Tip of the Week: Using the Ink Manager
This InDesign tip on using the Ink Manager was sent to Tip of the Week email subscribers on February 22, 2018.
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Before you export a PDF file for a commercial print job, you should click the Ink Manager button (in the Output pane of the PDF Export dialog box or the Separations Preview panel menu).
If you have spot colors in your document, they’ll show up here in the list of inks.
If you’re paying your printer extra to print special spot color plates, like varnishes or metallic inks, just leave those alone. But if you didn’t mean for them to be here, then turn on both the All Spots to Process and the Use Standard Lab Values for Spots checkboxes, so you’ll get the best possible conversion to CMYK.
Lab is a color space that describes what colors look like to the human eye. So by choosing Lab here, you’re telling InDesign to keep the look of the color as close as possible to the original, even though you’re converting it to CMYK.
Also, if you ever come across a situation where you know a spot color was used in a document, but it’s not showing up in the Separations Preview panel, check the Ink Manager. The spot color was probably mapped to process there.