Jump to content
MartinHH

PDF Export - huge Files!

Recommended Posts

Hi,

I have a litte private project I'd like to realise with Affinity Publisher just to test it. 204 pages, 30x40cm. I have more than 200 Photos and a lot oft text, the text is set in three colums per page, and there are several photos embedded in the text. 

The export of this document lasts about one hour and the  file-size of the first PDF-export was about 6.5GB!

Now I have a problem. The print shop I want my book to create only accepts file sizes up to 1GB! 
In the first step I reduced the resolution of all the very large images. The re-export as a Pdf resulted in a reduction of the file size by 1.5GB, now "only" 5GB. The pictures are partly only 25% of the original size, but the document is still 5GB. So I have no chance to print the pdf at the print shop.

I checked an old pdf, which I created with InDesign. 216 pages, also 30x40cm, also with many pictures and text set in colums. In this project I left the pictures in the original resolution, I did NOT reduce the resolution.  This pdf has a file size of 500MB! That's only about 10% of the file size Affinity Publisher exports. In the export settings I found no way to drastically reduce the file size. 

I found out that a document about 200 pages and with only one photo per page is rather small and the export is fast! I looks like the combination of text in colums, embedded photos etc. makes the export slow and the document huge!

Is there a tip here? If there is no chance to reduce the export-filesize I have to go back to InDesign and I don't want to!

Thanks and best regards

Martin

 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

One additional information:

I imported the PDF of the old InDesign Document I talked about (see above). The PDF was about 500GB. I stored the document as afpub.document and exported it to a PDF file. And this PDF Files is now about 3.6GB!  

Original PDF: 500MB, New PDF: 3.6GB 

BR

Martin

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

One more additional information:

I did a test with a smaller document. 10 Pages, 2 pages with 4 Photos, 8 pages with only one large picture.

Output PDF size Affinity Publisher: 59MB

Same in InDesign. 

Output PDF size InDesign: 1MB

I know you can't compare that exactly because the PDF options aren't directly comparable, but the trend is clear, I think.

Cheers

Martin

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi,

First, you need to check your settings and have the same ones in APub and in ID.

When I test a 8 page with the same amount of photos as your test, APub file is 37M and ID's one is 18M. That's different, but not 60/1 like your PDF.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi, 

that's my problem! It's not so easy to compare both settings. ID has much more to change. Maybe two screenshots can help.

Thanks!

MartinAP-Settings.png.9021ca36182798180b1f7c0d819f0430.png

ID-Settings.png

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I would not export with 100% quality in this case. Even 75-90 % is almost unvisible but reduces the file size enormous up to 50% depending on the amount of photo details. Take a look at this impressive comparisons, see a bunch of different example photos, each in its different quality and file size: 
http://regex.info/blog/lightroom-goodies/jpeg-quality#surprise

Also you could try a newer PDF version than 1.4 – unless Whitewall demands this.

Finally – if you have access to Acrobat Pro – you can reduce the file size after export by deleting unnecessary data from the PDF. – For instance: if I print a jpg in 30x20 cm with the "Save as PDF" feature in Apple macOS than it results in a PDF with 23 MB. The cleaning process in Acrobat Pro reduces it down to 3,5 MB (without touching the image quality). Honestly I experienced such a huge difference only with this Apple PDF yet. A quick 1-page test with Affinitys export as Print PDF did not reduce the file size at all in this Acrobat cleaning.

It's not only the export settings which influences the file size of a PDF but also the code/library which is used. That is, you can not necessarily achieve exactly the same file size if you use the same settings with different export software. Like you reduce the file size of an .indd occasionally, also a PDF can include data which can be seen as unnecessary garbage.


macOS 10.12.6,  Macbook Pro 15" + Eizo 24"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@thomaso: thanks a lot! I tried to change the PDF version, but that makes a negative difference. With 1.4 file-size is about 5.1GB, with 1.8 it is about 9GB! 

I try to use a litte lower quality. 50% is a lot, but unfortunately not enough.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Good evening!

as @thomaso suggested I tried to use PDF version 1.8. And as I wrote in my last post the file-size increased from 5.1 to 9.33GB.

After this I exported my book with a JPEG-compression of 60% instead 100%. Now the file-size is about - 9.33GB. So this has no effect to the file-size!

Today I talked to the print-shop and they see no chance to produce books from PDFs larger than 1GB. 

If anybody has another idea, it would be highly appreciated! 

Thanks and have a nice evening!

Martin

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Why don't you use preset for print without transparency? (PDF/1a:2003 for example)

For example this one, which give for a 99 pages A4 with lot of images a PDF of 134M instead of 400-600M with other settings:
(Resampler "Nearest neighbour is perhaps not the best choice)

2018-11-26_232113.jpg.e5422a80536222ec94596e2a42a321c0.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@Wosven: thanks a lot! That might be a solution. In the first test run I was able to reduce the file size to 1.25GB. Let's see how I can save the last 250MB.

@v_kyr: thanks, but I hope that a software with this high demand should be able to adjust output formats granular in size. If I need additional programs for this,I think something is not round yet. Of course I'm inspired by InDesign which is what Serif does.

Thanks again for your input, guys!

Cheers

Martin

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This sounds like there are some bugs in export. Generally you should be able to output photos inside PDF around a few megabytes per image. Possibly there is something else taking space in the file.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
12 hours ago, Fixx said:

Possibly there is something else taking space in the file. 

Obviously it is: I did a test with 3 images in 40x30 cm.
The original fotos are RGB, saved in 100% quality, they have 4 MB + 8,3 MB + 9,9 MB = 22,2 MB.
 

With pdf 1.7 , RGB, 75% quality, I get a PDF with 7,7 MB
Same setting with CMYK creates  25 MB.

When I optimize the cmyk PDF in Acrobat (without image change) it results in 6,1 MB.
The optimized rgb PDF has 5,8 MB.

 

That means:

The CMYK pdf export appears not much effective in AFPub concerning file size. I expect CMYK to be roughly 35% larger than RGB, not 200%.
(Though it's more effective than printing as PDF via Apples macOS "Save as PDF"-Feature: that results in 123 MB for these 3 pages.)


@MartinHH, you seem to export as CMYK.

If yes, I recommend you an RGB export. Whitewall does offer and will be able to handle it. Since you named your pdf preset "Whitewall" I assume according to your enormous file sizes that you downloaded any of their special .icc profiles which might be CMYK. There is no need for this workflow; your PDF contains information about its used profile and will pass it to the printer software which will respect it for its print result.


macOS 10.12.6,  Macbook Pro 15" + Eizo 24"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think the pdf output should be optimised in general. Also the affinity designer and photo make larger filesizes than ID, AI and Quark for PDF/X-3 and X-4.

This is an aspect I can live with, but it is not nice and should be reworked in near future.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@thomaso: thanks a lot for your effort! I tried PDF/1a:2003  just for tests, only to see if the filesize decreased. And it does! With PDF 1.8 the file-size of my output-document is about 9.6GB. With PDF 1.4 it is about 5.1GB. And with PDF/1a:2003 it's about 1.25GB. I tried some more things, f.e. pictures within picture-frames or without, using only jpg files or also affinity-photo files etc. It all has no, or a negative effect for the file-size.

I know that WhiteWall accepts only sRGB documents. So I can't use PDF/1a:2003 with only CMYK. And I don't use their special .icc profiles until now. Unfortunately they see no chance to work with larger PDFs due to their automatic online process. I'm pretty upset about that cause there are not so many print-shops who are able to create books from pdf uploads.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It seems weird that the file size increases with higher (newer) PDF versions. I'd expect it to be vice-versa.
Especially PDF/X-1a, which would must save as CMYK only, should increase the file size, not decrease it. However, even the 1.25GB appear too high, that means an average of 5 MB per page. (I'd expect 2-3 MB) – So I still would like to know: What color space did you set your document? What color space do you export? (RGB or CMYK, what profiles?).

Are in your document Photos only, or other types of graphics, too? What got placed in your document regarding to ...
... Photo files: RGB or CMYK? – And with or without embedded profiles?
... Transparency: Yes or no? – If yes, for what type of object? (vector or rasterized/pixel)

I recommend to run tests with just a few, average pages only - instead of all 216. Saves time and space and nerves.

> "I'm pretty upset about that cause there are not so many print-shops who are able to create books from pdf uploads."
No reason to feel upset. This is a Beta and you are aware of it. / PDF upload enable for instance: blurb, saal, viaprinto

 


macOS 10.12.6,  Macbook Pro 15" + Eizo 24"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks a lot!

Color space of the document is set to sRGB. That's the color space WhiteWall is asking for.

All Photos are also in sRGB. And I use no Transparency.

Yes, I will prepare a smaller Test-Document. In this case I'd like to compare the sizes of the PDFs with different parameters in the main-document. But I will prepare a smaller one.

Yes, no problem about the beta. That's the reason why we are testing and comparing.

One word to the supplies: Blurb: No A3 landscape. Saal: max 100 pages in A3. Viaprinto: No A3.
 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi,

I'd like to warm-up this topic.
I've turned my big testing project into a more manageable project with only 20 pages, and I'd like to share the results with you.
 

 image.png.c581cf09951edd973fb3900121076f0a.png         image.png.867f7ef56d7badf7dc47cde82ba5a536.png   image.png.b6ec239d5bcb85a9319075464786e16f.png

File-Size of the exported PDF: 682MB.                                        File-Size of the exported PDF: 284MB.                               File-Size of the exported PDF: 313MB.

As I mentioned in one of my earlier postings there is no difference between "Allow JPG compression"  60% or 100%.

I exported 220 pages from an InDesign-Document with the same settings (hopefully - as far as comparable) with an output size of a bit more then 500MB!

I don't know if the settings of my export-dialog are wrong, cause I didn't change them from default. Is there any setting a "kill-setting"? Any ideas?

 

Thanks a lot!

Cheers

Martin

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 12/3/2018 at 8:24 PM, MartinHH said:

no difference between "Allow JPG compression"  60% or 100%.

Strange. You should be able to export a PDF with approximately the same file size as the sum of the placed file sizes (assuming they are jpgs)
To me the compr. setting definitely influences the resulting PDF file size:

I just tried with 2 photos in A4 (placed 470 dpi) –> downsample, bicubic, 300 dpi, PDF 1.7.  = setting from your first screenshot.
4 jpg compression settings:

100%  ... 39,5 MB
 80 %  ... 19,8 MB
 60 %  ...  7,7 MB
 20 %  ...  4,5 MB

Both photos are jpgs with 80% compr. quality / file sizes 9,9 + 8,3 MB = 18,2 MB.
Since they are not full sized in the layout (470 dpi > 300 dpi) even the 19,8 MB at 80% setting should be less.  Edit, see below...


As mentioned earlier, little visual difference is between 100 and 60% – compared to the big difference in file size.
In the attached pdf are 3 screenshots in 300 % zoom / jpg-quality  p1: 100% – p2: 60% – p3: 20%

screenshots jpg quality 100-60-20.pdf

[ Edit: I just noticed I had exported as document CMYK. - Now the 60% pdf in RGB (eci v2) has 3,6 MB only / towards 7,7 in cmyk. ]


macOS 10.12.6,  Macbook Pro 15" + Eizo 24"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 11/27/2018 at 11:48 AM, Fixx said:

This sounds like there are some bugs in export. (...)

@Martin, meanwhile I suspect like Fixx did before. – If you want send me 1 page (1 photo embedded) of your document, so we can compare our results.

As alternative or in addition, just to limit or exclude problems, you could create a totally new document and place there only 1 image, then export this and also the same page of the entire document. - Do the two PDFs have the same file size?


macOS 10.12.6,  Macbook Pro 15" + Eizo 24"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@thomaso: Thanks a lot!

I can't upload an example because a document with only 10 pages is over 400MB in size. Even a two-page document already has 45MB, and I'll explain why.
But I made further comparisons to Indesign, and now I suspect that I can't realize this kind of documents (more than 200 pages, more than 300 high-resolution images, output filesize maximum 1GB) with Affinity Publisher. The following statements and facts (Sorry, Affinity, if I constantly compare this with InDesign, but InDesign is the reference, and if I change, then I simply compare):

1) For years I have never, or only very rarely, taken care of the size of the images used in my work with InDesign. I have always left that to InDesign, and it has always worked very well. As an example my last photo book, 216 pages size A3, 300-400 pictures, high resolution. InDesign document: 150MB (linked images), output file size: 550MB. The used images have a size between 5 and 20MB per image.

2 In Affinity Publisher, it makes no difference in file size whether I embed or link images. The file size is always exactly the same! With InDesign I have even in a very large document (see above) a minimum file size, that is only the "skeleton", and so it should be.

3. It may be my fault that I have to drastically decrease image-size before processing them in Affinity Publisher. As I said before, this is something I never had to do with InDesign, and the results have been flawless so far. If I have to do that in the future, it would greatly affect my workflow. Furthermore I don't think that I could reduce the outpout file size so much that I would stay at an output file size of max 1GB with such a large photo book. 

I will now simply wait and see how the "final release" behaves. Then I will make dependent on it whether I can work with it for my requirements or not. 

Thank you for your support and the many tips and suggestions!

Best regards

Martin

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, MartinHH said:

now I suspect that I can't realize this kind of documents (...) with Affinity Publisher.

Martin, I am still shure it can be done in Affinity, since you was able to create the layout document already. The minimal output size of JPGs is neither related to a layout documents file size nor to the file size of its linked or embedded JPGs. In this matter there is no difference to Indesign.

But for now there apparently occure two main errors in a.) your export result and b.) your document, which should get avoided before a final judge:

a.) The lack of an impact of jpg compression rate on export:

On 12/3/2018 at 8:24 PM, MartinHH said:

there is no difference between "Allow JPG compression"  60% or 100%.

b.) The difference in document file size towards the sum of its placed files sizes.

6 hours ago, MartinHH said:

a document with only 10 pages is over 400MB in size. (...) The used images have a size between 5 and 20MB per image.

 

I do not know if b.) has an influence on a.), because I do not understand yet what happens to your .afpub in b.). But actually/indeed the exported size is independent of the document size. Think of the export as a digital version of a printed photocopy that can have little or much in common with the original. Only if the original is upscaled during export, the output may appear increased relative to the input (but with reduced quality).

c.) I suspect a third issue in the negative impact of the newer pdf version 1.7 towards 1.4 and 1.3 – but for the moment I'd ignore this for several reasons.

On 12/3/2018 at 8:24 PM, MartinHH said:

File-Size of the exported PDF: 682MB.        ....       File-Size of the exported PDF: 284MB.        ...       File-Size of the exported PDF: 313MB. 

 

So, again, I want to 'invite' you to upload an .afpub with one averaged page of your entire doc, might be in DropBox or any other (free) cloud. Or do yourself one more test as described in my last post. This may suite to discover details or solve issues.

Don't throw in the towel, since you have gone so far.

p.s.: did you do a "Save as..." with your .afpub yet? As in InDesign it appears to possibly clean up and get rid of data garbage.


macOS 10.12.6,  Macbook Pro 15" + Eizo 24"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, thomaso said:

So, again, I want to 'invite' you to upload an .afpub with one averaged page of your entire doc, might be in DropBox or any other (free) cloud. Or do yourself one more test as described in my last post. This may suite to discover details or solve issues.

Don't throw in the towel, since you have gone so far.

p.s.: did you do a "Save as..." with your .afpub yet? As in InDesign it appears to possibly clean up and get rid of data garbage.

Thanks a lot so far! I've send you a link to my dropbox. if we have new infos we can discuss it here.

Thanks for now! 
 

BR

Martin

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

[ EDIT :: this content is partially outdated / read the next post first ]

 

Martin, I got your dropboxed .afpub with its 2 pages, 5 images, embedded.

First test:
2 pages, 40 x 30 cm, downsampling from 301 dpi, RGB, 300 dpi, jpg quality 75%:

59.7 MB

Rediculous much. – There is definitely a bug in downsampling on export.
It is an extraordinarily vicious process which creates a lot data garbage with exporting high-resolution images.

Martin, I do understand if you decide to stop here. – Otherwise:

=====================
Since in your original .afpub the images have 861-1261 dpi I did upscale their dimensions on the pages to 200% to reduce the max dpi in the placed images because APub offers its downsampling as limited from 600 dpi in the export options. Just to avoid such useless 600 dpi limitation.


Downsample slider starts at 1dpi but is limited to 600 – indeed? :

123682112_Bildschirmfoto2018-12-11um20_08_45.jpg.e4afd8ac07bd5551a432a532e9162302.jpg

 

Resolution dpi (1):

1945121768_test2_recsourcemanager-1.thumb.jpg.4944cfda6db9726990a38da05fdefe5d.jpg

 

File sizes of .afpubs and its exports:
Test2 = name
_000_ = downsampling from
_00. = jpg quality

1079827141_test2_filesizes-1.jpg.bbca2d3e29ccced98e42b52ff0cfd11b.jpg

 

After resize images to 200% to avoid any hidden possibly downsample limit of 600 dpi bug:

test2_recsource manager-2.jpg

 

1228832708_test2_filesizes-2.jpg.0b8a678f99372b5beba9891a58568cad.jpg

Aha: the .afpub file size increases from 96 to 124 MB, simply by changing frame sizes, though APub saved all content anyway even before. – Buggy bug.

But more relevant in the screenshot above: the exported PDf now has 90 MB (towards 59,7 before) - whereas it contains data of about simply 1.8 MB, as the jpg-export from pdf confirms.


Finally, here's a visual comparison of files highlighted in the screenshot above:
Left: 1.8 MB exported jpg from PDF – Right: the original APub exported PDf with 90 MB:

63724730_test2_leftjpgfrompdf1.8MB-rightpdf90MB.thumb.jpg.70c6dfb0a34ae43726ba0d4b6e28c23d.jpg

 

@Martin, now I do know what I wanted to know. Hard stuff. Thank you! –The rest is up to Serif ...

 


macOS 10.12.6,  Macbook Pro 15" + Eizo 24"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@MartinHH, the buggy file size of output PDF might simply get solved with 1-click:
 

In your document setup change the color from 16 bit to 8 bit.

1616620408_test2docsetup8bit.jpg.062500639911b4938779fb2792107f22.jpg

In your .afpub with 5 images the switch of document color space takes ca. 3 seconds (beachball) to be finished.
In case it is related to the amount of images then you will have to wait quite a while in your entire document with 200 images.


–> the resulting pdf has 1.7 MB towards 59 MB with 16 bit document color space.

1968994997_test2filesizes816bit.jpg.a2728e975c7369e36ff362ddc534c164.jpg


In the export options you will see the change in the estimated size, too:

16 bit:  336946574_exportestimate16bit.jpg.17a3bab2081fa8f70205ab76c852c76d.jpg    ...  8 bit:  436151468_exportestimate8bit.jpg.5f2d3574e57ab0f90df3a947e510ae1e.jpg


The calculating time for size estimation might be long with your entire document, but it shows the impact of the color space switch before you export.

109931447_exportestimatecalculate.jpg.7bb9c0364365c9bacea75f6b57c225bb.jpg

 

I wonder if 16 bit is an useful option at all if you have set, like in your document, the document type to "print":

1627373256_test2typeprint.jpg.23593e96ade2564068763963361aee20.jpg

 

However, though you might be able now to export a PDF with reasonable size and quality, the huge pdf file size exported from a 16 bit document certainly is a bug:

• A change of compression quality should have an impact on the resulting PDF file size.
• A page in 40 x 30 cm, 300 dpi, should never result in a 59 MB pdf.

 


macOS 10.12.6,  Macbook Pro 15" + Eizo 24"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×

Important Information

These are the Terms of Use you will be asked to agree to if you join the forum. | Privacy Policy | Guidelines | We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.