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CREATING PRINT FILES FROM CORELDRAW 15

This instructions do not guarantee the correct creation of your print files. Rather it is intended as an assistance. If you are not familiar with how to create print data and use these instructions, we recommend that you order a data check for a surcharge as an extra option to your order. 

As we often receive questions regarding the creation of print files using CorelDRAW, we would like to provide you with a guide in this matter. We will demonstrate the procedure in CorelDRAW X5 using the example of a standard DL flyer which can be ordered at www.onlineprinters.co.uk.

COLOUR MANAGEMENT

Before you start to actually set up the document, you should configure the CorelDRAW colour management. 

The colour management ensures the consistent colour reproduction of all devices involved in the process (scanner, camera, monitor, printer, printing machine etc.). A so-called ICC profile is required for each device which describes the colour properties of the device. You find the correct ICC profiles for offset printing on the website of the European Colour Initiative (www.eci.org) in the "Downloads" section under the file name "eci_offset_2009.zip". Unpack the archive and install the profiles in your system ("right-click → install profile"). 

Navigate to the corresponding window via "Options -> Colour Management -> Default Settings".

Select the presetting "Europe - General Purpose" and change the spot colour definition from "Lab values" to "CMYK values". Verify that the other settings shown here are the same as your own settings. 

The colour profile "ISO Coated v2 (ECI)" is correct for print orders on art print paper. If you create a file to be printed on offset print paper, select "PSO Uncoated ISO12647 (ECI)" here.

CREATING A DOCUMENT

Create a new document via "File → New" and select "Preset destination: Default CMYK" This menu also allows you to select a CMYK profile only for the present documents that differs from the default setting. You do not have to enter the page format yet. This will be done in the next step.

"Layout → Page Setup" takes you to the following menu.

The final format of the DIN-Long flyer is specified on the corresponding product page under "Details". It is 10.5 cm x 21.0 cm or 105 mm x 210 mm. Here you will also find the note on the 2 mm circumferential bleed. You need this bleed as tolerance for cutting your products. It is shown as a dashed line around the document format and thus sets the data format to be delivered to the dimensions 109 mm x 214 mm. 

Now enter the values into the corresponding fields and confirm your entry with OK. Make sure that the checkmarks for "Show page border" and "Show bleed area" are set.

We recommend that you add a margin tolerance of 4 mm to the final format on each page to place crucial design elements (be careful: this recommendation does not apply to advertisement systems and brochures. Go to the details of a product for more information). CorelDRAW allows you to define guidelines. This gives you the certainty during layout that you keep a sufficient distance to the final format edge. For this purpose, open the "Guidelines" menu item and enter the corresponding values under "Horizontal" and "Vertical". The vertical guidelines in this example are located at 4 mm and 101 mm (105 mm – 4 mm). The horizontal guidelines are located at 4 mm and 206 mm (210 mm – 4 mm).

Elements such as images or backgrounds which should reach beyond the final format edge, such as for instance the logo bar shown below, must reach at least 2 mm beyond this edge, that is, they must reach completely into the margin bleed or beyond it.

PLACING TEXT AND IMAGES

You can now begin to configure the actual layout of your document. 

We generally recommend our customers to use the colour mode CMYK (cyan, magenta, yellow, black) for image files as these are also the printing colours used later on. If you want to use pictures, e.g. taken with a digital camera, these pictures are usually in the RGB colour mode (red, green, blue). 

In this case, you should enable the "Tools → Proof colours" option for verification. With this function CorelDRAW tries to simulate the anticipated colour result of the offset printing on the screen. Since the RGB colour range is much larger (it simply contains more possible colours) than the CMYK colour range, colour shifts can occur. This primarily concerns highly saturated and brilliant colours. The printed colours may therefore appear slightly darker and duller. Additionally, you have the option to highlight the critical spots. To do so, choose the option "Highlight colours outside printer gamut".

Please note that in order to obtain a colour proof representation you have to use a profiled and calibrated high-quality monitor However, this option is very useful as it gives an impression of the difference between the screen display and the actual print result. 

Moreover, your pictures should be in the file formats *.tif or *.jpg and have an effective resolution of at least 300 dpi (dots per inch). You can check this at any time on the status bar at the lower screen section. To do so, just select the corresponding picture. Please note that magnifying a picture reduces the effective resolution. It is therefore imperative that you check the resolution after you have scaled the picture to its desired size in the layout.

TRANSPARENCIES AND EFFECTS

Transparencies and special Corel effects sometimes cause errors when exposing the data. Such elements must always be converted to bitmaps before they are output. 

To do so, select the corresponding element and select "Bitmaps → Convert to Bitmap" to open the following menu and apply the settings shown here.

OUTPUT AS PDF

To finalize save your document as a PDF file, select the menu item "File → Publish to PDF ..." and click "Settings. …“.

Now successively browse through the individual tabs and apply the following settings. Select the "PDF default setting: PDF/X-1a" and "Compatibility: PDF/X-1a" under "General". This also serves as the basis for the configuration that follows now:

Enter the colour settings of the document. Unless you have ordered special colour print in our shop, you have to disable the option "Preserve spot colours". If you have not used special colours, this option is grayed.

You do not have to make any special settings here.

To prevent problems with fonts that are not embedded or incorrectly embedded, select the option "Export all text as curves". Also set a checkmark at "Render complex fills as bitmaps".

On the "Prepress" tab set a checkmark at "Bleed limit" and enter 2 mm. This setting ensures that the bleed allowance entered when setting up the document is also accounted for in the PDF output. But we do not need printer marks.

Please do not use security settings for your document.

The last tab may show possible problems encountered while saving the data; please observe the warnings given there. 

Finally, you can save the settings you have made as PDF style. You can use this style for future data without having to re-enter the settings. To do so, go back to the first tab and click on the "+" icon in the lower right section. Save the "PDF style" under a unique name. You can use it for other documents as well by opening it via the "PDF default settings" dropdown list.

Click "OK" to close the "Publish to PDF" dialog box and subsequently save the file. 

We urgently recommend that you review the created PDF visually. For this purpose, we recommend the free Adobe Reader which you can download from http://get.adobe.com/de/reader/

Please note that you cannot open and edit a PDF document in CorelDRAW. Its sole purpose is to transmit your print data to us. Therefore, you should save your document in Corel-DRAW file format *.cdr in regular intervals, during and after the layout. You can to this via "File → Save" or "File → Save as". You can open and edit this file again and again. Onlineprinters only requires the PDF file. 

We wish you much success with the creation of your print data and promise you that we will process the order you have placed at www.onlineprinters.co.uk in top quality. 

Your Onlineprinters team

PDF DOWNLOAD

You can download our tips for print file creation as a printable PDF file.

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