problem: Black channel too weak on simulated and real process jobs.
The dilemma is how to make the black display the way it will print. Since black ink will gain more than any other color, it is hard to have it both ways. Generally the black plate is correct but may look a little light on the monitor. If you feel the black channel is too light, simply apply a slight Tone Curve to it. Another way to avoid this is by changing a setting in the Color Settings. Try setting Black Generation to Medium and/or Black Ink Limit to 100% instead of 85%. Refer to the T-Seps Manual for more details on the proper Color Settings in Photoshop.
Problem: Program asks to approve all of the routines.
If you run the program and it asks you to approve almost every move it makes, you have accidentally turned on the “stops” in the program. This is an easy mistake to make when switching from List View to Button Mode in the Actions palette. The only solution is to Replace Actions from the Actions menu. This is the small, round button with an arrow on it at the top of the Actions palette. Make sure to select the correct T-Seps action file. Reload the .ATN file named “TSEPS20-English.ATN“. The program may also not be installed correctly. See the next “Problem.”
Problem: Interlok Errors “Interlok Device Driver Not Found” “Certain device drivers need to be updated and/or require a reboot” OR Photoshop crashes or the computer restarts without notice.
Interlok is the third party anti-piracy program that is used by T-Seps to prevent piracy of the program and also to prevent theft from registered owners. These errors are easilyfixed by visiting www.paceap.com and downloading the “Interlok drivers” for end users for your particular operating system (Windows, MAC OS9 or MAC OSX). Close Photoshop, install the newest drivers and then reboot the computer. This will solve these errors. These drivers are also on the T-Seps installation disk.
Problem: Can’t find T-Seps in Actions Palette. “I loaded the action and it is still not there”
There is no way to automate the loading of the actual “action” that T-Seps uses in the Actions Palette. This must be done manually. Simply open the Actions Palette (Window/Actions) and go to the upper right hand arrow. Come down to Replace Actions. When the Load menu appears, select the appropriate action from the T-Seps folder. Make sure the actions are in Button Mode (upper arrow and select Button Mode). The buttons are in purple, yellow, etc. A common mistake when moving from a demo version to a full version or when upgrading to a newer version is that if you load the action, it places the new version BELOW the old version. You have to scroll down on the menu to even find it. You must REPLACE the action – not LOAD it.
Problem: The Index routine images look grainy on the monitor.
Index images can be grainier on the monitor than when they print. Also, the file resolution determines how “grainy” the image will be. You must be at a resolution of at least 150 to 200dpi for indexing to look good. If you run the routine on a low resolution file it will be very grainy AND you can’t upsample an indexed image once the routines are run.
Problem: Index routine underbase and top colors don’t match in size.
This one is easy to miss. When the index routine is running the menus will prompt you TWICE to “verify that the input and the output resolutions are the same.” Sometimes Photoshop will change the resolution in this menu. If it says Input 200 dpi and Output 150 dpi, then you will be sampling the image down in size. The Underbase will now be SMALLER than the top colors. You must read the menus and follow the directions.
Problem: Unlocking issues.
T-Seps uses a security program called Interlok that only allows you to install the program on two computers at a time. Once the program is installed on the computer correctly, you will receive a series of words called a Challenge when opening Photoshop or running a routine. If you have the full version of T-Seps, it needs to be unlocked within 20 days. We do not accept the Challenge words verbally over the phone because these words are very specific and there are usually errors in understanding them, not to mention the time it takes to transfer them all verbally. You must email them in to email@example.com. When you get the Challenge words, there is a button marked “Copy Challenge” in this window. By pressing this button, you automatically copy the words to “clipboard” on your computer. You can simply paste these words into the body of your e-mail. We will send you back a series of words called a Response that will then unlock T-Seps. Please don’t forget to also include your company name and order number (if you know it) with your unlock request.
Problem: If All Else Fails…..
If all else fails, please re-read the manual and re-run the routine making sure to follow the on-screen menus exactly. It is also helpful to view the video training again and learn more about proper image adjustment. Don’t be shy to call for support. Let Scott Fresener run a routine on your file and help figure out what the problem is.