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What is the best way to export an image without rasterizing text that has 3D effects and Shadowing?   I need to send a graphic created in Affinity Designer to a printing company that prints on vinyl using a latex printer capable of printing 1200 dpi or higher.  They need to be able to use some type of vector image and of course they prefer Ai but what can I use to prevent rasterizing?  It appears that I can only export to a highest setting of 400 dpi.

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Signguy,

 

It is unfortunate, but if you use the effects like 3D or Shadows, then your file is going to be rasterized (or at least part of it will be). The only way to avoid  the rasterizing is to not use those kinds of effects. It seems odd to me that they require a vector file and yet they specify a dpi.

 

Hokusai

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Signguy,

 

It is unfortunate, but if you use the effects like 3D or Shadows, then your file is going to be rasterized (or at least part of it will be). The only way to avoid  the rasterizing is to not use those kinds of effects. It seems odd to me that they require a vector file and yet they specify a dpi.

 

Hokusai

They do require a vector and they don't specify a dpi.  I am just trying to export an Affinity Designer vector image that uses 3D and shadow effects and AD doesn't export them as vectors so apparently the only option that I have is to export the objects as a rasterized images which then uses a dpi.  They prefer the file in Adobe Illustrator format but since I can't do that, I'm trying to keep my images as vectors. 

 

Seems a little counter intuitive that I can give a vector shape a 3D or Shadow effect but there is no way to export the image as a vector shape to share with a print shop.

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… and how do you think would it be possible to save a smooth(!) shadow as a vector element?

Did you ever try to convert Chicken McNuggets into a soft drink? :)

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Hi Signguy,

You can export at a higher setting than 400 dpi. Click on the input box and write the value you need.

Thanks MEB,  That is what I was looking for.  I had an epiphany this afternoon as I was walking the Dog and taking in some fresh air and I figured that the input box was probably editable even though it has a drop-down list.  Came back home and exported at 1200 dpi and sent it to the printers.  They said it imported just fine.  

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… and how do you think would it be possible to save a smooth(!) shadow as a vector element?

Did you ever try to convert Chicken McNuggets into a soft drink? :)

MH, how does Affinity save a smooth shadow as a vector element?  Apparently it's possible within Affinity when you do a "file/save" so I guess they have the formula for your Chicken McSoft Drink figured out.  ;)

I was just trying to figure out how to save it so that Ai can import it or how to save it at the highest dpi that a printer can print.  

 

It's nice that Affinity has the option to add effects to vector shapes but it's a little proprietary if it can't be used with other apps when it needs to be shared.

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Are they PRINTING it onto the vinyl or cutting the vinyl in the shape of it?

 

True vectors are just the shapes that you make, no gradients, no nothing just the shape (and the fill). Modern vector editors (like Illustrator and Photoshop) often add affects that can take that vector and apply effects that give them things like blurs, gradients, and all kinds of things like that, but those are all always being drawn on the fly by the program every time you load the file.

 

If you want those effects to work in anything that isn't an Affinity app, you need to export it at whatever resolution you need it at. Because those effects are raster, they're just being redrawn every time you make a change. :) (Hope that made sense?)

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Are they PRINTING it onto the vinyl or cutting the vinyl in the shape of it?

 

True vectors are just the shapes that you make, no gradients, no nothing just the shape (and the fill). Modern vector editors (like Illustrator and Photoshop) often add affects that can take that vector and apply effects that give them things like blurs, gradients, and all kinds of things like that, but those are all always being drawn on the fly by the program every time you load the file.

 

If you want those effects to work in anything that isn't an Affinity app, you need to export it at whatever resolution you need it at. Because those effects are raster, they're just being redrawn every time you make a change. :) (Hope that made sense?)

Thanks David for the info.  Yes, they are printing onto vinyl.  

 

So what you are saying is that all modern vector editors can share vector shapes (i.e. eps, svg, pdf) but the effects that you can add to them are not sharable between applications without first being rasterized, correct?  (There is NO STANDARD to vector effects they are all proprietary)

 

If you created a graphic on a 12" x 22" artboard and you want to send that graphic to a print shop to be printed on a 12 foot by 22 foot mural, you only have a few options.

 

1. Design the graphic in the same software as the print shop so that the image can be easily scaled without it being rasterized (This option would necessitate the need to purchase an Adobe CC subscription).  Almost ALL print shops use Windows computers because their printers software is ONLY available on Windows.  And since they use Windows, they use Adobe Illustrator and will probably never use a Mac or Affinity Designer unless a version is made for Windows. (And even if there was a Windows version, how many professional print shops would ditch the ever popular Adobe format?)

 

2. Scale the image to the desired output size and then save the image to their preferred file format (this option would rasterize all special effects).  If your image is going to be scaled and rasterized, why would the print shop even need the file in a vector format?  You may as well send them a png of the graphic.

 

3. Not use any effects at all when using Affinity Designer. (This is not likely to happen)

 

The issue that I have is that when I send a file to the print shop to be printed, I now have to have first hand knowledge of each of the printers that they use.  Some of the Eco-solvent printers on the market can print anywhere from 800 dpi up to 1440 dpi.  The Latex printers can print up to 1200 dpi (maybe more).  Without knowing the make and model of the printers, I would never know exactly what I should be setting my rasterization dpi setting to.  Why wouldn't I want to utilize the maximum dpi that the printer supports?  This is precisely why they want the graphic file in vector format in the first place.  They can scale it and print it at the highest dpi that their current printers support. 

 

So, the next time my print shop wants me to send them a vector of my image, what dpi setting should I choose to get the best quality? (Yes, I need to know how to convert Chicken McNuggets into a soft drink)  Even if I choose the industry standard of pdf which is supposed to be a file format used to "present and exchange documents reliably, independent of software, hardware or operation system", vector shapes can be saved and be scaled within a pdf file, but any effects that you give those shapes will always be rasterized and will not scale without being "pixelated".

 

Long winded I know but this thread certainly leaves more questions than answers.

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Hi Signguy,

Yes, that's correct. You have to create it using only vector objects (no layers effects, complex gradients and some specific blend modes) so it can be exported as PDF and scaled as needed. Or, If you want to use the features mentioned above you have to set the dpi to which those objects/effects etc will be rasterised. This depends as you already said on the requirements of the print shop/printer.

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Thanks for writing all that up Signguy. I learned a lot from your trail.

 

There is a lot of nuance that doesn't become important, or obvious to a general user, until a problem exposes the drama. There's always something to learn.

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