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Publisher: Solid background instead of transparency in PDF?


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When I export a PDF from Publisher for print and then open it in Photoshop, the whitespace shows up as transparent, even though File > Document Setup > Transparent Background is UNchecked. 

I would prefer a "flat" export without any transparency at all.
Is there another way to do it than to put a box with a solid color in the background of the document?

 

pdf-export.jpg

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I can’t come up with a way of getting what you want as a default document export option – tried for web, for print, flatten, etc. – but I suspect it might not be possible because of how PDFs work (the default white area is just somewhere that isn’t printed). I could be missing something though.
However, you can add a white background to the master page(s) and that works for me.
It would be interesting to hear if other software has a non-transparent page background export option, and why.

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There's a parameter for background in PS, did you try setting this one to "white background"? (I'm not sure if it's a settings or only asked when opening a document, since I'm not at work and can't check it now).

Try enabling the options when opening a document to check "white background", since you general settings set it to no transparency.

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32 minutes ago, GarryP said:

@LostInTranslation I’m curious. Why does your print shop have a problem with transparencies? Are you using some special materials, or inks, or an unusual printing machine/process?

No special things, it's just how they are. Since most of my clients insist of using them, I have to live with it.
 

 

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I’m fairly sure there are some print shop experts in the forum so I wonder if any of them could give some possible reasons for why a print shop would have problems with printing PDFs that aren’t totally flattened and with a white background. It sounds strange to me but maybe there could be a good reason for it. I can print stuff like that on my very cheap consumer-level printer so I don’t understand why a professional print shop with professional-level machines can’t. I’m not saying it’s ‘wrong’, just curious as to why.

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52 minutes ago, GarryP said:

I’m fairly sure there are some print shop experts in the forum so I wonder if any of them could give some possible reasons for why a print shop would have problems with printing PDFs that aren’t totally flattened and with a white background.

Yes, that sound strange for me too. Our fabrication team ask for no transparency (or flattened one), but only for elements lacking opacity. Usually, our export profiles are set to PDF/X-1a:2003 to flatten those part, but it keep "white paper" void, and opening them in PS or an Affinity app will add transparency to those parts.
They created the profiles we use.

Perhaps this printcompany can give examples of profiles or settings to get this result.

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I’ve been having a little look at this area and it’s starting to get a bit over my head so I think I’ll have a little rest.
This whitepaper http://www.sarawat.com/data/HomePageAnimation/designer guide for handling transparency.pdf from Adobe seems to have lots of information but there’s too much of it for me to read just to get an answer for something I’m only a bit curious about.
One extra question I have in this area – and I don’t want to take the discussion too far off-track here – is: “Can the Affinity applications handle W+CMYK for printing with white inks?” I’ve never really thought about printing white until now.

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As has been mentioned, transparency does not equal no page background colorant. PDF transparency that is evidently unwanted by the OP equals objects with less than 100% opacity. The opening screen shots are correct without transparency--assuming the text has 100% opacity. Using a white color in a vector design or a design using 0,0,0,0 color in a bitmap simply means "paper color" to a print device.

Gary, yes, white ink is possible, one just needs to use a white spot color ink or an ink identified as a white spot color and print direct or via a pdf to a printer that has white ink (which uses a heavily pigmented white ink, like certain Okidata printers).

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2 hours ago, GarryP said:

but there’s too much of it for me to read just to get an answer for something I’m only a bit curious about.

The answer is page 3: Transparency: live or flattened.

Quote

Flattening transparency accurately reproduces—by using opaque objects—the visual effect of transparency on printed output or in exported file formats that don’t support live transparency.

 

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Ok guys, I might not have explained myself fully and also - as I just found out - I made a rather stupid error which lead to this confusion.

My printcompany needs "transparency flattened". I am pretty sure that you are right and the transparency behind the text is not a problem.

The image in the screenshot of my original post has a layer opacity of 50%.
When I exported it to test it, I did so with the "PDF (for print)" setting of Publisher, not thinking it would make a big difference.

This gave me a result similiar to the top image here. The layer transparency "carries over" and an object placed behind it will shine through. This is the way that would *not* be accepted by my printcompany.

But there is actually no problem.
Another requirement they have is PDF/X-3:2002 standard.
Publisher can't do this, but PDF/X-3:2003 works just as well.

Turns out if I use the correct settings (and not the quick "PDF for print") everything is alright.
In this case the transparency is just "simulated" and not really transparent, as Wosven rightfully mentioned.
As seen in the bottom half of the image.

So my bad, but at least I've learned something.

doggo2.jpg

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LostInTranslation: Good to hear that you’re sorted now. I’m glad you brought this up as I’ve learned a few things because of it.

MikeW: Thanks for explaining about using a white spot colour.

Wosven: I’ll have to look at page 3 more fully. I saw 34 pages and didn’t know where I would have to stop so I only quickly scanned through some of it.

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  • 1 year later...
On 2/16/2020 at 4:01 PM, GarryP said:

@LostInTranslation I’m curious. Why does your print shop have a problem with transparencies? Are you using some special materials, or inks, or an unusual printing machine/process?

Amazon KDP needs such pdfs.. no transparencies... pdf/X ... that's millions of books... I'm struggling myself at the moment. I tried all export variants there are in Affinity Publisher 1.9.0 and still can't meet Amazon's requirements. It's like I'm almost ready to switch over to MS Word to be able to produce a pdf 😅

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