INSTAHINT
Mouse over a specification for a detailed description and explanation.
Computer monitors are designed to work with low resolution images. A typical computer screen is 72dpi (dots per inch) and so a low resolution image will still look quite nice. For professional printing, however, higher resolutions are necessary in order to produce quality graphics and images. A minimum of 300dpi is standard for photos. Black and white bitmap graphics (not grayscale) can be 600dpi or higher. Low resolution images and pictures tend to look blurry and jagged when printed in high resolution.

A very significant amount of time -- often more than the actual print job for smaller orders -- is required to prepare equipment and files for printing. Because of this, combined with simple economies of scale, you will pay a higher price per item if you order a small quantity than if you order a large quantity. However, the overall bill for a small quantity will still be lower, despite the higher per-piece price, so don't order more than you can actually use.

A bleed is where the ink extends beyond the edge of the paper. Since printing equipment can't print to the edge, this is accomplished by printing on a larger sheet, and then trimming. Most printers, because of the type of equipment they have, always have to perform this step. While it could mean that bleeds don't cost any extra, what it really means is that you pay for it even if you don't have bleeds. At Keness, you have the option of saving a significant amount of money if you select a 'pseudo' bleed if your budget is tight. What this means is printing a 5.5 x 8.5 booklet at 5 x 8.25 for example. This allows you to save on both paper and printing.

If you are creating a book, booklet, catalog or newsletter, don't worry about trying to arrange your pages in such a way that even after the paper is folded and stapled, they will be in the correct order. This is called 'imposition' and it is completed by the printer since different products are imposed different ways. Sometimes even the same product is imposed differently depending on the thickness.

Printing on the spine is only available for perfect bound books. Depending on your number of pages and paper choice, the thickness of your book can vary quite a bit. Feel free to contact us to find out exactly how thick your book is going to be. Or, you can just wait until you receive your proof and modify your design files for the cover if you wish. Make sure to notify us that you will be sending a new file for the cover.

Colors coming from an object which generates its own light (such as a computer monitor or a TV) generally operate in the RGB (red, green, blue) color space. Colors from an object which does NOT generate its own light, and instead must reflect ambient light (such as paper) generally operate in the CMYK (cyan, magenta, yellow, black) color space. While the range of colors these two color spaces can reproduce mostly overlap, there are some 'RGB only' colors and some 'CMYK only' colors, which, when switching from one color space, must be approximated. Because of this, and because all printing is done in CMYK, make sure your files are prepared in CMYK or you may find that the colors have shifted -- sometimes dramatically -- in your proof. Digital camera pictures, scans from a scanner and web images are all generally RGB to start with and much be converted.

A printer doesn't want you to be unpleasantly suprised any more than you want to be unpleasantly surprised! We're here to help, so if you have any questions or concerns, feel free to ask!

1: High resolution images are critical.

2: Number of copies printed can make a big difference.

3: Save money by avoiding bleeds.

4: Don't impose your pages before you send them.

5: Check thickness before you design your book's spine.

6: Use CMYK, not RGB.

7: Don't assume, ask.