crisp
& clean

print smooth

Many factors can affect how well
your type, shapes, lines, and rules
print. These tips and techniques can
help you print beautiful, legible type
and crisp vector art every time.

Choosing Type Rendering Options

Our professional four-color process printing uses a series of tiny dots to
create a field of color. Depending on how a file is set up, these dots may
become visible at times. Keeping this in mind, review the tips below to help
you choose the right type rendering options.*

What do type size and color have to do with each other?

Choosing a color mix with 100% of Cyan, Magenta or Black will improve the printed quality of your text. If your design requires type or background with a light color mix, consider increasing the size or weight of the type to ensure legibility.

RGB

White type on 30% cyan background,
enlarged to 400% of actual size

RGB

White type on 100% cyan background,
enlarged to 400% of actual size

RGB

30% cyan type on white background,
enlarged to 400% of actual size

RGB

100% cyan type on white background,
enlarged to 400% of actual size

What is the difference between vector and raster type?

For crisp printed type, use a vector layout program such as Adobe Illustrator to create the type for your design. Type created in image-manipulation programs such as Adobe Photoshop is rasterized and can appear to have jagged edges when printed.

RGB

Raster type, enlarged to 400% of actual size

RGB

Vector type, enlarged to 400% of actual size

What kind of black should I use for my type?

Use Flat Black for type to ensure crisp, precise edges. Refer to the
Choosing the Right Black section for a complete review of Flat Black vs.
Rich Black.

What is overprinting and
when should I use it?

Overprinting tells the printer
to print one ink on top of
another, rather than next to
it. Select overprinting for
Flat Black rules to eliminate
white halo effects due to
small printer shifts.

RGB

Select overprinting for your blacks in the
attributes panel of Adobe InDesign or Illustrator

RGB

Small shifts can happen in printing,
leaving white halo effects around type.

RGB

Overprinting your blacks ensures no
white halo effects around your type.

Making Rules Visible

In contrast to a home or office printer, four-color process printing uses a series of tiny dots to create a field of color. Consider this process when determining the color and weight of your lines or rules.*

What do line weight and color have to do with each other?

Thin lines and rules can appear jagged or broken if printed with a very light color mix. Consider increasing line weight or color mix to improve legibility and crispness.

RGB

White rules on 30% cyan background,
enlarged to 400% of actual size

RGB

White rules on 100% cyan background,
enlarged to 400% of actual size

RGB

30% cyan rules on white background,
enlarged to 400% of actual size

RGB

100% cyan rules on white background,
enlarged to 400% of actual size

What kind of black should I use for my rules?

Use Flat Black for lines and rules to ensure crisp, precise edges. Refer to
the Choosing the Right Black section for a complete review of Flat Black
vs. Rich Black.

What is overprinting and
when should I use it?

Overprinting tells the printer
to print one ink on top of
another, rather than next to
it. Select overprinting for
Flat Black rules to eliminate
white halo effects due to
small printer shifts.

RGB

Select overprinting for your blacks in the
attributes panel of Adobe InDesign or Illustrator

RGB

Small shifts can happen in printing,
leaving white halo effects around rules.

RGB

Overprinting your blacks ensures no
white halo effects around your rules.

Selecting Vector Shape Settings

Just like type and rules, graphical shapes appear sharper when printed if they are created in a vector layout program such as Adobe Illustrator.

Do I need to worry about light color mixes?

Our eyes see smooth, continuous color for vector illustrations. Light color mixes should not be a concern unless your design uses very small, precise vector shapes.

What kind of black should I use?

Unless your design uses small, precise black vector shapes, consider using Rich Black in your illustration for a rich, vibrant print. Refer to the Choosing the Right Black section for a complete review of Flat Black vs. Rich Black.

Should I apply overprinting to my vector shapes?

Select overprinting only for Flat Black vector shapes. Otherwise, overprinting is not necessary. Refer to the Choosing the Right Black section for a review of overprinting.

RGB

Our eyes see smooth, continuous color when we view printed vector illustrations