Start Here With Pre-Press & Variable Data Printing FAQ’s.

Here are some of the common questions we receive about file preparation and correct address formatting for Raff Printing. But the Raff Printing Difference doesn’t come from a list. Our customer service and sales representatives, working in close concert with our prepress and print floor departments, stand ready to serve you personally.

Can I create type in Photoshop without getting a “bitmapped-look”?

Photoshop has a new vector type feature that should be used. Once the file is complete, the photoshop (.psd) file must be flattened and saved as an EPS file. Still, the best method would be to create type in a Page Layout program such as Quark or Indesign.

Do I need to supply fonts with a PDF file if the font is stored in the PDF document?

It would not be necessary unless you would request changes to the PDF file. In that case we would need the fonts used to make any type adjustments, plus the fonts can not be embedded in the file.

Why have I had problems printing “hairlines”?

A hairline in many applications is considered .25 pts, but is technically the thinnest line an output device can produce. With high-end output devices like our plate setter (2500 dpi), a hairline will appear broken or possibly not even visible. To avoid this, create the line thicker than .25 pts; ideally .5 pts or thicker.

Why doesn’t my color print out match the contract proof from the printer or the press sheet?

All color printers display color differently based on different inks, number of inks used and technologies for laying down the fluid pigments on paper. Most people print to color ink jet or laser printers using the most basic settings and no calibration. Conversely, printers use highly-sophisticated proofing equipment that is calibrated and profiled to match the printing press. These proofing devices apply a higher resolution and also use purer and more consistent pigments, therefore producing a much closer match to the press sheet. Generally, you should use your color print out to show general color usage or positioning, not color accuracy. Also, expect your color print out to vary from the printers contract proof.

What is the proper set up for a pocket folder?

A standard pocket folder when finished and folded is 9” x 12”. However, the file should be set up as the folder would be when opened completely. The overall size would be 19-1/2” x 16” which would include a 4” pocket on both sides as well as 3/4” glue flaps on the outside edge of each pocket.

What is the proper layout for an 8-1/2” x 11” tri-fold brochure?

Create the file on an 8-1/2” x 11” page (landscape) and divide the panels with guides at 3-11/16”, 
3-11/16”, and 3-5/8” with the 3-5/8” being the panel that is inside when folded. Don’t forget, 
if it prints on two sides, the second side will have the guides positioned in reverse order; 3-5/8”, 
3-11/16”, 3-11/16”.

What type of file types do you accept?

We accept Excel, CSV, and any comma or tab delimited text file. 

What format will mail database be addressed?

Correctly addressing the envelope is the most important aspect of any mailing. To facilitate efficient sorting and processing, USPS recommends capital letters without punctuation and requires the use of standard abbreviations. Your mail should be addressed as follows:

  • Name (not required if there is a company but preferred)
  • Company (not required)
  • Secondary address (Building, Mail Stop, etc.)
  • Delivery Address
  • City, ST, Zip code

What other fields can I include in my mailing list?

You can really include anything else that you want. But the USPS requires that it go above all of the pertinent delivery information.

Does my mail piece require tabbing/wafer sealing?

Any folded letter size mail piece requires to be tabbed. The location of the tabs depends on the design of the mail piece, where it folds, etc. We can assist you with your mail design to make your mail piece completely automatable and postage cost efficient.

How much room do you need for the mailing panel?

For the piece to be automation compatible we require a mail panel of 4” wide by 2” tall.

What is Move Update?

On November 23rd, 2008 the USPS made it mandatory that all discounted First Class and Standard Mail
must be updated with an approved method 95 days prior to the mailing date.

Approved methods are:

  • Premailing Methods
    • NCOA Link® : national COA database
    • FASTforward ® Multiline Optical Character Reader (MLOCR) processes
       
  • Postmailing Methods
    • OneCode ACS ® : Intelligent Mail ® Barcode
    • ACS™: postmailing
       
  • Move Update option
    • Ancillary service endorsements
    • Address Service Requested, Return Service Requested, Change Service Requested
    • Alternative Move Update (First Class Only)

Contact Raff Printing To Discuss All Your Printing & Distribution Needs.

Make Raff Printing in Pittsburgh your one-stop, single-source partner for whatever you need to print, bind, fulfill, ship or mail! Brokers, Agencies, Businesses and more--contact us today for fast, high-quality professional printing and service that?s second to none!

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