I think you need to find a new “digital print shop.” If you get correct results printing out of Acrobat to a simple office printer, a commercial printer should get it correct as well. It almost looks like the PDF file was subjected to some crazy workflow that corrupted the PDF file, moving elements around and disrupting the proper rendering of transparency.
The only difference that I would recommend is use of the PDF/X-4 PDF export options, but the difference between those and the High Quality Print options would not account for the travesty which you see.
Unfortunately, many of these “digital print shops” – and I will not name any names here – are staffed by minimum wage, part timers who know nothing about graphic arts, are poorly trained if trained at all, and the results show.
Sorry you had that experience, but it looks like you need to find a reputable shop ...
PS: If you want to post the original PDF file and send me a private message via the forums as to how to retrieve it, on behalf of Adobe, I'd be glad to take a look at it and confirm the above!
Thanks much Dov. I expected as much, but wanted an outsider's viewpoint. The outfit's been a great resource to date, and they're pointing the fickle finger at me. Oh well, lesson learned. Thanks again.
Do you know how your printer handled your PDF?
Did you deliver him an INDD? or a PDF?
Personally I would always recommend to place a PDF/X-4 into InDesign regardless what version is finally created. To the printer I deliver never an open file, only PDF, in most cases a PDF/X according to their requirements. Not everyone is accepting X-4, but I would prefer it.
Gave him a high-res, print-ready PDF (that printed fine on my desktop printer) beforehand. He doesn't use/support InDesign (still a Quack shop).
Peter, you mentioned: He doesn't use/support InDesign (still a Quack shop).
I'll bet the "printer" placed your PDF in Quark for printing/imposition purposes.
This is a well known issue and has been going on forever. Even Quark has acknowledged issues with Quark 10 and has multiple updates.
I'll also bet that the "printer: has an older version of Quark with even more issues.
Ask them if they placed your PDFs into Quark for printing.
They may give you a honest answer, but they may not give you the complete truth, since this would mean that the issue was on their end and require a free redo of the job which costs them money.
Quark had a Best Practices: Transparency guide for QXP 8.1 which show the following:
And this was about a problem with placing a native QXP drop-shadow box over a picture in QXP
If they were having problems with elements that were created within QXP, I shudder to think of the issues they would have with PDFs created from other programs and placed in QXP
THANKS for feedback. Job’s too late to reprint… was used at a Philly sports function last weekend; customer wants to send a copy of the book to the advertiser along with thank you note; holding breath that advertiser doesn’t look at the ad he paid $200 for!
I'll second Dov Isaacs' recommendation to find a reputable printer next time.
It may be too late for a reprint, but you can still ask for a refund.
If they balk at a refund and just want to give you a credit, I would use the credit for one last job with them and then get the heck away from them and find a better printer.
Wish I could do that… they supplied a proof and my customer never noticed the problem!
OH WELL! But lesson’s been well-learned.
I already got paid for the copy prep directly from customer; printer who sub’d the job to digital printer has yet to be paid…
To be continued!
Was the problem on the proof?
My dumb; everybody’s dumb; nobody remembers, including customer. Proof destroyed.
Finger pointing at anybody in range.
Without the proof I guess you eat it. I'd refund the advertiser's money without being asked.
In your scan of your printed page there are thin boxes and lines.
Were these actual design elements?
Did they show on-screen in InDesign or in the PDF?
Some of the corruption seems to follow the lines and boxes.
However, the exaggerated drop shadows seem to a different issue entirely,
Not sure what MY customer’s going to do… I did the comp for customer & already got paid.
He used a printer who sub’d it to a digital printer.
My total charge for entire book was $320 ($10/page, 32pp)… flat comp rate.
Dunno what intermediate printer charged… to be continued.
The advertiser (sporting awards, trophies, etc) paid my customer $200 for the full page, color ad.
He’s going to send a thank you note along with a sample booklet. I’ll suggest that he just ‘forget’ to send the sample booklet with the note and hold his breath. Maybe I’ll suggest that he just send a composite PDF of the finished booklet. That’s a clean copout methinks.
I hate seeing this. There's no excuse for something that blatantly bad.
I still have a client that I do the occasional print ad for. Since I never know what kind of printer will be receiving these ads, if I can't find out with a quick phone call, I play it safe and export to X/1-a.
And yes, believe it or not, some of them actually demand flattened PDFs. I shake my head, mutter obscenities under my breath and just do it.
No… never even noticed them… they don’t show in the InDesign document at all.
Something happened on the way from InD to Acro/PDF.
We all missed (messed up).
It sounds to me like it was your customer who picked the printer, so I'd lay it on him (especially since he seems to be the one whom made money on this), but you could split it with him if you feel generous. But I wouldn't forget to send the booklet. The advertiser has a right to see what happened, and honesty will get you a lot further towards another ad next time around.
Yeh, I thought about that, but that’s where the process ended… @72, processes are rapidly deteriorating! not too many more em’s & en’s left in these tired old fingers.
but the alternative makes continued graphics work, albeit faulty, nevertheless rewarding (usually).
thanks peter, bob, bo et al… to be continued next week.
will post results if/when available
...printer who sub’d the job to digital printer has yet to be paid…
So the Quark shop didn't even do the printing? If so, you may never really know the process used.
It is true that ID's placed PDFs have usually output to another PDF better (or rather, more reliably) than Q's. It takes a bit more experience/thought in Q to do the same that one can do in ID without as much thought. That said, I have only had issues with Q or ID placed PDFs when somewhere down-stream someone has mucked with the files but never drop shadow offsets like that (just other issues).
This screen shot is from a Q-generated PDF. One is a placed PDF, the other from inside Q where I also placed the grayscale image and the box with a drop shadow. PDF was made in ID using the High Quality preset (which I would also normally use PDF/X-4).
yes, the quack shop did the digital printing…
I did the makeup of the ad book for the publisher/originator who used a printer who sub’d it to a digital printer who used MY print-ready PDFs—2page spreads for outside 4 pages, sequential B&W PDFs for inside 32pp.
Scary thing is that they had problems with their color printer all week long, delaying delivery of the job somewhat—was delivered the night before the weekend event…and outside 4 pp were done on that color printer.
Went back to originally-supplied PDF from ad originator… it looks fine. When I placed into InD, InD did something — don’t know what — but can definitely see those hairlines in white background where there should be none…
What could’ve InDesign (ME?) done when importing that would damage the supplied PDF?
Might have I done something that everybody missed in the proofing stages?
It all just sounds like what nightmares are made of!
I had a job once I turned over to the client that bounced through two print brokers. I found out about it the day before delivery. Max my stomach churn waiting to hear back how it went. Turned out good, but I am too much a control freak to have that happen and hear about it before hand.
That sounds like stitching lines from a flattened pdf and can show up in a digital print but that doesn't explain the drop shadows.
Can you post that original PDF somewhere?
just did bob
I missed that and I don't see a link anywhere.
Guess I should’ve saved it in photoshop to a flat .tif & reimported into InD.
hindsight’s foresight = 20-20 vision I guess
Those lines are stitching lines caused by transparency flattening. That is why I recommend ONLY to use PDF/X-4 when it is used to placed in any other application. If you place a PDF/X-4 in InDesign you can still export X-1a or X-3, but if you use X-1a or X-3 you can't export to X-4.
Forum's not allowing me to post the link, not even part of it w/o the http i front of the letters...
Keeps telling me to try again later m5
The forum doesn't accept attachments.
Upload to dropbox.com or the like and post a link.
I did that and it won't allow me to publish the dropbox link... keep getting a "try later" error message.
just did… seems that the forum won’t allow google’ized shortening of DB links….
That PDF was created in CorelDRAW. Not a very high quality method of PDF creation here.
There drop shadows are separate objects as are the graphics. Kind of weird the way it was created.
Aside from CDX5 as the creation tool, it uses an sRGB transparency blend space.
(or is that UGH!?)
Oy is yiddish for ugh!
know dat… just wanted to translate for the goyem!