BY RALPH EBERHARD
Everyday the catalogue of QuarkXPress 7 XTensions modules is becoming larger and larger. Recently, ID2Q from Markzware was added to the pages of this virtual layout catalog.
For many users, this is a long-awaited arrival. This XTensions module will convert InDesign documents into QuarkXPress projects.
For many users this is a long-awaited arrival. This XTensions module will convert InDesign documents into QuarkXPress projects. The original ID2Q was compatible with QuarkXPress 4.1X and 5.X and until now, users with higher versions of QuarkXPress were unable to use this valuable XTensions module. Markzware has also considered the market and both ID2Q6 and ID2Q7 are included in the same package (not currently available for Universal Binary). If you use both 6.X and 7.X of QuarkXPress, you are in luck. Although any conversion software will have its bugs, ID2Q is a valuable timesaving addition to your XTensions module arsenal.
The first document I tested was a very graphics-heavy portfolio layout that I converted to QuarkXPress 6.5 using ID2Q6. Unfortunately, this didn’t go as smoothly as I would have liked. However, it was not due to ID2Q6, rather the roadblocks were due to the limitations of converting to QuarkXPress 6.5.
In my original document, I had a wide array of files: JPGs, TIFFs, PDFs, Illustrator vector graphics, and EPS graphics. I had also used quite a bit of transparency on the images, laying them over solid-color boxes and bringing the transparency down to create a slight duotone look. With image transparency not supported in QuarkXPress 6.5, the graphics of the layout were all converted without transparency, not at all the original look I had intended. To get this effect I had to use the ShadowCaster XTensions module. My native Illustrator files were also not supported by QuarkXPress 6.5, they all needed to be converted to other formats. The fonts used in the original document were brought over accurately with the exceptions of several glyphs. Those were replaced quickly though.
I had much better luck converting the original InDesign document using ID2Q7. Fortunately, QuarkXPress 7 now has image transparency functionality. My transparent images were brought over exactly as they looked in InDesign, no need to use another XTensions module to gain the desired look. This saved me some time but I still had to convert each Illustrator file into an EPS for them to place in QuarkXPress correctly. Unfortunately, there is no way around this, since QuarkXPress 7 does not support native Illustrator files. ID2Q7 brought over the text with barely any problems as well. I still had the same glyph issues I did in ID2Q6, but nothing major. Another minor text issue was that the box inset seemed to be lost in the conversion; all of my text ran to the edge of every box.
Overall, ID2Q7 worked great and saved me valuable time. My design was primarily a graphic layout so I was most concerned with how the images were treated. QuarkXPress itself caused the only abnormalities in my newly created documents. Both ID2Q6 and ID2Q7 converted the images and text within the limits of each version of QuarkXPress. Small differences in text formatting were present, but nothing that couldn’t easily be fixed. All of my fonts and sizes were converted perfectly. Both XTensions modules from Markzware would be valuable tools for a person or company converting to QuarkXPress or who uses both applications in their workflow.
I converted a wedding program with both ID2Q6 and ID2Q7 that was mostly text with only a handful of pictures. I wasn’t worried about picture formats with this document; I had only used JPGs so I knew I’d be safe. My biggest concern with this document was the text format. All of my style sheets from InDesign were converted with no problems, though I had a bit of problem with the formatting at first.
The text in my linked text boxes ran quite a bit longer in my new QuarkXPress document than it had in InDesign. Fortunately the style sheets were converted properly and still linked to the text. A few quick edits and I was back on track.
Picture runaround was another small issue that I had. All of my runarounds were lost in the conversion. Luckily, I didn’t have many pictures in this document, so I quickly applied new ones, regrouped the images, and even added a new drop shadow available in QuarkXPress 7. I only had a few lines with colored text and all came through fine. The custom colors were converted just as I had them in the original document. Since this document didn’t require any features not supported in QuarkXPress 6.5, it was converted the same in ID2Q6 and ID2Q7.
Both Markzware XTensions modules have the same dialogue box and are very easy to use. Simply launch QuarkXPress and under the utilities menu you will find a new option, Convert InDesign Document. There are three options for converting your text and three options for your pictures. Choose the Use Styles check box to carry all of your formatting from InDesign into QuarkXPress. Choose Plain Text to disregard the original formatting and choose Empty Box to convert only the text boxes — handy for making template files. Formatting options for picture previews are similar to text options. Choose Use Picture to convert all image previews. Choose Grey Preview to create a grey image that serves as a placeholder for images; don’t worry, your links to the original image will be retained and can be later updated in QuarkXPress. Choose Empty Box to attain just what the name implies; only empty boxes will be created in the new QuarkXPress document.
I was very pleased with both ID2Q6 and ID2Q7. Of course, with any conversion tool, there are bound to be elements that are not brought over completely accurately since the features between the applications are different. However, Markzware has done an excellent job of minimizing these occurrences. The limitations that I found were due to displaying features correctly inside QuarkXPress and not the limitations of the XTensions modules’ conversion abilities.
Anyone wanting to convert documents from InDesign to QuarkXPress should give these XTensions modules serious consideration. Source
Review: ID2Q7 (InDesign to QuarkXPress 7) by Ralph Eberhard