Export to PDF from Quark 6.1 & 6.5

Your printer may support native application files however most like to receive PDF versions of files.  If you are using QuarkXPress 6.1 or 6.5, the following tutorial will help you create a print ready PDF file.

Exporting fonts from Quark

Select Usage under Utilities then select fonts.

  • If fonts are missing from your document, a negative will be displayed before the font (i.e.{-3, Palatino <> }).
  • If fonts are missing they will have to be loaded into your system using a font utility program or into the fonts folder of your Operating System.
Exporting Graphics from Quark 6.5

Make sure the status of all the graphics used say “OK”.  If graphics are Missing, you will have to Update them by locating them in your computer.

export as PDF from Quark


Exporting PDFs from QuarkXPress

Select Export under the File menu then Choose: “Layout as PDF

Export as PDF from Quark

  • Save As: (Name file)
  • Pages: “ALL” (or enter page range)
  • Select “Options…”
Layout Info in QuarkXPress

Select Layout Info
Leave Blank (or fill out any metadata that you would like to be saved into the PDF file for identification.)  *Note that this metadata is not the same as metadata used in eBook conversions.

Managing hyperlinks in QuarkXPress
Select Hyperlinks
If Include Hyperlinks is checked, uncheck it.  Note that having this checked may cause issues during printing.  For instance anchor text can come out blue and underlined in a printed book.  As a best practice, you should use a separate PDF file for eBook conversion submission where the presence of hyperlinks is required.

Selecting job options in QuarkXPress

Select Job Options
The following settings are generally optimal however you should double check with your printer to ensure they need PDFs configured in this way.  Different printers will have different workflows.

Under Font Options:

  • Check “Embed all fonts”
  • Uncheck “Subset fonts below”

Under Color Images:

  • Compression: “Manual ZIP”
  • Resolution: “Keep resolution”

Under Grayscale Images:

  • Compression: “Manual ZIP”
  • Resolution: “Keep resolution”

Under Monochrome Images:

  • Compression: “CCITT Group 4”
  • Resolution: “Keep resolution”

Lastly, Check “Compress Text and Line Art” and uncheck “ASCII Format”

Output settings for QuarkXPress

Select Output 

  • Type: “Composite”
  • Print Colors: “CMYK”
  • Check “Produce Blank Pages” Note that leaving this unchecked could result in no blank pages being included at the front or back of your title during printing. sometimes prepress departments notice this and ask the customer but sometimes they don’t.
  • Uncheck “Use OPI” Note that this setting is obsolete for many printers.
  • Registration: “Centered”
  • Offset: “12 pt”
  • Type: “Symmetric”
  • Amount: “0.125″

OPI settings in QuarkXPressOn the last tab for OPI settings, make sure OPI Active is unchecked then click OK.

Export as PDF from QuarkOnce you have all settings configured the way you need them, you can click save and make the PDF document.

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Creating Print Quality PDF Documents with QuarkXPress 8.0

Many printers will take native files but virtually all of them prefer PDF versions (Edwards Brothers Malloy included).  Its easy enough to create a basic PDF with pre-defined output settings using any desktop publishing program.  You simply save or export as PDF. Most of the time though, there are some additional steps you can take to make sure you are creating PDFs that are print ready.

*Note that these steps apply to using QuarkXpress in a Macintosh Environment.

With your document open, click the “Edit” menu item at the top of the screen  and select “Output Styles” from the dropdown.

Quark Drop Down Menu

In the Output Styles Dialogue, you may notice a list of predefined styles for PDF documents.  Quark will come with styles pre-loaded into it.  Often these are not optimal for a printer to work with.  If you are sure that one of these styles has the characteristics your printer requires, use that one.  Otherwise, click the “New” button and select PDF .

PDF Styles in Quark

A new dialogue will open allowing you to configure settings for a new PDF style .

Best Practice Tip:  If you work with multiple printers and each one requires PDFs in a slightly different format, you can name the style of PDF after your print vendor so that the next time you export, its as easy as clicking the name of the printer you are sending it to.


page blanks

The first tab open should be page options.  If ‘Include Blank Pages’ is not checked by default make sure that you check it.  This can potentially be very important down the line.  If you were to leave the box unchecked, send your file to your printer (and they don’t ask if you meant to leave the box unchecked), your book could go to press without blank pages at the beginning and end that you may have required.  Checking the blank pages check box ensures that those are counted in the overall pages for the book when creating a PDF.


The next tab is metadata.  Note that this most likely is not the same metadata that a printer will use if providing eBook conversion services or for any other purposes.  At most, a printer may use this data embedded in the PDF in order to organize files.  Typically it may be ok to leave these fields blank when creating your PDF style however since there are so few of them, you might as well fill them out.

Including Hyperlinks

Next are the hyperlink options.  Naturally if you are only having a print book done, you should leave this unchecked.

Checking it could result in having color issues or having actual underlined blue font in your book.  If you are in fact having an eBook done, including hyperlinks in your PDF depends on how many and the complexity of the links in your document.

For instance if you have a few absolute URLs (ones that actually look like a web address), you may not need to configure this setting to include links.  If however you have anchor text (regular words with a link embedded), then you will want to include those with your file or risk having to go back later to give that information during the eBook conversion process.

Best Practice Tip:  If you know you will be having an eBook conversion done, send in a separate PDF that is specifically designed to be converted to an eBook.  This way you avoid features designed for eBooks interfering with your print book and vis versa.


Some printers require PDFs to be compressed before being sent to them however this practice is not so essential any more.  In the past this was done to save space on servers.

ZIP compression is usually the safest because it is a loss-less compression meaning no data is lost when the file is compressed.  Unless you are having space issues or your printer requests a compressed file, compression may not be necessary.

Color Options

Color is a tough thing to talk about in generalities.  Be careful in this step because if you pick one setting (CMYK for example), all of your colors will be printed in that setting even if not all colors should be printed like that.

Again, your printer may catch things like this but it could potentially be missed.  For instance if you choose CMYK as your setting for this style and you have spot colors, all colors will be printed as CMYK.

It is best to ask the printer you are working with what this setting should be and to discuss with them the varying color formats in your document before your job goes to press.



This should typically be checked.  Missing fonts was one of the most common reasons that files were stopped in the prepress process in the past.  Having this box checked means the fonts will be included in the file you send to your printer.  Typically this is checked by default.

Registration Marks

In general you should ask your printer what settings they require here.  Some printers require this setting to be left on so they can see that the crop marks don’t interfere with the bleed areas of a page.

Bleed Settings

Bleed settings should typically always be symmetric (same on all sides) and at least .25 inches.

Transparency Settings

At one point, the technology that printers used didn’t know how to deal with transparencies (see-through images in PDF).  Typically just keeping this box checked is all that you need to do.


You can check this if you think that someone might need to go in an edit the PDF in Photoshop.  Otherwise you can leave it unchecked.

OPI settings

In the past this setting was used so that a server would grab a higher resolution image for printing and low resolution images could still be used in design files.  Technology has advanced to the point where this may no longer be necessary.

Best Practice Tip:  You should always use higher resolution images in your files because if they are lower resolution when printed, they will come out blurry.  An image can look fine at a lower resolution on a computer screen but come out fuzzy when it is printed.

JDF options

Lastly are JDF options.  This is more common in digital workflows.  The JDF file is kind of like your work order and it follows the PDF file around.  In it are instructions for the manufacturing of the job.  Some printers use this and some don’t.

It is best to check with the vendor you are working with for precise settings.  Every printer has a slightly different workflow.

Many of these settings are elements that someone in a pre-press department would have to fix before a file went to press if they were not configured properly or at all in the first place.

Getting them right up front or before you send your files to your printer means your job goes much smoother, you avoid stressful holdups and potentially added cost.


We hope this tutorial has been helpful.  Have you run into any headaches before when submitting files?

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5 Common Printing Headaches to Avoid

An Image to symbolize errors made when people get a book printedFor seasoned publishers and beginners, there are few things worse than making errors that easily could have been avoided.  The smallest oversight can result in re-doing a lot of work.  We’d like to share some common manufacturing missteps and how to avoid them when you get a book printed.

Using Low Resolution Photos in Text or Cover

A common mistake that can be caught during the prepress phase of book manufacturing is the resolution of images.  The resolution used for images printed on paper is typically much higher than that used on a computer screen.  An image may look fine on a computer screen but when it is transferred onto paper with a low dpi, it comes out blurry.  Many printers recommend at least 200 dpi and up.  Try to only use high resolution images while making your print ready files.

Too Many Changes before Getting a Book Printed

Shop Floor before Getting a Book PrintedMaking too many corrections at the proofing stage of the process can add to the overall cost of getting books printed.  Many can be avoided by proofing the book more thoroughly before it gets to the printer.

The further into the process you are, the more expensive corrections are to make.  A good way to avoid this is to have another set of eyes when proofing your books.


Ordering too many books

It’s tempting to increase the amount of an order to drive down the cost per unit charge of a book.  In many cases, the more you order the cheaper the per book cost is.  You have to take into account the whole story though.  For example how much would it cost you to scrap books that sat unsold?

How much does it cost to manage that inventory if it doesn’t get moved quickly?  We’ve done case studies on the topic and often it is a better idea in the long run to print fewer books at a higher cost per unit price rather than a lot of books at a lower cost per unit price and risk not selling them.


Inadequate Bleed

Get A Book PrintedBleed (or artwork that extends beyond the document boundaries) is an important element.  Printers cannot print ink all the way to the edge of a page so we print on a page that is larger than it needs to be.

After printing and binding is complete, the book is trimmed and if the ink extends far enough, it will get trimmed properly (i.e. no white edge where graphics or images should be).

This makes it look as if ink was applied all the way to the edge of the page.  If the bleed is not far enough into the trim area (typically around ¼ inch or about 5mm), a white edge can appear.



Cover Design Template for Getting a Book PrintedAsk for a Cover Design Template

This can save you some time up front.  There are typically specific measurements that printers follow for soft cover, printed case and foil stamped books.

Sometimes publishers will just try to use their best judgment for these measurements but they often need to be tweaked.  Ask whoever you are working with to provide a cover template so you can get your design right the first time.

The book printing process can be lengthy and you should try to squeeze time out wherever you can.  It isn’t always possible to see mistakes coming but at least you can avoid some of the common ones.

What problems have you faced during the book manufacturing process?  How did you resolve them and what did you learn?  Join the conversation by dropping us a line or commenting below.    

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The PPN Distinguished Service Award Goes to One of Our Reps!

Mike JohnsonWe are happy to announce that Mike Johnson, one of our sales representatives , has been awarded the prestigious 2013 Publishing Professionals Network Distinguished Service Award at the PPN Scholarship Event held at Pearson Learning in San Francisco on June 5th. The award has been presented each year since 1983 to the person who has exemplified the highest standards of the book building profession and for distinguished personal commitment and service to the West Coast publishing community and to Publishing Professionals Network. The annual selection is made by a committee of former DSA recipients and PPN officers. Mike has been very active with the organization (formerly Bookbuilders West) since 2007 as a board member, Crash Course chair, and has served on the Book Show and Green committees.

The Distinguished Service Award signifies Mike’s involvement in the industry and dedication to the advancement of book publishing in the Bay Area.  “We’re thrilled for Mike and pleased that his peers recognize the passion, commitment and integrity that Mike brings to both his job and our industry, day in and day out,” said Joe Upton, VP of Sales and Marketing at Edwards Brothers Malloy.  When asked how he felt about being selected to receive the award, Mike says “I’m honored, flattered and humbled.  It’s a great honor.”

Mike Johnson

Mike Johnson receiving the Publishing Professionals Network Distinguished Service Award from the previous recipient Andrea Helmbolt at Wednesdays presentation at the PPN Scholarship Event at Pearson Learning in San Francisco.

We are extremely proud of Mike for his dedication to the book industry.  Congrats Mike!

BookBuilders West  (BBW) was started in 1969.  In 2012, the name was changed to the Publishing Professionals Network (PPN).  They are a non-profit association dedicated to providing educational resources for individuals involved in book and book-related publishing.

The PPN Scholarship Event is attended by book industry professionals representing all facets of the business: editors, production people, vendors, printers, and typesetters among others.  In addition to The Distinguished Service Award, the event also highlights scholarships that are awarded to students in the graphic arts industry who have submitted projects.  Submissions are chosen by a panel of local experts and given money toward furthering their education in book related fields.


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