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Attack of the Jaggies!!! - LYNX S-60

Discussion in 'Flexi' started by humandroid, Sep 4, 2006.

  1. humandroid

    humandroid New Member

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    I am designing graphics in Photoshop and save as PSD files.
    I open the PSD files with FLEXI and autotrace.
    But when I cut the design on my LYNX S-60 I get tiny jaggies on anything except a straight line.
    :help:
     
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  2. Fred Weiss

    Fred Weiss Merchant Member

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    Possible causes and solutions:

    1. Not a large enough canvas in Photoshop. Increase the canvas size to provide Flexi with a higher pixels per inch count. Not the same as increasing it after you've already done the job in Photoshop ... that is just an enlargement of a bad source file.

    2. Your trace settings in Flexi may be picking up too much edge detail. Try adjusting these setting for a smoother, but less detailed, result.

    Instead of just sending the job to the cutter, first examine your trace result by zooming in to examine the vector smoothness. Select and convert to outlines in Flexi then turn on the nodes by selecting with the node edit cursor.

    The ultimate solution for most of these situations is to learn to hand trace in Flexi with the Bezier pen tool.
     
  3. humandroid

    humandroid New Member

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    So, I guess I should just be designing directly in FLEXI for best results?

    I went back and checked the graphic I just cut and the original resolution of the graphic was only 72 pixels per inch.
    I had enlarged it somewhere along the line to 300 pixels per inch and forgot that I had done so.
    So I guess that could be the problem.

    Although, now that I think about it, the text was where the jaggies were at.
    And as long as your text is in a seperate layer in Photoshop and you aren't just dealing with a flattened image, when you resize or change resolution doesn't photoshop adjust the text the same as if you retyped it at the higher resolution?

    What would you say the minimum resolution should be to avoid jaggies?
     
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2006
  4. Fred Weiss

    Fred Weiss Merchant Member

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    Most autotracing is optimized for 300 dpi. Depending on detail and nature of the art determines the size for good tracing results but I typically will work on a canvas set at 6000 x 6000 pixels when i am planning an autotrace.

    Autotracing works best with freeform art such as life forms. Artwork containing text objects or geometric shapes if better hand vectored. Insomuch as all type is vectors to begin with, why would you want to create it as raster only then to attempt to return it to a diminished vector state by autotracing?
     
  5. humandroid

    humandroid New Member

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    I see your point.
    Thanks Fred.
    I'll redo it in FLEXI and see if that gets rid of my jaggies.
     
  6. gvgraphics

    gvgraphics Very Active Member

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    I had that same issue at one time. The way to fix it is to adjust your trace options to most, most, full and 50%. That got rid of them for me.
     
  7. Fred Weiss

    Fred Weiss Merchant Member

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    Yes, but if you compare the result to the original you will see the detail sacrifice you make in the process.

    Autotracing has the same negative effects as making a photocopy of a copy of a copy. It should be used sparingly and one should do most tracing done by hand if one wishes to have a growing reputation for quality workmanship.
     
  8. humandroid

    humandroid New Member

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    Well Fred,
    I just wanted you to know that I spent the day learning how to draw in FLEXI and the results are simply amazing.
    I now have super smooth perfect cuts that I can be proud of.
    Plus the job finished cutting in less than half the time.
    I really love the "Optimize by curve"
    It took me a while to realize what you can really do with that tool but it's a real time saver and a lot of fun too.
    Thanks for the advice!
    :U Rock:
     
  9. Fred Weiss

    Fred Weiss Merchant Member

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    Glad I was of help.

    Don't forget tho explore the other tools in Flexi. You have the ability to draw perfect geometric shapes, to measure segment lengths and angles, to set exact positions of anything selected, to snap a line to vertical or horizontal and a whole slew of other features that will add to the quality of your creations.

    Get very familiar with what various Combining commands can do as well. When you start to look at a piece of artwork and see the component shapes that are either present or missing that you can add in or subtract from with your various shape tools and combining commands, you will appreciate the power of this part of FlexiSign.
     
  10. humandroid

    humandroid New Member

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    Well.. the saga continues

    I decided to redraw by hand one of the graphics that I had autotraced from a photoshop file before.
    When I had cut the vinyl before it was about 34 inches long and was a perfect fit but had come out with jagged edges like I said.

    So I imported my original photoshop file and drew by hand instead of autotracing and the cuts were beautiful like I said before.

    But when I went to install the piece this morning I found that the new one was about 2 inches shorter than the original "jagged cut" graphic that I had cut before.

    Any idea what could have caused this?

    If my words don't seem very coherent I apologize.
    I'm a little rattled this morning as I am on a time crunch.
     
  11. Fred Weiss

    Fred Weiss Merchant Member

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    I would suspect that when you brought the image file in from Photoshop, the size changed due to the resolution you had set it for vs. what Flexi may have been expecting. It should be a proportional variation so that you should be able to resize the entire finished job in Flexi to correct the problem.

    You will then need to recut the job.
     
  12. humandroid

    humandroid New Member

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    I wasn't expecting that.
    I'll be sure to check the size before cutting next time.
    I'm still wondering exactly what I did differently so that it won't happen again.
    Would/could importing an image produce different results in sizing than just opening an image?
     
  13. Fred Weiss

    Fred Weiss Merchant Member

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    What I'm saying is that Photoshop works in pixels dimensions but allows you to set whatever resolution you want. It then transposes those numbers into actual dimensions in inches for your convenience if you resize without resampling.

    So if you have an image set to 900 x 900 pixels in Photoshop, it will tell you that the image is 9" x 9" if you have the resolution set to 100 ppi. It will tell you the image is 3" x 3" if you have the resolution set to 300 ppi. Anyway you slice it, it is still 900 x 900 pixels.

    Bringing it into Flexi, I'm frankly not sure what Flexi will do to it as to sizing it. Someone else may know. The dimensioning problem you experienced is foreign to me because it would never occur to me that a vector made from a raster image would not then be dropped into a layout and sized at that point before cutting it.

    There should be no difference between opening or importing except that opening creates a new workspace and importing brings the image into an already open workspace.
     
  14. iSign

    iSign Major Contributor

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    my guess would be that there are so many variables to investigate the specific step you took that caused this, that the real solution is to adopt the habit of looking at the size of everything you cut. If the step occurred this time because you were updating an old file with your new method... maybe that won't be a common enough occurance to justify a lot of time identifying the specific source of the problem if you can just adopt more new & improved work habits to prevent it.

    When filling "reorders" it is a great advantage to have a clean vector file already sitting in your archives... but NEVER trust that the size is correct... too many times I may have made a last minute adjustment before cutting & not saved it, or saved an adjustment the customer requested that doesn't match the original size noted on the paperwork... or the customer says my new truck/bike/surfboard/etc is the same... so just make it the same... & THEN IT DIDN'T FIT!! ...so be gald the file is on hand, BUT RE-CONFIRM THE MEASUREMENTS!

    I can see the logic in returning to the source (.psd) file for the redraw... but if you still have the previous cut file (.fs) ...I'd be checking against that one before cutting next time.
     
  15. gvgraphics

    gvgraphics Very Active Member

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    Yes, that is true Fred. But the only time I use the auto trace option is when there is little or no detail needed. If there is detail then the best way for me is to redraw the image. I should have explained that in my last post but was in a hurry. I apologize.

    Sean
     
  16. humandroid

    humandroid New Member

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    I resized and recut and it is perfect.:thumb:
     
  17. Ian Stewart-Koster

    Ian Stewart-Koster Active Member

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    Ctrl-K is one of the most used flexi shortcuts here (size/resize) then [cancel].
    It's a good habit, for insurance purposes, to confirm the overall size of the item before going to plot, no matter how confident you are, it's always easy to accidentally resize something...
     

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