InDesign CS5 Plugin Q2ID for File Conversion from Quark to Adobe InDesign

Q2ID, the Adobe InDesign CS5 plugin for Quark to InDesign file conversion from Markzware, can convert content from QuarkXPress to Adobe InDesign. The Q2ID InDesign CS5 plugin is a big help for those who want to convert Quark to InDesign quickly and easily, as noted in the following excerpt of an article written by Anne-Marie “HerGeekness” Concepcion of Seneca Design & Training:

When clients hand you source files so ancient or obscure that they’re unreadable for Markzware design layout file conversion, don’t despair. Part 1 of my file conversion survival kit will have you repurposing those files lickety split – without asking the client to lift a finger, and without forcing you to buy every application under the sun just to open the occasional weirdo document.

I bet they forgot to tell you in design school that you need to become an expert in computer file formats to survive, let alone succeed, in our field.

Consider graphic file formats. Your clients and vendors assume you know the limitations and appropriate use of all the image file types: JPEG, TIFF, PSD, AI, EPS, GIF, PNG, DNG, BMP… Tell me, did you take that class at Design School U?

Luckily, most layout programs (Web, print, or presentation) can import a wide variety of graphics file formats; and if they can’t, a quick trip to an image converter utility (or in and out of Photoshop, Illustrator, or CorelDRAW) will spit out a version in an appropriate format.

To me, the real challenge for designers is dealing with the hundreds of other file formats out there, the ones clients occasionally ask you to pull content from. Most clients don’t need to be as computer-savvy as we do; it’s just a peripheral tool to them. In their sweet naiveté, they assume that if you have a computer, you can open any computer file, period.

My ever-lovin’ clients blithely send me files created in the dawn of time (WQ1, which is Quatro Pro DOS), files from a program they’ve upgraded to and so assume everyone else has too (DOCX, the new Microsoft Word format), and every format in between, from WS4 (WordStar) to CDR (CorelDraw) to PUB (Microsoft Publisher) — all without a thought that I may not be able to do anything with them.

Figure 1. Ack! What the heck is a CWK file?

Figure 1. Ack! What the heck is a CWK file?

As a business owner, I want to make it as easy as possible for clients to work with me…

Here are some trusted conversion tools I’ve come to rely upon to get me out of just about any file format jam…

Converting Layout Formats
While Dataviz software is great for converting general business files and graphics, it doesn’t speak page layoutese. What can you do if a client sends you QuarkXPress 6.5 source files and you only use [Adobe InDesign CS4 or Adobe InDesign CS5]?

Markzware to the rescue! In true entrepreneurial spirit, these developers, already well-known for their flagship FlightCheck Professional prepress software, found a need and filled it with their killer conversion add-ons, Q2ID, ID2Q, and Pub2ID.

Each program is available for Mac OS X and Windows and can convert cross-platform. The first one, Q2ID, is an [InDesign CS4, CS5 or CS5.5] plug-in that converts [QuarkXPress 3-9] files into INDD files. ID2Q is an XTension for [QuarkXPress 8 or 9] that – surprise! – converts INDD files to QXP layouts. Pub2ID, a plug-in for [InDesign CS4 or CS5], converts Microsoft Publisher files to INDD layouts.

Each starts at $199 for a single seat.

Figure 3. This is the top couple of inches from a random page in an electronic parts catalog done in QuarkXPress 6.5 (note the cursor upper right). Click on the image to see a larger version.

Figure 4. This is the same section of the page after converting it to InDesign… with Markzware’s Q2ID plug-in. Can you imagine having to recreate this page in InDesign manually? It’s just one of 1,200 pages where the default type size is 5.5/6! Click on the image to see a larger version.

As with the Dataviz products, you can’t expect perfect file conversion, especially because page layout programs often have key differences that just don’t translate. Markzware’s documentation does a great job of explaining how it handles those situations. Nonetheless, I’ve used both Q2ID and ID2Q and believe me, the almost perfect file conversion they do will pay for themselves ten minutes into the first time you need them!

Converting Fonts
…a client asked my studio to develop an InDesign… template for their Windows-based magazine with the same basic design and typography they used in their previous program, QuarkXPress 6.5 for Windows. With the help of Markzware’s Q2ID (see above), I converted their most recent QuarkXPress issue into my Mac version of InDesign…, which I used as a reference for the new template I was creating in InDesign…

In Case of Emergency, Ask for a PDF

Inevitably, you’ll receive a file in a format for which there is no conversion solution. Last week, a client wanting a Web site handed me a layout file done in Ventura Publisher 4.1 – that’s circa 1993, ladies and gentlemen. If you encounter a hair-puller like that one, your best bet is to get it into PDF format and then either extract the text and images for re-use elsewhere, or convert the PDF itself…

Q2ID supports Adobe InDesign CS5.5, CS5 and CS4. Q2ID is on of Markzware’s InDesign CS5 plugins. This InDesign plugin can convert Quark to InDesign. Get your file from Quark to InDesign with a click! Q2ID is available via the Q2ID page. Use this quick InDesign CS5 plugin to convert Quark to InDesign and get your Quark content into Adobe InDesign CS5 today!

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