Quick-Tip: Saving as a PDF/X-1a:2001 in Adobe InDesign

Quick-Tip: Saving as a PDF/X-1a:2001 in Adobe InDesign

The most compatible file version of PDF (Portable Document Format), x-1a:2001, also known as PDF/X-1a:2001 or simply x2001, is standard for use here at Print Chain and in other businesses, as it embeds everything into the file, ensuring maximum compatibility and ease-of-print. Whilst we can convert files you send to us, maybe you’d like to try yourself? After all, it has many more uses than just printing!

In this article we are using Adobe InDesign CS6, although the method is the same for all versions of Adobe InDesign.

To save in this format:

  • First, make sure you’re happy with the content of your PDF – this is important because if you feel the content isn’t ready, then worrying about the specific format can come later!


  • Second, go to file > Adobe PDF Presets and select [PDF/X-1a:2001]…


  • Choose to save in your desired folder


  • Once the options menu appears, click on Mark and Bleed


  • Choose to Enable Crop Marks and Use Document Bleed Settings



Simply click export and – Voila! Your very own PDF/X-1a:2001, ready to send.


The artwork used is from September’s promotional campaign.

Need any help with this Quick-Tip? Feel free to contact us, comment on this article, or use our social media. We’ll help any way we can, with this and much more!

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