“Before anything else, preparation is the key to success.” – Alexander Graham Bell
At Half Price Printing, we want your print order to be exactly the way you intend it to be. However, in order to do so, we require your uploaded artwork files to be Press-Ready.
We understand setting up print ready artwork is not a task for everyone. That’s why we’re here to help. We gang up your printing on larger sheets and trim your job to size (we don't print at finished size, like an office or home printer), so we need the proper set-up to ensure your printing comes out as you intended.
If it all sounds a bit tricky, our in-house design studio can help create your artwork from scratch, or set up existing artwork correctly for an additional fee. Ask us today if your file is editable and able to be made print-ready.
If you're giving it a go... see how to set up files to meet our requirements, below.
Creating your files
If your job is single sided then you simply supply a one-page pdf. If your job has two sides then we need a two-page pdf file. If you have a two-sided design with multiple kinds, then you simply supply one two-page pdf for each kind.
Please note artwork supplied as separate PDFs, EPS, INDD, PSD or JPEG files, will all have to be manually corrected by our design studio and will incur an additional setup fee. Some JPEG files are low resolution and not optimal for printing.
Questions to ask yourself before submitting a Press Ready File
What format should my file be? Half Price Printing require all files to be supplied as high resolution PDF files.
How high is hi-resolution? Optimal printing is produced when images in your design are 300 dpi. Please note images used to create online/digital content look fine on screen (72dpi and smaller), but are usually low resolution and won't print well. Low resolution images result in a fuzzy/ pixelated print.
Is my artwork in CMYK colour? CMYK is the four colour print process we use to print, professionally. If your file has been created using RGB colour, (traditionally used for web images), it will need to be converted. If you don’t have access to a program that can do this, or if you have a spot colour (PMS colour) request you will need to raise this with an account manager prior to printing.
Where do I add Trim/Crop marks? Because we gang up your print job on large sheets, we need to know where to trim your job to it's final size on the guillotine. Trim marks are a guideline placed within 3mm of the four corners of your document's border.
Have I added external and internal bleed borders? External Bleed is the area around the outside border of your artwork. If colour goes all the way to the edge of your design, please put only that background colour in a 3mm wide border.
Internal Bleed is an invisible 3mm buffer border inside your final artwork size where no text or images are placed. This ensures nothing important is too close to the edges of your design during the trimming process.
Increase the bleed area to 10mm on all booklet pages. When sending your booklet PDF, please add pages to one PDF document in chronological order.
What should I name my file? Please ensure files are named in a short but descriptive way. Examples would be abccompany_A4Flyer.pdf or johnsmith_BC.pdf.
Additional Set Up
Ink Coverage: When printing, the maximum ink coverage possible is 400%. However, if we were to print a file with this amount of ink coverage, it will take a long time to dry and effect delivery times.
We recommend the maximum ink coverage to be set at 300% for coated stocks and 260% for uncoated stocks. This means the colours that you use should contain less than a total of 300% (or 260%) when you add together cyan, magenta, yellow and black.
If you require a deep black colour or as we call it, rich black, the best combination is 100% Black and 40% Cyan. However, this is for areas 30mm square or larger, excluding text.
Fonts: Half Price Printing require that all fonts you use in your files be outlined or embedded. This means that we can print them even if we don’t have those particular fonts in our systems and they will look exactly the way you want. You may need a license to embed certain fonts, so please don't send the fonts with your design as it is not legal.
Gradients: Sometimes in printing banding can occur. To avoid banding when printing a gradient, ensure your gradient image file is prepared in high resolution (using Illustrator is best).
If you have any questions, contact us for help!