Recommendations for creating 1-, 2-, or 3-color PDFs

The Basic Rules
  • If the final product bleeds, then the image area must extend at least 1/8 (.125) inch beyond the trim on every side.
  • Make sure that your live area (critical copy and art that you don’t want clipped too closely by the cutter) is at least ¼ (.25) inch inside the trim.
  • Fonts fully embedded – don’t subset.
  • Include crop marks – don’t include registration bars or color bars.
  • Document should be in pages, not spreads – we will impose your pages.

 

The Details

Many people save files as PDFs without looking at the more detailed menus provided by Acrobat and other PDF creation software. This means you are accepting the software’s default settings, which are not always the optimal ones for your job. Here are Better Impressions’ recommended settings in the most important areas (these are based on Acrobat menus, but are applicable to other software).

Generally

Compatibity = Acrobat 5.0
Object Level Compression = Tags only
Auto-Rotate Pages = Off
Binding = Left
Resolution = 2400 dots per inch

Concerning “Images”

Bicubic downsample color images above 450 pixels down to 300 pixels.
Compression = JPEG (Automatic)
Image Quality = Maximum

Bicubic downsample grayscale images above 450 pixels down to 300 pixels.
Compression = JPEG (Automatic)
Image Quality = Maximum

Bicubic downsample monochrome images above 1800 pixels down to 1200 pixels.
Compression = CCITT Group 4
Anti-alias to gray = Off

Concerning “Fonts”

Embed all fonts – do not subset fonts

Concerning “Color”

File Settings = None
Color Management = Leave Color Unchanged
Document Rendering Intent = Preserve

If you have questions, please feel free to contact us.