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How to split a PDF with spread pages to single pages?

Community Beginner ,
Dec 10, 2010 Dec 10, 2010

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Hi

We just recieved a small booklet from a customer wich containted spread pages (sorry if it's the wrong term, I mean that to and to pages like 2 and 3 were merged to one page in the PDF).  Our printer doesn't accept spread pages so what we had to do were to make a 40 page document in InDesign with facing pages, then place the pages from the top left corner of the even pages so it "stretched" across to the next pages.  Then we could just export it ourselves and get the pages as single pages.

My question is: is there a way to make this quick and easy in Acrobat (or InDesign if not possible in Acrobat)? Either with a clever solution or maybe a script?:..

We were lucky considering the booklet only contained 40 pages, but what if someone sent us a file with 400 pages, it would take quite a lot of time. I read somewhere that you could duplicate every page and then crop by hand, but that wouldn't be either precise nor time effective.

Thanks in advance for any help

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correct answers 1 Correct answer

LEGEND , Dec 10, 2010 Dec 10, 2010
As you only need the PDF for printing, you can refry it in Acrobat (not something we usually advise but in this case...)Open the Acrobat print dialog and select the Adobe PDF printer. Click Properties and make sure you're using a high quality print setting and the correct destination paper size (such as portrait A4 if your original has A3 spreads).Under Page Handling, choose "Tile all pages", 100% scale and zero overlap. Untick marks and labels, and print the file to a new PDF. You'll lose any l...

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LEGEND ,
Dec 10, 2010 Dec 10, 2010

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As you only need the PDF for printing, you can refry it in Acrobat (not something we usually advise but in this case...)

Open the Acrobat print dialog and select the Adobe PDF printer. Click Properties and make sure you're using a high quality print setting and the correct destination paper size (such as portrait A4 if your original has A3 spreads).

Under Page Handling, choose "Tile all pages", 100% scale and zero overlap. Untick marks and labels, and print the file to a new PDF. You'll lose any layers, forms, scripts etc but you lost them anyway with your inDesign workaround. Be careful to check that fonts are embedded in the final document if you're printing via a commercial RIP.

Note that if the PDF is secured to prevent editing / page extraction, the Tile choices on the print dialog Page Handling list won't be available even if the PDF has print permissions - Acrobat needs to play about with the page content to do the "tiled" layouts as some page objects will cross the cut line, so it needs an unsecured file to work on.

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Community Beginner ,
Dec 10, 2010 Dec 10, 2010

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Hi Dave, thanks for the info

Though I have one question, I tried what you said with the file we got just to test it out.  The file we recieved were in the format 21x21 cm (so the spreads were 42x21 of course).  I followed your instructions and also made a new paper size at 21x21 cm, but when I print it, every page is divided up in 4 parts, so in the final PDF the first page wich contained only a centered title were made into four pages.  The first page showed the 1/4 of the title in the lower right corner, then 1/4 in the lower left corner, 1/4 in the upper right corner and 1/4 in the upper left corner and so it continued through the whole document with 4 parts for every page.

Do you have any idea what went wrong?  Or does it only work with premade papersettings?

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LEGEND ,
Dec 10, 2010 Dec 10, 2010

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If there's even a millimeter of content outside the destination page height, the Tile command will switch from 2x1 to 2x2, so you may need to slightly increase the page size selected for the Adobe PDF printer until it takes the bait. If need be you can always trim it down again once the PDF has distilled, using the crop pages command. You could also try a very slight change in the scale (say to 99.5%) and see at what point it bounces back to 2x1 on the preview thumbnail.

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Community Beginner ,
Feb 14, 2011 Feb 14, 2011

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Ah this is great.

Before coming across this tile feature, I was trying to come up with a way to automate 1) printing to PDF but with 2 copies collated AABBCC, 2) cropping all odd pages on the left side, then cropping all even pages on the right side.

This is so much better.

By the way Dave, you mentioned that this is not usually advised. Apart from the loss of formatting from PDFs professionally created, are they any problems to be aware of if I'm doing this for scanned documents? Will things like OCR info, highlights, meta data for e.g. be "passed on"?

I encounter a fair bit of photocopied research, usually from books and are in "2 in 1" form. Pain to read having to scroll left right then up down. So this is a really useful technique.

THANKS.

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