Convert 4c type in PDF with Acrobat?

FullPro

New member
I am having problems with camera-ready ads that have been made into PDFs and have 4-color black text. Is there a way to convert the text to 100% black only and keep it as text (PS fonts).

I think I can do it with a fixup setting in a custom prepress check for text on more than one plate (and total ink of > 250 or something), but i'm not positive it will work.

I can also see opening in Illustrator and changing text objects to 100K, but this would have to be done object by object, no?

We have a fairly ad-hoc workflow and have to deal with files created with all kinds of nutty settings and processes. I don't have any add-on tools like PitStop, just the usual CS3 and Quark 5&6, and Acrobat 8. on PC.
 

MacDaddy

Well-known member
Not for sure how to do it using Acrobat Pro, really never looked. But you can open a pdf in Adobe Illustrator.
And then fix it their.
 

mattbeals

Well-known member
Callas pdfToolbox has a button that fixes four color blacks. Not all of them mind you, but many of them. If you have a copy of PitStop Pro then you can also do this pretty easily with an action list or global change. Both tools work well for building a running list of colors that you want to map/change. There aren't any "fixups" in Acrobat that I remember seeing that will let you map/change/fix specific colors.
 

steesh

New member
You could open in Illustrator, select one of the objects, select menu, same fill colour then adjust using the CMYK slider? Opening in Illustrator may cause another set of problems tho..
 

Dov Isaacs

Well-known member
BAD, BAD, BAD Idea!!!

BAD, BAD, BAD Idea!!!

Not for sure how to do it using Acrobat Pro, really never looked. But you can open a pdf in Adobe Illustrator.
And then fix it their.

Very BAD idea!

On behalf of Adobe Systems Incorporated ...

Adobe Illustrator is not, repeat not, repeat yet again absolutely not a general purpose PDF file editor. The only PDF files that can be safely and fully edited in Adobe Illustrator are PDF files created by Adobe Illustrator via the save as PDF function and for which the retain editability option is specified. In such files, private data is added to allow such safe editing. You also must have all the fonts used in the PDF also installed on your system - Illustrator does not use the fonts embedded in the PDF (if any). For all other PDF files, editing in Adobe Illustrator may result in font changes, color changes, and content loss. Adobe Illustrator only supports a subset of the PDF file format and doesn't support mixed color spaces.

In the example given, the rich black likely came from a PDF file generated from an RGB application and fixing it in Illustrator may yield even more problems!

- Dov
 

Lukas Engqvist

Well-known member
Color converter works fine, there is a preserve blacks option. You can also use it to just convert text objects. Pitstop has more control over the selected colour range that you convert.
 

Stephen Marsh

Well-known member
I think I can do it with a fixup setting in a custom prepress check for text on more than one plate (and total ink of > 250 or something), but i'm not positive it will work.

I found a "text uses rich black" check... but where is the similar out of the box fix-up for this check? I am still looking into the settings for a custom preflight or fix-up.

BTW, this may sound like a strange question - but are you *sure* that the black text is really 4C and not K only? Have you used the object inspector, or just the separations preview? (there is a good reason why I ask this question) Why is text 4C, why would a document creator do this? What program is the PDF creator? (found in document properties) Is it some weird PDF conversion tool? Is somebody using the wrong settings to convert an RGB PDF to CMYK?

What rich black values do you have? Are they consistent? Is black 100% or lesser?


Best,

Stephen Marsh
 
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MacDaddy

Well-known member
I understand Illustrator is not a all purpose pdf editor. But if you need to fix this issue with rich black text I have found it to be a reliable fix. To avoid font issues open a new Illustrator file place the pdf in. have it selected click object, flatten transparencies, select High quality and check outline fonts. Then you can select the troubled text and make it 100K. Hope this helps.
 

Dov Isaacs

Well-known member
Still NOT Recommended

Still NOT Recommended

I understand Illustrator is not a all purpose pdf editor. But if you need to fix this issue with rich black text I have found it to be a reliable fix. To avoid font issues open a new Illustrator file place the pdf in. have it selected click object, flatten transparencies, select High quality and check outline fonts. Then you can select the troubled text and make it 100K. Hope this helps.

You are very lucky that you haven't ruined your jobs. Your workflow is strongly not recommended by Adobe.

- Dov
 

MacDaddy

Well-known member
I get it it's not recommended. But it can work. And if adobe does not recommend why don't they have a fix in PDF distiller to fix it.
 

Lukas Engqvist

Well-known member
The question is should there be a fix for everything or is it better to invest a bit of effort to get people to do things right at the source? I think very few people use distiller now days anyway, and there are tools like calas or pitstop that can handle the problem fairly automatically. You can make all type to grey in an action in Acrobat, and you can use colour converter to fix text.

In short there are tools to fix problems, I don't think that it is just to add too much critique at the problem. Also I am sure that there are some patent issues that don't allow Adobe to incorporate functions that plugin applications deal with (such as converting a range of colours from one colour system when in text objects to a specific colour, black or otherwise). The price for the software is not outrageous, especially not if you compare it to the hours it will save you and the quality you gain. (Pitstop actions can even be incorporated in some workflows such as agfa apogee prepress, and I am sure others)

Think of it this way: if the suite can solve all your problems where would your companys unique selling point be ;)
OP says he has the "usual"... today the usual means having what you need to juggle a PDF, investing in good PDF touchup tools means you can save on having to upgrade all the other software, if you are in a tight spot to keep up with development.
 
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Dov Isaacs

Well-known member
Nope, Not the Issue!

Nope, Not the Issue!

I get it it's not recommended. But it can work. And if adobe does not recommend why don't they have a fix in PDF distiller to fix it.


It's not a matter of a fix in Distiller or any other component that creates PDF. As I explicitly noted in one of my earlier posts on this thread, Adobe Illustrator does not support the full PDF imaging models. There are many things you can do in PDF that have no analogy in Illustrator features and as such, Illustrator often either discards such features, does conversions (especially text and color space) that may be harmful to your career, or simply passes content through and doesn't allow any edit (and that's the best of the bad scenarios.

The trouble is that “it can work” is conditional and when it doesn't work, can cause major, expensive problems that might only be caught post-press! There are limited situations where, if you know exactly what is in the PDF file (or part of a PDF file), opening the PDF file (or part of the PDF file such as is done for the object touchup) may be useful, but not always and it may cause serious damage.

Believe me, the easiest thing for me would be to tell you without a care in the world to go ahead and use Illustrator as a general purpose PDF editor. On the other hand, we do have the experience at Adobe of seeing problems that our customers report due to such product misuse!

In terms of Distiller, Distiller itself only produces a subset of the PDF imaging model and is totally irrelevant to this discussion!

- Dov
 

abc

Well-known member
Or you could use RichBlackto100K.com - Convert Rich Black to 100K Black in your PDF Files, which is a quick website I've setup specifically for this purpose, it currently only works with PDF files and full rich black also known as registration black.

Indeed, I have to congratulate you. Your service took my perfectly good PDF file, rasterised it at 720dpi using Ghostscript and sent it back to me.
This is innovation of the highest order for the 20th Century. Can you fax me more details on it please....
 

Puch

Well-known member
No offense, but I think I'll pass on sending my customer's files to who-knows-where.

Now that's an interesting question. What if I create a 'swiss-army-knife' type PDF toolkit website (based on a heavyweight industry standard engine mentioned here), with 'green bar' SSL class security – would you use that?
 

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