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Jan 28, 2014 11:43 AM

Tags: #transparencies #flattening

Can someone help explain the difference between Flattneing a PDF in Acrobat (Flatten Preview tool) verus opening a PDF file in Photoshop and re-saving as a PDF?

  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jan 28, 2014 1:33 PM   in reply to ekema23

    Simplistically one makes use of Acrobat and the other makes use of Photoshop.

    However, flattening PDF form fields or Comment / Markup Annotations is not what Photoshop is meant to do.


    Be well...

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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jan 28, 2014 6:54 PM   in reply to ekema23

    Opening a PDF file in Photoshop, the entire page is converted into a bitmap image. All the separate objects (graphics, text, etc.) are lost, so saving back to PDF from Photoshop is rather useless - you'd get the same result saving as a JPEG.


    Flattening in Acrobat converts come types of content into others. There are two meanings for the term 'flatten' in Acrobat:


    1. Flattening transparency (which is what the flattener preview does) - this merges page objects that have transparency so they are more reliable when printed to older technologies, and it can also change 'live' text into outline graphics, etc.
    2. Flattening comments and form fields - here the only change is to set the comments/form fields to be part of the page instead of dynamic objects that appear on top. It prevents them from being changed using the form or comment tools but leaves them in their original format, so a text field is still rendered as live text, not a graphic shape or bitmap.
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