TPI Solutions Ink Blog: My file is print ready. . . really!


Have you ever wondered as you click that send button, is my file really ready to print? Or, have you ever questioned which types of files need to be sent to your printer? It can be confusing and frustrating at times.

As the graphicpantone color  guide designer you've spent a great deal of time coming up with a great design for your project. Finally, it is complete, you send the file off to your printer and you are ready to move on to your next project. Just when you thought you were done you get that call from the prepress department - something is not quite right with your file. Ugh! What now?  

Fortunately an experienced and knowledgeable prepress department sees these situations every day and can get your project back on track in no time. Sometimes, as a graphic designer, you are not even aware of the minor adjustments that need to be made to your file before going to print. However, there are other times when a small adjustment just won't do the trick, prepress needs additional files, missing photos or missing links for example.

Okay, great . . . if you've been in this business for a while you know that this is not breaking news! What can you do?

Here are a few recommendations of things to check for from TPI Solutions Ink's prepress department:

  • Is your job printing in spot color or CMYK?

  • If CMYK, check that all photos and colors are converted  to CMYK and not RGB.

  • If your job is printing in spot color check that all artwork, photos and text are selected to print in the chosen color - not CMYK or RGB.When printing spot colors be sure to convert all photos to grayscale then select the spot color that it will print.
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  • If you are using a PMS color be sure to select PMS U when printing on uncoated stock or PMS C when printing on coated stock. DO NOT use both PMS U and PMS C in your document.

  • Does your job bleed? If so, don't forget to allow for bleeds in your design file.

  • Send ready to print PDFs to your printer along with your original design file.

  • When working in Adobe InDesign be sure to preflight and package your file for printer before sending - this will ensure that your printer gets links, fonts, etc.

Do you have any tips or questions to add to those above? What do you do before sending your file off to be printed? We'd love to hear from you!


About The Author

Carrie is currently the President and Co-Owner of TPI Solutions Ink. She is a graduate of RIT with a BS in Printing Management. Carrie has over 40 years experience in the printing industry.