Layout to pdf doesn't reflect my map symbology!

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06-25-2018 06:31 AM
deleted-user-XBIblHRrwSU9
New Contributor

Hello,

I am having issues exporting layouts from ArcPro to pdf in terms of the colours and actual extents shown on the pdf varies from what's in my actual map. It looks like adobe puts a thicker outline around my geometries than I actually have in my project. Any idea why that happens? I can't find any Setting in Pro that would tackle this issue.

If I export the same layout to .png the output reflects my map, only when the output is a pdf..

Does anyone have any suggestions?

Thanks,

Simona

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MarcoBoeringa
MVP Regular Contributor

Are you using Adobe Reader to view your PDFs?

If so, be aware that Adobe Reader has a number of "enhancement" options for viewing vector based PDFs. One of them is called "Enhance thin lines", which you can find in the Edit / Preferences / Page view / Rendering menu option. This option does exactly what you are witnessing: make thin lines (e.g. 0.2-0.4pt) wider for display. This is a really bad option / setting of Adobe Reader in the context of cartographic maps. Adobe made the unfortunate decision to set this option to on by default.

If you review past posts in discussion forums of graphic designers, there is quite a list of designers lamenting this descision to make this option default on, as it wrangles their designs as well.

So, switch the Enhance thin lines option off in Adobe Reader!

Note that I have even witnessed this option affecting the display of vector true/open type fonts, and causing artefacts in the rendering and anti-aliasing on especially fonts set to Bold. This is another good reason to switch this option off.

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deleted-user-XBIblHRrwSU9
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Thanks for the tips Marco, however I am using Adobe Acrobat Pro, and that Enhance Thin Lines option doesn't change anything for me.

It's just weird because I don't get this issue when exporting from ArcMap to Pdf, only from ArcPro, so I'm wondering if Pro could have some embedded pdf setting somewhere that could do this..

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MarcoBoeringa
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Could you post screenshots here of how you view some of this data in ArcMap, ArcGIS Pro and Adobe Acrobat? Just hit the "Print Screen" button on your keyboad and paste in a graphics application if you want to crop the image, or straight in a GeoNet editor window, which also works.

One fundamental difference though between ArcMap and Pro, that also may affect how you "view" the PDFs, is that Pro currently maintains all coordinate information of the original data in the PDFs, while ArcMap does a kind of "generalization" to the dpi specified during export. This difference, as I understood it, has to do with some fundamental, Windows level, differences in the display pipeline of ArcMap and Pro. As to some observation by me regarding this, see this post I created in another GeoNet thread:

https://community.esri.com/thread/179579#comment-710329 

As a consequence, if you have highly detailed data derived at large scales (e.g. 1:5k-1:25k), and view it a small scale (e.g. 1:100k-1:M) without generalizing the data yourself using a tool like "Simplify Line/Polygon", the data may appear very erratic and with "spikes" in a Pro export if the data is also following erratic paths, while ArcMap's output may look smoother and closer to what you would have expected. Especially look closely at the screenshots I posted there to understand what I mean and the differences this may cause in the visible image on your screen.