PDF font rendering problems
Posted: Thursday, October 10, 2013 12:53:10 PM
I'm working on some new designs that include a PDF of a logo I'd originally designed using a vector based software program. The logo consists of a small photo in its center, with text to both the left and right of the photo. I also have a small amount of arched text atop the image. The logos are being imported to Zazzle and applied to the pocket areas of t-shirts, with the PDF resized to horizontally fill the area pocket available.

However, when I look at the enlarged view of the product under design, the logo looks really terrible. The small photo looks fine, but the text is a full of low resolution jaggies and appears to have been rerendered as a fairly low res bitmap.

Has anyone encountered similar problems working with small PDFs? And, if so, what sort of strategy did you take to overcome the problem?

Posted: Thursday, October 10, 2013 1:28:27 PM
A little more data...

The original PDF is 7.25" x 1.15" (according to the PDF utility on my computer), but after it has been uploaded to my images an investigation of the Image Details of the file now stored to my image library shows dimensions of 256 x 256 pixels.

That seems wrong, but would account for the poorly rendered images I'm seeing when designing products using this file.
Posted: Thursday, October 10, 2013 2:54:37 PM
That's pretty tiny compared to what you started with. If I was making a 7.5" x 1.15" logo with vector software I would have made my artboard 2175pixels W x 345pixels H and outlined the text, then uploaded to Zazzle keeping it in the vector format. Maybe it's in the way you saved it as a PDF. I don't know what vector software you use, but in Illustrator it always asked formatting questions before saving as a PDF. Why convert it at all? That's really weird. It went from a rectangle to a circle. What?
Posted: Thursday, October 10, 2013 6:32:32 PM
The way I saved the PDF should be fine, as I've been able to use this file in all kinds of other applications and on a variety of different web sites. I sent a query to customer support, but the reply I got in return was less than helpful, almost entirely a cut'n'paste from the support page that describes supported file formats.

Curiously, the image at the center of the PDF IS about 256 x 256 (the rest of the PDF is text), so I have a feeling what I'm seeing is a bug whereby the upload mechanism "peeks" into PDFs (likely to seek out text Zazzle would otherwise not allow), finds the image within the PDF, and resizes the entire PDF to that size.

Sure wish there was an easier way to report bugs.
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