Printers have plenty of unique business terms.
It is important to understand these terms to communicate effectively with the people who make your marketing products a reality.
This glossary explains some of the most common terms.
Offset Printing: This printing method transfers ink from a plate, to a rubber blanket, to the paper. It is the most cost-effective method to use when you need a lot of high quality prints.
Ink Jet Printing: This printing method uses computer-controlled nozzles to spray droplets of ink onto the paper. Many office printers are ink jet printers.
Vector Image: Vector images are made up of geometrical shapes and lines. They can be increased or decreased in size without affecting the finished quality of the image.
Raster Image: Raster images are made up of dots, or pixels. Changing the size of a raster image will visibly change the quality of the image.
Resolution: The resolution is usually measured in DPI (dots per inch). The higher the resolution of an image is, the more dots will be in a single area, resulting in a higher quality image. For best results, your image must be at 300 DPI/PPI (pixels per inch).
LPI: Lines per inch. This is the method used to measure resolution for screen printing and lithography.
Stock: Paper or material that is printed on.
Substrate: Any surface or material that is printed on.
Proof: The proof is a hard copy or pdf that allows the customer to view and approve the finished design before production begins.
Coating: A thin surface on the paper that provides the glossy surface. Stock is available as C1S (coating on one side), or C2S (coating on both sides). Printers can add additional coatings to provide protection and the desired finish. Some options for coatings are:
- Full UV coating
- Spot UV Coating
- Aqueous Coating
Color Gamut: Different color systems and devices (like computers), have limited color capabilities.
The color gamut is the entire range of hues that it is possible to create using a particular device or system.
This technique uses cyan, magenta, yellow and black to create a full range of printed colors.
It is also called CMYK, where K means Key (black).
4/0: Full color printing on the front side only. Nothing printed on the back.
4/1: Full color printing on the front side and grayscale or black on the back side.
4/4: Full color printing on both sides.
B & W: Black and White
Grayscale: An image made of different densities of black ink, creating various shades of gray on the page.
Bleed: Bleed occurs when an image or color extends past the trimmed edge of the paper. You must include bleeds if you donʼt want white borders on all four sides of your image.
Safe Area: This is the area where all essential elements of your design should be. Anything outside this area is at risk of being cut away.
Image Area: This is the part of the page that can be printed on. It is the total size of the sheet minus the gripper area.
Grippers: The metal fingers that hold and control the paper as it makes itʼs way through the printing press.
Alteration: Referred to as AA, this is also known as customer alteration or author alteration. This is any change that is made after the artwork or copy has been given to the printer, separator or service bureau.
EPS (Format): Encapsulated postscript file. This graphic file format from Adobe converts text and graphics into code that tells the printer to print at the highest resolution possible. EPS is also used by some in the printing industry to refer to envelopes.
For more information on these and other common printing terms, refer to the complete glossary located in the Help Center on JG Imprinters Wholesale Color site.