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In this movie, we're going to further modify our action by adding a step that converts the image to the CMYK color space, and then turns around and saves that version of the image to yet another folder. That way we protect the layered RGB version of the image that contains the Adjustment layer as well as the two Smart Filters. So, first thing you want to do is make sure Convert for Prepress is selected, and then click on the Record button to add more steps to the end of the action.
Now you can convert the image to CMYK by going up to the Image menu, choosing Mode and choosing CMYK Color. But that's going to give you a series of three irritating alert messages, and it's not really the best way to work. So what I'd like you to do instead is go up to the Edit menu and choose this command way down here, Convert to Profile. And now at this point, if you're working with a printer who has provided you with a CMYK Profile, you can select that from this Destination Space list.
If not, just go ahead and select Working CMYK, which is going to be up here way at the top of the list. Here in the States by default that's going to give you US Web Coated SWOP V2. And then later if you do get a profile from your printer, you can switch it out here inside the action. You want to make sure that the engine is set to Adobe ACE, and that's by default. Intent can be Relative Color Metric or Perceptual, it's totally your choice. Perceptual does a better job of maintaining smooth gradients.
Relative Color Metric is going to do a better job of hanging on to the actual colors, but it's unlikely that you're going to notice a difference. Then make sure Use Black Point Compensation is turned on. I like to turn Dither off, and that way, if I have any flat areas of color inside my image, I'm not introducing a dither pattern. And finally, you want to turn on this last check box, Flatten Image to Preserve Appearance. Because otherwise, you're going to still have an Adjustment layer that's not going to work properly.
Then go ahead and click OK, and you will create a single merge layer over here inside the Layers panel, which is not the same thing as a flat image by the way. We need this image to be absolutely flat if we're going to hand it off to either a designer to put inside of an InDesign document, for example, or if we're going to hand it off directly to a printer. And to make it flat, go up to the Layer menu and choose Flatten Image. Or, if you loaded Dkeys, you can press that keyboard shortcut of Mash Your Fist A, and then you'll end up with a flat background here inside the Layers panel.
All right, now of course we want to save this image to a new location, so go up to the File menu and choose the Save As command. And then, back up to the actions folder, in which you'll see this sub folder called CMYK flat for print. And again, that's just a placeholder folder for you, it doesn't have anything in it yet. And so go ahead and double-click on it. And instead of saving to the PSD format, go ahead and switch to TIFF. And the reason is pretty much as simple as that's how it's done.
When you're sending out CMYK images, both Prepress professionals and designers expect TIFF files. Then go ahead and click on the Save button. And here inside the TIFF options dialog box, make sure LZW is turned on to apply Loss List Compression. And then you leave the other options alone. This one you don't want to mess with. And Byte Order can actually be either IBM PC or Macintosh. Now I'll click OK in order to save off that file. All right, we're done recording the action, so you can click on the Stop button or press the Esc key.
And now let's try out the action on this other file that I've got open. And what I'm going to do here is just to make sure everything's the way it should be, because I'm seeing a little asterisk after the file name up here in the Title tab. So I'll go up to the File menu and choose the Revert command, just to make sure everything's exactly the way it wants to be. Now, you don't want to play the entire action on this file because it'll ruin it. Because the first portion of the action, all these steps right here, have all ready been performed. So instead you just want to click on this guy, convert to Pro File Current Document.
And if you troll that open, you'll see that's where we made the CMYK image. And then Shift-Click on the Save Steps. So just those last three steps. And then click on the Play button in order to play them off, and we'll end up with this version of the file right here. Now again, it's hard to tell if the action totally worked. We can see that we have CMYK files up here in the title tabs but we don't know if they got saved after the right folder. So just to confirm go up to the File menu and choose Browse in Bridge once again, and then switch from this RBG layer subfolder to this CMYK Flat for Print folder.
And sure enough, you should have, if you're working right along with me, a couple of TIFF files. One for and one for my changes so far. All right, so by now we've managed to create an action that prepares an image for not only a local printer but for Prepress as well. In the next movie, we'll use this action to batch process an entire folder full of images.
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