General Question

Ltryptophan's avatar

What are the major file formats that most graphic designers would require to make letter head, business cards, t-shirts and the like from your images?

Asked by Ltryptophan (10241points) June 7th, 2010

I have found a graphic designer who wants to help with my logo. I will need the logo for all my materials. What software formats should I make sure the designer provides before I use them that will keep my logo readily accessible for professional printing for years to come?

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9 Answers

Ltryptophan's avatar

found this, it seems like the main types are vector, and pixel.

Corel (.cds) being the chief example of vector I think, and pixels as .jpg

cazzie's avatar

Are you working in Apple or PC? Find out what program they use to create the image.

Ltryptophan's avatar

Well, I want to have everything universally formatted.

cazzie's avatar

Well, Bill Gates and Steve Jobs kind of made sure there was no such thing as ‘Universal’.

But if you know what program they are going to create the logo in, and what programs you’re going to use to make your letter head, etc… you’ll know what kind of image you need. It won’t be universal. You could use a small sized .bmp or .tiff file if you’re going to import the image into Word. I made a cheap version of letterhead once by just creating a header on a template with the image and info on it, just in MSWord.

But that same image won’t be suitable to say.. print tshirts with. They’ll want a large vector image. If your graphic designer is using Photoshop, you can get the image in several different sizes and types of files, according to what you’re going to use it for. Usually, people working in Apple products can convert some types of images for their use. I can’t open some types of Apple image files on my PC. They ended up sending me a .png file, that my windows image program could change into a .jpeg file.

I have a few different forms of my current logo now… a small version that I can upload onto the net.. a larger version so that I could have it printed onto a custom apron, and even one in ‘negative, just for fun.

Good luck!

Mitchell_Lewis's avatar

Graphic designer here.

A vector .ai is an absolute must.
A vector .ai with the text outlined is an absolute must.
A 300dpi large .jpg in CMYK is a must (for print display)
A 300dpi large .jpg in RGB is a must (for computer display)
A .pdf is a must.

If your designer doesn’t know how to supply you with all of the above, you need to find a new graphic designer. Those are industry standards. These are all universal formats. You don’t need any special program to open a .jpg, .pdf can be opened in adobe acrobat reader, and while you won’t be able to open a .ai without Adobe Illustrator (an expensive design program) it is a need-to-have for passing on the logo or design to any other graphic designer or printer.

PupnTaco's avatar

Adobe Illustrator EPS or AI for logos. Convert text to outlines & save back to CS3 as a courtesy to those who haven’t updated to CS5 yet.

NRO's avatar

PDF is the easiest all printers can do it—pdf with the whole thing, logo, text, layout
if just the design AT eps best, hi res tif or jpg or png ok
most printers can handle Indesign or PhotoShop ir Adobe Illustrator

BuzzTatom's avatar

I own a printing company. www.odeecompany.com just for reference. Here would be my suggestion. Because different printers have different types of RIP’s one will deal with one file better than the other and have certain weaknesses. All very good suggestions above and most would probably work for most printing companies. We always ask for a print ready pdf and the native file in whatever program you created it in. Why? Let’s say there is an issue with the pdf such as no bleed built in or something like that. Normally, then we can go back to the native file if done in one of the major graphics programs and fix it very easily for you. Then make our own pdf of the fixed file. This does not include changing your art since a printer should not do that but if you have a minor issue it saves everyone the hassle of going back to you and you having to go back to the designer. You should also keep a copy of those files as well. Don’t just give to the printer. I am being very simplistic in my answer for space considerations but this should take care of you 99% of the time. Hope that helps.

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