Creating Proper PDF Files


“How should print ready PDF files be prepared?” is a common question we hear at Allied. The PDF file format has become so widely used in many industries that the creation of PDF files correctly for print has become confusing.
So “How should files be prepared for Allied”? Keep it simple! A good place to start for general offset and digital print, is to follow the PDF/X1a standard. At Allied we are looking for PDF files that include the following:

  • Embedded fonts (subsetting is ok but not preferred in case editing is needed)

  • Single pages (no reader spreads)

  • 1/8” bleeds

  • Effective image resolution should be no lower than 300dpi.

  • Crop marks offset to .125” - make sure trim and bleed boxes are present in document.

  • All colors should be CMYK and color management either turned off or set to the GRACoL standard

While providing PDF files only is acceptable, we always prefer to receive the native design files. By doing this, we can ensure that files are correctly prepped for print whatever the condition, and in the event of changes, they can be done much more efficiently.

Have questions or more topics you would like to see covered? Please reach out to us at: and we will be sure to include your requests in future blogs.

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