[Scribus] Resolution of PDF image

Peter Linnell scribusdocs
Thu May 27 19:48:55 CEST 2004

On Tue, 2004-05-25 at 23:41, Carol Kankelborg wrote:
> At 21:09 +0200 5/25/04, Craig Bradney wrote:
> >On Tue, 2004-05-25 at 20:51, Carol Kankelborg wrote:
> >> I am converting my audio tape collection to CD. iTunes allows you to print out
> >> a CD case insert for the front, but not for the part that fits under the plastic on the back
> >> and side of a standard jewel case.  I am working on a template in Scribus for the part.
> >> I am using iTunes to generate a PDF of the "CD jewel case insert: Text only (black and white)".
> >> This PDF prints out just fine and is a sharp black and white image.   In the template, I
> >> make an image box and put the iTunes-generated PDF into it.  I don't scale it since the song listing
> >> is the right size in the original, I just shift the position so the song listing is centered in the back panel
> >> of the CD case insert.  But, when I print or generate a PDF from scribus, the song listing is fuzzy. 
> >> It looks like it has been turned into gray-scale.  I've compared the iTunes PDF and the Scribus PDF
> >> at 800% and the difference is quite clear.
> >>
> >> Am I doing something wrong in this process?  What is causing the PDF to lose quality?
> >> (I am on Mac OS 10.2.8, Apple X11b3, and Scribus 1.1.6.)
> >
> >What resolution is the PDF you are including, what resolution are you
> >exporting at and what version of ghostscript is installed?
> >
> Craig,
> I don't know the resolution of the PDF that iTunes creates.  Is there any way to find out?
> For scribus, I was creating the PDF with 300 dpi resolution.  ghostscript is 8.00 (via fink).
> Your questions triggered a thought, and I tried generating the PDF from scribus with 600 dpi.
> The results were much better, but not quite as crisp as printing the iTunes PDF.  I showed the
> Scribus PDF printout to my husband who said, "It looks like an image."  By pulling a PDF file
> into an image box in Scribus, does it turn the contents into an image?  Does it matter if you
> have the whole PDF visible or if you effectively crop it (like I am doing) by having the image
> box size smaller than the PDF?  Is there any way around this?  Or am I just stuck with this
> problem because Scribus is doing what it is supposed to do -- treat the imported PDF as an image?

Yes, this is correct behavior.Thus, newer Ghostscript usually means
better import quality.

> Now for the oddities I discovered in this process.
> I printed out the file directly from Scribus.  Under "Options..." the resolution was 600 dpi.
> The iTunes PDF part of the printout was grayscaled and fuzzy, about the same as the PDF
> generated by Scribus at 300 dpi.  I also generated a PDF from Scribus with a resolution of 600 dpi.
> This took quite a while to generate.  I then printed out that PDF.  This printout differed from printing
> directly from Scribus in two ways.  First, the iTunes PDF part was much crisper -- not quite as crisp as
> printing the iTunes PDF directly but close.  Shouldn't the two outputs be the same?
> Second, the portion of some lines which extend into the
> margins in the Scribus file were printed.  I specified not to print stuff that was outside the margins, but
> the generated PDF ignored that directive.  Printing directly from Scribus obeyed it.  Is this a known bug
> or something I should report?
> Thanks for pointing me in the right direction.
> Carol


Could you send me both the iTunes PDF and your Scribus file? I would
like to see what is going on. 

I do know the PDF creation in OSX is not exactly the same quality as
more traditional distilling via Acrobat.Perhaps I can see if there is an
alternative to generate higher quality PDF from Scribus.


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