Photoshop: Need help with exporting files for a magazine brochure

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I'm exporting files for 2 magazine pages which are all filled in color (stars background image with a few texts on it) and been asked to export the following:

300 DPI. CMYK TIFFs
must be 100% of final size.
Transparencies must be
flattened.
Line screen is 150 l.p.i.
Allow for 10% press gain
when preparing Grayscale
materials.
Maximum ink density:
300 total.

Can someone help me with exporting these files? I barely have any experience working with bitmaps and did some research on it and still can't figure out what exactly they need. It's a very professional magazine and I don't want to ask them and look inexperienced.

Thanks
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Hussam Eissa

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Posted 4 days ago

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Max Johnson, Champion

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300 DPI. CMYK TIFFs
must be 100% of final size.
Transparencies must be
flattened.
Line screen is 150 l.p.i.
Allow for 10% press gain
when preparing Grayscale
materials.
Maximum ink density:
300 total.
  1. Save-As Tiff (optionally with LZW or ZIP compression... not JPEG compression)
  2. Image->Image Size...
    in dialog, set Resolution to 300, change the dropdown next to with and height to be inches or cm, change size to be whatever you need, and hit OK.
  3. Image->Mode->CMYK... ignore warnings.
  4. Edit->Convert to Profile...
    in Dialog select "Custom CMYK..." from the profile dropdown.
  5. Ignore warnings if you get them, set dot gain 10%, Total Ink Limit 300%
  6. Layer-> Flatten Image
  7. Save.
I don't know what Line Screen 150 is so you'll have to look that one up. Good luck!
(Edited)
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eartho, Champion

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A few things here, Max... 150 lines per inch refers to the print resolution and means that the artwork supplied needs to be 300dpi or higher. With cmyk conversion, you generally don't want to convert to cmyk and then convert again to another profile. The proper workflow is to first create your custom cmyk profile and then convert from rgb straight to that ink mixture. Also, your final image is highly dependent on how you choose to reach the 300 limit density. GCR, UCR, etc.

This really is one of those situation where you'd hope the printer would supply the profile for their press. Or if it's simply a general 4c for multiple ad runs, going with one of the Gracol profiles would be a better choice.
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Max Johnson, Champion

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Thanks for the clarification! My limited experience has been for print-on-demand products, not high end magazine publications.

I noticed on my screen that converting direct to the custom CMYK profile changed the color on my screen, but did not if I did a CMYK conversion before profile conversion... was that bad?

If you can get the ICC profile, I assume that would be loads better all around.
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Hussam Eissa

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Hi Max, Thanks for those tips. My client just sent me a more detailed version of their ad specs here: 

The Magazine prints PDF/X-1a files only.
Export setting: ADOBE ACROBAT 6 (1.5) or higher.
Quality control depends on properly created PDFs. DOWNLOAD:
All rasterized files must be 300 DPI.
CMYK TIFFs must be 100% of final size.
Transparencies must be flattened.
Line screen is 150 l.p.i.
Allow for 10% press gain when preparing Grayscale materials.
Maximum ink density: 300 total.

I'm not sure what exactly they need. My files are 2 pages with fully colored backgrounds and with not much text
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Max Johnson, Champion

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Getting further into shaky territory there, but after you've saved your files as tiff, then Save-As each as a PDF with the layers check box off and the ICC profile checked on... then when the dialog pops up, there should be a preset for PDF/X-1a and which acrobat version to save for...
Strange that they require PDF/X-1a AND Acrobat 6, since the export greys out the option to select higher than acrobat 4 in that preset mode...
You may want to change the compression in that window to "None" so it isn't lossy.
And in Output, maybe change color conversion to "No Conversion" since you already changed it to a custom profile?
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Hussam Eissa

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They actually just requested just regular 300 dpi CMYK TIFF files and made the adjustments to the colors from their end. Still, thank you so much for your help and for helping me understand more about exporting for print. I was able to discuss it with them with more confidence and without doubts.