Design File Preparation
Have a design file ready for print? We recommend that you review the following guidelines before placing your order. These guidelines will help ensure that your file is formatted correctly for printing.

1) Accepted File Types

We recommend vector-based .PDF design files. Most major design applications can generate a print-ready .PDF by using the Save As feature and selecting “Adobe PDF.” If you are unable to obtain .PDF files for your design, the next best are those in .EPS or .AI (CS3 or higher) format with all text converted to outlines.

Recommended file types:
Vector-based PostScript .PDF, .PS, .PSD, or .EPS
Vector-based Adobe Illustrator .AI

We can also print high-resolution .TIF and .JPG files. Please note that low-resolution .JPGs can cause quality issues.

Other accepted file types: 
PNG, .TIF, .BMP, .GIF, or .JPG

You can upload a file up to 250MB in size to our website. If your file is bigger than 250MB or you experience long upload times, please contact us.

2) Image Resolution

We recommend that all images in your design be at least 300dpi. Submitting files with a lower resolution can make the image appear pixelated and blurry when viewed closely.

Zooming in to 100% will help you determine if the image is low resolution or not.. This will give you an idea of what your image will look like when printed. If pixelated, we recommend that you find a higher-quality file.

3) Bleed & Crop Marks

All files need to be built to the final trim size plus bleed. Your file should be 0.25” longer on each side of your product. Example: If your sign dimensions are 12”x24”, your overall dimensions with bleed should be 12.5”x24.5”.

When preparing files, avoid using crop or printer's marks. These will increase the dimensions of your design file.

Additionally, we recommend that you keep all important elements of your design (such as phone numbers, photos, website addresses) away from the edge of your design. Doing this will ensure that nothing essential will be cut off during production.

4) Color

We print in four-color CMYK and recommend that all submitted files be saved in CMYK to ensure color accuracy. Please note: all submitted RGB files will be converted to CMYK before printing; this may result in minor color tone shifting.

5) Image Alterations & Transparency

If your image needs to be cropped or has a background that needs to be removed, please contact us to arrange design services.

If part of your logo or image is transparent, please save the file as one of the following vector formats before uploading: .EPS, .PDF, or .AI. For all other file types, such as .PNG, .TIF, or .JPG, contact us and we’ll make the logo or image transparent for you.

6) Fonts

If you are using vector-based software such as Illustrator, InDesign, or Freehand, all text must be converted to outlines before generating the final .PDF file. If working out of Photoshop, save your file as a .PDF – this will maintain all font data.

Please make sure you are not using a font size smaller than 7pt.

Finally, be sure to double-check your design (spelling, phone numbers, images, layout, etc.) before uploading and placing your order. While we do check all files before sending them to production, it’s still better to make sure everything is just right before submitting it to us for printing.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to get in touch with us at 1.800.518.1217.

Page Authored By Rick Debus

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