File Preparation

“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!


Other things you may like to know

Why are your prices so cheap?

We are fully equipped with the latest in print technology and operate with an integrated workflow. This enables us to print onsite at less cost.

How do I setup my artwork?

Please refer to the Artwork Setup Guide on our website, if you cannot create or setup your print ready artwork, we can set it up for you. This however will be at a rate of $90 per hour. We will provide you the final print ready files and you can upload that when placing you order.

Do you deliver? Or can I pick-up my order?

We deliver Australia wide. Online orders receive FREE Melbourne, Sydney and Adelaide Metro delivery. Alternatively, for a quicker turn-around you may pick up you order from our Broadmeadows factory.

What is your turn-around time?

Different products take varying times to complete. You can contact our office today to ask the general production time of your item. If you have an urgent need for an item, call us to assess the time it will take to get your order to you when you need it.  We also offer next day dispatch for some products, however you will need to contact a member of our sales team to see if it is applicable. This may cost a little bit extra. 

What payment methods do you accept?

We accept payment by credit card and direct deposit. For credit card payment we only accept Visa and MasterCard.

How can I see my printing before print?

If you have opted to receive a proof, we will generate a low resolution digital proof of your artwork to send for approval via email. Your file will pass a pre-flight check before printing, RGB will be converted to CMYK. Images will need to pass a minimum 150dpi test to be suitable. You will need to approve via email before your artwork is sent to print.

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