Lightning LEN

Lightning LEN is a high performance LEN output plugin for the Harlequin RIP that is designed to output Esko compatible LEN files.

As well as providing integration capabilities with the high performance industry standard Harlequin RIP, its main benefit is its lightning fast performance; the combination of the Harlequin RIP and Lightning LEN gives Esko users access to what is widely acknowledged as being the fastest PostScript/PDF RIP on the planet, something that has been confirmed in numerous independent speed tests over the years.

The high performance that the Lightning LEN output plugin achieves is obtained through a unique method for implementing LEN compression, along with a significant number of code optimisation techniques that have been applied. In addition, Hamillroad engineers have built in the use of advanced multi-threading software techniques, which when used with the latest multi-core CPUs, such as the Intel Core i3/i5/i7, provide a near linear additional increase in performance.

The results of this are the creation of LEN files at extremely high speed, allowing for both greatly increased throughput and faster last minute production of time critical plates.


  • High performance compression algorithms
  • Multi-threaded on multi-core CPUs
  • Standard or Extended LEN format
  • Additional user selectable Flate compression
  • Conventional and (extended) template naming
  • Advanced file and job scripting capabilities
  • Fully optimised 64-bit version for HMR-10/11

Feature Box Title

A fully-functional 7-day trial version of Lightning LEN, a high performance output plug-in for the Harlequin RIP which provides lightning-fast performance.

For Windows

Lightning LEN
Harlequin RIP 9 or earlier

Lightning LEN
Harlequin RIP 10, 32-bit

Lightning LEN
Harlequin RIP 10, 64-bit

For Mac

Lightning LEN
Harlequin RIP 9 or earlier


High performance compression

At the heart of Lightning LEN is a wide range of highly optimised, high performance algorithms for implementing the standard compression methods required to create LEN raster files. These along with the multi-threading capabilities make Lightning LEN the output plugin of choice for the most demanding users and applications.


Taking advantage of the latest multi-core CPUs, Lightning LEN is multi-threaded so as to provide maximum performance on today’s hardware. This offers the highest performance possible, for last minute production of time critical jobs.

LEN formats

Lightning LEN provides the option to generate both Standard and Extended LEN files.

Data formats

Lightning LEN provides the option to generate LEN files either in Intel (Little Endian) or Motorola (Big Endian) byte order.

Compression formats

Lightning LEN provides the option to compress the normal LEN data with Flate (ZIP) so as to produce smaller LEN files, with a user selectable compression level from 1 (fastest, but largest) to 9 (smallest, but slowest).

Conventional and (extended) template based naming

Lightning LEN provides numerous controls for conventional based naming and an extended set of template variables for template based naming.

Advanced file and job scripting

In addition to post-processing per specific file, Lightning LEN also provides post-processing for each job. This combined with the ability to place all output from a job into its own unique folder allows for sophisticated customisation by writing post- processing scripts to perform additional tasks.

Technical Specifications

Image formats

Monochrome (Halftone) – 1 bit per pixel
CMYK Separations (Halftone) – 1 bit per pixel (Includes any additional spot colors, enabled in the Harlequin RIP in the usual way.)

LEN Formats

Standard LEN format
Extended LEN format

Compression formats *

Flate (ZIP)

Data formats

Intel (Little Endian)
Motorola (Big Endian)

RIPs supported

Harlequin RIP version 5
Harlequin RIP version 6 (Eclipse Release)
Harlequin RIP version 7 (Genesis Release)
Harlequin RIP version 8 (Plus Server RIP)
Harlequin RIP version 9 (Plus Server RIP)
Harlequin RIP version 10 (Multi-RIP, both 32-bit and 64-bit)
Harlequin RIP version 11 (Multi-RIP, 64-bit only)

Operating systems supported

Windows XP / Vista / 7 / 8 / 8.1 / 10
Mac OS X (Intel) 10.2 – 10.10