[OS X TeX] Preparation of illustrations for press

Bruno Voisin bvoisin at mac.com
Tue Mar 25 07:49:13 EDT 2008

Le 25 mars 08 à 11:16, Adam Fenn a écrit :

> I would some advice on how best to prepare illustrations for press.  
> I note that publishers such as Springer typically recommend minimum  
> resolutions of  300, 600, 1200 dpi for
> halftones, combination art and line drawings respectively.
> So far I have a few full colour illustrations, approximately 10 x 15  
> cm, scanned at 800 dpi and saved as pdfs in photoshop. This produces  
> quite large image  files, around 24MB, and both TeXshop preview and  
> Acrobat Reader take a long time todisplay these pages (I realise  
> that I can use draft mode when working on the text).
> Is this the best way to prepare illustrations for press? Should I  
> save them in a format other than pdf?

Does it get better if you save as pngs at the same resolution in  
Photoshop? pdf is primarily intended for vector content, using it for  
bitmap content may be the culprit here.

Also, Adobe applications notoriously produce huge files and assume  
huge computer resources. They are also generally not well optimized  
for the Mac. Did you try Gimp instead? (I'm no Gimp user myself, so I  
don't know whether the result will get smaller with it.)

> Is it normal for pdf files with lots of high resolution  
> illustrations to be so slow to display or is this more an issue with  
> the amount of memory on my computer?

Yes to the first question, and to the second I think it's rather the  
VRAM (the RAM on the graphic card) which is involved. I would  
recommend 128 MB at least, 256 MB for normal use and 512 MB if you use  
graphics extensively.

I'm writing this on a MacBook which has no VRAM, a part (64 MB) of the  
main RAM is used instead. As a result, display of images of often a  
pain. Slowness in displaying any single web page comes from this, I  

By contrast, my other Mac at work is a MacPro with 256 MB VRAM. As a  
result, display of web pages is practically instantaneous and  
processing large graphic files in Illustrator works with no crashes.

A similar experience to yours: http://tug.org/pipermail/xetex/2008-March/009106.html

Hope this helps,

Bruno Voisin

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