Preflight Checklist for Designers and Prepress Operators

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Here is a great preflight checklist for graphic designers and prepress operators. It includes reasons why one should use dedicated preflight tools for preflighting during prepress, such as Markzware‘s FlightCheck preflight solution. A blog post titled, “preflight: quality check your files” explains in part about this vital process for prepress:

Quick Quality Checklist by a dedicated Preflight Manager
3. Run a preflight software like FlightCheck
Goal: For me, FlightCheck is the fastest way to get a snap-shop of the project as a whole, allowing you to flag potential problems immediately.
Once files are downloaded and you have made some notes from the printouts for follow up, load the fonts and run the files through FlightCheck.
It will flag:
a) RGB images which should be CMYK
b) low resolution images
c) missing fonts
d) Pantone colours in use
e) missing images

4. Now look at the files
Goal: You have flagged issues from the printouts and FlightCheck. Now it’s time to open and have a look at the files themselves.
a) are they built to the correct size?
b) what file format are they (Illustrator, Quark, InDesign, PDF) and is this appropriate to the job?
c) are they the right scale?
d) is there enough color bleed (print bleed) and are all graphics within the safety area?
e) are folds, die-lines and glue flaps created properly?
f) check Ink densities (see my Ink Density post)

Total time for check up to this point: 15-30 mins (perhaps up to an hour for a larger project) Source

David Williams is from Toronto, Canada. He has over 20 years of experience in print production, prepress, creative, studio management, print purchasing and client liaison. He currently works for a large format printing firm in Mississauga.

Preflight Checklist for Designers and Prepress Operators

Title: Preflight Checklist for Designers and Prepress Operators
Published on: March 2, 2009
David Dilling

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