Artwork

Artwork approval – Whilst every care is taken in the preparation of final artwork, it is essential that the artwork be checked thoroughly by you or someone within your organisation. Xpress CDs shall not be held responsible for any errors, issues or concerns not identified by the person providing final authorisation.

Templates

Below you will find the templates for our standard products. If you cant find the template you are looking for or you need a more specific template for your job please call or email and a member of our team will help you out. Artwork needs to be supplied to us to our specfications. You can view these by clicking here.

Clicking download will download the specified template.


  Duplication Replication
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DVD onbody pdf_icon
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CD / DVD onbody (SIlver Base) pdf_icon
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2 Page CD Booklet (Single Page Spread) pdf_icon
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2 Page DVD Booklet (Single Page Spread) pdf_icon
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4 Page CD Booklet (2 Page Spread)
(Also use for any stitched booklets; 8 page, 12 page, etc.)
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4 Page DVD Booklet (2 Page Spread)

(Also use for any stitched booklets; 8 page, 12 page, etc.)
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6 CD Page Booklet (Rollfold) pdf_icon
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8 CD Page Booklet (Rollfold) N/A pdf_icon
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Cardwallet pdf_icon
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Double Cardwallet, 1 pocket (Lancing Pack) pdf_icon
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Double Cardwallet, 2 pockets (Lancing Pack) pdf_icon
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4 Panel CD Digipak pdf_icon
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6 Panel CD Digipak + Tunnel Pocket (Right panel tray) pdf_icon
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CD Studpak pdf_icon
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Artwork Specifications

Basic Artwork Checklist.

  • CMYK colour mode.
  • Minimum 300 dpi.
  • To correct template dimensions.
  • 3mm bleed around all artwork.
  • Leave off center hole.
  • No text or logos within 3mm of any crop marks. (No text area)
  • All transparencies flattened.
  • Can be supplied as PDF, TIF or JPEG.
  • Maximum 320% and ink coverage.
  • Fonts Embedded or outlined.
  • Minimum font size of 6pt.
  • All barcodes need to be 100% black.

Dark artwork. Please bear in mind when setting up/designing your artwork that the print will be slightly darker than what you see on the screen which is illuminated. To avoid any loss of detail in dark areas of your artwork, we advise you to make those areas of the artwork lighter than you need. Read more

CMYK blue. Please bare in mind when setting up/designing your artwork that the print will be slightly darker than what you see on the screen which is illuminated. To avoid any loss of detail in dark areas of your artwork, we advise you to make those areas of the artwork lighter than you need. Read more


Templates / Spec Sheets

For your convenience, we have placed on our website a number of spec sheets and templates for you to overlay your artwork. Be aware that the templates are at 100% and should not be altered in size in anyway. If you open these PDFs up in an image editing software package such as Photoshop, keep the size at 100% and at 300dpi (see resolution below). On these, you will also notice some thick light blue guide lines. These are just to let you know where the edge limit and type area is. Your artwork is to be placed over the top of these.

The spec sheets, however, JUST GIVE YOU THE SIZES. DO NOT PUT YOUR ARTWORK ON THESE. Instead, take note of the sizes on them, and create your artwork from scratch. Be careful to notice the difference between the trim sizes and the bleed sizes (see below).


Crop Marks

Crop marks are the thin vertical and horizontal lines you see on the templates in the four corners. These are to show where the paper is cut once your paper part of the job has been printed. Basically, all paper parts are printed on a piece of paper much larger then the finished article. And then cut down to the correct size. This ensures that if your design has ‘bleed’ (see below), it will look correct when finished!

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<hr />
<h3>Bleed</h3>
<p>What’s bleed?!? Well, have you ever printed something at home and the colour or text never actually goes right to the edge of the paper? This is because your printer doesn’t print ‘edge to edge’. So, to get round this, we print something in the middle of the page and then cut it down! We know where to cut it because of the crop marks (see above). Hey presto, your finished piece now looks like it prints ‘off’ the edge! The colour or graphic that prints past the crop marks, the bit we’re throwing away, is the bleed. Look at diagram B below and you’ll see what we mean.</p>
<p>If you want your paper part to look like its printed straight to the edge of the page, you’ll have to include bleed, it’s the only way to do it. But how much bleed should you include? Ideally 3mm of extra colour or graphic past the crop mark should be enough. Yep, in theory, if the printer were to cut the artwork exactly down the printed line, you wouldn’t need to add any bleed. But, you know as well as I do that if you run more then one piece of paper through a printer, its more then likely to move ever so slightly. And when we’re printing lots, one after another, there can be a fair bit of movement between the sheets! So, by adding 3mm on all of the edges, ANY slight variation will not show once its cut down. It’s impossible to cut each one individually, so all sheets are stacked up and cut in one go with a big guillotine.</p>
<p><img class=Dark Artwork

Editing software -
Use colour managed editing software, such as Photoshop or the much cheaper (but still very good) Photoshop Elements. If you can’t find anything about colour management settings in your image editor, then there is a serious possibility it doesn’t manage colour correctly – this is not a good thing.

Calibrate your monitor -
Your room lighting level for working at a screen makes a difference as to how you perceive brightness and contrast levels. It affects colour a bit too, but that’s a bit beyond what we’re looking at here.

Ideally your monitor at it’s brightest (white), should be the brightest white you can see when looking towards the screen. i.e. no bright desk lamp next to the screen where you can see the bulb.

The key to the dark print problem is usually that people have their monitors set too bright. When the monitor is bright, the dark areas are brighter too, this gives the subjective effect of ‘opening up the shadows’. As with most things connected with vision, it’s not quite as simple as this, but it’ll do for the moment.

The usual approach is to recommend a particular value for the brightness (or luminance) of your monitor. This is even more important with modern LCD screens, since they are inherently much brighter than our old CRT monitors.

The luminance value depends on your ambient light levels to some extent, and some profiling solutions will suggest monitor settings for a screen brightness based on these ambient light levels.


Barcodes

Most people today have seen bar codes because they are printed on nearly every item we buy. These are either UPC or EAN linear bar codes. However, there are over 300 other different types of bar codes.

Most linear bar codes are nothing more than “license plates” that identify an item. The numbers and/or letters stored in the bar code are unique identifiers that, when read, can be used by a computer to look up additional information about the item. The price and description of the item is generally not stored in the bar code. The data is read from the bar code, sent to a computer, and the computer looks up the price and description of the item from the computer’s database.

We can add barcodes to your artwork for a fee, but you will first need to supply a barcode number. If you do not have a barcode number you can obtain one from GS1


Why so Blue? or not.

One of the most common problems I see are solid RGB colors like bright blue converted into CMYK and turning purple. The device doing the converting, whether it’s Photoshop, Illustrator or even Publisher, is trying to come up with a solution for a color that doesn’t exist so it comes up with something it thinks is close.

Choose colors for your logo or other design elements that fall easily within the CMYK color space. If you need to employ a designer, be sure to ask how much experience he or she has with designing for print compared to the web. Taking the time to educate yourself just a little bit about color will return your investment in peace of mind and great looking print.

Please, please, please setup and supply your artwork in CMYK to avoid any issues with mismatched colours in RGB to CMYK colour conversion.


Duplication Thermal Print process

One of the most common problems I see are solid RGB colors like bright blue converted into CMYK and turning purple. The device doing the converting, whether it’s Photoshop, Illustrator or even Publisher, is trying to come up with a solution for a color that doesn’t exist so it comes up with something it thinks is close.

Choose colors for your logo or other design elements that fall easily within the CMYK color space. If you need to employ a designer, be sure to ask how much experience he or she has with designing for print compared to the web. Taking the time to educate yourself just a little bit about color will return your investment in peace of mind and great looking print.

Please, please, please setup and supply your artwork in CMYK to avoid any issues with mismatched colours in RGB to CMYK colour conversion.

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