Sunday, August 19, 2012

Common PDF export problems in iWork/Pages



A reader writes:

I've made several scientific posters in Pages '09 and now want to share them with colleagues for feedback via PDF files. I have found that no matter how I export them (print to PS then save as PDF, or direct export to PDF, or print to PDF), some images become really poor quality and some Pages features (like shadows and frames around images) are missing in the PS or PDF versions. I suspect the image quality may have to do with the fact that I'm working with images people sent me already imported in a powerpoint file (and for the final versions I would obtain the original images), but the issue of dropping some of the Pages specific formatting seems strange. Any ideas? - Wendi

Wendy, hi,

- First of all check the quality of the original images without any iWork/Pages features. Open them in Preview and check info. Good quality images should have DPI of 300 or above in real dimensions. A small image may have 300 DPI but when you enlarge it the count may drop.

- Assuming you use Acrobat for producing PDFs, check Acrobat settings for PDF, you may have to change them to a higher setting.

- Some of the picture frames in Graphic Inspector (the ones that look like old-fashioned photo album frames) just don't work at high resolution in large dimensions. But if you want to achieve a similar effect in high resolution, create your own frames as objects using the Draw tool or find a high resolution photo of a framed picture/painting and put your image inside the frame by superimposing your image and adjusting dimensions of your image to fit inside the frame.

- Shadows have given me a lot of headache too. When I use them I make sure that any text in the document is well removed away from the shadow, otherwise it comes out fuzzed on PDFs.

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