File Submission Guidelines

Preferred file formats

  • InDesign, QuarkXPress, Illustrator, Photoshop, print-ready PDFs. If you intend to supply a file format not listed, please discuss it with us in advance of submitting your project.
  • Build as individual pages to the final trim size of your project.
  • Multi-page documents should be built on master pages to keep common elements consistent.
  • Extend bleeds 1/8" beyond trim size (outside of document page size).
  • Hold in type and any critical elements at least 1/8" from trim.
  • Folders, trifolds, etc. should be built on a single document page, one page each for front and back. Set up panels to correct sizes with fold marks. Please contact MGTL if you have any questions regarding the correct folding layout.
  • 300 ppi effective resolution.
  • CMYK (not RGB) for four-color process. Undesirable color shifts may occur if the RGB to CMYK conversion is not done properly. If you prefer to have MGTL do the color conversions please contact us for an estimate.
  • TIFF format preferred.
  • JPEG images are acceptable if saved using the "Maximum" quality setting in Photoshop.
  • EPS files should be saved with Mac preview, Binary encoding, and no compression.
  • PSD files are acceptable.
  • Line art images (bitmap) should be at least 600 ppi.
  • Total ink coverage in darkest area of a four-color image should not exceed 320%.
Transparency effects
  • Keep all objects that are not part of the effect or elements that should not flatten (such as type) on layers above the transparency.
  • Use the flattener preview to see which type or objects are affected by flattening.
File naming
  • Use numbers and letters only; no asterisks, bullets, slashes, etc.
  • Keep file names short; a 32-characters maximum is preferred.
  • Always use version numbers so it is perfectly clear that the most current file is being used.
  • Don't use "final" to describe a file; number the versions instead.
  • Do a "collect for output" and include all fonts (printer and screen fonts) with your job.
  • Avoid small and/or thin typefaces reversing out of four-color process.
  • Avoid small and/or thin typefaces created in four-color process.
  • Note that your fonts are only used for that specific project and are archived on our system with the job files in case they are required for a future reprint.
Digital media and file transfers
  • We prefer either CD-ROM or DVD disks.
  • To upload a file, use the "Send a File" option on this web site.
Reference proofs
  • Supply current laser proofs with your disk. Reduced laser proofs are o.k., but please note the percentage of reduction.
  • When submitting native files via electronic file transfer, include a PDF (low-res o.k.) for reference.
  • Proof content should always match the supplied electronic files.
Print-ready PDF files
  • Save print-ready PDFs in PDF/X-1a format.
  • If possible, always include the native files and fonts used to make the print-ready PDF in case last minute revises are necessary.
  • Save (export) PDF files with crop marks and bleed.