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Travis, Mac-Trained Product Designer
Category: Mac
Satisfied Customers: 759
Experience:  19+ Years of Mac Experience, BSA in Design and 6 Years of Mac Training from University of Cincinnati
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OK...Ill do my best to explain this. (MacBookPro intell duo)I

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OK...I'll do my best to explain this. (MacBookPro intell duo)I am working on several CD covers..put in a good 130 hours at this point. They are ready for production...but..I am having trouble with conversion to pdf files. The graphics were done on an old iMac with photoshop 7.0 and saved as pdf files on the templates disc makers provided. When I tried to open the documents in preview they had what looks like a veil over them, washed out low contrast. So......I went and bought Photoshop CS4 to solve the problem. But it's not solving it. When I save the images in psd, they are perfect. When I save them in pdf, the veil appears again. So....I tried creating a photoshop new doc and copied the image off the old file and pasted it in and tried to save it. It worked just fine until I tried to save a pdf copy, that copy has the veil over it. Help!!!! Clare
When you work in Photoshop, what format is the file (RGB, CMYK)?

When you save as a pdf, is it saving with a CMYK proof setup?

Does the production house require CMYK or RGB or does it matter?

What happens when you open the pdf back up in Photoshop, do you get the gray veil?

It's possible that you are working in RGB but saving in CMYK, which is what would change the look. For example:


Versus CMYK:
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
thanks for taking this on. wow! I think you hit on it. Yes there is a difference and the cd makers do want CMYK and I tried to save the open document in that setting but it wouldn't let me. What you showed me is exactly my problem.
If the following suggestions work, please let me know and you can Accept the answer (and if possible, leave positive feedback). If not, please DO NOT Accept the answer. Instead, let me know and we'll try some more things or I can refer you to another Expert who may be able to help you further.

CMYK is the standard for off color printing. Problem is, RGB ALWAYS looks better on screen. The black is a "created" black instead of a process black. Here's the kicker though. When you print RGB in four-color process, which uses cyan, magenta, yellow and black (CMYK), it never looks like it does on screen! Double edged sword. The best thing to do is create the art in CMYK to begin with in photoshop (top menu image > mode). Sometimes the produciton house will require your fonts to be pure black (not a mixed black, but C=0, M=0, Y=0, K=100) so that the type will be clear. This would be in the printing requirements if expected.

What do you do? Save the RGB file as a backup. Convert the file to CMYK in photoshop. Adjust the color as best you can, then save the pdf. The color will not be as good as RGB, but that's just the nature of four-color printing.

Read this article, it may give more insight than I can offer.
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
o.k. I tried that while I was waiting for your reply and I'm getting a message that says settings in my save preferences are going to override that OK, so I tried it and ended up with the veil again. I saved the image CMYK with a backup in RGB, but when I open it in preview its the veil a...gain! What settings do I have to change for the saving process not to override things. The image by the way looks good in CMYK when open in photoshop.
Ok, open the original file in Photoshop. Save as a different name so that we have a duplicate to mess with.

Go to Image > Mode > what does it have listed?

Go to Edit > Convert to Profile. What does it have under Source Space? Change the Destination Space to Profile: Generic CMYK Profile. Make sure the box for "Flatten image" is not checked. Otherwise you'll lose your layers.

Now go to Image > Mode > what does it have listed?

When you go to File > Save As > Photoshop PDF, what choices do you have checked on the save as screen?
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
It lists:grayscale, RGB, CMYK,indexed color, lab color, multichannel,18 bits, 16 bits, 32 bits. Source space: profile: sRGB IEC61966-2.1 Image mode: grayscale, indexed color, RGB color (checked) CMYK color,lab color, multichannel, 8 bits, 16 bits, 32 bits channel. Save as: As a layers,embeded color profile sRGB IEC 61966-2.1, and that's it. by the way, this is only in one layer. Thanks so much Travis for trying to help me.
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
I'm getting pretty sleepy - bedtime. I can't go forward with this project until I solve this issue, if you don't think we can finish up tonight- tomorrow after 11:00 am would be great. If you can help me solve this, I really want to accept and give you a bonus and good reference...if possible. So if we loose eachother tonight maybe we can finish tomorrow?

I really appreciate your time and patience. I'm not happy with the Adobe tech service I received today after waiting a good 35 minutes, then I could barely understand the man with the thick accent and he didn't understand me very well. He certainly didn't have an answer for this problem.
Did you go to Edit > Convert to Profile and change the Destination Space to Profile: Generic CMYK Profile?

When you go back to Image > Mode it should now have "CMYK" checked.

Now go to Save As: Photoshop PDF. Make sure under Embed Color Profile, it has CMYK listed.

Now when you save the file and reopen in Photoshop, the veil should be gone. It should be in CMYK and what you see is what you get.
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
Well, I did everything you said to do and it looks fine in photoshop, but in preview it has the grey veil, which is the same problem I started with. I guess what I am afraid of is that when I send them the art and they post it, it will have the grey veil and turn out that way on my cd as well. Will the print turn out without the grey veil as it is printed? Even if it appears on their site with it when they post the proof for my approval? Is that what you first explained to me?
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
when i go to save it i have to go through 3 screens the last one says: Preserve Photoshop Editing capabilities" is incompatible with earlier versions of PS (remember the image was first made in 7.0) In earlier versions, you must open the PDF as a Generic PDF (not as a PS PDF)

message asks: Do you want to continue? and I said yes could this be the catch?
There may be something else going on with the file.

Under Image > Mode, the file should be CMYK and 8 Bits / Channel

It is a flattened file correct? To make sure go to the Layers panel and make sure. Go to the menu and Flatten if necessary.

Go to File > Save As

Choose the following settings:
Format: Photoshop PDF
Uncheck all of the boxes below, even the color profile.
Click "Save"

In the next popup window (Save Adobe PDF), choose the following settings:
Adobe PDF Preset: [Press Quality]
Standard: None
Compatibility: Acrobat 5
Leave "Preserve Photoshop editting capabilities" on
Leave "Optimize for Fast Web Viewing" on
Click Save and close the file.

Now the file should be in the correct format. Open it back up in Photoshop, and adjust the color as necessary wiht the Image > Adjustments.
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
i did everything, but the next window to come up says "Preserve PS Editing Capabilities is incompatible with earlier must open the PDF as a generic pdf not a ps pdf, do I say yes or no?
You can click yes. Shouldn't matter for what you are doing. Also, make sure you save as, so you'll have a duplicate copy. And make sure the file ends in .pdf
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
actually, while I was waiting I went back and saved it as 'don't preserve editing' option just to see what I would get, because everytime I used the preserve option, I got the grey veil again. This time I didn't get the grey veil in preview, but it doesn't look good at all, it is way out of focus until I zoom in to check it and then it is in focus, and its flat and lost its 'sparkle' (contrast?, i don't know, i've tweaked the contrast so many time its beginning to distort the shaded areas. so is what I just got the best I can do or is there other hope for me?
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
is there any possible way I can replicate this image while it is in photoshop and through another format get it into pdf looking as good as it does in photoshop? They are using SWOP for their set up.
If you reopen the final pdf file in Photoshop it should look the same as it does in Preview. Does it look different in Preview?

I will be back to check on the status in a few, then will be heading to bed shortly to revisit in the morning if that is ok.

Last, if you don't mind, would you like to send me one of the final pdfs in question so that I can check the settings? You could email to "DWCdesignTB" at "aol" dot "com". (We have to put email addresses in that way or the system X's them out)
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
thanks for asking me to e-mail the file..I was thinking the same thing. No the final file in preview looks aweful, but when I open the same file in ps it looks good. I'll send you both the original and the final copy I worked on with you so you can compage notes.

Nite nite and God bless.
I'll let you know what I find out after getting the files in the morning.

Ok, I received the files. Actually they both are pretty close. I will also warn you, that depending on what color profiles the printer uses, humidity when printing and even the paper type, quality and coating will ultimately change the final color output of the covers. On top of, the first cover may not look exactly like the last cover. These are all issues we encounter in off-set and web (type of printing, not the internet) printing. Unless you are running color comps during the middle of the job, and matching ink swatches (which some printers do for large and important jobs), printing this way is kind of a finetooth crapshoot. You have to go into with a "close enough" attitude. I do this everyday and have just come to accept the drawbacks of mass printing. All you can really do is provide the printer with your best copy and then hope they do their job.

As far as your files go, follow the steps below:

1) Edit > Convert to Profile. Change Destination Space to "Custom CMYK".
2) In the Custom popup, change the following
2a) Ink Colors: SWOP (Coated)
2b) Dot Gain: Curves (We'll gain back some contrast here)
- Click the Cyan radio button and change 50: 78%
- Click the Magenta radio button and change 50: 69%
- Click the Black radio button and change 50: 72%
3) Separation Type: GCR
4) Black Generation: Custom and then drag the high-point dot a smidge to the right. Per the image below:
5) Black Ink Limit: 100
6) Total Ink Limit 300
7) UCA Amount: 0
8) Click OK to return to the "Convert to Profile" window
9) Engine: Adobe (ACE)
10) Intent: Relative Colorimetric
11) Make sure both are check marked: "Use Black Point Compensation" and "Use Dither"
12) Click OK.
13) Go to File > Save As
14) Change the "Save As:" name as necessary
15) Change the "Where:" location as necessary
16) Format: Photoshop PDF
17) The only thing that should be checked is "Embed Color Profile: SWOP (Coated), Curves..."
18) Click Save
19) "The settings you choose" popup is a warning box. I think you can feel free to choose "Don't show again" by now here.
20) In the "Save Adobe PDF" popup window, make sure Adobe PDF Preset: is set to "[Press Quality] (Modified)"
21) Standard: None
22) Compatibility: Acrobat 5 (PDF 1.4)
23) Under Options, uncheck everything, but mark "View PDF After Saving"
24) Click Output in the left window.
25) Under Color > Color Conversion: Choose, "No Conversion"
26) Make sure Profile Inclusion Policy is set to "Include Destination Profile"
27) Click "Save PDF"

The saved pdf should open in your pdf reading program. This color conversion should be optimal for printing. What do you think?

Edited by Travis on 12/2/2009 at 2:20 PM EST
Travis and 3 other Mac Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
I couldn't be more pleased. Thank you so much Travis for the labor and precise answers you put into this. I am so tired of being brushed off when I have issues with tech reps. What an experience to have an expert get right down to the nitty gritty and get results! I really appreciate how you hung in there with me till we did, the comittment I expect from a professional. You can be sure I will spread the word about your site. You just saved me a week's worth of labor in photoshop redoing all the images.

Gratefully, Customerbr />
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
p.s. I erased the deposit thing by mistake and didn't know how to get it back.
First of all, thank you So Very Much for the wonderful words of praise and the bonus. Completely uncalled for, but very much appreciated.

Glad I could help. Thank you for the opportunity to do so. I really enjoy doing this, it's like solving puzzles and I'm addicted to the process. Being able to help someone through their computer woe is really rewarding for me. Especially when it goes this well. Thanks!

If you ever have any problems in the future, please let me know. Feel free to ask for me by name with "For Travis" at the beginning of your question. I'd be honored to help again!
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
You're SO welcome, and I will ask for you again.

God Bless

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