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You are here: MacNN Forums > Software - Troubleshooting and Discussion > macOS > Printing pictures across multiple pages

Printing pictures across multiple pages
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reader50
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Oct 14, 2018, 02:41 AM
 
This feels like a dumb question. I scaled up a JPEG, then went to print it.

Expected result: as it is too big to fit on one page, the printer would print the first half. Or whatever would fit on the 1st page. Followed by additional pages, using the order defined in the Layout pane. Until the entire image is printed. Afterwards, I could tape the pages together into a mosaic of any size.

Actual result: no matter what I do, the print dialog insists it will print only one page. The preview window always shows "1 of 1", even if I change the Pages: to say, "From: 1 to: 4". Fiddling with the other dialog pages does not change this. It never breaks to multiple pages, with a piece of the file on each. All I can do is control what piece appears on the single page to print.

Tested with multiple JPEGs. Tested in Preview and PS Elements. Tested using three different printer targets. Connected via network or USB. Tested under Mojave and El Capitan. Tested using my Mac Pro and MBP. No change - a JPEG will only print to a single page.

I could swear I've done this successfully before, and without drama. But it's been a long time. Maybe all the way back in OS 9. What am I missing?
     
subego
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Oct 14, 2018, 03:17 AM
 
Not as nice as it being native, but Acrobat Reader can do it.

The print dialogue is feature laden, and one of those features is “poster” printing.
     
reader50  (op)
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Oct 14, 2018, 10:39 PM
 
This is useful, though imperfect. Thanks - I can use it. But are there any other ways to tile-print a large image?

Acrobat will only open PDF files, so I have to first "print to PDF". Which adds padding on the sides as needed to make it perfectly fill a page. I could work around this by creating a custom paper size. But I'd potentially have to do that for each image.

When using standard paper sizes, the padding changes the image aspect ratio. This interferes with printing layout when you finally reach Acrobat. ie - an image intended to fall across 2 pages may force to 4. When you scale up enough to fill the two pages vertically, the padded left-right margins force it to spill across more pages. With half the paper actually unused.

If Acrobat let me crop, I could eliminate the padding and scale only the content. Or an image program that can print tiled output, and skip the PDF step.
     
reader50  (op)
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Oct 14, 2018, 11:35 PM
 
OK, it *was* OS 9 that allowed this via the normal print dialog. Further research reveals this is a common question. One Apple has been ignoring.
  • Acrobat will tile, but does not allow editing to fix padding. Unless you buy the paid version. Only opens PDFs.
  • PS Elements: Scale up, then manually position each piece of the image in the Print dialog. Too inconvenient for 3 or more pages.
  • Safari will print an image across any number of pages. The Mojave version adds padding on the left side, sometimes screwing things up. May get fixed in a Mojave point update. El Cap Safari adds almost no padding. Other versions not tested.
  • Firefox will do it. But only prints 1st column of tiles. Also no print preview - requires test prints to PDF.
  • Chrome will do it. But only prints 1st column of tiles. Only enlarges to 200%.
  • Opera will do it. But only prints 1st column of tiles. Only enlarges to 200%.
  • OmniWeb has some printing issues. Only prints leftmost 8-inches of images - affects Landscape printing.
  • iCab has some printing issues. Only prints leftmost 8-inches of images - affects Landscape printing.
  • PosteRazor will do it, but is old, and looks it. 32-bit, so won't work after Mojave. Creates intermediate PDFs, which print from Preview. Has the most complete controls.
  • Assorted paid utilities will do it.
( Last edited by reader50; Oct 15, 2018 at 04:39 PM. )
     
subego
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Oct 15, 2018, 12:47 PM
 
Originally Posted by reader50 View Post
This is useful, though imperfect. Thanks - I can use it. But are there any other ways to tile-print a large image?

Acrobat will only open PDF files, so I have to first "print to PDF". Which adds padding on the sides as needed to make it perfectly fill a page. I could work around this by creating a custom paper size. But I'd potentially have to do that for each image.

When using standard paper sizes, the padding changes the image aspect ratio. This interferes with printing layout when you finally reach Acrobat. ie - an image intended to fall across 2 pages may force to 4. When you scale up enough to fill the two pages vertically, the padded left-right margins force it to spill across more pages. With half the paper actually unused.

If Acrobat let me crop, I could eliminate the padding and scale only the content. Or an image program that can print tiled output, and skip the PDF step.
If it makes it any better, pasting the picture into TextEdit/Pages/Word and printing the PDF will at least anchor the image to the top left of the PDF page.
     
andi*pandi
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Oct 15, 2018, 03:52 PM
 
I think I cheat and use Adobe Indesign to tile. Crop marks, yo.
     
subego
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Oct 16, 2018, 02:59 AM
 
Yeah... Illustrator can swing it, too.
     
   
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