Are Your Files Fast? – Tips for Preparing your Files for Print
In the digital age, custom customer design is often supplied to print suppliers worldwide. It’s often asked of printing professionals “When I give you a file, don’t you just have to press a button and say GO?”. The answer is not always, and, not usually.
Quality printing professionals will often “Preflight” your files to make sure that you get the greatest quality product you can achieve in a timeframe you can expect. Here are some steps to help you prepare your project for efficient print.
First – get the quote before you start the project. in most cases, a Customer Service or Sales Professional can help guide you in time-frame and run efficiencies. This will help you save both time and money.
Second – Make sure you design the piece to the exact size of what you want printed. If you have already worked with the Customer Service or Sales Professional, they will have given you a detailed quote with the item size. Any manipulation on the part of the printing professional to readjust for size with may jeopardize the integrity of your design.
Third – If the colors run to the edge they bleed. “Bleed” is a printing professionals term for color that seems to “bleed” off the edge of the paper. In order to achieve this look an additional 1/8 of an inch of color past the edge is required. Many programs have “Bleed” settings, make sure you have 1/8 (.125) inch requested.
Fourth – Most printing professional print at 2,400 dots per inch (DPI) quality. A general rule of quality print is that all photos and settings should be at a minimum of 300 DPI. Most internet art is 72dpi. Try to avoid internet photos or art and use original photos or purchased art from quality stock programs and sites.
Five – Proof, Proof and Proof Again. Most printing professionals will send you a proof from your file to guarantee all art and type translate properly. If translated properly, they can go directly to print. Any changes to text or photos from the supplied files often delays the project longer than it would if you had taken an extra 24 hours to proof in house and make sure its 100% ready for print.
PDF Files work best – Portable Document Format (PDF) files often require no manipulation to print if all the above steps have been followed. Native files (Word, Publisher, Illustrator, etc), can make translation difficult and may result in text or art not coming out the way you desire.
Finally – If it’s super detailed and time critical – let the professionals do it. Many times, printing professionals can design, proof and print in a time-frame faster that the average workforce professional. Palm Printing, along with The Print Shop & More, currently have nine professional designers with over 100 years combined experience. Our team is available to make you and your project look good, we have the team to do it.
Any other questions on this or any other printing and digital marketing project; feel free to contact any of our Customer Service Professionals in any of our 4 locations.