I'm creating the .pdf from Framemaker 12, and it has nice quality photos (.jpg), with lots of detail. I've tried High Quality and Press Quality Settings but the pdfs do not show good enough quality for the photos.
By default, High Quality and Press Quality don't downsample color images unless they are 450 ppi or greater, and then they only downsample to 300 ppi.
So let's start with your images: what is their original resolution prior to adding them to your FrameMaker layout, and are they scaled up or down while importing (or after importing) into FrameMaker?
Looking at the .jpg in Photoshop, it shows Resolution: 180 Pixels/Inch. 3067px x 3009px
When I import it into my anchored frame, the final size is 15.2 picas x 15 picas. I scale it down quite a bit - 50%, then manually scale a bit more.
Thanks for the quick response.
Following that workflow, when you resize the image in FrameMaker, the resolution increases 1203.6 ppi. FrameMaker just displays "Unknown Resolution" in Object Properties, but Photoshop will show you exactly what is happening. This does mean that the photos are subject to resampling as you convert to PDF because 1203.6 is over the 450 ppi threshold.
You could disable the resampling as per Matt's reply to see how it looks—but note that if you have a lot of images, your files will be significantly larger and you don't need that extra pixel data. Or, you might handle all of the resizing in Photoshop (which allows you to adjust the size and resolution independently) and just drop the image into FrameMaker. Try out both workflows and see which one works best for you.
I also have to throw one more thought out there—JPGs were designed to archive photos in a paperless format so that they don't fade or degrade over time. However, they use lossy compression—which means that they throw away data in order to compress the file. If you save a JPG as a JPG in Photoshop several times, you are tossing out pixel data with each save. Eventually, the file becomes useless. When I'm given a JPG, I open it in Photoshop, save it as a PSD and edit away. I may export it back out as a JPG when I'm done, but when I'm editing and saving, it's always as a PSD. I don't know that this is part of the problem, but it's worth mentioning because most of my students are not aware of this.
Thank you for your suggestions. I will try them out and see what works best.
What do you want your audience to do with the PDF?
If you want the images to be passed through with minimal processing, you can set up a PDF .joboptions file that has the Images tab set like this
This will result in a larger PDF, but the image quality should be comparable to what you'd see if you open the originals in Photoshop.
Let me know if you need help setting/changing the PDF job options.