A Glossary for Manufacturing

The A-Z of

Everything you ever wanted to know about printing and pressing but were too afraid to ask.



A series
Standard international metric range of paper sizes
Transparent sheet of plastic
Acid-free paper
Paper made without the use of acidic chemicals which reduce its shelf life
A software developed by Adobe Systems Inc. that allows documents to be read and printed across computer systems, using PDF (portable document format), files
Against the grain
Folding or cutting a sheet of paper at right angles to the grain of the paper
The '&' symbol used for the word 'and'
Anti set-off spray
A fine spray used when printing to stop the ink setting off when the paper is stacked
A printing paper with a rough textured finish
Digital storage of previously jobs
Art paper
Gloss paper coated with china clay and then calendared to a gloss finish
Copy or digital file used to produce the printed job
Part of a letter that extends above the x-height
File sent with an email message
Author's corrections
Corrections made on a proof
Automatic Press
A record pressing production line that automatically feeds, presses and outputs a vinyl record. Typically used for black, single colour or marbled vinyl.



B series
Alternative international range of paper sizes
The process of fastening printed sheets together in a secure way
Bit Depth
The number of bits of information per sample of a digital audio file, relating directly to the resolution of the audio.
Digital image file made up of individual pixels
Black and white
Mono or monochrome image in black only
Part of the image beyond the trim area of the print
Blind embossing
The effect created by a non printed raised area on the print
Process that impresses an image or lettering onto a sheet
When a graphic or area is enlarged
Bitmap graphics format
General term for paper above 200gsm
Body text
The main text of the print
Thick version of a typeface
A range of uncoated papers often used for stationery
British Printing Industries Federation trade body
Bulk Packed on Pallets
Photographic light-sensitive paper once used in print reproduction
Burst binding
A strong form of adhesive binding for books and brochures



Computer-aided design/computer aided manufacture
Camera ready artwork/copy
Conventional artwork ready for processing
Capital or upper case letters
Carrier sheet
A sheet of paper which shows the delivery address placed inside a film wrapped brochure
Uncoated paper with high opacity and good bulk often used for sketching
Refers to whether letters are capitalised (upper case), or not (lower case),
A book with a hard case outer cover
Cast coated
Paper with a high mirror like gloss
Catalogue number (or cat. no)
A manually generated number used to identify each unique release for distribution. Separate versions of the same release will usually have different catalogue numbers
Recorded CD produced via dulication method without a glass master
A CD recorded with data file(s), for use in a computer.
China clay
Material used for coating onto matt, silk and gloss papers
Chlorine-free paper
Paper whitened without the use of environmentally harmful chlorine chemicals
Distortion that occurs when audio is driven into overload, causing peaks to square off and distort. The resulting 'clipped' waveform will sound distorted.
Clipping path
Outline around an illustration or image which determines the cut out area
Abbreviation used for four colour process printing – cyan, magenta, yellow and black (K),
Coated paper
Paper coated with china clay
Cold Foil
Cold foil is applied in the same way as print. It is always shiny silver and requires no tool to be made. It receives it’s tone or shade by overprinting a certain colour, like yellow to become gold
Place the printed sheets into the correct order for finishing
Colour bars
Coloured strips and circles added to four-colour process printed sheets showing ink densities and used for quality and consistency
Colour separation
The breaking down of full colour into the four process colours
Colour splits
The separation of the different colours on artwork
Colour swatch
A sample of a specified colour
Colour transparency
A full-colour photographic image on piece of film
Reduction in level of "peak" or loud portions of an audio program, reducing its dynamic range. Usually done so that quiet portions of a recording can be made louder without making loud portions too loud
Computer-to-plate - CTP
System which exposes litho plates by laser or thermal imaging directly from data supplied from a computer file
Continuous stationery
Stationery produced on a reel used on certain computer printers
Continuous tone
An uncountable range of colour variation or shades of grey such as occurs in a photography or painting, which cannot be directly reproduced
Contract proof
A colour proof that was used to mimic the expected result of a printed job
Copier paper
Paper used in photocopying machines usually 80gsm uncoated
Copy date
An agreed date to send copy to the printer
Fibres are broken when paper is folded
Score a line across a sheet of board to assist folding and reduce cracking
The effect of the outer printed pages in a brochure or catalogue becoming wider than the inner pages, due to the thickness of paper across the fold
An old proofing system used in full colour litho printing
Cropping or trimming an image as indicated by crop marks (see below)
Crop marks
Marks printed on a sheet indicating where the sheet will be trimmed
Cross fold
A sheet that is folded in half and then again in the opposite direction
Cut marks
See crop marks
Illustration where the background has been removed
Cutter Head
The diamond or sapphire point that cuts the groove into a master lacquer
The blue colour used in full colour printing



Dandy roll
Cylinder on paper making machine which impresses patterns and watermarks onto the surface
Digital Audio Tape. Used as a standard format for use as CD or vinyl production master for several years, before being superseded by more reliable master formats. It is susceptible to various problems due to age (dropouts, gumming of tape heads).
Data integrity
The degree to which date is trusted or assumed correct
(Disc Description Protocol) - A Data version of a PMCD. The most secure format for delivering masters to pressing plants. Files that can be uploaded directly to the plant.
Reduction of high frequencies in a recording. Usually done to remove overly sibilant "S" sounds from recordings most commonly vound in vocal sibilance, synth squelches or hi hats. Especially important to use before cutting lacquers due to the risk of sudden high frequencies distorting.
An optical device used by printers to measure and control the density of ink printed on the paper
The part of a letter extending below the character baseline
Die cutting
The process of cutting out shapes from the sheet of card
Representation of sound as numbers corresponding to the level of an analog waveform over time.
Digital Master
A track that has been mastered for use on digital formats eg CD or streaming, without considering the audio requirements of Vinyl or MFiT .
Digital printing
Printing directly from computer files to paper
Digital proof
A proof generated from a computer file
Digital workflow system
Prepress system that manages the flow of made-up pages from creation through proofing to imposition on plate
A term for typographical characters such as arrows, starts, hearts and snowflakes
Direct Metal Mastering (DMM):
Instead of cutting into a blank lacquer, the groove is cut into a blank copper disc via a specially equipped lathe. This cut disc is equivalent to a mother that is produced from lacquers.
The audible result of an altered signal - most commonly heard in over-compressed mastering but also in analogue playback such as too much high frequency towards the endof a side of vinyl.
A technique used in computer graphics to create the appearance of additional colours and shades of grey
Dot gain
The increase in the size of the dot in a halftone image when printed onto paper
Dots per inch (dpi)
Measurement used to determine the resolution of a printer or scanner
Double spread
Print going across two facing pages
Double-page spread
When two facing pages in a book or periodical are shown
The non-productive time when a printing machine is being maintained or serviced
The transfer of files from one computer another
Downloads / Download Codes:
Many records include a coupon or sticker inside the record sleeve with a unique code enabling the consumer to download an mp3 version of the music.
Abbreviation of dots per inch, which indicates the resolution of images. The more dots per inch, the higher the resolution. Minimum required for printing is 300 dpi for all images
A binding style in which the cover is wrapped around the spine and glued directly
The making of holes in a pile of paper for binding methods, such as loose leaf
Drop Capital. A letter or letters at the beginning of the paragraph which extend below the depth of the rest of the text line
A momentary absence or reduction of recorded sound, most commonly heard on older magnetic tapes that have degraded or accidentally come into contact with a magnet.
Drum Scanner
The original method of scanning transparencies using a cylindrical clear drum
Drying time
Time taken for the ink to dry on the printed sheet
Dub plate / acetate
A playable reference record cut on a vinyl lathe, for approval of the quality of a vinyl cut before lacquers are sent to a factory for processing. Available in 7” / 10” & 12”. A Dub plate has a limited amount of plays, depending how much weight is placed on the needle each time it is played.
Mock-up of a book or other piece of printing to show how it will look before the main run
A black-and-white image that is reproduced using two colours to add depth
Duplex printing
Printing on both sides of the paper
Dynamic Range
The difference in decibels between the loudest and quietest portions of audio. Vinyl with more dynamic range is more likely to have audible surface noise during the quiet sections..



Elemental Chlorine Free pulp and paper during manufacture
Edge gilding
Gold-leaf edging on a book
The forming (or growing) of Nickel onto the face of a master disc - used in vinyl and CD manufacturing. When this nickel layer is removed from the master, the removed layer becomes the father or stamper.
Embossed finish
Surface pattern pressed in paper
See blocking
Strong paper used for securing the body of a book to its case
Encapsulated Postscript
EQ or Equalization
Selective boosting or reduction of specific frequencies in an audio program.
A special process traditionally done using UV exposure and acid baths, to allow a piece of artwork to be used on an unplayable side of a record.
Expanded type / Expanded type
Typeface with characters wider than the normal font
The length of book expressed in pages



A style of type ie typeface
Facing pages
Pages that face each other in an open book or magazine. Also called double page spread
A problem in litho printing where an image can reappear faintly somewhere else on the sheet
The metalwork grown from the master lacquer – instead of a playable groove, the father consists of the inverse peaks. A father is used to create a Mother, and is then stored for future use.
In printing, ink spread
Feed edge
The edge of the sheet of paper that is presented to the lays of a press that take it into the machine. Also called gripper edge, leading edge or pitch edge
The pattern and or colour that is inside an object produced in a illustration programme
Fine papers
High quality printing and writing papers
The type or surface that a particular grade of paper has
Finished size
Size of printed item after production is complete. Also called trimmed size
Bindery process taking place after a job is printed. Ie folding, stitching, cutting inserting etc
First proof
The first proof used for checking
First revise (or revision)
The corrected first proof made after errors have been noted
When a printed image lacks contrast or colour density
Flat size
Size of printed item after printing and trimming but before finishing
A press where the printing surface is flat rather than curved as on a litho press
Flatbed scanner
An image scanner with a flat platen or bed
Relief printing process using flexible bendable plates
Flush cover
A bound book or booklet having the cover trimmed to the same size as the text pages
The plain sheet of paper in a book between the cover and the text pages
Foil emboss
To stamp and emboss an image onto a sheet of paper, also called a heat stamp
Foil Numbering
Foil numbering is applied either as last step AFTER creasing, folding, glueing or in the final assembly, usually on the finished product. It uses hot foil supplied on to revolving wheels which contain the numbers and in some instances letters or a combination of both
A sheet with a surface that resembles metal - see also Cold Foil and Hot Foil
Folding boxboard
High quality board used for making cartons which has good scoring and folding characteristics
An extra page that is attached to another page, often used for a map or chart. Also called throw out, gatefold and pullout
The page number at the head or foot of a page of text
A complete family set of the same typeface and point sizes
Font size
The actual size that the type is produced at. In the UK and US font size is usually given in points
The common text that appears at the bottom of each page
Trimmed page size or physical specification for a page or a book
Four colour process
Four colour separation
See colour separation
File Transfer Protocol. System for transferring digital files between 2 fixed sites securely
Full colour
Full point
Full stop



Galley proof
An old system of proofing text that is not made up into page finished pages
A page in a magazine or book which folds out twice
The process of collecting individual sheets of a printed job into the correct sequence for binding
A problem in litho printing where an image can reappear faintly somewhere else on the sheet
The filename extension for files in Graphics Interchange Format
Gigabyte (Gb)
One billion bytes
Glass Master
A master for CD Production, produced by a factory from a supplied production master eg. DDP. Pits representing the digital information on a CD are etched into the glass using a special process. This master is then used for electroforming to create stampers for pressing CDs or DVDs.
Gloss art
A paper with a highly calendared/glossy surface
Graduated fill
The gradual change from one colour to another. eg From a dark tone to a light tone across an image
Grain direction
The direction that the fibres that make up a sheet of paper lay
How the weight of paper is measured – grams per square metre
Gravure printing
A method of printing in which recesses on a cylinder are filled with ink and then the surplus is removed with a blade. Used for long run magazines and catalogues
Grey board
Particular kind of bulky board used as backing board for pads etc
The area on the lead edge of the sheet of paper that the litho print machine grabs to feed the sheet of paper into the press
Groove Bottom Defects
These indicate drop-outs, bumps or rough areas in the bottom of the groove which cause rumbling or hissing sounds when the record is played. It can be caused in pressing if the compound does not float perfectly in the grooves, or, a more common cause is separation issues in electroplating resulting in stamper defects.
gsm or g/m2
Grams per square metre. How the weight of paper and board is measured
The machine that cuts the sheets of paper
Gummed paper
A paper coated on one side with adhesive
The margin used when binding a book



Very fine line or stroke in a letter
Illustration created by dots of varying sizes
Hard copy
Physical written copy, typed or printed as distinct from a digital file
See Case-bound
See case-bound
The running headline appearing at the top of each page or letterhead
The difference in dB between the loudest peak and 0dB. Typically digital masters have very little or no headroom, whereas correctly-produced vinyl masters have plenty.
Spot on a printed sheet caused by a spec of dust or dirt that causes an imperfection in the printed image ink. This is particularly noticeable in solids, large type, halftones, tints etc
High resolution
An image produced in high detail
The lightest tonal areas in a graphic
Hot Foil
Hot foil is applied as an addtional step right after printing and requires a bespoke tool to be made.
The adhesive used in perfect binding to glue the pages into the spine



A small picture that is used to represent something
Image area
The printed area of a sheet
There are two main types of images – Vector Graphics and Bit-Mapped Graphics. Vector images use a composite of lines and nodes while Bit-Mapped Graphics use a composition of a pattern of dots (sometimes called Raster Graphics) Programs that enable you to create and manipulate Vector Graphics are often called drawing programmes (e.g. Adobe Illustrator or Macromedia Freehand) Programmes used for creating and manipulating Bit-Mapped images or photographs are sometimes referred to as image editing or paint programmes (e.g. Adobe Photoshop or MS Paint)
How the pages are arranged on the printed sheet so that when a publication is folded and bound, the pages run in the correct order
The publishers and/or printers identifying tag printed in a book or other work
Where the type is set further in from the left hand margin of a page than the rest of the surrounding text
India paper
Very thin opaque rag paper often used for high-quality bibles
A digital printing process
Ink set-off
Unintentional transfer of wet ink from one printed sheet to another in the paper stack
A loose sheet of printed material that will be inserted into another piece of printed material such as a magazine or brochure
Blank sheets of paper placed between wet printed sheets to prevent a ink set-off when cutting
Iris proofs
An old system of full colour digital proofing generated from a Postscript file
International Standards Organisation – the international accepted working standards in paper sizes
International Standard Recording Code. Embedded into DDP production masters and used to track royalties from public use of the track.
Letters in the font family that slope forward
Ivory board
The traditional high grade smooth white board used for business cards



The dust cover on a book
Jaggies is the informal name for pixelated effect in raster images.
An object-oriented programming language designed for programming the internet
Joint photographic experts group (JPEG)
A standard for coding and compression of colour images
Where the text on a page is aligned with either the left or right margin or with both



The adjusting of the space between two adjacent letters to create a better appearance
Kerning pairs
Pairs of letters which invariably need spacing adjustments made to them visually neater
A thin line drawn on artwork to show where illustrations or other material should be placed
A strong brown paper used in packaging and printing



An aluminium disc coated in nitrocellulose, usually 14” in diameter, used as a master disc from which the metal stampers are produced at the pressing plant
Laid paper
A high quality paper that has lines parallel to each other imprinted into the paper
A thin plastic film that is glued to a sheet of paper or board using heat and pressure that adds to the protection and/or appearance of the finished job
The orientation of a page or image or picture so that its width is greater than its height
A very specialised, complex machine used to cut audio onto lacquer or DMM masters
As single sheet, comprising two pages ie printed both sides
Letter spacing
Adding or reducing the space between individual characters
A printing process using raised lead metal letters to transfer the ink onto the paper
Lick-coated paper
Paper with a very light coating
Lightfast ink
Ink that fades more slowly than normal ink on prolonged exposure to strong light
A form of compression in which the sound level is not allowed to exceed a set limit. Heavily used in modern music production, a main component in the 'loudness wars'.
Limp binding
Paperback binding
A mistake introduced when keying in copy, often only affecting one or two characters
Litho plate
The printing plate used in offset litho
Print process in which ink is applied selectively to the plate by chemically treating the image areas to accept ink and the non-image areas to accept water. Shortened to litho
Locked groove
A technique used in record cutting where the groove on a vinyl record forms a closed loop, which traps the arm preventing it from going any further. While this is normally used to simply end a side of music on a record, some studios and factories are able to incorporate audio into a locked groove, allowing a loop of music to play forever, or until the stylus wears out/a power cut happens.
Loose leaf
Binding which uses steel rings passing through drilled holes in the paper to hold the sheets together
Low resolution
Often shortened to low-res. An image that is produced in low quality
Lower case
Small letters as distinct from capitals. Abbreviated as lc



Machine binding
Binding printed sheets by machine rather than manually
Machine coated
Paper that is coated during the paper-making process
Machine minder
The person who supervises the running of a printing machine
Machine proof
A proof made by printing from the actual printing plate. Also known as a wet proof
One of the colours used in 4 colour printing
The setting up of a printing machine ready to run a specific job
A tough brown paper made from hemp and often used for envelopes
Manual Press
A record press that is operated manually, typically used for special effects and picture discs. All presses were manual until the invention of automated presses, so manual presses tend to be older.
When a louder sound is played with a softer sound causing the softer sound not to be heard.
Overall term for all mastered tracks compiled onto one medium (eg DDP, lacquer, wav files in a .zip)
Final transfer of sound to a production master, while preserving the sound quality of the original and conforming to the technical considerations of the production format.
An old system of dry proofing, similar to a Cromalin
Matrix Inscription / Matrix Number:
Sometimes also referred to as a “scribe” or “scribe number”. The alphanumeric identifier that is etched into the lead-out (matrix) area of the record at the pressing plant.
Mechanical binding
Binding system using metal or plastic coils. See also spiral binding
Megabyte (mb)
One million computer bytes
Information about the song embedded into the table of contents for the file. Info such as artist, title, ISRC, Cat No, Artwork etc can be embedded into an audio file for ingestion to digital distributors and download services
Metallic inks
Inks that contain metallic particles such as gold or silver take give a shiny metallic printed effect
The general term used to describe metal plates used for record pressing, including fathers, mothers and stampers
MFiT Master
(Mastered For iTunes) A proprietary format developed by Apple, requiring that a Track must be mastered specifically to sound good when converted by Apple's AAC encoders
Instrument used to measure the thickness of paper
Units used to measure the thickness of board
Mid tones
The tonal ranges between highlights and shadows
Mini web
Small web offset machine typically producing 16pp A4 colour sections (8pp A4 to view)
One colour or more on the printed sheet do not align up
Undesirable checkered pattern on the printed sheet caused by a conflict of screen angles of the four colour process dots
Literally means one colour. Often black on white
An illustration in one colour
The metalwork grown from a Father that is two steps removed from a cut Lacquer — a mother can be played on a turntable. A mother is used to make Stampers.



Noise Floor
The level of noise naturally occurring on an analogue format, eg cassette tape or vinyl record. No analogue format is completely without noise when played, even when no music is present
An audible issue caused in the record pressing process, causing a crackle sound. Caused by microscopic pieces of PVC not being melted in the puck before being pressed into a record.



Part of a book or journal printed separately. Eg and article from a journal
The printing process that uses a rubber blanket wrapped around a cylinder to transfer the image onto paper as in offset litho
Offset lithography
See Offset
Offset paper
A term for uncoated book paper
On the fly
Refers to any process which occurs as output is being performed
One Bit
One bit (1bit) images are made up entirely of either black or white pixels with no grey. At low resolution they can appear jaggy but at very high resolutions of 1200dpi and above they can produce crisp graphics.
One sided art
Paper coated on one side only
One Step Plating
The Electroforming process which produces a set of stampers only. This is generally not advised as it does not allow for reproducing metalwork without having to start from scratch with a new cut.
The term given to how see through a piece of paper is
OPP lamination
Oriented Polypropylene Lamination. The standard lamination film used in print
All the processes used in the production of the original material such as typesetting, up to the plate making, to get the job ready to print
Out of register
When one or more of the colours on the printed sheet are out of alignment with the others
An area comprising of only an outline with no solid area
Additional printing over a previously printed sheet
Copies printed in excess of the specified printing number requested
See spoilage



One side of a sheet of paper
The numbering of pages
A small booklet comprising of only a few pages
Proprietary name of a widely used colour matching system
Pantone matching system (PMS)
See Pantone
Parallel Folding
Folding a sheet with all the folds parallel to each other
When a job goes through a machine
Pass for press
Customer authorisation of the final form of a job for printing
PDF (Portable Document Format) is a way of saving a document that protects the document formatting so that it will look exactly the same when viewed on any computer or when printed.
Perfect binding
Adhesive binding method widely used on paperback books and magazines
Printing both sides of a sheet in one pass
Punching a series of tiny holes in paper to facilitate tearing
An raster image manipulation programme from Adobe
Abbreviation for picture
A typographical unit of measurement
The lifting of parts of the paper surface during the printing process
The constituent of a printing ink that gives it its colour
The horizontal spacing of printer characters
An abbreviation for picture elements
Plastic proof
An old system of proofing such as Cromalin or Matchprint etc
The the piece of aluminium used to transfer the image from the printing blanket to the paper in offset printing
Plate Sunk
Area of paper compressed
The imaging unit on a ctp device to etch the image into the plate
The Electroforming process which produces the stampers. The process can be One Step, Two Step or Three Step.
(PreMaster CD) - A specially formatted Audio CD, embedded with Metadata, sent to a CD Pressing Plant for manufacturing. Largely superseded by DDP format, but was industry standard for a couple of decades.
PMS stands for Pantone Matching System used by the printing industry to print spot colours. It is not always possible to match PMS colours using CMYK.
Point sizes
The unit of measurement for characters in the typeset copy. This is measured by the height of the capital letters. 1 point equals 1/72 of an inch
A form of portable graphic display system
The origination of a picture, screen or page, such that its height is greater than its width
An image on film or paper in which the dark and light values are the same as the original as distinct from a negative
Information encoded onto an audio CD, identifying the exact start and end of tracks as well as spaces between. An essential component of a production master for CD but also for vinyl if only audio files are supplied.
Pre press
All the functions required by the printer before he is able to print
A rare phenomenon usually heard at the beginning of a side of a record. Caused by first note of the audio being extremely dynamic (eg loud piano), resulting in a faint 'ghost' note being heard during the silent lead-in groove
A process of checking a digital file for errors before sending for proofing or printing.
Part of a job printed before the main run through the press
Printing machine
Press proof/press pass
Proof taken from the press after make-ready but before the main run
Process colours
The 4 colours CMYK used in printing and the colour separation process
Progressive proofs or progs
An historical proofing system made from each plate in a colour set showing each colour alone and in combination with the others as a guide to colour matching at the printing stage
A trial printed sheet or copy made before the production run for the purpose of checking
Proof reader's marks
Symbols used by a proof reader in marking corrections on proofs
Checking typeset copy for accuracy
The raw PVC material that is pressed into a record. A Puck consists of a hockey-puck shaped piece of extruded vinyl sandwiched between a label on the top and bottom. The puck is compressed by the record press into the shape of a vinyl record.
a strong system of gluing books and magazines using Polyurethane glue



500 sheets of paper
Paper sheets wrapped in lots of 500
A right hand page
The master roll of paper as it comes off the paper making machine before it is cut down to sheets
Register marks
Marks in the same relative position on the printing plates that enable the correct alignment of colours to be achieved
The alignment of the different colours used in printing
Relative Humidity (RH)
Amount of water vapour present in the atmosphere expressed as a percentage of saturation
Printing method using a raised image eg letterpress
The subsequent printing of the first edition of a publication
The processes used before a job can be printed – prepress, scanning and make-up
Measurement of image quality stated in lines per inch (lpi), dots per inch (dpi) or pixels per inch
Correcting a photographic print or transparency before reproduction
Reversed Out
Where the the type printed in white and the background is another colour
A revised proof for subsequent checking
Red, Green, Blue – the colour system used in tv's and computer monitors
Rich Black
A CMYK black made with 100% black ink plus one or more of cyan, magenta and yellow to produe a stronger deeper black.
Rich Text Format
A basic format for word processing
Right-angle folding
Folding a sheet with one or more folds at right-angles to each other
Ring binding
Binding by means of holes in paper which locate on metal rings in a binder
Undesirable formation of word spaces into a vertical river of white in the text
Sketch or layout
The traditional standard size of paper 480 x 636 mm
Revolutions Per Minute - the number of times a vinyl record spins in a minute when placed onto a turntable. There are three main RPM speeds: 33 1/3rpm, 45rpm, and 78rpm. Some speeds work better for different formats of vinyl, depending on program length
A line
Printing lines measured in points
Ability of paper to be printed without problems
Running head
A title repeated at the to of each page. Also known as a running headline
Runout / dead wax
The blank, unplayable area of the record between the end locked groove of a record, and the centre label. Often contains information such as the cutting engineer's personal signature or symbol, or hidden, hand-etched messages



Abbreviation for 'same size' in reproduction specifications
Saddle stitching
Method used to bind books with wire staples
Sample Rate
Number of audio samples carried per second, measured in Hz. CD is 44.1K (44,100), high resolution digital audio can be up to 192KHz but is more often found at 96KHz .
Sans serif type
Type in which there are no serifs
Scalable font
A font that can be used at any size and any resolution
Scatter proofs
Proofs of illustrations or photos arranged in random order on the sheet for checking
To impress into a board with a rule to make folding easier and reduce cracking
Screen angles
Each of the colour dots are printed at a different angles to avoid a moire pattern
Screen clash
A moire pattern is caused by the screen angles being incorrect or when a previously printed image is re screened
Screen ruling
The number of lines or dots per inch on a screen
Screen tint
When a colour is printed as a shade rather than full strength the dots are percentage (10-90%)
A typeface that simulates handwriting
Scum or scumming
The build up of ink on the non image area of an offset plate
A folded sheet which is assembled with others to make up a book. Eg an A2 will provide a section of 8 x A4 pages when folded twice
Section sewing
A conventional method of binding where a thread is used to sew the section together as in most paperback or hardback books
Self adhesive paper
Gummed pressure sensitive paper
Self copy paper
Carbonless copy paper
Self cover
Where the paper used for the cover and the text are the same weight
Self mailer
Printed piece mailed without envelope
The terminal stroke at the end of a line making up part of a character
The transfer of wet ink onto the sheet
To fasten the sections of a book with thread
The lightness or darkness of a colour
The dark areas in a photograph or halftone print represented by a 70-100% dot
Shaped Record
A record produced in any shape other than round, using a manual record press and specialised cutting machinery.
The full size piece of paper used for printing before folding or cutting
Sheet fed
Where individual cut sheets are used for printing as distinct from paper on a continuous reel
Sheet work
Each side of the sheet is printed with a different image. As distinct from work and turn
Show through
Lack of opacity in a sheet of paper to the point where the printed image on one side of a page is excessively visible from the other side
Shrink wrap
Plastic film wrapping used to package printed items
An exaggerated high frequency most commonly found in voice recording, but also present in other high frequency elements, especially if transient (fast, very dynamic) peaks are involved
Side lay
The guide on a sheet fed press which positions the sheet sideways to ensure each sheet is in the same position before it starts to travel through the press
Side stabbing
A form of stitching where the stitch goes through the side of the document rather than in the fold
Synonym for section
Silk screen printing
A printing method which employs a fine mesh screen to support a stencil through which ink is squeezed
Playback stylus of a turntable jumps out of the groove, causing audible jumps/repeated sections. Multiple possible causes but normally due to collision of two consecutive groove revolutions, or groove being too narrow or shallow
Slip case
A cardboard case for a book
Image distortion caused by drag on the printing machine
Small capitals
Capitals the same size as the x-height of the normal lower case
Evenness of paper surface
Soft cover
A paper cover as distinct from hard case board
Soft proof
A representation on screen of what will be printed in the form of a PDF, rather than a proof on paper
Printed area where the colour is printed at 100%
Ink dissolver
The back edge of a book
Spiral binding
Binding using a continuous spiral of wire or plastic threaded through punched holes in the back margin
Waste incurred during the printing or binding processes
Spot colour
A colour that is usually specified in a document as a particular pantone or PMS number
Spot varnish
Varnish applied to selected parts of a printed sheet
Pair of facing pages
The piece of metalwork (one per side of a record) which stamps the groove into melted vinyl puck (see Puck). Stampers are non-playable as they contain the raised inverse of the groove
Proofreaders instructions meaning ignore the marked correction ie leave it as it was
The binding method using a stitch made with a thread or staple
Stitching (Audio)
This is a relatively common pressing flaw which is caused by the record touching the stamper in a twist-like movement when the pressing machine opens. It is usually detected in accompanying quality checks and appears randomly affecting only a handful records of a pressing run. It can be audible as a scratching or cracking-like sound but can also just be a cosmetic flaw not affecting the audio in any way. Stitching becomes a more serious issue on transparent, clear and very light vinyl colours for the reason that it is not visible on such records due to different refraction. Especially clear vinyl leaves no chance to detect the flaw and thus these records are exempt from claims regarding stitching.
Strip gumming
Applying water soluble adhesive to paper in strips
A small character printed below the baseline
Surface being printed on
A superfan is someone who admires and supports a person - Artists, Musician, Band etc. in an extremely enthusiatic way
Small character set above the line



To determine the points where the text is to align vertically in typesetting
Totally Chlorine Free, relating to pulp and paper manufacture
Test Pressings
Playable records produced by a factory from master stampers, created to use as a test run to check the audio is correct, tracks are in the right order, the cut is of good quality
The body type in a book as distinct from headings and display type
Text pages
The body type in a book as distinct from the type on the cover
Text paper
A printing method where the body paper of a magazine or book as distinct from the cover stock
Thermographic printing
A traditional printing method where the ink is coated with a special powder and heated immediately after printing which causes the ink to raise
Thread sewing
The conventional binding method that sews the individual printed sections together to form a book
Three Step Plating
The Electroforming process which produces a set of Fathers, Mothers, and set of Stampers. This is advised for orders of larger quantities of 7” or 12″ Standard weight records. Fathers are able to make additional Mothers. Mothers are able to make additional stampers.
Throw out
A page which folds out of a book or a magazine to a size beyond the book trim
Thumbnail sketch
Small rough drawing
Tick marks
Alternative term for crop marks or cut marks used for finishing the printed item
TIFF (Tag Image File Format)
A standard format for the storage of bit map graphics and scanned images
A solid colour reduced in shade by screening, specified as a percentage of the solid colour
Tip in
To fix a single leaf inside a printed section using glue
Tracing paper
A transparent paper
High amplitude, short duration sounds that occur at the beginning of wave forms
Transparent Inks
Inks such as process inks which permit other colours to show through when over-printed and so produce subsequent mixed colours
Trap, trapping
The overlap between two colours used in printing to ensure that there is no white gap appearing between them as a result of paper movement or poor registration
To cut the edges off the printed sheet to square up or reduce in size
Trim marks
Alternative term for crop marks or cut marks
Trim to bleed
Trim so that printed solids reach the edge of the trimmed sheet
The use of three (usually Pantone) colours in combination to produce a particular effect in printing
Two Step Plating
The Electroforming process which produce a set of Mothers and a set of Stampers. This allows regrowing new stampers from the mother for additional pressings.
Type family
Roman, italic, bold and all other versions of one typeface
The name given to the person who used to specialise in the design and layout of printed type matter particularly in the publishing industry
Abbreviated to typos. See literals



Uncoated paper
Paper with no coating
Typesetting having a ragged right edge
Unsewn binding
See perfect binding
To decompress a file that has been zipped
Upper case
Capital letters
UV varnish
A high gloss varnish that can be used as a spot or overall that is hardened using UltraViolet light



A thin, transparent coating applied to printed work for gloss finish and protection
Vector graphics
Another name for an object orientated graphic. The term arises because graphics are defined in terms of vectors, or geometric formulae, rather than bitmaps or pixels
Left hand page with even number
A halftone in the background that gradually fades out
Vinyl Master
A track or audio program that has been mastered specifically for cutting to vinyl
A word that provokes fierce debate amongst aficionados of records. NOTE: The plural of vinyl is vinyl.
Virgin fibre
Fibre used for the first time to make paper (ie not recycled)



The cleaning of the individual printing units of a press prior to a change of ink or when the machine is shut down
A graphic representation of the shape of a sound wave. The waveform determines some of the physical characteristics of the sound.
Wet proof
See machine proof
A single line of a paragraph, printed at the top of a page
Wire Binding or Wire-o-Binding
Binding method comprising a continuous double loop of wire running through punched squares in the margin of a book
Wire stitching
See saddle stitching
Word break
Division of a word at a line ending
Work and Tumble
A printing technique where the reverse side of the sheet is printed by turning it over and using the same plate
Work and Turn
Printing the first side of a sheet, turning the stack across the short axis and then printing the reverse side of the sheet using the same plate
The control of documents moving around an organisation
A paper produced using a plain, woven dandy roll and therefore without laid lines, as distinct from laid paper



The height of the lower case letter 'x' in a particular typeface or font
Electrostatic copying process in which toner adhere to charged paper to produce an image



A file format widely used for data compression