GWG Transparency White Paper

The Ghent Workgroup (GWG) has published a new white paper entitled Transparency Best Practices.

The basic principles of transparency effects in graphic and layout applications are described. Designers get valuable practical tips on how to use and define transparent objects in order to avoid potential problems during output.

The white paper can be download for free from

A quantum leap in Preflight!

The latest updates of the most important preflight tools (Enfocus PitStop and Callas pdfToolbox) feature new technologies which allow to substantially leverage the quality of preflight checks. We had to wait long time for such possibilities!

Until now preflight tools could only check for properties of single isolated PDF objects. The classical example is black text which is not overprinting. A corresponding check has also issued an error message if the black text was not placed on top of a color background but over the paper white. In this case it’s irrelevant if the text is overprinting or not! This created a lot of unjustified error message (false positives) which was irritating for the user. This has often led to ignore serious error messages. This is a big problem with the preflight profiles of the Ghent Workgroup and PDFX-ready since they feature many overprint checks.

In the past preflight also checked invisible objects which were masked or covered by other objects.

A restriction of the objects to check was only possible with the page geometry boxes (e.g. BleedBox, TrimBox). A restriction of the preflight to an arbitrary contour (e.g. cutline) was not possible.

Read more…A quantum leap in Preflight!

Script «Fix PitStop Menus»

Enfocus has added a new top-level menu with the long title PitStop Pro Dashboard in the recently released Enfocus PitStop Pro 2018. Most of the users will use this feature not often or never at all. Together with the menus PitStop Pro and Certified PDF Enfocus now uses almost half of the entire menu bar. Especially on smaller monitors (e.g. laptops) this is very cumbersome. (This also contradicts the recommendation of Adobe that third party plug-ins shall use the «Plug-Ins» menu.)

That’s why I have developed the JavaScript Fix PitStop Menus which removes the menus «PitStop Pro Dashboard» and «Certified PDF» from the main menu bar and moves them to the «PitStop Pro» menu.

Read more…Script «Fix PitStop Menus»

Changed Hotkey for Annotations
in Output Preview

Already in 2012 in Acrobat XI a new feature was introduced which allows to store information from Output Preview (color value of separations or result of object inspector) as an annotation in the PDF page. To get this the user had to perform a Shift+Click on the page while the Output Preview window was open.

The use of the Shift key as hotkey was unfortunate since the shift key is also used for performing multiple selections with the Acrobat tool Edit Object or the PitStop Inspector. This was no longer possible while the Output Preview was open. Instead of selecting multiple objects Acrobat created unwanted annotations.

Read more…Changed Hotkey for Annotations
in Output Preview

Recordings of GWG webinars

Recently the Ghent Workgroup (GWG) has conducted eight webinars. The recordings are available here:

Free Webinar on
Ghent PDF Output Suite 5.0

On January, 11th I have conducted a webinar for the Ghent Workgroup (GWG) on the Ghent PDF Output Suite 5.0 for which I am the project leader in my role as co-chair of the Process Control subcommittee of the Ghent Workgroup.

The webinar recording is available and you can also view or download the presentation.

Error in Adobe PDF Print Engine
caused by bad font data

Datalogics, distributor of Adobe software libraries for developers, has publisher a knowledge base article on a new error in version 3.0 of the Adobe PDF Print Engine (APPE) called NON-FATAL PDF Exception: Cannot extract the embedded font. This error message generated by the Adobe Common Renderer is caused by bad font data. The article describes settings which can prevent this error message (but adds the risk of wrong display of fonts).


Screening technology to avoid the orange peel

Martin Bailey, CTO of Global Graphics (Harlequin-RIPs), talks in his blog about tests to avoid the orange peel effekt for inkjet presses using special screening methodes.

When inkjet presses print on non-absorbent, poorly wettable media such as flexible plastics or metal, prints are characterized by a mottle effect that looks a bit like orange peel. This effect seems to be triggered by ink shrinkage during cure. This can be corrected with a halftone with specially designed characteristics.

In order to avoid these artifacts Global Graphics will soon introduce a new screen technology.

It’s interesting that the topic of screening becomes important again for the new printing technologies…

One year PDFX-ready Online Tools

In the morning of Octobre 26th, 2016 we have launched the PDFX-ready Online Tools. which I had developed for PDFX-ready. Right at the beginning we offered three tools:

There is a FREEWARE and PREMIUM versions for members of PDFX-ready.

The experience we made in the past year is pretty good. The Enfocus Switch server with the applications Callas pdfToolbox and ColorLogic ProfileTagger is running very stable. But of course there were a few problems.

Read more…One year PDFX-ready Online Tools

Quality loss after color conversion
in Acrobat

In preparation of my new seminar PDF Color Management I have tested the image compression before and after color conversion in the most popular PDF tools.

In highend PDFs destinated for quality printing the images are usually compressed using JPEG maximum quality. Before color conversion the images must be decompressed and afterwards compressed again. Acrobat always uses JPEG medium quality for this recompression. The consequence is that there is an (unexpected) loss of quality of the color converted images (see table).

Read more…Quality loss after color conversion
in Acrobat