Prepare Electronic Files

Submitting Jobs on Disk

Image File Formats: If your publication requires digital images, use only high resolution 300 dpi TIFF, JPG and EPS formats for the highest quality output. File formats such as PICT (Macintosh Picture), WMF (Windows Metafile), and WPG (WordPerfect Graphics) are generally problematic and you are encouraged to avoid using these especially with multi-color graphics. Images that are downloaded from the web (GIF and JPG) are usually 72dpi and are not adequate for printing. Regardless of which layout software you use, always provide Production Services with all image files and fonts used in your document.

Fonts: Be sure to include all fonts used in your publication as well as those used in your art files. TrueType and PostScript fonts are the two primary font file formats used in digital printing. TrueType fonts (TTF) are displayed using the same file for both the screen and printing devices. PostScript fonts are composed of two elements: screen fonts and printer fonts. If you are using PostScript fonts, send both the printer and screen fonts. Even if you use software that allows you to embed fonts, you should still include them on the disk you submit for printing.

Not all fonts have a bold or italic version. If you are not certain that you have the bold or italic variation of a font, do not use the font attributes buttons in your application to fake the variation. Your desktop printer may be able to mimic or simulate the missing variation, but high-resolution printers, such as those used for offset printing, will not. If the font you are using does not have a bold or italic variation, you should select another font that does have the desired variations.

Ink Color Systems: Spot color is a single ink color identified by number in the Pantone Matching System (PMS). This system is the industry standard for printing with color ink(s) in the U.S. PMS is the common reference for designers and printers to reproduce the chosen color.

Process color is used when printing color photographs because it can produce a wide range of colors using only four inks (cyan, magenta, yellow and black). Designers can incorporate one or more spot colors, process color, or a combination of the two. It is best to keep this color choice in mind when creating your layout and art files.

Your computer monitor uses only 3 colors: RGB (red, green, blue) and therefore does not accurately represent the colors of a printed piece. All full-color printing, whether to laser or offset, uses process color. If you use any image files that are set up as RGB (video screen colors), they must be converted to CMYK for printing. For an accurate representation of color, a matchprint will be provided.

Diagram of a bleedPage Size: Please be sure that the document size on your disk matches the page size of your finished publication. If you are using bleeds, please set up at least a 1/8-inch bleed in your file, as shown in the example at right.

PostScript: The PostScript printer language, invented by Adobe Systems, is the de facto standard for all commercial printing, imaging and printing devices. We strongly urge all of our clients to print all of their documents to a PostScript laser printer before submitting for production. If you do not have access to a PostScript printer, Production Services will provide the first proof from one of our black and white or color PostScript printers for your approval before production begins.

Disks: In all cases, disks should be accompanied by a hardcopy/ printout of your document so we have a clear idea of how you expect your document to appear. We will point out any differences we discover between your hardcopy and the PostScript printout. You may then choose to adjust your document yourself or schedule an appointment with one of our customer service representatives.

When preparing disks for printing, name your file clearly and print the name of the file on the requisition. Give us all the files we need but only the files we need. Erase any files from the disk that are not needed for printing the job at hand. Do not use any compression utilities. It is better to submit multiple disks. Production Services and most commercial printers prefer zip disks, CD's or USB memory sticks.

Again, please, always include a hardcopy printout with your disk!