24 Replies Latest reply: Sep 1, 2010 3:19 PM by [scott] RSS

    Why does printer need a flattened file when there is no transparency?

    anneroku Community Member

      I sent a pdf of an AI file to a digital printer to preview before sending out to print.  In the email I received from the printer, I was told that this pdf was "transparent (meaning more than one layer) and needed to be flattened." (Quotes are taken directly from the email.)

       

      I am puzzled about this because there was no transparency anywhere in the original file.  Yes, the original AI file had three layers, but it was all flat, solid vector artwork, no transparency or transparency effects anywhere.  Nothing that normally needs to be flattened.  It will all be printed CMYK, and my understanding is that the printer will eventually convert the whole thing to a .tif file.

       

      I am awaiting a response from the printer and have read all I can about flattening to see if I am missing something.  In the meantime, can someone tell me if this is a common request from digital printers?  Am I missing some important concept regarding flattening?  Thanks!