TIPS FOR QUALITY OUTPUT
At Denver Print Company we have streamlined our pre-press process and this has allowed us to pass significant savings onto our customers. These guidelines allow us to bypass certain pitfalls associated with digital artwork preparations for print. We avoid worrying about missing fonts, un-linked images and the like by making this guideline available as well as only accepting the specific flat file formats covered below. Because we want to provide you with the best possible print products, we request that all files be sent be sent using these standard formats. We request that any files dependent on the native application, fonts, or other separate design elements used to create the pieces be sent in the following formats:
TIF – JPG – PDF – EPS – PSD – AI
We can use Quark, Pagemaker, Corel Draw, or any similar files by converting them to the above formats. Keep in mind, however, that any design elements dependent on the native application or computer, such as fonts that are installed on your computer but not in the Denver Print system, may be lost in this process. (See below for more information on fonts.) Instructions on how to convert are included below.
What to know before you submit . . .
Please take the time to review all everything carefully! Although we take our time to insure each file is set-up properly and that we are representing your digital file in print correctly, we are not responsible for the quality of the artwork that you submit. To insure proper output, please follow all guidelines. If you have any questions regarding files, please don’t hesitate to reach out to our customer service department.
We are a high-resolution printer, so we require all submitted files to be 300dpi (Dots Per Inch). If you design a file at 72dpi or lower, we cannot use the file. Our pre-press system would resize image to 300dpi, therefore “stretching” it out and lowering the quality. In the example on the right, one image was created at 300dpi, the other was created at 72dpi and then stretched out to 300dpi.
How to determine what size your image must be for printing:
Multiply the resolution required by the area to be printed. Example:
If a printer requires a minimum of 300 ppi and you want to print an image in an area that is 5 inches wide, multiply 300 pixels x 5 inches = 1500. Your image must be at least 1500 pixels wide.
How to determine what dimension your image can be printed at good quality:
Divide the pixel dimension of your image by the resolution required by your printer.
Example: If image is 1024 pixels wide & printer requires 300 ppi (1024 ÷ 300) = image can be printed at 3.413″ wide.
(small format only – flyers, postcards, postcards, business cards, etc.)
About 1/8” on all sides will be trimmed off. Anything that extends past the original canvas size is considered a “bleed.” Make sure you do not have any important content in this area. Adjust your canvas size to compensate for this; and an additional 1/8″ on all sides. (See Size)
Although our cutting staff is extremely precise, we can not guarantee any print job cuts without the added bleed. There are no exceptions. Please be sure to keep your text at least 1/4″ away from the edge of the piece unless it is an eighth of a page or smaller. This ensures your text is in a “safe” area. If you have any questions regarding our policy you may call us.
(small format only)
The trim area is a space of 1/8″ after the bleed. Its purpose is to separate any text or important content from the edge.
(small format only)
The safety area is the space where its “safe” to put your layout, design and content. This is usually 1/4″ from the edge of the canvas. On smaller projects, such as business cards, you can design closer to the edge.
Your print files should be designed in the size that is being ordered. We assume that you desire what you have ordered, and files will be re-sized in accordance to the job. We will not stretch and enlarge a file unless at your request. For example, a 4.25″ x 5.5″ design ordered as a 4″ x 6″ postcard print would have to be manipulated in order to print edge to edge and not have content cut off.
If your job requires a border, please note that in order to have your border exact, we recommend AT LEAST a minimum of 1/4″ on all sides. Our cutters are specialists in their field. Due to paper shift, however, borders cannot be cut to be exactly balanced on all sides. The thinner the border, the more that small differences will show. For more information on printing with borders, click here.
There are two types of color spaces that are used for graphic and print design:
RGB (Red, Green, Blue): These are the colors your monitor uses to display everything.
CMYK (Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, Black): These are the colors used for printing.
Color shifts are usually not visible in color photographs; however, rich and solid colors (like a background) can be affected by a color conversion. Most of the time, color shifts are minor and will not be noticeable. But sometimes they will.
Denver Print Company can get nearly any font in existence, but we may not have the font that you used in your design currently installed in our system. If you submit a PSD, AI, PDF, or TIF file, fonts that we don’t have may be replaced with different fonts.
There are several ways to avoid this happening. The easiest way is to submit a JPG file. This will embed the type into your design. (If you do submit a JPG, please make sure that your design is completely print-ready, as we will have very little ability to make corrections to this type of file.) You can also simply tell us the specific names of the fonts that you used and, if we don’t have them, we will get them.
If you have designed using Adobe Photoshop or Illustrator, another method is to rasterize or “create-outlines” for your type. Here are some helpful videos that show you how to do that in Photoshop and Illustrator.