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ďŹ le preparation guide

typecraft press inc. A NEW day, NEW owners ... a NEW Typecraft Press!!! A new day has dawned at Typecraft Press and the benefactor is YOU!!! In February of 2008, the Major family, long-time owners of Typecraft Press, sold the business to Michael Muldowney and Mark Smith, owners of Direct Impressions Inc., a full service web press operation catering to the direct mail and commercial printing industries. For over a year we have worked hard to remove inefficiencies, improve equipment productivity and increase customer service at Typecraft Press. We essentially are turning a well-regarded productionminded printing firm into a fast, efficient and effective sales engine! Effective immediately, Typecraft Press now is part of the Direct Impressions culture of “extreme customer service” and “sales-driven decision making”. We believe in our philosophy and commit to you to make YOU the driving force in everything that we do. We welcome and need your questions, comments, concerns and critiques to drive us forward. The combined equipment list of the DI/Typecraft engine includes: SIX web presses with a combined 42 print units that include: • A ten-color full size non-heatset web press

• Two eight-eight-color heatset webs

• Two six-color webs

• One four-color web

THREE Sheetfed presses TWO full Bindery operations including: • 8 MBO folders including 3 high speed batcher/banding machines

• 3 computer controlled cutting systems

• Saddle Stitching and Perfect Binding capabilities A complete mailing operation A complete full-service Production Management division The combined new company has revenues in excess of $20 MILLION dollars which rank us in the top 275 printers in America according to Printing Impressions magazine. The ownership group and management group have over 200 combined years of printing and production management...we know how to handle your work and we know what you expect. We want to become an extension of your company. Typecraft Press simply wants to say “YES!!!” to whatever your print and mailing needs are... we now have the equipment, the knowledge, the ability and the extreme desire to satisfy ALL of your communication issues! Service like never before. Equipment like never before. A relationship like never before. We are ready to serve...the NEW Typecraft Press! Call us today!

file formats Does Typecraft Press accept any file format? Typecraft Press accepts print-ready files saved from the following design software programs: Adobe Photoshop®, Adobe Illustrator®, Adobe InDesign®, Adobe PageMaker®, QuarkXpress®. We can not guarantee files created in MS-Word or MS-Publisher will produce high-quality images and text. Please refer to your user manual or software vendor for information on how to output a printready raster image that meets Typecraft Press specifications. Please note that if you have an artwork file in any other format (e.g., word document), we encourage you to create a PDF file that can be uploaded to Typecraft Press.


file layout Does my artwork have correct bleeds? Do I have copy outside of safety area? Typecraft Press requires a 0.125” bleed around the perimeter of your artwork for all offset printing to ensure accurate cutting (e.g., artwork for a 4” x 6” postcard should extend to 4.25” x 6.25”). If your image has a white border on all four sides, bleeds are recommended but not required. If your image is not white on all four sides, you must include 0.125” bleeds in print-ready files. Bleeds, Cut Line and Safety Bleed



Problem Artwork Safety: Text outside the blue line will get cut off in the trimming process. Make sure all information does not go over the blue line. * The safety area for all offset jobs is 0.25”. **The safety area for all web jobs is 0.5”.

Typecraft Press 45 South 23rd Street Pittsburgh, PA 15203

Bleeds: Artwork that reaches the cutline need to be extended to the red line. Add a total of 0.25” to your original size for proper bleed. (0.125” to each side of your artwork) Print Ready Artwork

Typecraft Press 45 South 23rd Street Pittsburgh, PA 15203

Cut Line: This line represents the final size of the cut down document.

Safety: Text is inside the blue dotted line to prevent information getting cut off.

Bleeds: Artwork extends to the red dotted line for proper bleed.


photo resolution Why is resolution important? Resolution also known as DPI (Dots Per Inch) can be described as the number of dots that fit horizontally and vertically into a one-inch space. Generally, the more dots per inch, the more detail captured and the sharper the resulting image. For an image to print properly, the image must be at least 300 dots per inch (dpi) at the final output size for sheet printing and 200 dots per inch (dpi) at the final output for the web. If your file is not a high enough dpi, you can not simply increase the dpi from a low resolution to a higher one by increasing the DPI in your imaging program. What resolution is needed for my job? For most printing jobs, 300 dots per inch (DPI) is the minimum resolution to guarantee acceptable printing results. For larger products such as large format posters and banners, we recommend sharper resolution which can range from 300 to 1200 dpi, depending on the intended use of the printed piece.

bad file

A file printed at 72 DPI

good file

A file printed at 300 DPI •3•

ucr (under color removal ) and total ink density If you design for print, and specifically for materials that will be printed on traditional offset lithography presses, you either already know about Under Color Removal, or really should know. In offset lithography, your designs are replicated on paper by little dots of ink of various colors (typically, Cyan / Magenta / Yellow / Black, or “CMYK”, and “spot” colors). These little dots of ink hit the paper in what is known as a halftone pattern. If you break out your loupe and take a look at anything printed this way, you will see the halftone pattern. It looks sort of like this:

You can see how the patterns of dots overlap one another. How much they overlap is called “ink density”, and is something that you can control in Photoshop. The info palette is where this information lies (Window > Info, or F8). If you are in CMYK mode in your Photoshop document, it likely looks like this:

The values shown in this palette represent the values at the location of your cursor in your Photoshop document. If this isn’t what your info palette is showing, you can easily change what it shows by clicking the little eyedropper icon in both the top panels inside this palette:

Total Ink

CMYK Values

Why Should You Care UCR? Different presses and different papers can only handle so much ink because of something called dot gain. Dot gain is how much the little halftone dots grow when they hit the paper, much like a ring of wetness on a bar napkin when you set your cocktail down. Too much of this going on, dots will start pooling into each other, and you will get nasty dark/muddy areas with loss of detail. The rule of thumb with total ink is 300%. This is why the default mix for rich black in Photoshop is 75/68/67/90 (Add that all up and you get 300). As they say, rules are meant to be broken. If you are printing on really cheap uncoated stock (like newsprint), your total ink is going to need to be a lot lower, closer to 200. You might be able to go over 300 on a really nice press with really nice paper. Talk to your us, we should be able to tell you all about this and what your limitations will be. •4•

The important thing to remember is that Total Ink is your responsibility as a designer. A sharp prepress team might be able to alert you before press time that you are having issues with that, but don’t count on it. What if my Total Ink is too high? So you are mousing over your entire image and you come across a heavily-saturated area and your total ink is reading over 300. Being the astute and detail-oriented designer that you are, you want to bring that value down. One way to bring total ink down is to reduce the saturation of the image. This is a “brute force” tactic that can work great if your entire image is riding high, but is generally not a good idea. A more graceful technique is to use curves (Images > Adjustments > Curves) to target high saturation areas and bring values down in a more subtle way. So the area that you found that was reading over 300 you notice is only a little over 300 and is heavy on red. This is a great opportunity for curves:

With the curves dialog open, change the channel to “Magenta”. Then click on the upper right handle on the line and drag it straight down just a little bit. What this is doing is altering the values of magenta in your Photoshop document. If you pulled it down to 95, any areas that previously had 100% magenta now will have 95%. Because of how curves works, this is not just a straight drop of 5% of magenta values across the board. If your line is straight, areas in your document that were at 50% magenta will now only be 47.5% magenta, half the drop of the top end. You can even add a new point to this line and drag the 50% back to the dead center and you will get a curved line for even more subtle changes. Experiment! And make sure to have the preview box checked so you can see how it is visually affecting your images.

good file Total Ink - 295%

bad file Total Ink - 383%

* Visit for more details on UCR. •5•

color What is CMYK color mode? CMYK is the color mode used by Typecraft Press to reproduce your job on one of our presses. The color calibration of Cyan (C), Magenta (M), Yellow (Y), and Black (K) determines the final color in your artwork. As a result, your submitted files must be in CMYK color mode to maximize color quality. If your files are submitted to print as four color, using any other color standard, such as RGB or Pantone, they will be converted to CMYK during preflighting. Conversion from one color standard to another at this point may result in a color shift or colors dropping out. If you are not familiar with printing in CMYK color mode, we highly recommend that you examine your Sherpa proof extensively. This proof will most closely represent what will print on the press. Please note that we can not guarantee that the color of your artwork printed on our presses will match that seen on your monitor or printed via any other method.

CMYK Color Mode vs. RGB Color Mode Color mode must be in CMYK to be a print ready file. If files are submitted using any other color mode, such as RGB, the files will be converted to CMYK during preflighting. The following illustrates the visual difference between RGB (monitor) and CMYK (printed).

RGB What you see on the monitor in RGB format

CMYK Your card printed in CMYK format


Grayscale Photos All photos that will print in black in white need to be saved as grayscale images - not RGB, index or CMYK. The following is a visual example of how to convert color files to grayscale.


Tips for Printing Grayscale on the Web Press When printing on the web, photos may need to be lightened further after converting to grayscale to avoid them looking muddy. The following is a visual example of how to use the Shadow/Highlight tool in Photoshop to adjust photos.


Before Shadow/Highlight adjustment

After Shadow/Highlight adjustment

What if I want to create a solid black area? When you want an area of solid black within a CMYK document, 100% black (K) will not result in a solid, saturated black. You should use rich black, which is made by mixing other colors of ink with black ink to produce a much darker, deeper black on press than can be achieved by using black ink alone. To create rich black on pieces printed by Typecraft Press, your CMYK calibration values must be 30% Cyan (C) and 100% Black (K) for sheet presses or 20% Cyan (C) and 100% Black (K) for the web. What if my artwork has black and spot colors? Typecraft Press offers both spot and four color process printing. All blacks should be between 10% and 100% black only. No rich blacks or PMS blacks. PMS colors should be consistent - all coated or uncoated. Photos on this type of piece should be grayscale, monotones of the chosen PMS color or duotones of multiple PMS colors or a PMS color plus black. Vector artwork works best for spot colors as far as logos and graphic elements go. Halftone curve adjustment For those a bit more advanced with the Photoshop program, the follow is a guideline for adjusting halftones for the print best results. WEB 100 line screen

SHEET 150 line screen

Shadow: 80% - 83%

Shadow: 85% - 90%

Midtone: (Facial tones) 10% - 18%

Midtone: (Facial tones) 15% - 20%

Highlight: 7% - 10%

Highlight: 2% - 4%

DPI=200 for photos @100% (double the line screen

Reflection Highlight: 0%

X% of photo = DPI)

DPI=300 for photos @100% (double the line screen X% of photo = DPI)


fonts The single biggest reason why files do not produce expected results is: FONTS!!! According to some national estimates, bad or missing fonts account for 82% of all delays and additional charges. To print your job properly, you must send us the fonts you used in your layout. We do have a large font library but we may not have the exact one you used in your job. Since there are many versions of the same fonts sold by different vendors, your font may not match our font of the same name. If you have vector artwork and your file is missing fonts, you can open your file in Illustrator, select “Create Outlines”, save your fonts, re-save your artwork file, and then upload it. If you have artwork that is rasterized, you can open your file in Photoshop and select “Flatten the Layers”, re-save your artwork file, and then upload it. Cheap Fonts Bargain fonts are worth what you pay for them. 5,000 fonts for $29.95, do not use them! Often they do not perform on an imagesetter the same as they do on a laser printer. If there is a font you must use, set the type in an illustration program (like Illustrator) and convert to paths. This way, you control leading & kerning exactly and they will reproduce the same on our platesetter. PostScript vs. TrueType There are two types of fonts: PostScript and TrueType. PostScript fonts are highly recommended. They are more reliable, cleaner and process more quickly. In certain trapping situations, TrueType fonts will not work at all. Be sure to provide all files needed for every font you use, both in your layout program and in any embedded illustrations (EPS files). One screen “Suitcase” may require many Printer Fonts. Stylized (Pseudo) Fonts Some programs allow you to apply styles (italic, bold, bold-italic) to a plain font to approximate the real font variant. Do not use this option! A stylized font will in many instances be replaced by the plain variant when RIPed. Use the font variant that is the style you want, not the plain variant with an applied style. For instance, use the HelveticaBold font instead of the HelveticaBook font styled Bold. Missing Fonts Take close look at your files to find out what fonts you need to send. Remember that enclosed EPS files also need fonts to properly render. Jobs with missing fonts will be delayed until you are contacted and either approve a substitution or can send the fonts to us. Sometimes substitution causes text reflow so it is always preferable for you to supply the correct fonts. Remember, PostScript fonts have two files, a screen font and a printer font. Both are required. Reverse Type Reverse type (type that is lighter than its surrounding) is an effective way to grab attention to headlines, etc. However, it is important to remember that serif fonts have very thin lines that will often fill in with the surrounding ink coverage. Your best bet when reversing type is to work with a san serif typeface that is a little on the bolder side. See examples below:

12 pt. Serif Typeface 12 pt. San Serif Typeface • 10 •

links Links are the photos or graphics that are placed into the document to be printed. In order to print high quality photos or graphics, each and every one of these links must be sent along with the layout document. These should all be updated before saving the final document. Do not rename the links or move them into different folders after updating them in the final document. Doing so will confuse the software program when it searches for the links in order to print them properly. We cannot print your file without all of the links provided to us. Preferred file types are .tif, .jpg, .eps, .psd and .pdf files. What is the best way to send links? Most layout programs (InDesign, QuarkXpress and Pagemaker) have a “collect for output” function (consult your software manual for specific instructions). Utilizing this feature places the document, links and fonts into one folder to be sent to your print provider. This is by far the quickest and most efficient way to send files. It is also a good way to double-check that all the components of the file are available. Otherwise, you will have to open your links window and manually find each linked file and place them into a folder to be sent. Once again, if the files are being moved from another location, they must be updated in the document before sending. What about static or embedded objects? Embedded or static objects are not recommended. Often times links need to be adjusted for color mode, lightening, etc. When objects are embedded or static, there is no file available to make adjustments to. Also, do not drag artwork from another program into the program you are currently working on. InDesign Files are not in original location - need to be relinked.

File needs to be updated.

File needs to be updated.


File is not in original location - needs to be relinked. • 11 •

troubleshooting What if my file is missing images? If your file is missing the images you desire, you should re-save your file properly so that the images will not drop out during printing. You must place all images in your artwork and make sure to save your files properly. Please refer to your software program manual for more information on how to save your files properly. Transparencies and drop shadows Transparencies, drop shadows and other effects used in vector format software (Illustrator) or layout software (QuarkXpress and InDesign) must be flattened. Not flattening transparencies may result in some graphics dropping out from your artwork. Adobe Illustrator® To flatten transparency please use the instructions below.

Make sure to check “Convert All Strokes to Outlines”

Make sure to uncheck “Preserve Alpha Transparency” “Preserve Overprints and Source Color”

• 12 •

Select All (Ctrl A / Cmd A)

Object > Flatten Transparency

ten common mistakes


Missing Fonts Missing fonts are the bane of printers and service bureaus. So many versions of the same typeface exist that printers can’t make font substitutions to fix type without risking a different look or causing the text to reflow. Always include the exact fonts used in your files.


No Rich Black Type When black type prints in anything other than black ink only, it tends to look fuzzy. This is due to the type showing up on more than just the black plate.


Messy Files Clean up your files before releasing them for output. Cluttered files not only confuse and frustrate service bureaus and printers, they compound the possibility of errors. Even an unused image (off to the side of the pasteboard or on an unused layer) with no link can lead the printer to conclude something is missing. Remove unnecessary artwork, delete unused colors, make sure that you have recorded spot colors and that the color names match exactly across all programs. An oversight such as not specifying whether a color is process or match (spot) causes delays by forcing the printer to call and ask. Either that, or the RIP software will decide automatically and put the color on its own plate, conceivably turning a four-color job into a five color job.


Incorrect Page Size Setting Incorrectly specified page settings cannot be fixed by simply scaling up or down, so make sure your document size is your trim size. Leave decisions such as grind-off to your service bureau or printer.


Inadequate Bleeds Bleed photos and other graphics that extend to the edge of a page must be set up to overlap the trim margins by .125” to avoid white along the edge.


Missing and Unlinked Graphics Your page layout document shows the image, but the actual file is missing. It could have become unlinked when saved in a folder that differs from its original location or renamed. With missing links, graphics on the page layout document will output in low-res or cannot be output at all. Make sure all links are up-to-date.


No Hard Copy Proof A hard-copy printout lets printers see the final approved document, check for discrepancies and clarify how you intended the layouts to look. Make the printout at 100% of finished size if possible, or indicate what percentage of final size it represents. For digitally transmitted files, send a PDF with color mark-ups for reference. Also, for multi-page jobs, include a mock-up to show folding and binding. One of the most common printing mistakes is backing up in the wrong directions or binding pages out of sequence.


No Color Mark-Up In addition to a hard-copy proof, supply a color mark-up so the printer can note where the color breaks, overprints and knock-outs are intended to go.


Failure to Use Preflight Software If your software program has a preflight or “collect for output” feature, be sure to use it. The new versions will help you collect all the fonts and images, search for missing items and avoid careless mistakes. They will also create a report for the printer. Be sure to double check that all files are there after you collect for output because sometimes the feature mistakes fonts.


Unmarked Revision For revisions, send only the files that have changed and give them a new name. If new support files or fonts are used, include them - and supply new lasers with changes clearly marked.

testimonial “...I call Typecraft Press ‘home” because that is what it feels like. Everyone involved with my magazine at Typecraft Press treats my entire staff and my publication with the utmost care. I must tell you that the customer service and quality of my magazine now is incredible. Tom (Poupard, Typecraft Press General Manager) and his staff worked with mine to overcome all issues and concerns, even finding things for us before they presented a printing problem. Tom created tools and set up meetings to help us make our job so much easier. Working together with your staff has truly been a wonderful experience. The dedication and professionalism shown by your entire organization has truly put a new meaning to the phrase “earning your business!” Please thank them on my behalf for going above and beyond and caring about my publication.

Nightwire is now and will continue to be a magazine we can all be proud of.”

- Joyce Campisi Editor/Publisher Nightwire Magazine

file preperation guide  

Client guideline