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PDF file size unusually large.

Community Beginner ,
Jul 05, 2017 Jul 05, 2017

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I've got a number of file size issues as of late. But in this case, I've made a rule book for a game that's 22 pages. Lots of precisely laid-out text, but plenty of symbol usage, vector art, and raster art.

Unfortunately, the resulting pdf was well over 1 GB.

I tried downsampeling as much as I could but it's still about 800 MB.

Large background images were reduced to 150 ppi and some other smaller items are reduced to 600 ppi.

I even made the large background into a symbol hoping that internal links would be used instead of making 22 copies of the thing, but Illustrator doesn't appear to work that way.

But here's the strange part. If I export the whole thing as a 600ppi png images, the total is about 100 MB. Where is the other 700 MB coming from?

This isn't the first time files have become crushingly large. Some are 2 GB across only 10 artboards. I do a lot of card-sized art (9 to a page) with elements using many symbols.

Saving a file takes a rather long time, and this is causing workflow issues, especially when it comes time to try and print. Or share. Or do anything.

Advice?

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correct answers 1 Correct answer

Community Expert , Jul 06, 2017 Jul 06, 2017

Tychonoir  wrote

Turns out, the pdf image compression is lying.

It says it's downsampling artwork to specific resolutions, but it's not.

When I downsample each placed artwork individually before saving, the file size comes down considerably.

Here's the problem. If you select downsampling AND preserve editing in illustrator, it doesn't downsample. (It will otherwise)

This might be classified as a bug.

If you select editing in Illustrator as an option, no lossy compression or downsampling will be applie

...

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LEGEND ,
Jul 05, 2017 Jul 05, 2017

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I even made the large background into a symbol hoping that internal links would be used instead of making 22 copies of the thing, but Illustrator doesn't appear to work that way.

Symbols are an AI-internal thing. This has nothing to do with PDFs. Once you create a PDF, al lthe magic is gone. Conversely, actual image file sizes and so on don't matter in AI. It will still be resampled to the document DPI/ PPI. It seems you have some fundamental misunderstandings here. Resampling an image to 150 PPI in a 1200 PPI or so document will still turn out a huge document because of those things. I'm also not sure what you expect with regards to the difference of PNG vs. PDF. Again completely different things, since a print-ready PDF will do things such as embed its pixel data as uncompressed TIFF rather than a compressed format. hence it makes little sense to compare it to a PNG and its compression. The lengthy exports and saves no doubt are also related to AI is simply forever busy resampling your data to generate the previews and the final PDF. If you want better behavior you have to seriously read up and streamline your workflow accordingly.

Mylenium

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Community Beginner ,
Jul 05, 2017 Jul 05, 2017

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I'm talking about the compression options in the pdf settings. The parts where images are downsampled. It's giving me options to compress the data so why would it be stored as uncompressed TIFF?

Where do you see the pdf being 1200ppi? The vector art is still vector art and isn't being rasterized to 1200ppi or anything else; I checked.

If the raster mages are being downsampled, and the pdf contains less of them (since the vectors are preserved), I would expect them to be smaller, since the pngs are fully raster at a higher ppi than the pdf, even where not necessary.

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Community Expert ,
Jul 06, 2017 Jul 06, 2017

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Yes, if you specify jpeg for compression when saving to PDF, jpeg will be used in the PDF file.

And there is no such thing as a 1200 ppi PDF document. PDF is resolution independend, only the images in the pdf can have a resolution.

But maybe you also embedded the Illustrator file in your PDF.

Uncheck the option Preserve Illustrator Editing Capabilities when saving as PDF.

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Community Beginner ,
Jul 06, 2017 Jul 06, 2017

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Well I'm usually working directly in the pdf file so certainly editing is preserved.

I went through a bunch of the other files and found that a lot of the placed artwork was at inappropriate resolutions, including some buried hi-res images in symbols that just didn't need to be there. I fixed this, and the file sizes came down considerably.

I also tested saving a few as ai files, and there doesn't seem to be much size difference between the ai file and a pdf file.

At any rate, none of this helps the original file I posted about.

So I did some more testing.

Turns out, the pdf image compression is lying.

It says it's downsampling artwork to specific resolutions, but it's not.

When I downsample each placed artwork individually before saving, the file size comes down considerably.

Here's the problem. If you select downsampling AND preserve editing in illustrator, it doesn't downsample. (It will otherwise)

This might be classified as a bug.

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Community Expert ,
Jul 06, 2017 Jul 06, 2017

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Tychonoir  wrote

Turns out, the pdf image compression is lying.

It says it's downsampling artwork to specific resolutions, but it's not.

When I downsample each placed artwork individually before saving, the file size comes down considerably.

Here's the problem. If you select downsampling AND preserve editing in illustrator, it doesn't downsample. (It will otherwise)

This might be classified as a bug.

If you select editing in Illustrator as an option, no lossy compression or downsampling will be applied to the Illustrator part of the file.

So resampling and compression is only used in the PDF part of the file.

Why do you edit as PDF? Use AI and save a copy as PDF without AI editing options.

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Community Beginner ,
Jul 06, 2017 Jul 06, 2017

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The non-downsampleing appears to show up in pdf part too. I guess I just don't see the utility of explicitly selecting lossy compression and not getting it.

I've edited directly in pdf for years, because why would I want to maintain multiple copies of hundreds of files? It's a workflow nightmare. What's new in the process, is dealing with hi-res placed art, and it looks like I need to adjust a bit.

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Community Expert ,
Jul 06, 2017 Jul 06, 2017

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I just did the following:

10 artboard doc with the same linked image on every artboard.

Saved as PDF (with AI editing on): 12,9 MB

Saved as PDF (with AI editing on) and downsampling and compression checked: 1,6 MB

compression.png

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Community Beginner ,
Jul 06, 2017 Jul 06, 2017

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Hmmm.

The only thing that was different for me is it defaulted to ZIP. I didn't change it to JPEG.

I'm gonna take a guess that ZIP doesn't really downsample, then?

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Community Expert ,
Jul 06, 2017 Jul 06, 2017

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Zip is lossless compression, jpeg is lossy.

Downsampling is something else, it throws away pixels when you decrease the resolution.

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Community Beginner ,
Jul 06, 2017 Jul 06, 2017

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ZIP downdampleing I meant in the context of the options dialog which provides for a downsampeling option with ZIP compression.

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Community Beginner ,
Jul 06, 2017 Jul 06, 2017

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Well. I'm seeing different results.

All PDFs with AI editing capibility.
10 1200 dpi images.

No compression: = 101.2 MB

JPEG downsample to 72ppi = 100.4 MB

ZIP downsample to 72ppi = 100.4 MB

Downsample in AI to 72ppi, no compression = 509 KB

Finally, I tried JPEG downsample without preserving editing = 93 KB

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Community Expert ,
Jul 06, 2017 Jul 06, 2017

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I can only guess that the  effective resolution of your files is below the threshold and therefore will not be downsampled.

You can check the effective resolution (ppi) in the Links or Document info panel.

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Community Beginner ,
Jul 06, 2017 Jul 06, 2017

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I assume you mean "effective" with regard to scaling.

These are embedded images with an effective resolution of 1200ppi as reported by the bar at the top of the screen.

(If I change the scale of the images, these numbers do indeed change, so it's an effective resolution in my understanding.)

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Community Expert ,
Jul 06, 2017 Jul 06, 2017

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Yes, effective is the resolution after resizing.

I cannot reproduce your results.

JPEG downsample to 72ppi = 100.4 MB

ZIP downsample to 72ppi = 100.4 MB

It is impossible to get the same filesize with JPEG and ZIP compression.

JPEG removes pixel information and ZIP does not change any pixel.

The result will always be smaller when JPEG is used.

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Community Beginner ,
Jul 06, 2017 Jul 06, 2017

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Ok. I'll run another test. New documents, different image.

PDF with editing, four embedded 1200ppi images

No downsampling = 47.6 MB

downsample 72ppi JPEG = 38.1 MB

downsample 72ppi ZIP = 38.2 MB

downsample in AI 72ppi, no compression = 443 KB

with editing off

No downsampling = 9.5 MB

downsample 72ppi JPEG = 81 KB

downsample 72ppi ZIP = 113 KB

downsample in AI 72ppi, no compression = 109 KB

So it appears in my case, the illustrator portion of the pdf still has the full-res images. Not sure why it doesn't in your case.

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Community Expert ,
Jul 06, 2017 Jul 06, 2017

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The Illustrator part has always the full res images.

Without seeing your files, I can only keep on guessing.

If you use images that contain mostly flat coloured areas, there will not be much difference between zip and jpeg.

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New Here ,
Nov 10, 2017 Nov 10, 2017

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I have a similar issue that I'd like some help on please, and I am VERY unfamiliar with AI so bear with me.  I am trying to send a client 2 different templates or die lines for the layout of a booklet.  There are a few thin lines and a very small amount of text on both of them.  One though is a whopping 11MB while the other is a scant 68kb.  They are nearly identical and even when I downsized the larger one it only reduced to 5.9MB.  Can anyone suggest how I might get the larger one down into the kb range as it ought to be?  There is ZERO artwork, background or anything else; just lines and a bit of text (Front cover, Back cover..etc)  Thanks!

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Community Expert ,
Nov 10, 2017 Nov 10, 2017

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adrefs1  schrieb

I have a similar issue that I'd like some help on please, and I am VERY unfamiliar with AI so bear with me.  I am trying to send a client 2 different templates or die lines for the layout of a booklet.  There are a few thin lines and a very small amount of text on both of them.  One though is a whopping 11MB while the other is a scant 68kb.  They are nearly identical and even when I downsized the larger one it only reduced to 5.9MB.  Can anyone suggest how I might get the larger one down into the kb range as it ought to be?  There is ZERO artwork, background or anything else; just lines and a bit of text (Front cover, Back cover..etc)  Thanks!

Completely different question.

Please create a new thread and post details about your system and version and:

- exactly how do you save the files

- exactly where do you save the files

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Community Expert ,
Jul 06, 2017 Jul 06, 2017

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There might be some misunderstanding about the file format.

Please watch this: Mysterious things Illustrator does - Saving files on Vimeo

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Community Beginner ,
Jul 06, 2017 Jul 06, 2017

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Interesting link.

I suppose it's entirely possible that Preview on mac actually sees the illustrator part of a pdf file, and thus decides to show the full-res image. Which might explain why it appears not to downsample.

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Community Expert ,
Jul 06, 2017 Jul 06, 2017

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Preview opens the PDF part

If your goal is a small file, then you absolutely need to save without "Illustrator editablity". But then you will also need to save as a separate file.

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New Here ,
Mar 03, 2023 Mar 03, 2023

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You have saved me so much frustration. Thank you!

 

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Community Expert ,
Mar 03, 2023 Mar 03, 2023

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quote

You have saved me so much frustration. Thank you!

 


By @cg59837760

 

If you want to say "thank you" to someone and also highlight their post to others, please give them a "Like".

 

Because with your post here nobody can even know who you are referring to.

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New Here ,
Mar 03, 2023 Mar 03, 2023

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LATEST

K. Post was liked already.

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