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PDF Compatible = Big, slow files - Adobe Illustrator Windows

I've been very frustrated with the performance of Illustrator 12. Any file with any sort of complexity (i.e. photos, multiple fills/strokes, glows or drop shadows, etc.) was much larger than it needed to be, and took forever to save. For example, a file containing five 1-MB images and a small amount of text with drop shadows was over 60MB and took three minutes to save. Similarly, a file containing a detailed outline map of South America, with multiple fills/strokes applied to different layers, was over 15MB and took a couple of minutes to save. After a little experimentation, I discovered ...

  1. #1

    Default PDF Compatible = Big, slow files

    I've been very frustrated with the performance of Illustrator 12. Any file with any sort of complexity (i.e. photos, multiple fills/strokes, glows or drop shadows, etc.) was much larger than it needed to be, and took forever to save. For example, a file containing five 1-MB images and a small amount of text with drop shadows was over 60MB and took three minutes to save. Similarly, a file containing a detailed outline map of South America, with multiple fills/strokes applied to different layers, was over 15MB and took a couple of minutes to save.

    After a little experimentation, I discovered that the culprit is the "Create PDF Compatible File" checkbox, which is on by default. Saving the file with this option off gave me very reasonable file sizes (about 20% of the previous size); the file now saves in a few seconds.

    I haven't found any reference to this in the doentation or on this forum. It would be nice if the "save as" dialog had a warning of some sort (e.g. "Leaving this option checked may significantly increase file sizes and save times.")
    Herb_Caudill@adobeforums.com Guest

  2. #2

    Default Re: PDF Compatible = Big, slow files

    PDF compatibility in essence saves your file twice, once in native format, and once in PDF format- with the linked photos included... even if you uncheck "include linked files".

    If you check "include linked files" the photos get written twice.

    Saving with PDF compatibility is needed if you are going to place in InDesign.
    John_Slate@adobeforums.com Guest

  3. #3

    Default Re: PDF Compatible = Big, slow files

    I am also having a problem saving a large file. First of all, how can I you see the size of my file? Second, I need to send the pdf by email which is taking forever! Is there anyway to compress the file for viewing in acrobat? Please help. Thanks.
    Lyne_Smith@adobeforums.com Guest

  4. #4

    Default Re: PDF Compatible = Big, slow files

    Lynn,

    To save as PDF for e-mailing and then just viewing (i.e. just as a
    proof), select Save As > PDF. In the PDF dialog box. In the adobe PDF
    Presets drop-down select Smallest file size.
    LenHewitt@adobeforums.com Guest

  5. #5

    Default Re: PDF Compatible = Big, slow files

    Len,
    I tried changing preset to zip and 4 bit and it's still slow. I also tried setting to jpeg. Any other ideas? Thanks for your help.
    Lyne_Smith@adobeforums.com Guest

  6. #6

    Default Re: PDF Compatible = Big, slow files

    Lynn,

    If you choose the "Smallest File Size" preset, you won't need to change
    any of the compression or other options. That will give you as small a
    ..PDF as you are going to get from Illustrator that still has reasonable
    on-screen definition.

    If you have Acrobat Pro, then printing to a PostScript file and
    distilling to PDF can produce smaller PDF files.
    LenHewitt@adobeforums.com Guest

  7. #7

    Default Re: PDF Compatible = Big, slow files

    Lynn,

    First of all, how can I you see the size of my file?




    Ctrl+O and hover over it (or right-click and choose properties)in Illy, Acrobat, or other application.

    I just tried my suggestion in your other thread, zipping a file saved as PDF without editing capability, 10 pieces of vector art, one of them with rasterizing effect to 1200 PPI: the ZIP was 2/3 of the original. You may try and see whether you have more luck.

    Edit: Hi Len.
    Jacob_Bugge@adobeforums.com Guest

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