Help:Manual Printprep

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Prepping files for Commercial Printing

If you have never dealt with printers, nothing will assure a worry free experience for printing files commercially better than talking to your printer well in advance. Preventing mis-understandings and making them well aware in advance of your goals will more than likely prevent 90% of the mistakes. If you do not get satisfactory answers shop around. The printing business is competitive. The best offer both technical savvy and good service.

Ask questions:

If they accept PDF, which level ?

PDF 1.3 (Acrobat 4), PDF 1.4 (Acrobat 5) or PDF/X-3 (ISO Standard) ? If they accept PDF/X-3, consider yourself lucky. This type of PDF is the most advanced for commercial printing. PDF/X is expressly designed to assure good color fidelity between systems. If they can recommend specific ICC profiles to use, then even better.

Will they be converting the PDF to other formats like EPS?

Be aware, not all page layout applications are capable of supporting some of the advanced PS3 or PDF 1.4 features Scribus supports. Unless the printer's systems are using PDF 1.4, this is not a recommended solution.

Can they provide an ICC profile of their printer if color fidelity is critical?

What is the PS level of their RIP ?

This can be a determining factor in how you prepare the files. If their RIP is 3015.xxx+, you can be sure their RIP can handle 100% of the features of Scribus. They might not be able to directly answer that, but...

Consult The Pre-Press Notes and you can even take a printed copy of the PDF with you if the printer has not heard of Scribus. We have an online a listing of printers who support Scribus. See: Scribus Printers

If there remains unanswered issues, ask on the mailing list or on IRC. Usually, there is someone knowledgable who can answer your questions.

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