FOGRA39 is washing out my colors in PDF, and blacks in particular :'(

Explorer ,
Aug 31, 2021 Aug 31, 2021

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Hi everyone,

 

I'm having a big issue on my project.

The printing is planed for in 2 weeks, and I still didnt finish my project, and now I have a big issue.

The printer ask me the cards of my project into a PDF file in FOGRA39, but when I do that... This is the result :

Capture d'écran 2021-08-31 13.35.50.png

At the left side, a PNG export (probably 10dpi since it's not smooth xD ), at the right, a PDF export in FOGRA39, where you can see the blacks became grey.

Any idea 😮 ?

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Import and export, Print

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correct answers 2 Correct answers

Adobe Community Professional , Aug 31, 2021 Aug 31, 2021
Offset inks are transparent, so black with no CMY added does not display or print as absolute black. In your capture it looks like the text is overprinting the dark blue but the border is knocking out so it is black only. See this thread: https://community.adobe.com/t5/indesign-discussions/blacks-turn-dark-grey-after-exporting-to-pdf-from-indeign-cs6/td-p/4585888#4852443

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Adobe Community Professional , Aug 31, 2021 Aug 31, 2021
Okay but, is it normal ? Can I print it like that ? Do I have to do something else ? Why it's the basic behavior of FOGRA39 ? It‘s the behaviour of all modern CMYK profiles—the profile previews the expected transparency of black ink on press. In order to get an absolute black you’ll need to make a swatch with black + CMY. Here I’ve made a RichBlack swatch that is 55|40|40|100 CMYK: In this case the text filled with [Black] is set to Overprint so it is black plus the CMY values of the blue...

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Aug 31, 2021 Aug 31, 2021

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Offset inks are transparent, so black with no CMY added does not display or print as absolute black. In your capture it looks like the text is overprinting the dark blue but the border is knocking out so it is black only.

 

See this thread:

https://community.adobe.com/t5/indesign-discussions/blacks-turn-dark-grey-after-exporting-to-pdf-fro...

 

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Explorer ,
Aug 31, 2021 Aug 31, 2021

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Okay but, is it normal ? Can I print it like that ? Do I have to do something else ? Why it's the basic behavior of FOGRA39 ?

Because the professional printer (it's their damn job, you know) dont know what is happening, since they always work with FOGRA39 and it's the basic way the thing is working (I installed on an other computer, created a black text on white background, same result), why and how a professional company can not knowing it ?

The resolution post from "Rob Day" says :

"Offset inks are not opaque, and that is reflected in the InDesign and Acrobat soft proofing of [Black] and Black+CMY"
It only appears in Acrobat Reader for me, is it normal ?

 

"Proofing the appearance variations of black ink combinations on coated and uncoated paper stocks is not a bug it’s a color management feature. If the output is to an offset press, and you want an absolute black for large areas of ink coverage, you need to add CMY to the mix without excee...".

What does this mean ? What do I have to do ? Who have to do "mix of CMY thing" ?

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Aug 31, 2021 Aug 31, 2021

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Okay but, is it normal ? Can I print it like that ? Do I have to do something else ? Why it's the basic behavior of FOGRA39 ?

 

It‘s the behaviour of all modern CMYK profiles—the profile previews the expected transparency of black ink on press. In order to get an absolute black you’ll need to make a swatch with black + CMY. Here I’ve made a RichBlack swatch that is 55|40|40|100 CMYK:

 

Screen Shot 9.pngScreen Shot 10.png

 

In this case the text filled with [Black] is set to Overprint so it is black plus the CMY values of the blue below it. For small text on a white or light background you should not use a rich black.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Aug 31, 2021 Aug 31, 2021

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It only appears in Acrobat Reader for me, is it normal ?

 

Also, InDesign has an Appearance of Black Preference. If you are designing for press printing it should always be set to Display All Blacks Accurately (which is what you are seeing in Acrobat)—it  will show the expected appearance of black in print.

 

If you are designing for screens then choose Display All Blacks as Rich Blacks. The preference only affects the screen preview and won’t affect the black output.

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