Here you'll find answers to common questions our clients ask. Start by selecting one of the links below. If you don’t see what you need, call or contact us online. You may also download our "File Prep Guide" to help you prepare your document(s) for submission.
- What type of products and services do you provide?
- How do I go about getting an estimate from you?
- How should I lay out my project for optimal printing results?
- At what resolution should I save my photos and graphics?
- What is a proof and why is it important that I look at it?
- What is the Pantone Matching System?
- Why do the printed colors look different from the colors on my screen?
- Is white considered a printing color?
- What file format should I use when submitting my document for printing?
- Once I submit the documents, how long will it take to finish my job?
What type of products and services do you provide?
Good question! We are a full-service shop and offer a wide range of products and services. To see a full listing and description of what we can offer you, check out the Products & Services area in the Customer Service section of our website.
Well, since you are here, we would suggest you use our online estimate request form. Otherwise, the best way to ensure that we get all the information necessary to do an accurate quote is to give us a call and talk with one of our customer service representatives.
How should I lay out my project for optimal printing results?
There are several factors to consider when designing a project: margins, bleeds, crossovers, finishing, etc. Often times we have to return artwork because it is not set up using minimum printing standards.
• Margins: We require a minimum 1/8–3/16" margin to ensure that no pertinent information is removed during the trimming process.
• Bleeds: We require 1/8" bleed (image beyond the page edge) wherever there is image or color that extends to the edge of the page. This will ensure that you don't see paper color where you should see ink.
• Crossovers: Images and/or text that cross from one page to another often create a less-than-attractive printed piece. Binding is not a perfect process and can often lead to crossover images and text that don't line up properly next to each other. We would advise against this if at all possible.
At what resolution should I save my photos and graphics?
Resolution should be set to 300 dpi.
Pictures and graphics pulled from the internet are often low resolution, typically 72 dpi or 96 dpi. Avoid these graphics, as they will appear pixilated and blocky when printed.
Also note that you should save all photos in CMYK mode, not RGB mode when possible. Images saved in RGB mode may not print properly. If you are unable to save your image in CYMK mode, please let us know.
What is a proof and why is it important that I look at it?
In printing terms, a proof is a one-off copy of your document after all modifications and printing setup processes have been completed. It is your last and best opportunity to make sure that the print job comes out the way you want. By carefully inspecting the proof, you can help us assure an accurate, flawless delivery of your print job on the first run.
What is the Pantone Matching System?
The Pantone Matching System (PMS) is a color reproduction standard in which colors all across the spectrum are each identified by a unique, independent number. The use of PMS allows us to precisely match colors and maintain color consistency throughout the printing process.
Why do the printed colors look different from the colors on my screen?
In short, printers and monitors produce colors in different ways.
Monitors use the RGB (red, green, blue) color model, which usually supports a wider spectrum of colors. Printers use the CMYK (cyan, magenta, yellow, black) color model, which can reproduce most—but not all—of the colors in the RGB color model. Depending on the equipment used, CMYK generally matches 85–90% of the colors in the RGB model.
When a color is selected from the RGB model that is out of the range of the CMYK model, the application chooses what it thinks is the closest color that will match. Programs like Adobe Photoshop will allow you to choose which color will be replaced. Others may not.
Is white considered a printing color?
Not typically. Because white is the default color of paper, it is simply recognized as the absence of any ink. However, when using colored paper, white ink may be used if any text or graphic requires it.
What file format should I use when submitting my document for printing?
PDF (Portable Document Format) is the most common and preferred file format for submitting digital documents. With the installation of a PDF print driver on your computer, virtually any program can generate a PDF file suitable for printing. Both commercial and free PDF print drivers are available online for download from different sources.
Once I submit the documents, how long will it take to finish my job?
Simple jobs are often completed in less than an hour. Some jobs, however, may take several days to complete depending on their complexity and size. We always strive to provide an accurate estimate of the turnaround time for each job we do. And we’ll always work with you to find ways to complete your project when you need it.