Badia Software’s Printools is an XTension for QuarkXPress 7 that adds many new features when printing. (Versions are also available for QuarkXPress 4, 5 or 6.) This $99 XTension provides a live preview shows you in real time an exact representation of how the output will look as you change the print settings, including paper boundaries, single pages or spreads, crop marks, manual or automatic tiling, page rotation, bleeds, and negative printing. You can even manually tile a page by dragging the mouse over the preview area.
Its preview also shows page scaling, and color mode (color, gray or black-and-white). It can also warn you when the document size is larger than the paper in the printer or imagesetter.
One thing it can do that we wish QuarkXPress could do is output all the Layouts in a Project at once.
It can preflight a document to detect RGB images, text overflows, missing fonts, suppressed items, EPS with JPEG compression, hairlines, unknown image formats, and low resolution pictures. It can also automatically check every document before it is printed. It can add a temporary page border, and add page slugs showing owner name, machine name, bleed, scaling, line screen, emulsion and any custom text you like.
You can batch print multiple documents using the same output settings, or create PostScript files from batches of documents. Its Rename at Print feature can automatically rename files at print time using any combination of the project or layout names, page range, custom text, or an automatically-incremented serial number.
Cyndie Shaffstall wrote an enlightening article for X-Ray Magazine on how Printools works.
Jay Nelson is the editorial director of PlanetQuark.com, and the editor and publisher of Design Tools Monthly. He’s also the author of the QuarkXPress 8 and QuarkXPress 7 training titles at Lynda.com, as well as the training videos Quark includes in the box with QuarkXPress 7 . In addition, Jay writes regularly for Macworld and Photoshop User magazines and speaks at industry events.