Proofing Options

While we do our best to ensure that every project is done right, only you know your project well enough to make sure all the elements are in place. Different types of proofs are available and discussed below so you can choose the proof that fits your needs best. We urge you to take the proofing phase seriously and check every document carefully. Once you have signed off on a final proof, you are giving us authorization to proceed with printing. After you have given us the approval to proceed, we will not re-print your job for any error you did not notice.

Included in the price of all items is an electronic proof (unless otherwise noted). Electronic proofs are not intended to be accurate for color. In fact, we can safely say that the color won't match the printed piece you receive. If accurate colors are important to you, please read about the various hard copy proofs available. If you need further explanation, please contact our customer service department. offers two electronic proofing options and three hard copy proof options to meet the needs of a wide range of projects. Each of these options are explained below.

Electronic Proofs

Electronic proofs are digital facsimiles of your project sent to you online. We offer two electronic proof options:

PDF: PDFs (Portable Document Format) are files created in Adobe Acrobat Distiller and readable with Adobe Acrobat Reader. PDFs are rapidly becoming the industry standard for file transfer and are our preferred format. Color fidelity of PDF files is affected by monitor calibration, lighting and use of Pantone® colors (Pantone® colors do not always appear as true on your screen). Therefore the color you see on screen may not appear as they do in print. However, PDFs provide a reasonable means for checking the accuracy of your files for print. If color accuracy is imperative for you project, you will want to select a hard copy proof. However, please be aware that there is an extra charge for a hard copy proof. Adobe Acrobat runs on both IBM and Macintosh platforms and can be downloaded for free from

JPEG: This digital format can be opened by any Internet browser. We'll send you the address where your JPEG proof resides on our website. Again, monitor calibration, lighting and use of Pantone® colors may affect color fidelity. If color accuracy is imperative for your project, you will want to select a hard copy proof. However, please be aware that there is an extra charge for a hard copy proof.

Hard Copy Proofs

There are a variety of technologies used for producing hard copy proofs at various levels of color accuracy. We have divided the technologies we use into three basic categories: low, medium and high.

Low: Generally, we use a dylux, or low quality hard copy proof. A dylux is useful when you need to make sure that pages or components of your design align properly. It is not usable for proofing colors. automatically includes a digital dylux for books and catalogs because it is presented in book format and shows you the page sequence and page layout for the project.

Medium: Generally, we use Epson proofs or an equivalent for this level of proofing. Epson proofs are more accurate for color than PDF or JPEG proofs, which are viewed on your monitor. These proofs are especially useful for CMYK images, such as photographs, but are less accurate for illustrations, solids and specific Pantone® colors. does not guarantee that Epson proofs will match press sheet color. We only recommend them as an approximation for how your final job will print. Epson proofs are an additional cost.

High: We use a number of different technologies for the high quality proofs, such as Matchprint, waterproofs and Pictro proofs. Matchprints and waterproofs are created with the same film used to burn printing plates. As a result, they are a highly accurate method for proofing color. Pictro proofs are similar in quality to Matchprints and waterproofs, except that they are not made from negatives. Pictro proofs are selected when the press for your job uses computer-to-plate technology. All of these proofing techniques provide you with a high resolution product that can be used for determining color accuracy and are ideal for high-end four color projects. All proofs in this category are not included in our pricing, but are itemized separately in the Calculator if you choose this option.

Delivery of Proofs

Electronic proofs (PDF or JPEG) are accessible to you online. They are viewed from a designated site on our server (we'll send you the URL when the proof is ready for review). Hard copy proofs will be sent to you via overnight delivery service. Mail us back your approved proofs as soon as possible so that we can begin printing. If you have corrections, you have two options: 1) you may make the corrections yourself and send us new files. We will charge you $25 to process the files. 2) We can make the changes for you. We charge $75/hour for all corrections with a $25 minimum. If you want to see another proof, we can prepare one for you. Production for your job will not begin until we receive written sign off on the proof.

Tips for Selecting Your Proofing Option

What To Look For On A Proof

Attention to detail is the key to successful proofing. This checklist will help you make sure your checking your proofs thoroughly.