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Definition - What does Prepress mean?

Prepress refers to the collective processes that transform and prepare a computer-generated print layout for final printing (at printing press). It includes all the processes a printing device/personnel must take to transform a computer-designed file into a print-ready file.

Techopedia explains Prepress

Prepress is a term used primarily in the digital printing industry. It defines all the processes that occur after a graphic designer has created a design file until it is ready for printing or is printed. The prepress process is necessary, as a computer-generated print layout may appear different in alignment, format and color if it is directly printed on a press machine. Prepress typically involves the following processes:

  • Checking and verifying the design file for format, fonts and resolution
  • Matching the computer-generated color codes with print color codes
  • Aligning and formatting the layout for print
  • Creating a sample or proof of the design before it goes into bulk printing
  • Printing plates for offset printing
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