Paper Size And Printer Margins

Number Machine Pro can be set up to print to any size paper that your printer can handle. You need to be familiar with your printer’s minimum margins, however, as most printers cannot print within a certain distance of the edge of the paper. If portions of your PDF get cut off, you might be printing outside of your printer’s allowable margins.

Printer margins vary by brand, but a standard safe border area is usually between 3/8” to 1/4″. Make sure to leave plenty of border margin space when you are setting up your PDF file, and print a test copy directly from your PDF to make sure your job fits within the maximum print area and is nicely centered before you import the PDF into Number Machine Pro.

We do not recommend scaling an imported PDF as this could create unexpected results and poor margin performance.

If you’ve confirmed that your PDF is the correct size without scaling and that your page margins are within your printer’s tolerances, but you are still experiencing problems – such as the edge of the job being cut off, we suggest you print fewer-up per sheet and select a smaller page size.

Speed Up Slow Printing Or Fix Printing Failures

If you are having trouble with slow printing – or there is an unusually long pause between pages – you may need to switch off your print spooler or print buffer. These two features were created to help the average job process without overloading your computer’s RAm, but we’ve seen that these can actually slow down or cause a Number Machine Pro job to fail completely.

The print spooler and buffer work by forcing a single job with many pages to process as if it were many single page jobs. This works fine for the average print job, but will often cause failure when you are printing a numbering job, especially if you are printing a PDF at the same time.

Luckily, it is easy to switch these features off.

Print spooler:

1)     Windows XP

  1. Go to “Start”, ,
  2. Right click on “Printers and Faxes”
  3. Choose “Properties,”  then choose the “Advanced Tab”.
  4. Check “Send directly to the printer” and then click “Apply” or “Ok”


2)     Windows Vista

  1. Go to “Start”, “Settings”, “Control Panel”, “Printers”
  2. Right click on the printer
  3. Choose “Properties”, “Advanced Tab”.
  4. Select “Send directly to the printer” and then click “Apply” or “Ok”


3)     Windows 7

  1. Go to “Start”, “Devices and Printers”, right click on your printer
  2. Go to “Printing Preferences” then choose the “Advanced Tab”.
  3. Select “Start Printing Immediately” and then click “Apply” or “Ok”


Print Buffer

The printer’s buffer is what allows you to access many higher functions such as duplexing, reverse page order, collating, etc. Using these features while printing a large numbering job can cause overload and failure. We suggest you do not attempt to use these features when printing from Number Machine Pro.

Sometimes, your printer will allow you to switch off the buffer. Every printer has different ways to do so, and you will need to consult your printer’s documentation to learn the best way to turn the buffer off.

Problem With PDF On Printout

Older PDF fail

Some PDFs, usually ones created using older software versions (PageMaker before it became InDesign, or Quark 5 and older) or non-standard graphics programs (like Publisher or Excel), don’t print out correctly after being imported into Number Machine Pro.

Older software PDF

This sample PDF was created using a very old version of PageMaker. It looks fine here, but the PDF plugin used by Number Machine Pro will try to reinterpret the tabs into columns.

Older PDF fail

This older PDF prints out from Number Machine Pro badly – the text is forced to reflow into columns that aren’t in the original PDF and the start/stop and margins for the PDF are corrupted.



Transparent vector images are incompatible with the PDF plugin being used in Number Machine Pro version They will be imported as solid.


Transparent vector PDF

This PDF includes a transparent vector image in the background behind the text.

transparency becomes solid

Number Machine Pro’s PDF plugin doesn’t interpret the greyscale transparency correctly and prints it out as solid black and white.


There are two different ways to overcome these issues: 1) Quickly, or 2) Professionally.

1) The fastest way to fix the transparency is to open your current PDF in Photoshop, make sure the color settings are set the way you want them (Photoshop tends to default everything to RGB when you probably want grayscale), and resave as a PDF. This will effectively rasterize the whole document. The downside is it may increase the file size and decrease the quality.

(WARNING: Photoshop doesn’t interpret PDF margins very well and may alter your intended gutter spacing and finished size. You will likely need to resize the image to get the margins and project size correct before saving and importing into Number Machine Pro.)

2) To fix the transparency while retaining the highest possible resolution you can change the original image from vector to raster using whatever image program it was created in, re-import it into whatever design program was used to make the PDF, and then resave the PDF. This will take a little longer but will give you the best quality output without increasing your file sizes.
After you’ve done one of those two options you can re-import your PDF and the PDF will look as intended.