Camera ready

Camera Ready is a common term used in the commercial printing industry meaning that a document is, from a technical standpoint, ready to "go to press," or be printed. In live television, "camera ready" refers to a person's presentability - such as a newsreader wearing a suit or an actress wearing appropriate make-up - a person is not ready to be in front of a camera until they are camera ready.


The term camera ready was first used in the Photo Offset printing process, where the final layout of a document was attached to a "mechanical" or "paste up." Then, a stat camera was used to photograph the mechanical, and the final offset printing plates were created from the camera's negative.

In this system, a final paste-up that needed no further changes or additions was ready to be photographed by the process camera and subsequently printed. This final document was "Camera Ready."

Present Usage

In recent years, the use of paste-ups has been steadily replaced by desktop publishing software, which allows users to create entire document layouts on the computer. In the meantime, many printers now use technology to take these digital files and create printing plates from them without use of a camera and negative. Despite this, the term "camera ready" continues to be used to signify that a document is ready to be made into a printing plate.

In this new digital-to-plate system, a digital file is usually considered "camera ready" if it meets several conditions:

# It is created with a software program commonly used in the printing industry, such as InDesign (Adobe), Illustrator (Adobe), Freehand (Adobe/Macromedia), Quark XPress (Quark, Inc), and exported in a commonly used file format, such as EPS, PDF and sometimes TIFF. JPEG images are usually considered "not camera ready," as the compression used in the JPEG format deteriorates the quality of the image.
# The document uses the correct color setup. If printing a (full) color document, all graphics should be converted to CMYK (Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, and Black). If it is a spot color document, the color(s) to be used by the printer must be specified in the digital file.
# The layout is created at the correct and final size to be printed, and the "document size" in the desktop publishing program matches the size of the final printed piece.
# Text or graphics that are intended to bleed off the page of the final printed piece should be extended off the document boundary in the digital file. The amount varies depending on location, but is usually 1/8 inch in the US, and 3mm in metric systems.
# Fonts used in the digital file are converted to vector graphics (usually defined by the software as "Convert to Paths" or "Outline Text"), or alternatively, the fonts are included in the final digital package sent to the printer.
# Raster or image files are originally created at high resolution settings, such as 300 DPI (dots per inch). This ensures a high quality image. Images saved from Internet web pages are usually low-resolution, 72 dots per inch JPG or GIF files and are not considered camera ready.

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • camera-ready — [kam′ər əred΄ē] adj. Printing designating or of copy, artwork, etc. that is ready to be photographed for making into a plate for printing …   English World dictionary

  • camera-ready —    In graphic design, two dimensional artwork that is ready be given to a person who will photograph it so that printed versions can be produced. Although a physical image or piece of copy is still sometimes produced, and is employed in this… …   Glossary of Art Terms

  • camera-ready — /kam euhr euh red ee, kam reuh /, adj. Print. (of text or illustrations) ready to be photographed. Also, camera. * * * …   Universalium

  • camera-ready — /kam euhr euh red ee, kam reuh /, adj. Print. (of text or illustrations) ready to be photographed. Also, camera …   Useful english dictionary

  • camera-ready — (about a graphic or document) ready to be printed, ready to be reproduced, ready to be photographed and photoengraved onto a printing plate (Printing) …   English contemporary dictionary

  • camera-ready — cam′era read′y adj. pri (of text or illustrations) ready to be photographed • Etymology: 1965–70 …   From formal English to slang

  • camera ready — adjective Art or hard copy (a document or graphic art) that requires no additional work to be done to it before copies of it can be reproduced. It is commonly used in situations where separate documents will be compiled into a single compilation …   Wiktionary

  • Camera-ready — Подготовленный к съёмке …   Краткий толковый словарь по полиграфии

  • camera-ready — adjective Printing in the right form to be reproduced photographically on to a printing plate …   English new terms dictionary

  • camera-ready copy — noun (printing) Finished text and/or illustrations ready for conversion to film from which printing plates will be made • • • Main Entry: ↑camera …   Useful english dictionary

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.