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FusionPro doesn't recognize trim box position


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I have an AppleScript I've written that crops a PDF down to the bleed box by making the media box and the crop box the same size as the bleed box. This works fine for most of my purposes except if I need to use the PDF with FusionPro. For some reason, FusionPro won't recognize the trim box after the AppleScript is run on the PDF. It appears to work off the bleed box. As an example, if I draw a text frame at x-5.25 and y-4, FusionPro will give the coordinates as x-5.125 and y-3.875.


Other apps such as InDesign correctly recognize the bleed and text boxes. PitStop correctly reports the dimensions and position of all the page boxes. Even FP Imposer correctly reports the document's dimensions and bleed, but it seems FusionPro doesn't recognize the text box after the document is altered. To be clear, the AppleScript is run before FusionPro is ever invoked with the document, i.e. the page boxes are not changed after FusionPro has been introduced into the equation.


I've tried changing the AppleScript to make the crop box the same size as the bleed box but leave the media box at its original size and also tried explicitly setting the trim box and bleed boxes in the script but neither of those alterations change the behavior in FusionPro.


Is there a way to get FusionPro to recognize the position of the trim box in these edited PDF files? Any help or ideas is greatly appreciated.

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FusionPro's frame coordinates are relative to the page's Trim Box, by definition. So if your Crop Box is different than your Trim Box, the numbers may seem off. But they're not incorrect. Nor is FusionPro failing to recognize the Trim Box. On the contrary, it is seeing the Trim Box, and using it as the origin for the frame coordinates.


We don't use the Crop Box for frame coordinates because it's not technically supposed to be used for anything print-related. All that should matter for printing are the Media and Trim boxes, which define where the content is placed onto a sheet (the Media) and where the finished product will be physically Trimmed (cut). The Bleed Box is kind of advisory, to tell the press that it doesn't need to put ink down outside that area, though it's almost always the same as the Media Box. The Crop Box is supposed to be only for on-screen (non-printed) rendering, such as by Acrobat. (There's also the Art Box, but almost nobody uses that. And if you're making output for "digital delivery", i.e. not intending to print it, then you shouldn't need any bleed at all, so all the boxes should all be the same.)


So, we use the Trim Box, i.e. the finished page size, as the basis for our variable frames.


The other thing to know is how these boxes are used when composing FusionPro output. This depends on the Bleed setting on the Imposition tab of the Composition Settings, or in FP Imposer if using imposition. FusionPro will set the Bleed Box of the output to the Trim box with that Bleed amount added to each side. FusionPro also sets the output Crop Box to match the Bleed Box. (We didn't always set the output Crop to the Bleed, but people complained when they didn't see the entire Bleed area when viewing the output in Acrobat. You can use the "Crop Pages" feature in Acrobat to see where the actual Trim Box is in the output.)


Generally, you want to set the Bleed for the output to be the same as the difference between the Trim and Bleed boxes on the PDF template page(s). If I do this with your PDF, i.e. set the Bleed to 9 pt (0.125 in), to match the template PDF, and compose, then the output PDF has its Bleed and Crop boxes set to 9.25 x 6.25 inches, with the Trim Box set to 9 x 6 inches, and any variable frame set at position 0,0 will be exactly at the top left corner of the Trim Box, i.e. the finished printed and trimmed output page.


I don't know exactly what comprise "most of my purposes except if I need to use the PDF with FusionPro," but for FusionPro, I definitely recommend not trying to mess with the Trim Box. Or, if you really do have to do that, I recommend setting the Crop Box to match the Trim Box, and setting the Bleed in the Composition Settings accordingly.


Since your PDF originates from InDesign, you can simply export a PDF from InDesign with the FusionPro palette, and the Bleed (difference between the Trim and Crop boxes) in the template, and the Bleed in the composition settings, will be set to whatever you specify at InDesign export time, and things should all work fine. That's what I recommend doing for a FusionPro workflow. If you don't have access to the original InDesign file, then I recommend leaving the PDF as-is, or at least keeping the Trim and Crop boxes of the template PDF in synch, and again, setting Bleed in the Composition Settings.

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