Acrobat CC output preview

Thierry

Active member
Hi everybody,

I have a little question about the strange behavior of Acrobat XI. I know that Adobe has already acknowledged some bugs in the output preview panel but I found another one (or maybe it's just a new feature). In Acrobat X, when you open a PDF/X1 (or X3, X4, as far as I know), even if you change the simulation profile, the aspect of the composition remains unchanged (for instance, if your text is black only, it remains black only). In Acrobat XI, when I choose another simulation profile (for instance, if I replace the output intent of the PDF by ISO Coated v2 300%), the text becomes separated in CMYK. I understand that both situations can happen in a workflow (I can do both with Apogee Prepress) but is this change made on purpose? And, in this case, it would have been better to let us know when Acrobat XI has been released (even if it doesn't interest a lot of people…). I also know that the preview panel will always show the right output intent by default (one advantage of the PDF/X) but this change in the behavior of an important tool can be a little bit confusing…
 

leonardr

Well-known member
I have a little question about the strange behavior of Acrobat XI.

Happy to help with Acrobat XI. [FYI: There is no such thing as Acrobat CC]


I know that Adobe has already acknowledged some bugs in the output preview panel but I found another one (or maybe it's just a new feature).

No software is perfect, but not sure what you are referring to specfically.


In Acrobat X, when you open a PDF/X1 (or X3, X4, as far as I know), even if you change the simulation profile, the aspect of the composition remains unchanged (for instance, if your text is black only, it remains black only). In Acrobat XI, when I choose another simulation profile (for instance, if I replace the output intent of the PDF by ISO Coated v2 300%), the text becomes separated in CMYK.

Acrobat X is not following the PDF/X standard, while Acrobat XI is. The standard clearly states that the OutputIntent of the PDF/X file is to be used as the source profile for all non-calibrated colours (which is all of them in PDF/X-1a). So when you switch the simulation profile, you are clearly instructing that a CMYK->CMYK conversion take place (as part of the rendering). This is also what a proper RIP would do.


I understand that both situations can happen in a workflow (I can do both with Apogee Prepress) but is this change made on purpose? And, in this case, it would have been better to let us know when Acrobat XI has been released (even if it doesn't interest a lot of people…).

Yes, very much on purpose (as noted above). Pretty sure it was documented in the change notes and in the updated Print Guide for Creative Suite.
 

Thierry

Active member
Hi Leonard,

Thanks a lot for the answer. It's much clearer now. And sorry if I missed the information about that in the Creative Suite Printing Guide. I downloaded it when it was released but I didn't notice that… For the acknowledged bug about the Output Preview panel, I was just referring to this little one (not a real issue in most cases) : Adobe Community: Acrobat XI Pro - Output Preview problem

Thanks again.
 

meddington

Well-known member
Acrobat X is not following the PDF/X standard, while Acrobat XI is. The standard clearly states that the OutputIntent of the PDF/X file is to be used as the source profile for all non-calibrated colours (which is all of them in PDF/X-1a). So when you switch the simulation profile, you are clearly instructing that a CMYK->CMYK conversion take place (as part of the rendering). This is also what a proper RIP would do.

This is accurate, but seems counterintuitive to me. After all, a proper Rip should not set up to convert black only text to 4/c. It would be nice if in addition to selecting the simulation profile (presumed "source" profile) that one would also have the option to preserve CMYK numbers as well.
 

michaelejahn

Well-known member
This is accurate, but seems counterintuitive to me. After all, a proper Rip should not set up to convert black only text to 4/c. It would be nice if in addition to selecting the simulation profile (presumed "source" profile) that one would also have the option to preserve CMYK numbers as well.

A RIP ( or a workflow ) could be set up to do all sorts of different things with black type - for example - you could preserve an overprint setting, change an overprint setting - and you might even apply an overprint setting to all type below 18 point ( for example ) and remove that overprint setting ( or ignore it ) for type over 18 point and then trap.

I share this because - well - what would you expect Acrobat to do Michael ? Which printer - or which IP - would you 'tie' that app to, and how would you accomplish that ?

I do not think it is counter intuitive at all - just because you think black should stay as black ink only in offset ( for example ) has no meaning whatsoever to some inkjet printing system that might add colorant to make that black darker ( since the black ink only would be too light )

Preserve numbers - in the PDF - which numbers, and to what RIP settings - sorry, not that simple !
 

meddington

Well-known member
Preserve numbers - in the PDF - which numbers, and to what RIP settings - sorry, not that simple !

If we're talking PDFX1a files (and I believe we are) than having the capability to preserve the original CMYK, without conversion, seems logical to me. Also, "Simulation" is an ambiguous term to use here as well. When dealing with an inkjet proofing Rip for example, the Source (input), destination (output) and Simulation profiles may all be independent...and a "simulation profile" in this case is neither the source or the destination, but In Acrobat X1, simulation apparently is meant to mean "presumed source" profile. Not intuitive IMO, particularly from Adobe, who has had a competent and intuitive softproofing module built in to Photoshop for a decade plus.
Just saying.
 

leonardr

Well-known member
If we're talking PDFX1a files (and I believe we are) than having the capability to preserve the original CMYK, without conversion, seems logical to me.

It may seem logical, but it is not in keeping with the standard. Our goal has always been to be the most standards-compliant product out there, when it comes to PDF.


Also, "Simulation" is an ambiguous term to use here as well.

Agreed. It's an old term from the days before we even bothered handling PDF/X in Acrobat. We'll give that some thought about a rename for the future...

In Acrobat X1, simulation apparently is meant to mean "presumed source" profile.

Actually, it always means the profile of the (simulated) output device. (aka the "destination profile")

For "regular" PDF, the simulation profile would also be used as the source for untagged colors in that colorspace (in lieu of the Working Space profile of that colorspace).

In the case of a PDF/X (all flavors) file, the source profile will always be the OutputIntent profile of the PDF/X file - as per the standard.


Not intuitive IMO, particularly from Adobe, who has had a competent and intuitive softproofing module built in to Photoshop for a decade plus.

Softproofing single colorspace(!!) raster images, as Photoshop does, is a cakewalk compared to proper color management of a compound file format consisting of text, rasters and vectors in 11 different possible colorspaces (aka PDF).

Just saying.

Me too :)
 

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