General Information and Specifications
Follow these guidelines to ensure faster turnaround and better output from your digital files. If you need further support, please contact us our friendly and knowledgeable technical support staff.
We can print from virtually any program (and from hardcopy): We want to help you make the most of your digital files. You can use this guide to create a PostScript file from any Windows or Mac OS application or use this guide to create a print-ready PDF file. We also support native files from virtually every application.
Contact us if you are unsure of the application used to prepare your artwork. If you don't have a digital file, don't panic . . . we can also scan from hardcopies, including books.
Quick Checklist for Layout Programs
- Set the correct paper size.
- Set the trimming parameters to the desired size.
- If possible, use PostScript Type 1 fonts and avoid TrueType fonts.
- Do not select font modifications in the application program (artificial italics
- Use images in the right resolution (scan correctly or reduce the resolution in the
image editing program).
- Determine sections in the image editing program (unnecessary data ballast).
- Do not use hairlines.
- Observe minimum and maximum tonal values (e.g. screen tonal values between
5 and 95%).
- Remove superfluous objects – even from outside the page borders.
- Delete empty pages.
Although we handle every file type available, Akran encourage customers to supply PDF files for printing. The ability of designers to generate PDF files from their workstations and check artwork before further processing eliminates 99% of human error due to size, orientation, bleed etc. This will help you to cut production time and ensure that the final printed product meets or exceeds your expectations.
Enfocus Pitstop Professional (PDF preflight software) will help you spot most of the problems that occur with artwork prior to supplying PDF files for printing to digital and offset presses. Nevertheless, at Akran printing, all supplied PDF files undergo a rigorous inspection and preflight processing as the first step of our workflow quality control.
Native File Types Supported for Press
- QuarkXPress 7 PASSPORT OSX/Win
- Adobe Pagemaker 7.0 OSX/Win
- Adobe InDesign CS2 OSX/Win
- Adobe Acrobat 7.0 Professional OSX/Win
- Adobe After Effect 7.0 Professional OSX/Win
- Adobe Premiere Pro 2.0 OSX/Win
- Adobe Photoshop CS2 OSX/Win
- Adobe Illustrator CS2 OSX/Win
- CorelDRAW Graphics Suite X3 Win
- FreeHand MX (11.0.2)
- We also scan hardcopies.
*All previous application versions listed above are supported. Please contact us if you are using a graphics or layout program not listed above. Only the most common programs are listed.
All halftone raster images should be scanned at a resolution of 300 ppi at reproduction size. For example, if you have a graphic placed into your application enlarged to 150%, the graphic should be at least 450 ppi (300 ppi multiplied by 150%).
All lineart images should be scanned at 1270 ppi at reproduction size.
Vector images can be scaled without losing any image quality.
Whenever possible, rotate, scale and crop pictures before importing them into your document.
Disable all colour management options in Photoshop. Unless colour management is disabled, the output obtained with Adobe PostScript Level 2 and 3 RIPs can differ.
If you have a colour-managed workflow, you can download an ICC colour profile based on the printer you would like us to use for you print job. See Technology for a list of the printers at our facilities. Wherever possible, convert all image data from RGB to CMYK (Microsoft Office applications don't support CMYK images). If you separate RGB images in Adobe Photoshop, use medium GCR. For good results, we recommend that you select an area coverage of 95% for black and total area coverage of 340%.
- Do not store any screen information or separation curves in your Adobe Photoshop documents.
- Add a 60% Cyan boost to large black areas. This will make the black areas more intense in your final product.
- Use all colour names consistently and use CMYK in both your graphics and your page layout program.
Creating PDF files – PPD / INF Downloads
Use only Adobe Acrobat Distiller to create PDF files. The PostScript file should be created with the original Adobe Distiller PPD. You can download the Mac version and PC version from Adobe’s website.
If you have the latest version of Adobe Acrobat Distiller, use the canned settings for PDF/X1a or PDF/X3. If not, use the following settings in Distiller when creating PDF files:
Download Xerox Job Preparations Guide for Designers
Download PPD / INF Drivers:
- Disable ASCII format
- Enable "optimize PDF"
- Set the resolution to 1270 Compression
- Color pictures: disable recalculation; compression: ZIP, quality: 8-bit
- Grey-level pictures: disable recalculation; compression: ZIP, quality: 8-bit
- Black-and-white pictures: disable recalculation; compression: ZIP,
quality: CCITT Group 4
- Disable "compress text and vector graphics"
- If at all possible, create the PostScript and PDF files on the same PC
(mainly because of the installed fonts)
- Enable "embed all fonts"
- For conversion: enable "do not change color"
- Disable "keep transfer function"
- Disable Prolog/Epilog
- Disable "Postscript file may overwrite settings"
- Disable "keep level to copy page semantics"
Fonts and Lines
Always select fonts from the font menu. Avoid using style options (bold, italic).
Define black text as 100% K only. Use precise units to define lines. If you want to use a hairline, define it as a 0.25 pt line.
We handle all trapping.
How to Position Your Job on the Press Sheet (Imposition)
We will set up your files to optimize the best use of the press sheet.
What to send us
Please only send us the files required for the job. If you are sending multiple jobs, please label the directories or folders clearly. If you are sending us a native file, please send all fonts and supporting graphics as well. If you are sending us a postscript or PDF file, you need not send anything else. We recommend that you send along either a colour printout or a composite laser proof with markings for the individual colours or a set of laser proofs with separate printouts for each colour separation. Regardless of the type of printout you send with the job, please ensure that the printouts are at 100% of actual size.
How to send your file
The fastest and preferred method of getting the file to us is to upload the file to our website. Simply click on the linked image below:
You can also email your file as an attachment, however most email systems impose a file size limit of 5 MB on outgoing and incoming mail server.
Remember to compress your files. You can download some free compression utilities here. We also supports a wide variety of data carriers such as 3.5" floppy diskettes, ZIP100 disks, ZIP250 disks, JAZ1GB disks, JAZ2GB disks, CD-ROMs and DVD-ROMs.
For free technical support, contact us today.