Correct layout of print files – explained quickly!

When creating your print files, some main rules are very important for us to produce your printing material the way you require. Therefore, please note the following points precisely to layout your print files accordingly. If you have problems with the layout of your artwork our customer service team will be happy to assist you.

  1. The correct colour mode: The correct colour mode for your artwork is CMYK. Please do not send RGB files because these will be converted automatically into CMYK and this can then cause colour variations.
  2. Colour saturation: The maximum colour application (Cyan + Magenta + Yellow + Black) of your artwork should not be more than 300%. If the colour application is too high then too much colour is on the paper and it can stick together during the drying process. The minimum colour application should not be less than 15%. If the colour application is lower than this your print will appear pale. For creating a deep black colour, use the CMYK values 60 – 60 – 60 – 100.
  3. Resolution: To get an ideal print image your artwork should have a resolution of at least 300dpi. For posters a minimum resolution of 240dpi is sufficient. For flags, displays, beach flags up to 3 qm 150dpi, and bigger than 3 qm 96dpi is sufficient. A lower resolution is likely to cause blurry (pixelated) print results.
  4. Levels: Please reduce all levels to the background level.
  5. Colour channels: For 4/4 and 4/0 coloured prints 4 colour channels (CMYK) have to exist. For single-coloured prints (1/0 = grey levels) only 1 colour channel has to exist. For two-coloured prints (2/0 = HKS-colour + black) only 2 colour channels have to exist.
  6. Artwork formats: We accept PDF (PDF/X-4:2010, PDF/X-1a:2001) and JPG files for print:

PDF/X-4:2010: In a PDF/X-4 all pictures and writings have to be embedded or converted into paths, transparencies are allowed. We recommend to deliver the file including colour profile ISO Coated v2 300%. If possible, please send us this data format preferential.

PDF/X-1a:2001: In a PDF/X-1a all picture files as well as writings have to be embedded or converted into paths. Transparencies can not be accepted. If not stated differently in the product description we recommend you submit a PDF/X-1a with the colour profile ISO Coated v2 300% assigned to this.

JPG: Is a graphic file format which can lead to lower quality print image, due to compression of the artwork. If you save artworks in this format, please choose the lowest compression level (or rather highest quality level) to achieve the best possible quality.

  1. Bleed: If the product description doesn’t state otherwise, you have to create 1mm bleed on every side (3mm for posters) additionally to the end format (the size which will be delivered to you). Therefore your artwork is always bigger than the end format.

If you create a DIN A6 flyer for example, your artwork has to be 2mm x 2mm (at the top, at the bottom, on the right, on the left 1mm each additionally) bigger than the end format. In this example the cut end format is 105mm x 148mm. Therefore your artwork has to be 107mm x 150mm.

Please do not create the bleed as a white area, but extend your background into the area of bleed. This ensures a regular printed edge during cutting.

  1. Distance to the edge: To avoid writings and other important information like logos etc being cut off, these items should be placed at least 3mm (5mm for posters and 7mm for magazines) away from the edges.
  2. Arrangement of pages:It is important to submit your artwork in the right direction so that your print product will look as you have intended it to. If your artwork has been arranged incorrectly, the pages can be upside down in the end for example. This does not only concern folded products but also for open products. It is important that they have been arranged in the right direction. Otherwise the back side of a flyer or a business card can be upside down or front and back side can be in the wrong direction. If you want to be sure that your files are in the correct orientation, order our print file verification for a small fee. Starting at the “Silver” level we will check the direction and the arrangement of your pages for you.