When exporing to PDF out of ID CS6, which PDF preset should I pick when I need my Photoshop files to keep their setting and corrections when it goes to print? I thought it was something like "PDF/X-4:2008" or "PDF/X4:2010". Is there a difference?
You probably need to check with your printer which PDF preset they prefer. If they have an old PostScript RIP, they'll probably prefer PDF/X-1a. Unfortunately, this flattens transparency and converts RGB images to CMYK using a default CMYK profile.
You should look for a printer who has a new Adobe PDF Print Engine RIP. These RIPs can handle PDF files instead of PostScript. A printer using this workflow would probably prefer PDF/X-4 which keeps RGB images with profiles and transparency live until their RIP processes it.
Choose the PDF/X-4:2008 profile which supports the PDF/X-4:2010 standard.
Hi Steve, I should have given a little more info than I did. All the images are in Grayscale. The publisher is a company that does "self-publishing" (Print on demand). They request the book layout in a PDF. Most, if not all want PDFs. Note: I'm not the person choosing the self-publishing company. I've done a bunch of projects that were self-publishing. And I found that most of them hire morons. They said that they didn't know and to refer to their website. The website just states to send the PDF in the highest setting.
So I'll choose the PDF/X-4:2008 profile and just leave it at that. We are getting a proof of the book first before the it goes into print. I'll be able to see if any problems with the images show up.
Side note: Years a go I once asked if the cover image should be in RGB or CMYK. The tech person on the phone didn't know what CMYK was. He had to go ask someone. So this is what I deal with...
If you have a problem with the proof (and I don't think you will), you can now export to a grayscale profile from CS6. Choose Convert to Profile in the export dialog and pick the same grayscale profile you used for the images.
Yes, BUT, only do this if you have a problem, AND make sure before exporting that your "Appearance of Black" settings in the application Preferences are set to Output all Blacks as Rich Black, or your type will be screened to something around 93%.
Yes, it is set to "Rich Black". One last question. Since the publisher came back and said to set the export to the "Highest Quality Setting". And that's all they told us. Which one of these would be the safer PDF Preset to use in my case? I'll still keep the Standard at "PDF/X-4:2010". I hate when they give you half baked answers...
Starting from PDF/X-4 is fine. You just don't want to downsample below 300 ppi or use heavy compression on the images. X-4 is designed for press output, so will be more than adequate as far as image quality is concerned for a digital print on demand output.
The only real difference between starting with High Quality Print and X-4 is that HQP doesn't embed the output intent (as far as I know) and is comaptible with Acrobat 5 and later, rather than 7 and later, which may or may not be an issue with older equipment (5 being more universal).
HQP also sets the boxes (and just like X-4 you would need to set the bleed on in the marks and bleeds options), and it does not include any interactivity or multimedia. It may not be certified as meeting the standard, but other than as noted the settings are essentially identical.