Are your files print-ready? Basic check-list
- File names. Do your filenames include proper titles (cover, interior, endpapers) that represent the purpose of the file? Example of file naming: "mymagazine_cover.pdf", "mymagazine_interior.pdf".
- File preparation. If your product is going to be a brochure or a book, do you know how to prepare cover layout? Do you know the spine-width of your future book?
- Trim-box. Have you set a correct trim-box (finished size) when making the document? Bleed area should not be included in the trim (finished) size of the document.
- Bleed-box. Does the file have bleed?
- Safe zone. Are important objects in the design (for example text) kept within a safe distance from the trim-box?
- PDF file standard. Are you using PDF/X standard when exporting your file?
- Color mode and spot colors. Does your file contain only the colors that will be involved in printing?
NO BLEED REQUIRED
NO BLEED REQUIRED
Important! Bleed on layouts of softcover brochure covers and wire-o brochures shall be on all four sides.
NO BLEED REQUIRED
Before you export your PDF file please select the "include bleed" option.
We also recommend you to indicate crop marks and trim marks in your design. These should be software-generated and added at the PDF-making stage by ticking the "Crop Marks" option. Crop marks shall be at least 2 mm from trim box limits.
Make sure spot colours you use are from Pantone library and are intented to be used in printing of your design.
Do not leave any SPOT colours in CMYK designs; automatic colour conversion may give unexpected result. Most convenient way to check SPOT colours is to select separation preview function in the Acrobat Pro software. Do not use different Pantone colour palettes. For example, the same file may not include Pantone 485C and Pantone 485U colours.
Do not use RGB colours or elements within your design. Every RGB element will be automatically converted into CMYK, while result may not be as expected.
Pure black (100% black) graphic objects will automatically be set to overprint in the prepress stage. Therefore black elements on nontransparent backgrounds (Pantone metallic colours, like PMS 871, 877) shall never be pure black or they might become dimmed. Other colours shall be added to the black mix (for example: C50 M40 Y30 K100) to prevent overprinting.
Therefore we recommend supplementing black elements with other colours (except text < 24 pt and lines < 3 pt) (for example: C50 M40 Y30 K100). That is how we would get so called RICH BLACK. This would help us to avoid undesirable black overprints. Also black with other colours will become richer, than K100 alone.
For the Grey background made of Black colour only we recommend using 5-40 % Black.
For the Grey background made of CMYK we recommend using 5-20 % of CMY and 5-100 % of K 5-100 proc.
Grey shall not be composed of CMY only, without Black, while share of Black shall be greater than CMY.
In case you accidentally set the “overprint” function for a filling or a line (which are overlaying other elements in the design), result will differ from the design, as paint is transparent.
In order to check if the design is prepared correctly, activate the "Print Preview" function in Advanced/Print production menu of the "Acrobat Pro" software.
Fountain fills and transparencies
Do not use fountain fills in spot colour jobs as this will cause your job to be rejected by prepress.
Do not use transparency functions of Microsoft and CorelDraw software. Please flatten any transparencies in the Adobe Illustrator or the Indesign prior to generation of PDF.
Never use multi-layer transparencies as this may cause problems when your file is processed through our workflow, and may not give the desired end result.
Total ink limit
Do not apply any colour, which total ink limit exceeds 300% (which is calculated by summing all C, M, Y and K elements together) in your design.
Please note, that our software will automatically decrease total ink limit till recommended for particular type of selected paper. For a coated paper - 330%, for uncoated paper - 300%. In general it will not affect colours, at least you will not notice much difference, however, in order to avoid such conversion, try not to overcome 300% of total ink limit.
Make sure your design does not contain any low resolution elements.
Recommended resolution range is 300-350 dpi for CMYK and Grayscale images, and 600-2540 dpi for one bit bitmap images.
In any case quality of printed images of less than 150 dpi resolution may be low.
Also we recommend using only CMYK or Grayscale images, as any RGB images will be automatically converted by our software into CMYK elements, while result may be not what you're expecting.
PDF – ensure you embed all fonts when making your PDF.
EPS – ensure you convert all fonts into outlines when making your EPS.
Smaller than 7 point font shall be composed only from one of these colours: 100 % Black, 100 % Cyan, 100 % Magenta, 100 % Yellow or 100 % Pantone.
Important information (images, text) shall not be closer than 5 mm to trim, die-cut, perforation, punching line or other peripheral limits.
On the second and third page of the covers, as well as on the all interior pages of a softcover brochure, important information shall be at least 8 mm away from inner page edge (spine side). Also 2 mm wide white stripes (without any print) shall be left from inside on pages mentioned before. This would allow adequate gluing of an internal block to a cover.
Important information in wire-o products shall be at least 12 mm away from a trim line of a sheet.
Lines shall be at least 0.08 mm thick.
Colour of lines of 0.2 mm or less thickness shall be single coloured, moreover lines shall not be rasterized (100 % colours are required).
Preparation of PDF files
Provision of files
Version of PDF files provided shall not be higher than 1.6. We recommend providing us a PDF/X-3 version files.
Always generate Print Quality PDF files.
Do not forget bleed and crop marks in your PDF files.
PDF files shall be composite.
Do not forget visual check of PDF files by using Output Preview function in the Acrobat PDF, as this is a best way to check the future result of a printed version.
We recommend providing us all internal pages of the product in one file, however the size of the file shall not exceed 1 GB limit. In that case the design shall be split into few parts, names of files shall reflect pages of a product, for example: 001-016_projectname.pdf, 017- 032_projectname.pdf, etc.
Brochure interior PDF files should be exported in single pages, do not use “spreads” option.
Provision of files for saddle stitched brochures
Cover and internal pages of saddle stitched brochures shall all be included in a single file. Do not provide a design of cover page in a flat-size layout (spread), unless it is a non-standard size cover, cover with flaps, etc.
Provision of files for perfect bound brochures
A file for cover pages of a perfect boundsoftcover brochure shall be provided as flat-size layout (spread), including the spine in the design. The cover shall be provided as a separate file, not along with the interior.
Provision of files for UV spot varnishing
Files for UV spot varnishing shall be provided separately, as a PDF vector format. Dimensions of a product in UV file shall absolutely coincide with dimensions of a product in a main file.
Provision of leaflet files
4 page leaflets shall be provided in single pages. Leaflets with more than 4 pages should be provided in flat-size layouts.
Provision of files for UV spot varnishing
Files for UV spot varnishing shall be provided separately, as a PDF vector format.
Dimensions of a product in UV file shall absolutely match with dimensions of a product in a main file. Elements for spot varnishing shall be filled with 100 % Black and shall strictly coincide with varnishing areas.
Please do notuse Spot UV on small texts and line elements.
Provision of files for drip off varnishing
Recommendation for a file preparation:
- At the beginning prepare a file as for usual spot varnishing procedure, where elements for varnishing are covered by vectorial 100 % BLACK elements.
- Then fill whole master page with 100 % CYAN color in the file.
- Generate PDF file, which will contain two colors CYAN and BLACK (CYAN will represent empty elements, while BLACK will represent varnishing elements).
- Do not use Black Overprint function when you generate a PDF file.
A file that was prepared in a previously described way is easy and convenient to use. It allows the printing house to extract a CYAN form only, as drip off varnish requires a negative spot UV varnish image for the production process.
Provision of files for die-cutting
A PDF format file shall be provided for die-cutting jobs. Dimensions in a die-cut file shall absolutely coincide with dimensions in product design file.
Different language versions
If you prepare a design for products in various languages, where only black is changing for variations, files shall be prepared as follows: background (same for all languages) - CMYK without a text which varies; different language texts - separate files, only black.
Alternative: prepare a PDF file with layers, where background would be CMYK and separate layers for each language.
We recommend using ISOcoated_v2_eci.icc colour conversion profile for coated gloss or mat paper (1st and 2nd types of paper), maximum quantity of ink - 330 %, or ISOcoated_v2_300_eci.icc profile, maximum amount of ink - 300 % (according to FOGRA39 ISO 12647-2:2004). The latter profile is recommended for bulk coated paper (Arctic Volume or similar).
PSO_Uncoated_ISO12647_eci.icc conversion profile is recommended for non coated paper (4th type of paper), maximum amount of ink - 300 % (according to FOGRA47 and international standard ISO 12647-2:2004).
Colour / ink intensity tolerance
Slight colour variance on a printed product is inevitable because of many factors influencing printing process.
This means that colours may slightly differ from original design despite of printing quality, which is compatible with requirements of international standard and allowable tolerances.
On jobs with multi sheet products (especially books and brochures) there may be a variance in colour within the design itself (within limits set by the standard).
Also we would like to note, that subsequent reprints may slightly differ in colour as well.
Image on the screen is composed of RGB colours; therefore it cannot be replicated with ink on paper exactly, where CMYK system is used. Moreover, screen image quality depends a lot on calibration of the screen.