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My clients see color that I can't see in Acrobat

Participant ,
Apr 09, 2024 Apr 09, 2024

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This has happened several times and I don't understand why. Forgive me if it's a simple problem.

 

When I create a pdf of a 4-color process mechanical from InDesign to send to my client, sometimes they see things that are not in the original files. Like, in a file I sent to them, an illustration has a white background but on their display, they see a faint gray box in the background of the image (the image box from InDesign). They will send me a screen grab and the gray box is visible, but when I check my InDesign mechanical, the original Photoshop file, and the pdf in Acrobat I see nothing. I've even used the color picker to try and find out if maybe my eyes are deceiving me, but there is no color in the background of my files.

 

Why are they seeing the faint gray background boxes behind illustrations? And since/if the gray boxes are not in my original pdf, how are they able to screen grab a background box that doesn't exist?

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PDF , Print and prepress

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Participant , Apr 10, 2024 Apr 10, 2024

There are a couple of reasons for this. If they are using Acrobat DC be sure they have their color seperation box to have "overprint preview" turned on. - and you too. This gives a more accurate representation of what it would like in print.

If you are not printing and this is for something else such as the web - make sure you are designing and exporting in the correct color space with the correct profiles. My belief is we are still operating in 2000 when it comes to color profiles.

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Participant ,
Apr 10, 2024 Apr 10, 2024

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There are a couple of reasons for this. If they are using Acrobat DC be sure they have their color seperation box to have "overprint preview" turned on. - and you too. This gives a more accurate representation of what it would like in print.

If you are not printing and this is for something else such as the web - make sure you are designing and exporting in the correct color space with the correct profiles. My belief is we are still operating in 2000 when it comes to color profiles.

The next thing to check is your client actually using Acrobat or Adobe Reader or are they using a web browser, Preview or another viewer? If they are using another viewer at all have them try Adobe's to see if it's there. My guess is that is the culprit. 

There are pluses and minuses to different viewers (Acrobat's is the 200" limit) but Acrobat is the best with add-on plugins and viewing color.

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Participant ,
Apr 10, 2024 Apr 10, 2024

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Thanks for your reply. The projects are for print and they are CMYK files using U.S. Web Coated (SWOP) v2.  Someone else also suggested that it might be because they are using the free Acrobat reader (rather than the Pro version), which I have asked them about but have yet to hear an answer.

 

It's just such an odd thing. I've sent the pdf to other people outside of the company to view on their displays and they also do not see the gray boxes behind the images. I hope the culprit is the version of Acrobat--that's easy to resolve. If it's not that, they are going to keep running into the issue and making me crazy asking about it...

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Participant ,
Apr 11, 2024 Apr 11, 2024

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I found out that they have been using Apple Preview to review pdfs....mystery solved. Thanks for your help.

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