How to Save PDF files for better printing!
20 years ago a very wise man named John Warnock came up with a GENUIS idea for a system that would allow files from any computer or application to be viewed or printed on any other computer regardless of whether the other machine had the original software application, fonts, graphics, or anything else. This system which he named Camelot, went on to become the Portable Document File Format released by Adobe in 1993. Since then PDFs have become not only the standard, but in many cases a REQUIREMENT for graphic design and commercial printing professional worldwide.
PDF-based workflows are simply the BEST!
They are quick, robust, efficient; you just never want to go back to the OLD days of traditional postscript or linotype, bristol boards and wax paste-ups, or shooting negatives way back when.
So yes... PDFs are amazing! They're self-contained, compact, and as the name suggests, PORTABLE. Of course, there's a downside: PDFs have to be created properly! Even though Acrobat has gotten much more robust, and programs like PitStop allow some pretty intensive editing capabilities, it's tricky business to try to fix files that weren't made correctly. Creating bleeds that don't exist are difficult and sometimes impossible. You can't simply add resolution to a photo that was compressed too much.
Quality PDFs depend on choosing the right settings.
Our Acrobat Distiller Settings page contains all the information needed to properly set up your PDF print drivers, or your Acrobat Distiller defaults for any files you wish to send us for production. Also, the video below shows how to create your PDF presets for any Adobe product step-by-step. We used InDesign for the tutorial, but it works the same in any Adobe program, and is very similar in almost any other software application.