Print Ready artwork guidelines
As we are a print ready business it is important you send your artwork to us print ready so you do not incur any graphic design alteration fees. If you do need graphic design alterations to make your files print ready we can do this for you, just let us know and we will advise the cost in our quote.
Below is the information on what is required for print ready files.
Trim, Internal Bleed, External Bleed
The trim area is the final size of your print job (always include trim marks).
When creating your artwork, ensure your artboard is set up as the trim size of your design.
Use the document set up to define trim and bleed, never do it manually on page.
Internal bleed: 3mm (5mm on all booklets)
Keep all important information away from this area
External bleed: 3mm (5mm on all booklets)
Your job is printed on a large sheet and then trimmed to size. External bleed is the area extending past your trim area, which allows for a small amount of movement that may occur when your work is being cut to size.
All files must be supplied as PDF
Printed one side: Supply a one-page PDF.
Printed front & back: Supply a two-page PDF.
The first page of your PDF will be the front page and the second the back page.
Multiple kinds: Supply a single PDF with all kinds included. Eg: Kind 1 - front, back, Kind 2 - front, back and so on.
Self cover, page order: Outside Front Cover - Inside Front Cover - Pages - Inside Back Cover - Outside Back Cover
Book plus cover: Supply 2 separate files. One being the Outside Front Cover - Inside Front Cover - Inside Back Cover - Outside Back Cover and then other the internal pages.
Supply in CMYK mode
Convert all of your RGB or Pantone spot images to CMYK.
This will give you more control over the final appearance of your print job. Our automatic conversion may produce results you’re not satisfied with.
Special finish for one side only
All special finishes for single pages should be saved as your first page.
If your job contains a special finishing requirement (ie, lamination) for just ONE side then please provide that as the front page of your print ready PDF.
Your artwork should be 300dpi at full size.
Resolution is the number of pixels within an image. The higher the resolution, the better the picture, however if your resolution is too high it is not utilised and makes your files too large.
Either test print or view your design at 100% to decide if you’re happy with the image quality. If you enlarge an image you lower its resolution and conversely, if you reduce an image you increase its resolution.
Coated stocks: 300% maximum ink
Uncoated stocks: 260% maximum ink
The colours that you use should contain less than the total maximum % when you add together Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Black.
Rich black: 30% Cyan, 20% Magenta, 20% Yellow, 100% Black
Rich blue black: 40% Cyan, 0% Magenta, 0% Yellow, 100% Black
This is for areas 30mm square or larger and shouldn’t be used on text.
Fonts: Always embed or outline your fonts
Embedding or outlining the fonts you use in your files means we can print them even if we don’t have those fonts installed on our computers. This ensures they will look exactly the way you want them to.
To avoid banding when printing a gradient. All gradients should be created in Photoshop and saved as an .eps file and placed into the working document (either inDesign or Illustrator). Create the gradient in PhotoShop, apply “Noise” (Filter > Noise > Add Noise), then to smooth the noise apply a Gaussian Blur (Filter > Blur > Gaussian Blur….) and then save as.
Naming your file
Keep it short, sweet and descriptive.
For example, “ACME Incorporated” would name a business card file ACME_BC.pdf.
Setting up transparencies
Due to the nature of how transparencies can behave when being ripped, we recommend any file containing a transparency be flattened. Transparencies have been known to be an issue when ripping within the industry, therefore best practice states that files, that have been flattened, should output in the desired manner.
To support transparencies success our rip is continuously updated to ensure it is performing at optimal levels. Please speak to our Preprint Department if you have any queries regarding this.
We hope this section has proved useful in helping you prepare your files, however, if you are still needing more information or have a specific questions, then please feel free to contact us.
You may wish to send this information to your graphic designer or if unsure we can make print ready using our graphic designers (Note there is a print ready file alteration charge).