[EN] Error with the bleedbox or trimbox

What is it about?

Ads need to have the right geometric measurement in order to be printed. The final visible size is called final size or net size.

It is necessary in the printing process that for ads that are placed to the edge of the page a small additional area is included in order to be on the safe side in case the cut of the page is slightly off target which would result in small white lines where no information is being printed. These require, depending on the printing process, 3 to 5 mm per side.

Additionally it is necessary according to ISO 15930 standards to save the geometric information in special tags within the pdf file (trimbox, bleedbox or mediabox). Unfortunately some software producers don’t always implement the standard in older software versions.

What does this have to do with the boxes?

The exact description of the sizes are being displayed in the objects „trimbox“, „bleedbox“ and „mediabox“, which consist of two two-dimensional coordinates (x1/x2/y1/y2). Together, beginning with the coordinate jump (0/0/0/0/), they form a virtual rectangle (boxes). From these coordinates the length of the border can be obtained.

  • Trimbox: the net size of the pdf is called „trimbox“.
  • Bleedbox: the net size including the bleed is also called the gross size. The gross size is being labeled „bleedbox“ within the pdf.
  • Mediabox: The mediabox kind of like „pdf-paper“. It includes the bleedbox which in turn includes the trimbox. The mediabox contains crop marks, file information, signatures, etc.
  • Cropbox: Mask frame. Not really relevant.
  • Artbox: Antiquated concept of the trimbox. Is not being used by modern software.

Do I need to indicate the boxes?

Yes. The international standard ISO-15930 (PDF/X), which regulates the exchange of printing material in the graphic industry, declares that at least trimbox or artbox, as well as bleedbox and mediabox have to be contained. Secondly they have to be placed correctly.

How do I find out which size is required?

Please check the height and width of the size of the magazine that is required. You can look it up by checking the technical information.

It is possible to receive an error message because of a faulty bleed. Make sure to check if your ad has enough bleed to be on the safe side.

What do I need to if the size is wrong?

Look into the DUON info area to make sure which size is required.

Open within Adobe Indesign File > Document parameters and the field Manage document. With the fields width and height you determine the border length of the trimbox (final size).

With the button More options you can view the options regarding bleed and the info area. Enter the necessary values and click on OK (note: use the symbol of chain in order to enter differing values).

If you use individual settings when exporting you need to check the box use bleed settings of the document in order to activate the settings of the document.

Furthermore we recommed not to use any printing marks (crop marks, bleed marks etc.). All this information is being saved „in the background“ anyway.

In case you still want to use printing marks please note that the value Versatz is set on 5mm.

Where do I find the trimbox, bleedbox and mediabox in the PDF?

You can check the corresponding coordinates and the calculated border length of the PDF yourself:

  1. Open the PDF in Adobe Acrobat
  2. Open the window preflight (Advanced > print production > preflight)
  3. Make a random preflight by double clicking below the header profile anywhere.
  4. Open click on „+“ in the window results and then follow the path overview > page > page 1 > page information.

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