DESIGN

HOW TO CREATE A PRINT-READY FILE.

PRE-PRINT CHECKLIST

This quick checklist will help you hit the major elements of a print-ready file. Please note that non-print-ready files may get rejected, cause poor print quality, delays in printing and possible rush fees. To create the best experience possible, consult the full design descriptions below.

You can click here to upload your print-ready files.

File type = PDF or JPG

If JPG, file is designed at 100% scale (no bleed, no cropping)

If PDF:

file is designed at 100% scale (no bleed, no cropping)
if scaled, ALL design elements are vectors
fonts are outlined
all objects/gradients/swatches/symbols/special effects/transparencies/etc. are flattened

DPI = 150

Color = CMYK

Design Elements = NO crop marks, text or ANY elements not specifically intended to be printed

File size = 300MB or less

Design Standards for Wide Format Printing

Final output Files: Print Ready .pdf / Print Ready .jpg

.jpg Standards

  • .jpg Files should be designed at 100% scale. * NO Bleed * NO Crop Marks
    • Banners can be ordered to the custom inch, but no smaller fractions
    • Other Materials can be ordered down to the 1/4th inch increment.
  • Resolution in photoshop is set to 150dpi for output.
    • Many designers design everything at 300dpi as this is the standard for small format printing, but for wide format printing, the resolution does not need to be so high.
  • * NO Bleed * NO Crop Marks
    • Our printing output software adds in all of this information automatically.
  • CMYK Document Setup – Not RGB
    • Submitting a file in CMYK greatly increases color reproduction accuracy. While we can print using an RGB document – we can’t guarantee its accurate color reproduction.

.pdf Standards (vector artwork always preferred)

  • .pdf files should be designed at 100% Scale
    • For Extremely Large Area – Illustrator will not allow full size output. In this case –
      designing to scale works. You can submit extra large print files at ½ scale or even
      smaller as long as you retain the proportions.
  • Fonts Outlined – Just in case we need to slightly edit the file
    • Many designers forget to do this – and in rare cases, some designers will send
      their font pack for specific designs. Outlining your fonts allows for proper
      illustrator editing even without a particular font.
  • * NO Bleed * NO Crop Marks
    • Our printing output software adds in all of this information automatically.
  • CMYK Document Setup – Not RGB
    • Submitting a file in CMYK greatly increases color reproduction accuracy. While we
      can print using an RGB document – we can’t guarantee it’s accurate color
      reproduction.

FILE SPECIFICATIONS:

– Flatten all Objects/Gradients/Swatches/Symbols/Special Effects/Transparencies
– Outline all text
– Flattened PDF (Single Page) or JPEG file types only
– Remove all crop marks/bleed otherwise they will be printed
– File must be the same exact size as what is ordered (exception is Gallery wrap Fold Edge and templates)
– CMYK only (we do not print Pantone/5th/Spot/RGB/DeviceGray)
– 150 dpi
– If using a template, the file uploaded to our site should match the exact “template size” (different than “graphic size”).
– Do not scale template files, just flatten them and save at 150 dpi
– Files over 200″ can be scaled
– Under 300 mb for upload

***Remove EVERYTHING from your file that you do not want printed on the final product – especially hidden layers and template guidelines.

– Make sure all objects are embedded and flattened (we do not print Non-Native Art).
– We offer support for the following programs: Adobe Illustrator, Adobe Photoshop and CorelDraw. If the file is made in a program other than what is listed, please flatten the file in Illustrator or Photoshop and export to a JPEG ONLY, as we don’t recommend using other programs at our facility as there can be ripping issues.
– If using Compound Paths to create transparencies/shapes, please completely rasterize or flatten them into the file or they may print incorrectly.

– We do not have specific measurements for Panel jobs. If you are printing in Panels, please make sure you are providing a minimum of 1″ overlay in your files.

– We do not guarantee exact cutting; please make sure to leave a reasonable safety margin inset on your file to account for finishing. Please feel free to call us for more safety margin information.

– We do not color match at our facility. We have many printers in our facility and run through an automated system that sends files to the next available printer to keep production as fast as possible so different order numbers can be printed on different printers.
– We only print CMYK colors. We do not guarantee how Pantone, RGB, Spot or 5th colors will print out. They can print incorrectly, inverted or drop completely from the file. Please convert your colors to CMYK only to prevent major color issues.

Please be aware colors on screen will appear darker when printed and to create file accordingly. When printing photographs, please make sure the color values and color space are both CMYK only.

TEMPLATE SETUP (GENERAL GUIDELINES):

Be sure to consult specific template instructions for further details. If a template isn’t available on the product’s page, contact us or contact your ZOOM! Agent to request the correct template. These instructions will guide you through the use of our templates. Please follow the instructions carefully. If you require further assistance please contact customer service.

– Design on a layer on top of our template
– Once the design is made, delete the entire layer that includes the blue space/text/guidelines we provide or else they will be printed
– Flatten all objects/transparencies/gradients/swatches and outline all text
– Save the file as a flattened PDF or JPEG full size at 150 dpi
– The size of the file sent to us should be exactly the same size as the template was provided, including the artboard (white) space in the file

+ Our template is used as a guide or reference to show general placement of logos/graphic elements
+ Please be sure to use the template file that corresponds to your design program
+ We print on white material, if you leave an area blank it will print white
+ For Advertising Flags, leave a safety margin of at least 2″ from all edges to prevent text from being cut off/hemmed over.

HAVE QUESTIONS?

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CALL

323 – 909 – 9098

TEXT

323 – 909 – 9098