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ColorSep®: Color separations mode
ColorSep®: Color separations mode

How to use the color separations feature to preview the color separation plates when reviewing a CMYK PDF made from InDesign or Illustrator.

Marcus avatar
Written by Marcus
Updated over a week ago

If you are creating packaging files and illustrations, you’ll know that PageProof’s smart analysis of dimensions, fonts, and colors, as well as tools such as the ruler for measuring, and gridlines for checking alignment, are useful for digging into the detail of your files.

PageProof’s latest feature, color separations, is highly optimized for packaging proofing and lets you preview the color separation plates for a file that meets the following criteria:


  • PDFs made from Adobe Illustrator or InDesign

  • A CMYK colorspace PDF (that can also include spot colors)

  • 1 or 2 page PDF

Adobe Illustrator:

  • Adobe Illustrator .ai files

  • CMYK colorspace

  • 1 or 2 artboards

How to preview color separation plates

Step 1

Click the color separations icon at the bottom of the proofing screen.

Color separation icon

Step 2

In color separations mode, you will see the default composite plate.
Click the color plate you wish to view. You can select more than one plate at a time.

ColorSep screen in PageProof


  • The colors switch will display the plate in color

  • Selecting a plate will show the color separation preview for that plate

  • To view multiple color separation previews at the same time, use control (PC) or command (Mac) + click

  • Use the shortcut key a to select all plates

  • If a spot color is not auto-detected, set a color of your choice by double-clicking the colored dot next to the plate name. RGB, HSL, and Hex are available as options. Double-clicking the dot again will unset the color you have chosen.

  • Use the zoom to get right into the detail

  • Hover over the artwork to see the ink coverage and color breakdown.

    PageProof ColorSep® showing the mouse hover details for ink coverage and color breakdown

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