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Export with flatten option


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Is there a way to export a indesign file from the FP plug-in with the Flatten option?


I have a mail piece that has a green background with yellow letter in front of it. Those letters have a drop shadow behind them. When i export the piece using the FP plug-in, it exports fine and brings up the pdf and the define data source window. But finally when i go to compose it into ppml, it says "Transparency Detected-The image may not print correctly in postscript based output." in the output log.

When this happens my piece does not bleed at all. So i can't use it. FUBAR

I made a work around where i exported my piece with the yellow text into a separate pdf file and flattened it. Then i placed it back into indesign and added my variable text frames. This solved the transparency message and my bleed problem.


Do i have to go through that flatten work around every time i have a new piece? Or is there a faster way using FP?


Thanks Guys

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  • 3 weeks later...

I'm looking for an answer to this question as well. Last Friday I attended the advanced FP online class, but due to technical difficulties (audio) I only caught the tail end of Eric talking about custom PDF settings in InDesign. It "looked" like he was suggesting that the end user could define his own PDF presets which the plug-in would use when generating a PDF, but I can't find any way to do that.


Like Jordan, I found that the PDF produced with the default FP plug-in looked great in Acrobat, but after composing in FP (we tried both the JLYT and PDF output options), the transparent objects were opaque and did not bleed (the non transparent objects had correct 9 pt bleeds).


I love the idea of setting up our font style, size and position in InDesign, but if the transparency issue can't be resolved, we will have to continue to export PDFs using our own settings, and add variable data blocks in Acrobat instead.

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What I usually do is separate the variable items from the static items into two layers in InDesign. I then turn off the variable layer and export the file as a PDF using the PDF/X-1a:2001 setting (sometimes converting all spots to process is necessary as well in the output tab) and then place that PDF back into my InDesign file in a 3rd layer called "flattened" or something. Then I turn off the static layer and turn on my variable layer and export my file to FP. Not sure if that's what you want to hear but it's a fairly quick and dirty workaround that doesn't require me to isolate the transparent objects.
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Whenever you are composing to any postscript based output such as VPS,JLYT,PS,PPML you ALWAYS want to ensure

that your artwork of your piece, i.e. graphics, logos, are flattened prior to creating the PDF to eliminate any

rasterization or downsampling of these elements.

Check your PDF presets to ensure that they are set optimally.

The Indesign PDF presets should have settings with emphasis in Transparency Flattening, No Downsampling, High Quality.

If you are composing to a PDF output, then this would not be an issue. However, when composing to the ppml or any other postscript based

format, we need to ensure that the pdf generated from the design program have these settings applied prior to export with FusionPro.

Having said that, have the user select in Indesign the following options:

File>>PDF Export Presets>>Define.

Compression: Automatic

Set the "Color Images" to "No Downsampling", Quality set to "High"

Under enable "Transparency Flattening".

This should correct the problem. They can also choose to use the "PDF Optimizer" tool in Acrobat(Professional) which will allow them to specify

these settings as well using Adobe Distiller.

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