RGB question

Discussion in 'Design and Graphics' started by jtt, May 1, 2006.

  1. jtt macrumors regular

    Apr 10, 2005
    The head designer at an agency I was at today was telling her employees that it is okay to send .pdf files to the printer with rbg images because the prepress guys have more control over the them. Is there any truth to this? It sounds absurd. They send .jpegs also. Isn't that a no no? That's just more work for the printer right?
  2. decksnap macrumors 68040


    Apr 11, 2003
    That doesn't sound right to me. Maybe a specific printer that does it their own way?
  3. ATD macrumors 6502a

    Sep 25, 2005
    Most of the time yes, but not always. Some of my clients like just RGB and they leave it up to the printer to make the conversions. But that's not embedded into a pdf and they are not jpegs. Keep in mimd that these clients will pay for an 8 color run if the 4 color conversion is not rich enough for them. There is a bit of tweaking that can be done at the conversion level, some prepress guys can do it better than the standard conversion.
  4. daxx macrumors newbie

    May 1, 2006
    I agree with ATD. I also happen to know that when prepress people have to work on your files, they charge you for it and lots of times they dont tell you that until they bill you. Obviously a colour conversion has to happen because there's no such thing as an RGB printer... and yes its true they may have tools controlling pdfs that the agency doesn't. As far as I'm concerned, leaving files in RGB or sending jpgs as final art is just sloppy... but that's me! :)
  5. rick6502 macrumors member

    Apr 11, 2006
    The big problem with RGB...

    This is speaking from the standpoint of a prepress department for a printer. Sometimes RGB is okay, sometimes not. Most modern equipment will convert the RGB to CMYK at the output and things look fine. The big problem is type. When small black type is in a JPEG, TIFF, whatever, the conversion to CYMK results in process color type. Thus, unless it's printed on a four color press the type looks like crap. Now, if it's type in Illustrator, InDesign, Quark etc, overlaying a RGB image, then the software will result in black type over a process color image and all is cool. You would be surprised how many people design an entire poster in PhotoShop, type and all, and they can't see why the 6 point type at the bottom is fuzzy.
  6. jtt thread starter macrumors regular

    Apr 10, 2005
    Wouldn't you want the file "ready to go"?

    Thanks everyone
  7. rick6502 macrumors member

    Apr 11, 2006

    Obviously, I'd like nothing better than to have to just open the file and print. It's just that that rarely happens. In addition to having to check margins, overprints, missing items during printing, shifting fonts during printing, extra colors, missing colors, improper column spacing, screened type, knocked out type, bad overprints, & lo-res images. We often have to impose the document into a multi-up configuration, change the step, or change the orientation. Then we have to check many of the things on the first list over again. We also print almost everything from InDesign, Publisher, Quark, PageMaker or Acrobat.
    If everything was printing 4 color on a multi-million dollar press and damn the costs and garbage-in-garbage-out then these things wouldn't have to happen. We are a big shop in a small town, which means we are probably a small shop in a big town, and we print everything on 2 color small format presses. With one guy doing all of the bindery.
    So if money and time are no object, your file can probably be used as is. Otherwise, we're going to have to do something to it.
  8. HiRez macrumors 603


    Jan 6, 2004
    Western US
    I always convert all images to CMYK before sending to the printer. I want to have the control, not them. Unless you really know and trust the people to be doing things with your content, I would not give them an opportunity, keep as much control for yourself as you can.
  9. fatty423 macrumors newbie

    May 4, 2006
  10. zarathustra macrumors 6502a


    Jul 16, 2002
    Philadelphia, PA
    RGB or CMYK

    There is one instance when it's preferred to send RGB files : on large scale inkjet printers that print in RGB.

    I have had posters, duratrans' and various banners produced (over 6 feet tall) on these bad boys and when I first sent CMYK files (as per norm), the prints came out washed out even after the service bureau corrected them. Next time I worked in RGB only with their color profiles, and the colors were just great.

    So, talk to the vendor and ask for specific requirements, don't listen to sales guys, project managers or people who are not involved in the actual production of the piece.
  11. YS2003 macrumors 68020


    Dec 24, 2004
    Finally I have arrived.....
    I think that is a good policy to follow. RGB has wider gamut spectrum compared to CMYK. So, by using RGB while designing on your computer screen, you can see the color you choose more accurately.

    Ever time you convert your RGB to CMYK and from CMYK and RGB, the computer will make some adjustments (i.e.. change the color a little bit). So, it is recommended color conversion should be one way only, such as RGB to CMYK. Because if you decided to re-convert back to RGB from CMYK, you will degrade the color quality. Since RGB has wider gamet than CMYK, you should be able to do a conversion at the minimal degradation.

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