Reducing files sizes of Quark/PDF documents

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by Smileyguy, Aug 26, 2005.

  1. Smileyguy macrumors 6502

    Nov 29, 2004

    I'm creating newspaper pages in QuarkXPress, converting them to PDF and then e-mailing them off to be printed. The only trouble I'm having is that some pages that have large images of ads can, when converted to PDF, become too big for the network / e-mail account I'm working with to handle. (It is a broadband network and the e-mail account can handle attachments up to about 17mb in size but occasionally we get larger pages and run into trouble).

    One thing that I've found has helped a lot is to flatten images in Photoshop before importing them into Quark. Is there any other way I can reduce the final size of the PDF documents without compromising on the quality?

    Any help would be sincerely appreciated.

  2. Blue Velvet Moderator emeritus

    Jul 4, 2004
    You could try zipping or stuffing the file before transmission.

    Reducing PDF file sizes usually means compromising on image quality within the PDF.

    Quark's built-in PDF creation is notoriously flaky and produces overly large file-sizes. I suggest that you use Acrobat Distiller with QuarkXpress if you have it.

    Although slightly time-consuming, I have found the following instructions to be the best and most reliable way of preparing press-ready CMYK PDFs from Quark 6. Never failed me yet and after a few times of doing it, it becomes second nature.

    Download (1.3mb):

    Of course, if you have Acrobat Pro v6 or v7, you can experiment with the 'PDF Optimizer' which will enable you to resample most of the images within the PDF. Use with care to avoid noticeable JPG image artifacts.
  3. Lacero macrumors 604


    Jan 20, 2005
    They might have Tiff files. In that case, I would run JPEG compression on the images. If that is not feasible, the only other suggestion would be to set up an FTP server either on your end or on your printer's end. Macs running OSX can be set up to run as an FTP or even Web server.
  4. Smileyguy thread starter macrumors 6502

    Nov 29, 2004
    Thanks for the suggestions folks. The printer we dealt with last year was pretty damn unhelpful. Didn't want to go near FTP or Zip files. Changing printers is a top priority now.

    I'll have a look into the options suggested and come back shortly...
  5. Smileyguy thread starter macrumors 6502

    Nov 29, 2004
    A quicky question...

    We currently don't have a copy of Distiller, so I've been looking around the net to buy it, but the only thing I have found on Amazon and on the Adobe site is "Arobat Distiller Server", which costs about $5,0000. Is there a singular version?
  6. Blue Velvet Moderator emeritus

    Jul 4, 2004

    Acrobat Distiller comes with Acrobat Pro.

    Acrobat Pro is a must-have for any graphics studio, available as a stand-alone app and it is also included in Adobe's Creative Suite v2 Premium which also includes InDesign, Photoshop, Illustrator etc.
  7. MisterMe macrumors G4


    Jul 17, 2002
    Another thing that you might try is to open the PDF in Adobe Acrobat Standard or Pro. Save it to a new file. It will be cleaned up automatically. The size savings can be substantial.
  8. decksnap macrumors 68040


    Apr 11, 2003
    You're going to want to use distiller. Quarks's 'Jaws' or whatever it's called puts out some bloated PDFs. With distiller you will have much better control of your file size.

    Also, if you are saving your Photoshop Tiffs as layered, that might be causing some file bloat, but who knows. It can't hurt to save off flattened versions.

    Edit: can you not just mail them a disk? By the way, any printer worth anything should provide their clients with a way to submit files of that size. Those are not big files in the grand scheme of things.
  9. Smileyguy thread starter macrumors 6502

    Nov 29, 2004
    Would anyone care to make a guess as to have many MB's using Distiller might save? Just looking for some rough estimates....

    decksnap, mailing them isn't really an option as we need a quick turnaround. And you're right, printers should have ways to accept files of this size, and that's why we're changing printers.

    By the way, would an ISDN line be more capable of handling these file sizes? Might that be the best way to send them?
  10. Blue Velvet Moderator emeritus

    Jul 4, 2004
    40-70% Wild guess...

    Get Acrobat Pro. PDFing is a thankless task without it.
  11. Smileyguy thread starter macrumors 6502

    Nov 29, 2004
    Wow, that much? That's impressive. Must get it.
  12. Blue Velvet Moderator emeritus

    Jul 4, 2004
    Wild guess... but fact is, I'd have difficulty doing my job without Acrobat Pro (with Distiller). If you're serious about graphics, then you need this software.

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