Holographic Label Faq's (Frequently Asked Questions)
What is a Hologram?
A hologram, like a photograph, is a record of light reflected from an object. But unlike a photograph, that light is not focused through a lens. Holography is the award-winning science of recording the light waves emitted from a laser as they are reflected off of an object. The recorded image is called a hologram. Created by Lasers etching a pattern of light waves that is accurate to microscopic detail. The depth and pure spectral colors in a hologram cannot be duplicated in printing or photography. When re-illuminated and viewed under ordinary light, the hologram presents a true three dimensional recreation of the original object. For the observer, the perception of depth is virtually indistinguishable from reality.
In What Ways Are Holograms Typically Used?
Besides the wide range of products listed on our website, holograms are frequently used as embellishments on printed media such as magazine covers, paperback books, brochures, direct mail pieces, and pocket folders. Other interesting options include CD covers, school yearbooks, and product packaging. Some interesting examples can be viewed from our many clients examples posted on our website.
Why are custom hologram labels so expensive?
Shooting a master hologram is a very time-consuming and complex process that can be disrupted by anything from poor weather conditions to vibrations caused by nearby traffic and/or construction. In addition, the materials and equipment needed to create a hologram are very costly. It is this detailed procedure that makes holograms such an effective security tool.
The hologram mastering fee is a one-time charge. Once your holographic master is created, it will last virtually indefinitely.
What are Security Holograms, and Why Are They Secure?
Holograms are a method of protection against counterfeiting. Highly valued for security, holograms can only be produced using expensive, specialized and technologically advanced equipment. Holograms are noteworthy in this regard, since they are both costly to produce and extremely difficult to duplicate. They cannot be replicated by color copiers, computer scanning equipment, or by standard printing techniques (analog or digital ) since they are governed by different physical properties (holograms diffract light whereas print reflects it). Given that counterfeiters inherently select the path of least resistance, encountering a security hologram will frequently cause them to abandon their efforts to copy your product and move on to easier targets. As a result, the use of hologram security labels virtually guarantees product authenticity.
Security holograms are used to prevent counterfeiting, or to otherwise authenticate the products or packaging to which they are affixed. Further, the addition of covert security devices, sequential numbering, tamper evident adhesives and other security features make a well-produced security hologram virtually impossible to duplicate without by anyone other than its creator. The most commonly recognized form of security holograms can be found on Master Card and Visa credit cards.
Can Holograms be Reduced or Enlarged?
Unfortunately, for both Stock Image and most fully custom holograms, the answer is no. Holograms maintain an exact one-to-one ratio with the artwork used to create them. Our holograms can, however, be cropped down to smaller sizes-as long as the image allows for itself to eliminate a portion of the image.
Note: If you want to use a single image for multiple sizes we can create a wall-paper image similar to HSCI’s text patterns or patterns we offer. Repeating the image seamlessly allows you to make any size needed from the same continuous repeating image created. Please be sure to discuss this matter upfront with our design team so we can cater to your needs of a versatile image being created. If you want to create a registered image that allows for other shapes or cropping of the image to allow for a few sizes of the same image matter but you are not sure how a particular image will appear when cropped to suit a specific product, please ask your sales representative for assistance.
Or we have created many patterns or repeating text patterns designed for just this purpose that multiple sizes or shapes can be created from our already existing patterns. Please contact us to discuss the details of your project and we can custom create your holograms by using one of our patterns offered. We can topically add graphic to our patterns for your uniquely designed customized hologram. Or create a wall paper design customized to your specifications for your project by creating a wall paper master origination for your design.
Are there any low-cost alternatives to custom security hologram labels?
If your project or product requires a hologram label, but you find the cost prohibitive, you may be interested in using one of our stock holographic images. HSC's stock holograms are our original designs.
The hologram security labels can be used as they are, or customized with overprinting, sequential numbering or barcoding. We have several customization options to choose from. Please inquire for more information on customizing one of our stock holographic images or patterns to your specification.
However, because they are available to anyone who wants to purchase them, stock holograms do not offer the same level of security as custom images.
What is the largest hologram you can create?
Our brightest, highest quality holograms are 3" x 3" or smaller. Depending on the artwork, we can work with larger pieces up to 5.875" x 5.875". If you have a specific holographic project in mind, we'd be happy to discuss it with you. We currently run a 6" wide web, so the entire label itself, not including the hologram, is limited to 5.875" on one axis.
Can you create a hologram in which the subject matter "moves," such as a baseball player swinging at a pitch?
We can create 2-channel holograms. This method uses 2 images that interchange as the label or card is moved back and forth. We also offer Dot-Matrix and E-Beam holograms which can be made with kinetic movement effects, such as a spiral moving around as you shift the hologram left and right.
Another method is a Stereo-Gram which can achieve movement such as a baseball player swinging a pitch, though this method tends to be more cost intensive.
If you are interested in a wide range of motion with a series of frames, you may prefer a lenticular hologram. Lenticulars are not true holograms but digitally generated images that are printed and then viewed through a ridged "lens."
Are Pictures That Switch From One Image To Another Holograms?
Yes, common terms are multi-channel or acute angle holograms. Other terms are switch effects or 2 channel holograms. If custom holography is within your budget, and you are interested in combining 2D-3D holography and two channel imagery, we can accommodate your needs. E-mail your specific requirements and we will respond with the details.
Switch effects are very attractive for visual control of holograms. The switch effects consist in different images being seen in the same place of the hologram if viewed at different angles. Several types of switch effects are distinguished by horizontal, vertical or a 90-degree turn.
Holograms with continuous movement are generally categorized as a stereo gram. These holograms incorporate several exposures at slightly different angles to produce movement. For example, a person waving hello, which is animated by rocking the image left and right away from the viewer.
Do you make any other products besides hologram labels?
Recent projects include holographic bookmarks, business cards, trading cards, college parking permits and hang tags.
We can print on regular paper stock as well, producing a wide variety of labels such as graphical stickers and wine bottle labels.
What kind of artwork do you need to create a hologram?
How do I submit it? Please read our Artwork Specifications and Hologram Design Tips.
We'd like a hologram of our company logo. Will the hologram match our logo's pantone spot colors?
Holograms are created with light and use three main colors - red, green and blue. To achieve the brightest holographic image possible, we will designate one of these colors to each portion of the artwork. Additional colors can only be created by mixing red, green and blue. This is generally not recommended, as it tends to wash out the most intense vibrant hues of the hologram.
Even after designating specific color breaks to the artwork, the colors of the hologram will change. This is because we work with rainbow holography. When the hologram is turned back and forth, and depending on the light source and viewing angle, the colors will run through the spectrum - the colors of the rainbow.
We also offer what is called "True Color Holography" in which colors, such as skin tones, when viewed at a specific angle appear in true color. On our custom page there is an example of a tiger that was mastered in true color.
Are There “Full-Color” Holograms?
Most embossed holograms are created as a “rainbow,” so that each holographic element in an image will shift through the entire visible spectrum as the image is moved. Using the latest technology, we now have the ability to color tune holograms. Called TRUE COLOR holograms. Under ideal viewing conditions and at one particular angle, a color tuned hologram will closely replay the colors in the original scene.
We received an art file and/or color printout as a "proof" of our hologram label. Will the finished hologram look exactly the same as the proof?
Holograms are basically an illusion; they are reflections of light that fool the eye into seeing a three-dimensional image. Therefore, it is impossible to give an accurate representation of a holographic image on a computer screen or paper printout. What you will receive via email or hardcopy is an artwork proof to look over to be sure that the graphics and layout are to your liking, free of typos, etc. The holographic process is very expensive and involves many detailed steps, so it is very important that all hologram artwork is approved before the project moves into the laser lab for hologram mastering.
Is There More Than One Type of Hologram?
Yes please see several options of types of holograms we offer. HSCI uses various types of holography and techniques for many types of holograms to be possible. We use both analog and digital hologram technology.
What Are the Minimum Quantities Required For Custom Holograms?
Though there are no absolute minimum volumes for custom holography, the rule of thumb is that projects whose hologram budget is under $5,000 are more cost effective if stock image holograms are used. View our vast amount of stock images you can utilize. We can customize them to your needs by adding graphics, logos, text and numbering, bar-codes and more.
How will I be able to tell if my hologram security label has been tampered with?
We offer a variety of materials that your labels can be produced on. Tamper-evident material will destruct when removed. The top layer will separate from the metallic underside. The holographic image will be left behind on the product, and the label will be destroyed. We also offer selective release material. When someone attempts to remove the holographic label, a "VOID" or "CIRCLE" pattern will be left behind to signify tampering.
What advantage do I have in doing business with Holographic Security Concepts, rather than some of the other hologram companies?
The answer is simple; HSC is a fully integrated custom hologram label manufacturer. We are equipped to handle your security hologram label job from concept to finished product. All processes are in-house, allowing us to precisely control security, quality, and cost.
Our USA based facility is secure and in a climate controlled environment. We have over 100 years of combined experience in the label printing and holographic fields. Our expert staff is here to help you every step of the way with your hologram project. From concept to finished product, HSC is at your service.
Holographic Security Concepts, Inc.
1799 County Road 90 N Units 7-10 Independence, MN 55359
p. 763-546-1844 f. 763-546-8040
All rights reserved Holographic Security Concepts, Inc. 2013