|Frequently Asked Questions -- Printing Questions
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Can I submit multiple files for one job?
Please attach one file for each job that contains all of the pages for that job. I.E. a 40 page booklet needs to have a 40 page PDF attached to that job. Do not upload 40 1 page PDF's as we will have to combine them prior to printing and you will be billed Graphic Design Time for that service. If you only have single page source files and need us to combine them, please call for a quote and we will be more than happy to accommodate your needs.
Do you accept borders on jobs?
We can accept borders on jobs; however, there are several things you should know. Our printing equipment specs allow for a .5mm side-to-side, page to page, registration shift.
What does that mean?
Each sheet may vary placement of the image by as much as .5mm and when we cut the stack you may see variation that yields uneven borders. We Strongly urge you not to use borders on jobs like Business Cards as we cannot guarantee the finished results.
How do I export my .PDF files correctly?
When using Adobe Acrobat, please make sure you use a "Press Quality" preset (available in the newer versions of Acrobat). If you cannot find the preset, please verify a few things in your settings prior to exporting.
If you see any warning or pop-up when trying to convert to a PDF, please read it carefully as it is likely to affect the quality of the printed output.
- Compatibility: Acrobat 4 (PDF 1.3)
- Compress Text and Line Art: Off
- Image Quality: Maximum
- If you are not converting fonts to outlines -- Embed all fonts: checked/yes
How do I get accurate Grayscale images?
Please confirm that your images/pages are grayscale. When using the color eyedropper on a grayscale page/image you should see only zero's for the values of Cyan (C), Magenta (M), and Yellow (Y). If you do not see zero's the image will be printed in 4 color process and likely have a green or yellow tint to it.
To fix this issue, use the Channel Mixer (adjustment layer) in Photoshop and click on "Monochrome", then adjust accordingly. Or if an entire page is to be monochrome, you may, using Adobe Acrobat Professional (CS3), Click on Advanced-->Print Production--> Convert Colors. In the following window, you will need to:
- Select the source color profile (usually CMYK)
- Action: Convert
- Destination Space Profile: Gray Gamma 2.2
- Page-Level Transparency Blending Space: Leave Unchanged
- Convert Pages: Select "All" "Current Page" "From" as needed
- Conversion Options: Embed as OutputIntent
How do I get Rich Black (or a "blacker black" as some people say)?
A dark, deep, rich black is achieved by mixing 100% Black with a bit of Cyan, Magenta, and Yellow. To achieve a Rich Black, we suggest using the CMYK Values of:
- Cyan: 60
- Magenta: 40
- Yellow: 40
- Black: 100
How do I make sure my Blues don't come out purple?
This area is one of the most common errors we see. Computer screens and printed materials rarely accurately represent blues. Please make sure that your blues ARE NOT SPOT COLORS and that the value for Magenta is at least 30% less than Cyan. Example: 100%C, 100%M, 0%Y, 0%K looks blue on screen, however it will print purple. Use a color like: 100%C, 70%M, 0%Y, 0%K instead to yield a blue printed output.
Is there a way to avoid transparency issues?
Yes, a properly prepared file is key to avoiding issues in the printing process. Please DO NOT USE SPOT COLORS combined with Shadows, Glows, or Transparency as this is the most common culprit. If you do need to use Glows, Shadows, or Transparencies, please make sure all colors are CMYK and you have flattened the images into one graphic.
Should I send proofs or sample files to you?
No, Please make sure that the file attached to the order is correct prior to placing the order. Once an order has been placed, orders get processed on a next available queue which means your order may be on press in a matter of hours of the order being placed.
We cannot color-match paper originals that you provide because, in most cases, the printed out provided is not an accurate represntation of the color called for in the file. We calibrate our equipment daily, to ensure high quality output as well as calibrating our monitors weekly. This allows us to compare printed output with digital files and verify that an "eye pleasing color" match has been achieved.
What color mode should I use?
Use CMYK as your color mode. We can take RGB source files, however there may be a shift in colorspace because we have to convert the file to CMYK.
What is Full Bleed (sometimes referred to as Bleed)
Full Bleed means printing to the edge of the sheet. If you want your graphics to continue all the way to the edge of the sheet, you need to make sure you include a 1/8" Bleed Allowance beyond the edge of your desired printed sheet size. Essentially this means that, if you wish a Full Bleed page that is 8.5" X 11", you need to give us a File that is 8.75" X 11.25". The outside 1/8" all around the File will be colored by your background images and/or extended background color. -- DO NOT SIMPLY PUT A WHITE (OR ANY OTHER COLOR) BORDER AROUND YOUR FILE!!! -- If you wish more help for this, please call us at 480-629-5162 and we can send you our Full Bleed Info Sheet.
What margins should I have between the Cut Lines and the Text Content.
While the requirement is .125" we strongly suggest at least .25" or more. Also, if you are printing a book bound via Perfect Binding please allow an additional .125" on the binding edge. If you are printing a book bound via Coil Binding please plan on .25" on the binding edge being taken by the coil and punched holes in addition to your margin.
What Paper Types Should I Choose?
We have a number of paper types available--so many, in fact, that it can be overwhelming at times. As a general rule, we suggest using the same type of paper (gloss or matte) in a project. Example: A saddle-stitched booklet with 100# Gloss Cover usually looks best when the contents pages are printed on a Gloss Text stock rather than on a matte paper. On the other hand, if you were to use a Matte/Dull cover stock for the cover of your booklet, use a similar paper (Matte/Dull Text) on the contents pages. Using a gloss sheet for those pages would cause your booklet to look "confusing" and cause your piece to "lose professionalism".
What resolution should my files be?
The industry standard is a 300dpi minimum, however our equipment can print to at least 600dpi natively. Please keep this in mind as lower resultion files will result in pixilated text and images and will not be covered by our Satisfaction Guarantee.
What types of files do you accept?
We are an Adobe Shop meaning we can take anything generated by Adobe Creative Suite. We prefer High-Resolution PDF Files with fonts converted to outlines as they will yield the best results. Please make sure you use only CMYK Colors as we emmulate spot colors and they may not look correct on the printed output.
Why is there cracking on my scoring job?
Cracking may still occur even after a job has been scored, especially if it has been UV Coated. Please remember, scoring just reduces the chance of cracking--it does not prevent it.