[pdftex] pdf(pdflatex) vs ps(dvips) documents, crop marks, images

Ross Moore ross at ics.mq.edu.au
Sat Dec 6 00:39:27 CET 2003

Hello Reinhard, Ulrich

On Fri, 5 Dec 2003, Reinhard Kotucha wrote:

> >>>>> "Ulrich" == Ulrich Dirr <ud at art-satz.de> writes:
>     > So I'm wondering what you mean by "I would not put the crop
>     > marks into the original document."?

> I use it to typeset my friend's thesis.  The advantage using pdfpages
> is that it is much faster and, in my opinion, simpler.

It's certainly an elegant method for putting crop-marks around an
already-typeset PDF. But, as you pointed-out yourself, hyperlinking
aspects are then lost.

With a package like crop.sty (and probably others also),
you can easily "have it all".

> It is faster because the text is not reformatted, only the pages from
> an already formatted file are extracted.

Reformatting the document is *not* an issue.
Most cropping packages act via the \output routine,
or by patching \shipout , so do not affect the typesetting at all.
Crop marks are added "outside" the normal page area.

To be able to see the crop-marks onscreen in the PDF, you may need
to enlarge \pdfpagewidth and \pdfpageheight and adjust the \hoffset
and \voffset . Otherwise the marks can be in the document,
but outside the viewing rectangle.

The package may even have options to do this for you.

I have a book, and individual book chapters, done this way.
The hyperlinking aspects are unaffected.

> It is easy to use because you do not have to change anything in the
> LaTeX file.

That should only require something in the preamble, which
can be reduced to just 1 or 2 lines to comment/uncomment
to turn off/on the cropping features.

> Up to now I needed crop marks only for this thesis, but if I would
> need it all the time I would instruct TeX to read the filename from
> the command line, so that I could say
>     pdflatex a5crop myfile.pdf


> Today I looked into an ancient version of the APLAC documentation I
> have at work and I think that there are many problems.  Simply scaling
> down a document using a 12pt font by sqrt(2) scales the font size to
> 8.5pt, which is too small.  But the docs contain a lot of verbatim
> environments so that it is impossible to reduce \textwitdh or enlarge
> \fontsize.

Yeah. Re-typesetting the information at a different font-size is a whole
different ball-game.

> To be able to decide which way is the best I need much more
> information about the current project.  Probably your approach is
> better.  But the question was how to scale an A4 document down to A5
> and apply crop marks.  I think that my approach is quite simple.

If I understand you correctly, you want to print the A4-formatted
document at A5 size (i.e. scaled by 1/sqrt 2 ~ 70.71% ).
That scale-down should be done at print-time; then the crop-marks
will mark the image of the scaled-down A4 within the printed job
(printed on larger paper: e.g. A4, B5, or letter).
It's then someone else's job to trim-off the excess paper,
or apply a mask if including your job within something else.

Hope this helps,

	Ross Moore

> Regards,
>   Reinhard
> --
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> Reinhard Kotucha			              Phone: +49-511-4592165
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