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russbrett
01-22-2015, 10:45 PM
Need some help.

My comic is done and I'm trying to create a PDF version. But it keeps coming in too big (170 MB for 23 pages).

I MUST be doing something wrong. I have several other PDF comics that are WAY more pages, that are WAY smaller (ex: Comixtribe's The Red Ten - 155 pages, 38 MB).

Here's what I'm starting with (using Adobe Photoshop Elements 10):

My letterer sent me all 23 pages in Tiff format, 2025 x 3150, 300 DPI, CMYK. The Tiffs are all in the 9-14 MB range.

First, Photoshop automatically converted the files to RGB.
Then I reduced the Image Size to 100 DPI and saved it as a Tiff, LZW Compression. This reduced the Tiff files sizes to 6-8 MB each.

Then I re-saved each file as a PDF (JPG Compression, Low Image Quality).
The PDF files are all in the 6-8 MB range, and when bound together (using PDFBinder) clocks in at a whopping 170 MB.

ANY help to bring this thing down to a more reasonable size (without losing image quality - I tried using PDFCompress, which worked awesome (5 MB), but I lost too much resolution in the process) would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks, guys.

bramjm
01-23-2015, 12:25 AM
Think you'd be better off assembling it all in a page layout program it's what they're for and exporting it to PDF. Saving PDFs out of Photoshop's an awful lot of extra work and, I'm figuring, not giving you the control you need over file size.

Stewart Vernon
01-23-2015, 12:28 AM
One thing that jumps out at me... you say you have 300dpi files in the 9-14MB range that when converted to 100dpi are only 6-8MB in size.

Without doing anything else, reducing the DPI by 2/3 I would expect the file sizes to reduce by 2/3 as well... so you should be at 3-5MB, or close to half what you are talking about.

I don't know how the Comix Tribe PDF you are talking about was made... but when you are starting with bitmap (TIFF) images, there isn't a whole lot more to do to reduce file size without reducing quality.

IF you were working with vector-art, then that scales without loss of resolution and would result in much smaller file sizes.

Some of the answer here is going to depend on your endgame.

IF you are working on a PDF intended for digital distribution and viewable on a computer then you might not need as high of a DPI as you would for print-intended delivery.

I would have to do some experiments myself... but the complexity of the bitmap art (especially when dealing with color vs black & white) determines how far lossless compression can take you. The more complex the art, the less it will compress without loss of detail.

russbrett
01-23-2015, 12:35 AM
Think you'd be better off assembling it all in a page layout program it's what they're for and exporting it to PDF. Saving PDFs out of Photoshop's an awful lot of extra work and, I'm figuring, not giving you the control you need over file size.

What are some good "page layout programs?"

One thing that jumps out at me... you say you have 300dpi files in the 9-14MB range that when converted to 100dpi are only 6-8MB in size.

Without doing anything else, reducing the DPI by 2/3 I would expect the file sizes to reduce by 2/3 as well... so you should be at 3-5MB, or close to half what you are talking about.

I don't know how the Comix Tribe PDF you are talking about was made... but when you are starting with bitmap (TIFF) images, there isn't a whole lot more to do to reduce file size without reducing quality.

IF you were working with vector-art, then that scales without loss of resolution and would result in much smaller file sizes.

Some of the answer here is going to depend on your endgame.

IF you are working on a PDF intended for digital distribution and viewable on a computer then you might not need as high of a DPI as you would for print-intended delivery.

I would have to do some experiments myself... but the complexity of the bitmap art (especially when dealing with color vs black & white) determines how far lossless compression can take you. The more complex the art, the less it will compress without loss of detail.

The PDF is purely for digital viewing. The comic book is fully colored.

And I can't say why the file size didn't reduce more from 300 DPI to 100 DPI. Just as an example, Page 1 dropped from 9 MB to 6 MB.

Thanks for the responses.

bramjm
01-23-2015, 12:58 AM
What are some good "page layout programs?"


InDesign (http://www.adobe.com/products/indesign.html)'s pretty much the current standard. QuarkXPress (http://www.quark.com/Products/QuarkXPress/#1) is, it seems, still around in some form.

Stewart Vernon
01-23-2015, 04:19 AM
Obviously it's hard to say for sure, without knowing the kind of files you are dealing with or what exactly you are doing...

But I had a 300dpi scan of an image that was about 12MB in size as a TIFF. I opened it in Photoshop and changed to 100dpi and it dropped to about 1.8MB in size as a TIFF.

Complexity of artwork creates a variance of how much compression (I was using LZW mode in the TIFFs) so you wouldn't always expect a nearly 90% reduction in size from 300dpi to 100dpi... but I certainly would expect greater differences than you noted.

I'm wondering if you aren't actually fully reducing to 100dpi like you think you are in your initial steps.

walterostlie
01-23-2015, 08:03 AM
Does the program you use to bind the PDFs have a 'reduce size' option. I've used Adobe Acrobat before and it has this option. It is under the 'Document' menu and is called 'Reduce File Size'.

You could also check if you 'File' menu as any export options or save for web. You can also check the Help menu and search for 'reduce' or 'file size'.

DaveyDouble
01-23-2015, 08:35 AM
2025 x 3150?

How many screens do you know with that resolution?

Especially tablets?

I'm assuming "Fuck Guided View" by the way. iPad Retina is only 2048 x 1536.

300dpi is a print thing. The dpi of a digital file, meant to be viewed on a digital device is irrelevant. Matching the destination resolution is the key.

superggraphics
01-23-2015, 09:09 AM
I make PDF'S for Comixology submitter's all the time professionally... Shoot me a PM here or post your contact info... G

B-McKinley
01-23-2015, 11:00 AM
Reducing the dpi but keeping the image the same (pixel) dimensions has no effect on file size because it's still the same number of pixels. The size reduction in this case was from changing CMYK to RGB - which would be about 25%. Plus TIFFs tend to be LZW compressed by default so since that's lossless compression you won't get it any smaller by resaving it.

Don't make a PDF of each individual page and assemble those into another PDF. Each PDF file contains a lot of hidden file information that would be repeated. If you don't have a page layout program that can create the PDF, save each page as a high quality jpg and then assemble a PDF from those files directly.

russbrett
01-23-2015, 04:30 PM
Thanks for all the help, everyone.

I got it down to 35 MB (which is still too big, but I'll take it).

Pretty sure it's my graphic design illiteracy that's the majority of the problem.

maverick
02-10-2015, 01:23 PM
The answer to the question is: Adobe Acrobat

/end thread

L Jamal
02-10-2015, 02:41 PM
Acrobat CC is a free 30 day trial.
Download it you should be able to reduce that further.

khperkins
02-10-2015, 07:48 PM
Scribus (http://scribus.net/canvas/Scribus) is a free, open source, and makes pdfs just fine, if you can't afford Indesign.