Blurb Photobook PDF/X-3 fail

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New to the forum here, but I've been creating Blurb photobook for quite a while using the various Scribus 1.4.x versions. Alas, since around summer 2015, my PDF/X-3s uploaded to Blurb are rejected.

Blurb support was helpful enough to fix this in two cases by re-processing through Adobe Distiller, but they certainly won't do it for all future uploads. According to them "While Scribus claims to be PDF/X-3 2002 compliant we have seen that they re-encode fonts which isn't actual true compliance with the PDF/X-3 format. Unfortunately we have not been able to narrow down specifically what is causing these errors as I have seen successful uploads from Scribus in the past, our current best guess is the font encoding that Scribus does. Are you able to outline these fonts rather than embed them and try uploading again?" - I'm using TTFs which are completely embedded in the PDFs.

And in a recent test even a PDF without any text/fonts failed, seems to be some complexity issue, as removing some pictures, even just a single picture could cause the test PDF to be accepted. PDF size is around 400+ MB.

I'd really love to get to the root cause, in various tests I wasn't able to nail it down.

Any ideas, anyone? I'd rather avoid having to shell out the money for Indesign. Thanks.


Never heard about PDF/X-3s, only PDF/X-3. Is yours a newer version (1.5x) ?

Have you installed GhostScript latest version?

Your OS?


My guess is that the poster means "one PDF/X-3, several PDF/X-3s".


Exactly, that was a plural "s". ;-)
Windows 7 64bit,  latest Scribus 1.4 (1.4.6, but also happens with previous 1.4 releases), latest GS (but AFAIK GS is *not* involved in the PDF/X-3 generation at all).


I just read this comment in another thread:,2002.msg8870.html#msg8870
As I'm using frames cropping the original image quite heavily in my layout, could this be (part of) the problem?


Quote from: phtnnz on April 01, 2016, 11:42:35 AMcould this be (part of) the problem?

yes – you should crop your images with an image processor like gimp, photoshop...


Ok, thanks for the feedback. Only this is a very tedious process. It's much easier to leave the image in the original aspect ratio and move it inside the picture frame after double clicking. Especially for full page images with odd aspect ratios.


Meanwhile I create a Perl script to automate the cropping process. And it seems to work!


It's ignoring the rotation of images in the frame though.

Quote from: phtnnz on May 07, 2016, 02:14:49 PM
Meanwhile I create a Perl script to automate the cropping process. And it seems to work!