When creating files for printing, it is important to note many specifications: File format, trimming, font size, etc. But why? Why is it so important that the pictures have a certain resolution or that the CMYK colour space is selected? We look behind the scenes of the online print production and clarify the most important points.
The CMYK colour mode is used for printing, and consists of Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, and the Key colour black. In the printing process these colours are applied one after the other, and the overall picture depends on the proportions of each. Creating the print data in the CMYK colour space is therefore immensely important in avoiding any possible colour deviations. And so digital images created in the RGB (Red, Green, Blue) colour space, for example, must always be converted. The RGB merely describes colour perceptions, as these are used for example on the screen. The conversion to CMYK can be done before use in the layout program or during the export.
The resolution is specified in dpi, or “dots per inch”. This density describes the precision of detail in the image to be printed. The higher the dpi number, the sharper the image. With smaller products that are to be viewed from close up, a higher resolution is therefore better. Usually, this is at least 300 dpi. For larger printed matter or advertising materials from size A3 up, even 150 to 200 dpi can suffice. There are also products that require a higher dpi, for example stamps (600 dpi).
Bleed and safety clearance
In combined printing procedures, multiple products are assembled on a printed sheet and, after printing, are cut out from it. To compensate for any inaccuracies, a certain tolerance is needed: the bleed. FLYERALARM tries to keep this as low as possible, to leave as little of the paper blank as possible, and to avoid waste. With smaller formats, the bleed is therefore just 1 mm. The larger the format, the more trimming is needed. To avoid the danger of a possible incision, texts and important content should keep a certain spacing from the edge.
Only certain file formats can be printed: TIF, JPG or, for the best quality, PDF. All data used and elements such as photos, graphics, text and lines are integrated in a printable PDF. This allows the file to be printed directly, without having to be opened and edited. Professional layout programmes such as InDesign, Illustrator and QuarkXPress produce the best results when creating a printable PDF.
For each product, individual requirements apply. Please therefore always observe the respective data sheet that FLYERALARM provides at the end of the configuration. Here you will find a general and detailed summary of what must be considered when creating the print data: