"Blocks" around some letters in PDF

Discussion in 'Design and Graphics' started by Nermal, Feb 27, 2007.

  1. Nermal Moderator

    Nermal

    Staff Member

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    #1
    My first real foray into the Graphics forum, I'm new at this sort of stuff so bear with me :)

    Today at work I received a PDF newsletter to put on our website (I'm the web developer). However, Acrobat (both Reader and the full app) shows "blocks" around the lowercase L and capital I characters (see the attachment for details).

    I've opened it up in Preview and it all looks as it should. I showed it to a few of the graphic designers at work (who are all running Windows) and they said that they've never seen the problem before. One of them pulled the PDF into Illustrator, and it looked fine in there. He then exported out to PDF and we ended up back where we started. It's as if Acrobat is messing around with the formatting.

    One of the other designers tried printing it, and it looked normal (I didn't actually see the print so I'm taking her word for it).

    The newsletter was originally created using FreeHand MX and was PDFified with Distiller 7 on Mac.

    My question is not really "how do I fix this?" (it's a draft that came from an external design company, so I'll just get them to fix it for me :)) but "have you seen this problem before?" It has a bunch of us baffled!

    Any ideas?
    Thanks :)
     

    Attached Files:

  2. ATD macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2005
    #2
    It's just the screen view at certain sizes, some type or graphics can look wrong. If you zoom in it should look fine.


     
  3. apfhex macrumors 68030

    apfhex

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    #3
    I'm with ATD — Acrobat is probably just doing a poor job as displaying the text at a low zoom level. If you zoom in (200%, 400%, or more) does it look normal?

    I've also seen InDesign do really strange things at zooms less than 150% (like one of my recent projects where I was using Myriad Pro Semibold Italic... the point size looked way bigger for certain characters but zoom in or print and it was OK).
     
  4. Nermal thread starter Moderator

    Nermal

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    #4
    Hmm, I zoomed in while at work (on Windows) and it didn't help, but it appears to work with the Mac version! Interesting, and I'll need to confirm that tomorrow (when I can try the Windows version again).
     
  5. funwithstuff macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2003
    #5
    Another fix for the white box issue

    Seconded -- if the lines aren't there when you zoom in, they won't be there when you print it out.

    You can remove the lines by visiting Acrobat > Preferences, then Page Display, and disabling "Smooth Line Art". All the lines will look rougher, but the hairlines disappear. (They're effectively caused by rounding error.)
     
  6. heehee macrumors 68020

    heehee

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    #6
    :D

    I had this happened to me a week ago. I sent a pdf version to someone for "approval" and she insisted I didn't bold the "i"s and the "l"s. I wanted to say to her I left out those characters on purpose just to piss her off. :D
     
  7. eb6 macrumors regular

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    yo yo yo
    #7
    It happens all the time. I don't know why it happens but I know that it is common. I don't think there is really anything you can do about it. It's just the way acrobat shows it.
     
  8. Nermal thread starter Moderator

    Nermal

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    #8
    Something that I totally forgot to mention is that it also happens in this GIF map, which I believe also came from FreeHand.

    [​IMG]
     
  9. aricher macrumors 68020

    aricher

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    #9
    I can't tell you how many times I've had to assure a client that the "bolded letters i & l" wouldn't appear that way in print. Very frustrating indeed.
     
  10. funwithstuff macrumors newbie

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    #10
     
  11. Nermal thread starter Moderator

    Nermal

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    #11
    OK, zooming does work on Windows, but you need to zoom in a lot further than on Mac.

    Anyway... the design company has been notified so hopefully I'll have a "fixed" version of the newsletter soon :)
     
  12. smurfjammer macrumors 6502a

    smurfjammer

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    #12
    The reason why...

    It's caused by converting your fonts to paths/outlines then creating a pdf if you leave the fonts as is the problem won't appear (unless you are using crappy fonts that default to courier in the PDF)
    That should fix your problem... :)
     
  13. heehee macrumors 68020

    heehee

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    #13
    What about in photoshop? Should I not "flatten image" first?
     
  14. smurfjammer macrumors 6502a

    smurfjammer

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    #14
    Not worth it

    If you have a vector based file why take it into Photoshop? All your doing is increasing the file size and taking away the ability of being to zoom right in without it pixelating - in my opinon.
    When you save a a file out of Photoshop for web (jpg, gif) the file gets "flatten", from memory any file type that retains the layers will still have font data.
     
  15. smurfjammer macrumors 6502a

    smurfjammer

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    #15
    Exporting

    Are the the gif's being exported from FreeHand or Photoshop?
     
  16. Nermal thread starter Moderator

    Nermal

    Staff Member

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    #16
    Yeah, we decided that the problem was "embedded fonts" (which appears to be Adobe-speak for "convert the fonts to vectors"). Upon closer inspection, the thing is in Dax when it's supposed to be Arial! Of course, with Arial, you can expect people to have the font and therefore not need to embed it :)

    I don't know, I didn't produce them.
     

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