Print-Ready Files

Print ready files

When a project has been signed off by the client and requires printing, we have several things we do before sending print-ready files to the printer:

Images are 300dpi

Ensure all images are 300dpi (dots per inch). Images from websites are only 72dpi and are not high enough quality and resolution for print purposes. If low-res images are used they will look fuzzy and not very clear.

The example below shows you the difference.



Images are CMYK


Printers print in full-colour printing known as CMYK: Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Key (Black).

The ‘K’ differentiates black from blue in RGB: Red, Green and Blue. Often the images we receive need to be converted from RGB to CMYK.  This can often result in a slight colour variation.



Add bleed and crop marks


If we are designing a full-page document regardless of size, the PDF will need to have 3mm bleed and crop marks.

Bleed is a term used by printers and refers to an area of printing that is to be trimmed. If the artwork has a colour or image that needs to go to the edge of the page, then the image has to go into the bleed area. The standard bleed is 3mm. A printer may require a 5mm bleed dependent on the product being printed.

The crop marks are placed on the four corners of the artwork to show the printer where to trim. If bleed and crop marks are not provided to a printer then it will result in the finished article having a thin white edge.

Once we have completed and checked the above, the files are ready to send to the printers.