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FAQs - Our print data guide with the most frequently asked questions!

When creating PDFs to upload for subsequent printing, please use recognised PDF generators, such as Acrobat Distiller. If you use a PDF generator that is included in your Design Suite, your data may be rejected. Always save them in high or print quality. If you use Acrobat Distiller, select PDF/X-la:2001 in the dropdown. When you create your PDFs, make sure that all fonts are embedded correctly.

Always preview PDFs before uploading them for printing. This will give you the most accurate representation of how it will look when printed, and errors that were not visible before may still be revealed by the output preview.

The guidelines for the file formats can also be found as a PDF here.

Lorem Ipsum is simply dummy text of the printing and typesetting industry. Lorem Ipsum has been the industry's standard dummy text ever since the 1500s, when an unknown printer took a galley of type and scrambled it to make a type specimen book.

You would like to spice up your flyers with a finishing but have no idea how to apply the solid colour for a finishing? You have a hard time with programs like InDesign and Illustrator?

Then we have just the thing for you!

We have put together a little guide for you. You should be able to get to grips with the problem. :)

Step 1: Create your desired product with layout, graphic and text elements.

Step 2: Next, create a new layer. To do this, go to "Layers" and click on "Create new layer". Then rename it (double-click on the layer):

Layer 1 > "Print

Layer 2 > "Refinement

Step 3: On this new layer ("Refinement") you now add all the elements you want to refine. The easiest way to do this is to copy the corresponding elements from the "Print" layer into the "Enhancement" layer and paste them at the "original position" (right click, then the option appears).

Step 4: Create a "New Colour Field" in the "Colour Fields" window.

Step 5: In the window "New colour field" (double click on new colour field) select the colour type "Solid", choose the colour mode "CMYK" and set the magenta colour channel to 100 %.

Give the colour field a name (e.g. "Gold foil"). The additional colour channel now appears in the "Colour fields" window.

Important: Please use only the following names for spot colours: Gold foil, silver foil, copper foil, relief varnish or UV varnish.

Any other name will not be recognised by the Scodix!

Step 6: Colour the elements on the new layer that are to be finished with this new colour channel and finally set the Attributes window to "Overprint area" or "Overprint contour". To do this, simply mark the corresponding elements and place a tick in the respective field.

Step 7: When exporting, make sure that the command "No colour conversion" is set in the "Output" section under "Colour conversion". To check this, open the "Print Colour Manager" where the new colour channel should be listed under "Print Colour".

And while you are at it, you can also make sure that no check mark is set for "Convert all spot colours to process colours".

Done! Now nothing should stand in the way of your refinements.

You would like to spice up your flyers with a finishing but have no idea how to apply the solid colour for a finishing and set it to overprint? Do you have a hard time with programs like InDesign and Illustrator?

Then we have just the thing for you!

We have put together a little guide for you here. You should be able to get to grips with the problem. :)

Step 1: Create all elements to be refined on a separate "Refinement" layer.

Step 2: Name the colour, depending on the finishing option, and create it as a solid colour (colour value: 100 % magenta).

Example: Gold foil

Step 3: If you want to finish your print products, you have to make sure that the "Overprint" option is selected for the corresponding elements.

We also recommend that you activate the overprint preview, then you can check whether the final result looks the way you wanted it to before you print the file.


1. activate overprint preview in the menu view (Ctrl+Alt+Shift+Y)

Select the desired element (in our case the colour field with the applied spot colour) that is to overprint all other elements and set the checkmark in the attributes window for "Overprint area". If necessary, it can also be called "Overprint contour".

You can access the attributes window as follows: "Window" > "Output" > "Attributes".


The procedure is the same as in InDesign. Only the control panels look a little different.

1. activate overprint preview in the view menu (Ctrl+Alt+Shift+Y)

Select the colour field "Spot colour" and check the box "Overprint area" in the attributes window.

Done! Now nothing stands in the way of your finishing.

Different return address? No problem.

A neutral shipment to a different delivery address directly to your end customer is possible within the delivery area. Below the <Settings> and <Billing address> you will find the option of "White label delivery". Activate this to appear as the sender on the delivery note and on the shipping label.

The billing address you entered will be used as the sender's address and shown on the shipping label.

You can find a template of the delivery note sent with the parcel here.

*Only applies if the billing address is in Germany.

Here you can find out everything you need to know when applying a finishing (gold, silver and bronze foil as well as UV and relief varnish): Data sheet_finishing_foil+varnish

How must elements be correctly prepared for printing?

Images: Try to give us the best possible quality. The standard for this is a resolution of 300 dpi (dots per inch). The lower the dpi value, the poorer the resolution of the printed products. Please always keep this in mind when scanning, editing or generally using images for your project.

Font: We recommend a minimum font size of 5pt. Please only use 100% black if the text is between 5pt and 7pt.

Please ensure that all fonts are embedded in the PDF or alternatively converted to paths. Non-embedded fonts are an absolute K.O. criterion for the production of your product.

You can find the corresponding guidelines for creating data as a PDF here.

How can unavoidable colour deviations be minimised during printing?

Tolerance range: Due to the tolerance range of the ink in connection with 4-colour printing, minimal deviations in the final print products are unavoidable.

Your job will be printed within the tolerance range and of course according to ISO standards; however, the final colour may still look slightly different from what you expected or may not be 100% like the original colour in your designs.

Sometimes there may also be slight colour variations within the same order, but these are always within the tolerance range.

Subsequent prints may again differ slightly from previous prints, but this is quite normal and of course always within the tolerance range.

Screen colours: When you view your projects on screen, you are always looking at colour combinations of red, green and blue. These cannot be reproduced exactly on paper. How you perceive the colours also depends very much on how your monitor is set up.

Please note that the colour or content of your PDF as it appears on screen may vary depending on the simulation profile you use to view it in Acrobat. Therefore, please make sure that you are not using a simulation profile for a web-based press.

Also, before uploading, make sure that all spot colours are converted to process colours.

Colour stripes: We recommend that you avoid large areas filled with colour consisting solely of cyan, yellow, magenta or black, as these are predestined to form colour stripes. Please try to use colour fills consisting of two or more of the mentioned colours for best printing results.

A summary of the colour deviation issue can also be found here.

Cellophaning is a print finishing process that is also known as film lamination and has proved particularly popular for advertising materials such as brochures, business cards and flyers. With cellophaning, the surfaces of the printed products are refined by coating them with a wafer-thin film.

Cellophaning or film lamination is also used whenever printed products need to be given a high-quality appearance. Cellophaning not only gives the surfaces a shine, but also a pleasant, exclusive feel.

At the same time, they are optimally protected against stains, scratches and moisture by the coating.

How is cellophaning carried out?

A transparent plastic film is usually used as the cellophaning material. It can be used for finishing all types and thicknesses of paper. The films for paper finishing are available in both glossy and matt versions. To apply the film, a laminating agent is required to fix the coating to the paper surface. Dispersion or solvent adhesives are used for this purpose.

The cellophaning of paper can be done in the form of wet or thermal lamination. In wet lamination, pressure and heat act on the adhesive. This causes the chemical solvents contained in it or the water of dispersion adhesives to bond permanently with the film and the structures of the papers that are to be coated. In thermal lamination, the adhesive is melted by the action of heat and only then are the laminating agent and film applied to the paper products under pressure.

Foil finishes also work without heat. Cold foil transfer, a more recent printing process, produces similar finishes to hot foil stamping. However, the process does not require heat or pressure. Accordingly, the printed material is not usually deformed in this process. Instead, a special adhesive is applied to the substrate according to the motif. A film is then transferred to the substrate and adheres to the adhesive-coated areas.

What are the advantages of cold foil transfer?

By combining different foils such as gold, silver or copper foil and inks, impressive new colour shades can be created. In addition, compared to hot foil stamping, the process convinces with high edge sharpness and the feasibility of very filigree elements. Since the technology does not require hot stamping dies or rollers, the process is also particularly fast, flexible and cost-effective.

The advantages of both processes: Cold foil transfer with varnishing

At printsmarter we have the option of combining cold foil transfer with varnishing. With our Scodix Ultra Pro™ we offer you very individual possibilities to enhance your print products both haptically and visually and to combine the advantages of both foil finishing processes. In this way, we can print high-quality finished books, flyers, posters or business cards at low cost.