PostScript File with Overprint simulation

Hi everybody,

I have a big Problem with my AppleScript. I hope you can help me again?
I’d like to open a PDF-File in Adobe illustrator, and then, make a Post-Script File with the Option ‘Over Print Simulation’, and save the File to the Desktop or else.

Thanks a lot for your help




You cannot make a Postscript file with Simulate Overprint ON or OFF. Simulate Overprint is a little smoke and mirrors to approximate the effects of overprinting on screen or in a composite print. A Postscript file is hardcoded - it’s a program actually, interpreted by an output device. Any overprinting must be done in the PDF, the generating application, or in-RIP.

What exactly are you trying to do?

Jim Neumann

Actually you can create a postscript file with “simulate overprint” turned on - I do it al the time from InDesign. I’ve never done it in Illustrator, but qucikly going to the print menu, selecting Adobe Postscript file, and looking at the advanced tab, it’s there too. So it can be done.

I don’t know how to do it via applescript unfortunately, but I am in need of finding out how to do it in InDesign.

I may have misunderstood the question but. You can’t create a Postscript file with Simulate Overprint On applied to it. You can, as you see, print with the option On. This fundamentally changes the file. From Adobe:

(Noting that I am using ID CS3 here.). I am curious Why you would want to do it in the first place? If you use it for a composite proof, the same file cannot be used for plating/printing when it’s a spot color job. I use it for printing directly to a composite output device (color printer, etc.) but why would you use it for a Postscript file??


I apologize for continuing to hijack this thread, but when you create a postscript file with “simulate overprint” applied to it, it does create a very different postscript file than creating a postscript file without “simulate overprint” applied. That setting does change the way the postscript file is written, especially in terms of spot colors.

From what I’ve been able to tell from reading between the lines of at least 10 variations of what you quoted from various Adobe manuals and whitepapers, the main thing simulate overprint does is convert spot colors to CMYK colors, because Pantone colors in conjunction with transparency effects can cause issues depending on the final printer’s overprint settings. Adobe actively wants you to keep all transparency and Pantone colors “live” at all times, seemingly from a fundamental level (and the fact that the RIP software they sell is designed to be that way) - that doesn’t mean there are not reasons to do so in some cases. The setting was designed to allow printing of a file with live Pantone colors to a composite printer that may not have overprint options, but the setting has other uses as well.

A file with a Pantone color and transparency effect applied over that Pantone color is dependent on the final output printer’s overprint settings to print correctly. However, if you create the postscript file and distill it with ‘simulate overprint’ turned on, you force the same effect as having overprint having been turned on by the final printer - without being dependent on the final printer being set correctly each and every time it is sent to the printer.

If you know what you are doing, simulate overprint does have it’s uses beyond Adobe’s recommendation in their documentation.