Here are the basics to ensure that your files are set up property for printing:
PDF FILES: We only accept high-resolution PDF files for printing, with graphics and fonts embedded and with appropriate bleeds.
BLEEDS:If you have images or colors that extend to the edge of the page, you need to incorporate bleeds in your files. Our cutters cannot cut right on the edge of a piece of paper, so you need to extend the graphics and colors beyond the edge of the page. For these purposes, the bleed should extend 1/8 inch on each side of the page. So if your document is 8.5 x 11, the final size with bleeds would be 8.75 x 11.25.
SAFETY ZONES: In addition to the bleeds, it is important to ensure that no critical text or graphics are too close to the edge of the page, we recommend allowing at least .25 inch but preferable .5 inch from the edge of the page.
MARGINS: When multipage documents are bound using perfect binding, wire-o binding, or plastic coil binding, approximately 1/8 of an inch will be lost in the binding. For perfect bound, plastic coil, and wire-o books, we recommend allowing .75 inch at the gutter to ensure no critical information gets lost.
IMAGE RESOLUTION: To ensure that your graphics print clearly, make sure that they are at least 300 dpi (dots per inch). Keep in mind that images on a computer screen are displayed at 72 dpi. So even though the image looks good on your screen, it will look fuzzy when printed if it is not 300 dpi. Increasing the size of a graphic will reduce the resolution, while reducing the size of a graphic will increase the resolution.
CMYK vs. RGB: Be sure to convert all graphics and colors to CMYK before preparing your PDF file. Photos are typically in RGB color, but our printing presses will convert that the CMYK. This can cause color shifts, which tend to be more noticeable in solid colors. By converting before saving your file, you will have a chance to see those shifts yourself.
SPINE FOR PERFECT BOUND BOOK: The size of the spine for a perfect bound book depends on the number of pages in the book (pages are counted like pages in a book, the front of one sheet is page 1 and the back of the same sheet is page 2) and the paper used for the inside pages. You can use this formula to calculate the spine size:
For 60# uncoated text and 70# and 80# matte and gloss text stock:
Number of pages divided by 440 = spine in inches
For 70# uncoated text and 100# matte and gloss text stock:
Number of pages divided by 370 = spine in inches