International standard document size measuring 210 X 297 mm
Software program for viewing, creating, manipulating, printing and managing files in Portable Document Format (PDF).
Software utility for creating Portable Document Format (PDF) files from PostScript source files.
A digital image that consists of rows and columns of dots. The density of the dots — the file resolution or DPI — determines how sharply the image is represented. Bitmapped graphics are often referred to as raster graphics. The other method for representing digital images is known as vector graphics or object-oriented graphics, which are resolution-independent and can be infinitely scaled. In contrast, bitmapped graphics become ragged when scaled.
When images or other printed design elements extend all the way to the edge of a sheet after trimming. Artwork for a printed piece with “bleed” must be created to extend an extra 1/8th of an inch beyond the document’s intended finished size to allow for trimming variances and unintentional white borders.
A digital file format for recording bitmapped images which is not ideally suited for high-quality printing. High resolution TIFF or JPG files are preferable.
Booklet or Brochure
A multi-page printed piece, designed in increments of four pages. A booklet with four pages is created from a single folded sheet. A booklet with 8-64 pages is comprised of several folded sheets which are collated and saddle-stitched together.
Monday-Friday excluding national holidays
A multi-page printed piece, designed in increments of four pages. A catalog with four pages is created from a single folded sheet. A catalog with 8-64 pages is comprised of several folded sheets which are collated and saddle-stitched together.
Abbreviation for cyan, magenta, yellow and black, the four primary ink colors in 4-color printing. Also known as “process colors”.
.CSF / Adobe Creative Suite Color Settings File
This file format contains color management data to help synchronize how colors in your design documents are displayed onscreen and rendered for output while using Adobe Creative Suite tools. HubCast has created a custom .CSF which should be downloaded and installed into Adobe Creative Suite to ensure maximum color control when creating press-ready PDFs for HubCasting.
The shipping address for your print project including company name, contact name, address, postal code and telephone number.
Dots-Per-Inch — a measure of resolution for image input and output devices.
Embedded Art (Placed Image)
When a Placed Image is imported into a layout, often the software will give you the option to treat the image as “linked” or “embedded.” When an image is embedded, the entire image is copied into your layout document at full-resolution which results in a larger layout document file. Any subsequent changes to the original embedded art will not display in the layout document unless the embedded art is re-imported.
When creatin your press-ready PDF, one of the steps is to ensure that all readers will see your text in its original font and be able to print the file using the original fonts. This can be done by either embedding your fonts into your press-ready PDF, or by converting your text to outlines in your design software. Embedding fonts increases file size, but allows your text to remain editable while preventing undesired font substitutions when the file is sent to a third party. HubCast uses the PDF/X-1a file format which allows for font embedding. HubCast requires all fonts to be embedded.
Encapsulated Post Script — a file format usually used to transfer PostScript information from one program to another.
To output data in a format that can be read by another software application. For HubCasting, this means exporting your final documents into a press-ready PDF X-1a file.
The intended final trimmed size of a printed piece.
Flatten (refers to: Layers)
Many popular design programs allow you to create and edit images and layouts by storing objects in separate layers. These layers must be flattened before a file is ready for press. When you flatten an image, the software merges all visible layers into one and discards any hidden layers, greatly reducing the file size and complexity. This process also safely rasterizes any editable effects which might have been applied to a layer (e.g. dropshadows, blurs, transparencies).
A single sheet document. Can be single or double-sided.
Bending a sheet of paper over on itself so that one part of it covers another. Download a PDF version of our Fold Guide for more information.
Font Outlines (Convert to Outlines)
Normally, sending digital documents from one PC to the next requires both PCs to have the same fonts installed in order for any text to display and reproduce correctly. The answer to this problem is to either embed your fonts into your press-ready PDF, or to convert your text to outlines in your design software as a final step before export. Converting to outlines takes the editable text and renders it as vector-based shapes — the result remains crisp and scalable, but the text itself will no longer be editable.
When your layout document has been exported to PDF/X-1a, verified through Adobe Acrobat using the Pre-flight Settings for HubCasting and no errors are reported, the green checkmark means you’re in the Green Zone.
The inside margin (toward the spine or binding edge) between sequential pages in a printed booklet.
Finished size for brochure, booklet or catalog where the dimensions are the same as a standard US-Letter sheet folded in half: 5.5 X 8.5 inches
An offset printing term — a photomechanical or digital process that converts photographs into a dot pattern for reproduction by printing. Because the HubCast system automates the image-processing process (graphic elements, text, and lineart), it is not necessary (nor is it recommended) to convert photographs into halftone images.
The opposite of overprinting. When overlapping objects occur in a layout, the objects can be set to “knockout.” This technique prevents the objects from printing on top of each other and thereby creating unintended color results from mixing inks — the underlying element does not print (knocks-out) in the area where the objects overlap. This is most often applied to white or light-colored text on top of a dark or complex background.
Many popular design programs allow you to create your artwork and page layouts in layers, which are like stacked, transparent sheets of glass. Each “sheet of glass” can contain its own separate element of your design, giving you maximum flexibility for editing. By working in layers you can view the composite result of this stack of elements while still being able to edit each element independently. When HubCasting, your final press-ready file must be exported to PDF X-1a in order to ensure each of these layers has been flattened.
Letter Size (US)
The most common page size for office use in the US and Canada, measuring 8.5 X 11 inches.
Single-sided general business sheet, either US-Letter or A4 size.
An offset printing term — the measure of how many halftone lines are printed in a linear inch. Because the HubCast system automates the image-processing process, it is not necessary (nor is it recommended) to convert photographs into halftone images.
Linked Art (Placed Image)
When a Placed Image is imported into a layout, often the software will give you the option to treat the image as “linked” or “embedded.” When an image is linked, the original file remains independent of the layout document, which means that the layout document’s file size is much smaller and the original file can still be edited separately as needed — any changes to the original will then be updated and displayed in your layout document. Linked art is usually displayed as a low resolution placeholder, but will export or print at full resolution. This is the most efficient workflow for creating and editing your layout documents. When creating a PDF/X-1a for HubCasting the linked art will automatically be converted to become embedded in the final output.
The time in the time zone of the shipping address for your print project.
Abbreviation for Open Pre-press Interface. OPI is an extension of the PostScript page-description language that lets you design pages using low-resolution placeholder images and then replace the images with high-resolution versions when the file is sent for final press output. OPI comments are instructions embedded in a press-ready file which tell the output device how to merge the high-resolution components. This workflow allows users to work on layout documents which are smaller and more portable — however, pre-flight verification is difficult, if not impossible in this workflow. HubCast uses the PDF/X1-a format only which does not support OPI workflows.
The opposite of a knockout. When overlapping objects occur in a layout, the objects can be set to “overprint.” This technique forces one object to print over top of another, thereby creating mixed-color effects resulting from overlapping inks. This is most often applied to black text in order to prevent bleed-through and to achieve crisp, solid text over top of a complex background.
Portable Document Format. A cross-platform standard which is well-suited to high-resolution pre-press applications because it preserves the appearance of documents across many platforms.
A specialized version of the PDF standard which is optimized for the exchange of press-ready documents. This is the primary file format acceptable for HubCasting.
When importing a photo or other graphic image file into your design layout, it is called a placed image or placed art. This placed image can be either linked or embedded. (see entries for Linked Art and Embedded Art)
Points are a unit of measurement in the printing industry, generally used in reference to type sizes and line widths, equaling 1/12 pica and .013875 inch (.351mm).
A standalone mailable card, either single or double-sided most commonly 6 X 4 inches.
PostScript is a page description language used to communicate between applications (like QuarkXPress or MS Word) and output devices that are equipped with a PostScript interpreter in order to ensure consistent, high-resolution results between devices. PostScript can also be used to exchange data between applications themselves and it forms the basis of the PDF file format. PostScript is an object-oriented language, meaning that it treats images, including fonts, as collections of geometrical objects rather than as bitmaps.
Pixels-Per-Inch – a measure of screen or display resolution, often used interchangeably for DPI by illustration and page layout software.
Pre-flight / Verification
Derived from the pre-flight checklists that airplane pilots go though prior to takeoff, in professional print parlance “pre-flight” refers to the process of checking and double-checking your digital press-ready files before sending them for final output and printing. HubCast has created a downloadable pre-flight settings file for Adobe Acrobat which will allow you to verify your press-ready PDFs for HubCasting.
When a digital document has been proofed, sent through a series of “pre-flight” checks, and subsequently exported, it is “press-ready” and suitable for final printing.
A PDF document which is suitable for final printing — it has been proofed, sent through a series of “pre-flight” checks, and subsequently exported to PDF format.
Single-sided card, designed to fit in a standard display most commonly 4 x 9 inches.
To render a vector image (made up of infinitely scalable dots connected by lines and curves) into a bitmap image (made up of a fixed number of grid-based dots, or pixels).
Describes the detail an image holds, usually measured for print in dots-per-inch (DPI). Higher resolution means more image detail and larger file size (in Megabytes).
Abbreviation for red, green, blue, the additive primary colors used for viewing images on LCD or CRT screens. Color images intended for printing must be converted from RGB to the CMYK ink colorspace.
A simple binding style where sheets are bound together with staples placed in the center of the fold of the spine.
Safe Zone / Margin
The area which falls 1/8th of an inch inside the final trimmed document size. All critical text and graphics must fall within this area to allow for trimming variances.
Single or double-sided sheet, generally US-Letter or A4 size.
A spot color is when a specific ink mix is specified for printing (e.g. Pantone 187, Pantone Reflex Blue, etc.). This spot color would require its own separation and plate and would require a separate pass through the press. HubCast uses the standard 4-color (CMYK) printing process and does not support the specification of spot inks. Any spot colors in your press-ready PDF must be converted to their CMYK equivalent.
When two pages in a layout are facing each other (i.e. two facing pages in a booklet).
Many software design tools will allow you to specify colors in your layout which are a percentage of a solid color (e.g. 20% black is a light grey tint).
Tools for HubCasting
Downloadable set of settings files for installation into the major design programs to ensure your system is correctly set-up to create HubCast-friendly press-ready PDFs. The set includes color management values, PDF/X-1a presets, and file verification (pre-flight) tools.
Many popular design programs will allow you to design your layouts using transparency effects. This causes objects to appear translucent and lets objects underneath show through (e.g. overlays or dropshadows) but creates challenges for outputting the final result to press. HubCast supports only the PDF/X1-a file format for press-ready PDF creation, which ensures that any transparencies in layout documents are correctly flattened/rasterized prior to going to press.
A single sheet, printed on both sides, and folded into thirds. Size can be based on a US-Letter (folded to 3.66 X 8.5 inches) or A4 (folded to 99 X 210 mm).
Trim Box / Trim Size
Denotes the live print area of a layout, or the final intended size of a printed page after the last trim is made.
Trim Marks / Crop Marks
Short, straight, perpendicular lines which fall outside of the live print area of a layout, illustrating where the final trim is to be made on the finished page.
The most common page size for office use in the US and Canada, measuring 8.5 X 11 inches.
Vector Art / Line Art
Illustrations and page layouts created with software which stores the image data as a series of points and connections, making the data compact, easy to manipulate, and infinitely scalable (unlike bitmapped art/raster graphics whose files are resolution-dependent and are more limited in how they may be manipulated).