Print & PDF export generating different results

Hello all–
I’ve created a worship aid for my congregation but here’s my dilemma:

The document I’ve created is with 5.5x8.5 sheets (half US letter). If I print 2up so that I can make a small booklet (one page, front and back, folded in the middle) it looks correct however if I export using the same settings to a PDF, the margins are rendered totally different. (I created each sheet half size, but printing 2 up should be a standard letter page.)

Here’s the correct version if I print directly from within Dorico:

Here’s an incorrect rendering; all the settings are the same however this is the PDF version spit out by Dorico:

Note that the center margin is huge. This causes the document to be “wider” than in reality, so when you go to print from another computer, the document has to be forced down to 90% to fit on the page, even though if you print directly from within Dorico it is correct. The problem is, my office is in the church basement but I need to print hundreds of copies of this from the huge machine in the school. So far, I’m stumped since I can’t get the PDF to render correctly.


(And to be clear, the correct version is what shows on the screen preview before I hit export. Once I hit export and open up the PDF the second is what I see. Obviously they are not the same.)

What’s the size set in Layout Options?

“Statement, 5.5 x 8.5”

By my maths, 2 side by side should therefore equal 11x8.5 which is exactly what I want and what prints directly from within the program.

I’ll also mention that I tried tricking this by using the mac OS print dialogue to “print to PDF” however when that happens, it no longer generates as 2up (even though that’s what’s requested) it generates a single 5.5 x 8.5 in the middle of the page.

“Print to PDF” gives me all sorts of problems in Dorico. I’ve abandoned it in favor of PDF graphic export.

I’ve tried it both ways. It doesn’t matter if I use the system dialogue or the native function built into Dorico… either way renders the same result. I have 2up selected with US Letter as the paper size, it renders in the preview window correctly but exports differently than it previews. That’s why I’m stumped.

Well, the plot thickens, friends… I decided to inspect the properties of the bad PDFs and it shows that they are 13.13 x 8.5. Now I’m really stumped how Dorico manages to create a 13.13" document when that is not the size of the US Letter being asked for, or even a doubling of the dimensions of the original document. That seems a totally random number to me. More interesting still, if I ask it to generate with the crop marks, it shows they are correctly positioned. So Dorico clearly knows the proper boundaries of each half.

I’ve looked into this and determined that there is a bug at play, unfortunately. There is an assumption in the code that calculates the page size for graphics export that the page size will conform to the same aspect ratio as European paper sizes, which is not the case with US paper sizes. We will fix this in the next update. Unfortunately I don’t think there is a good workaround for the time being, except perhaps creating a landscape Letter-sized page and putting two music frames on the page, essentially creating the 2-up layout on a single page of Letter paper, so that you can simply print it without requiring it to be 2-up.

Thanks, Daniel. I’m at least relieved to know I’m not crazy. I’m relatively tech-savvy and this was a real stumper.

Sadly, I’m experiencing the same bug again.

This time around I have statement 5.5x8.5 as my paper size (which is a supported size for my printer and appears as an option when I go to print as well). If I view it to print, it looks correct. When I export a single page as an SVG, however, I get what appears to be a 2-up horizontal spread letter size (2x statement size).

And just to confirm my print settings:

I don’t think this is the same issue: you can’t rely on what you see in Preview for the actual size of an SVG. For various reasons – not least the fact that SVG doesn’t do any font embedding – depending on what your target application is, I’d recommend using PDF and then converting to SVG using another application (Illustrator, Affinity Designer, Inkscape, etc.).

I’ve been exporting little snippets into Affinity Publisher and due to the irregular shape of the export from Dorico, requires formatting rather than simply plopping the (planned-to-be) export into a frame of the exactly correct size. I have a document in Dorico that is 5.5" wide. I have a document in AP that is 5.5" wide. I should be able to make a frame go from edge to edge in AP and then plop the image in, but that’s not what happens because of the odd export from Dorico. I expected (not unreasonably I think) the SVG to be exported the same dimensions as the document size (or at least the same relative dimensions since it is vector based). Sadly, that is not the case. I’ll try it with PDF’s here on out.

Well, I’m afraid I’m running into snafus again. I had been exporting as PDF’s as suggested, however not all programs, most notably, affinity designer, render the PDFs correctly. In the interest of fitting things into the worship aid for Holy Week, I had to use atypical lyric compression. AD can’t render the pdfs correctly even though they look beautiful in Dorico. Most notably, hyphens are all over the place and some lyrics at the end of lines are superimposed upon the first lyrics of the next line.

So, that left me with trying SVGs again. I’ve discovered that Dorico does not export proper font weights to SVGs. It appears that lyrics export correctly, but shift+X objects do not. I’m using built-in font weights from the iowan old font.

There also seems to be an issue with objects placed in text boxes.

(PS- I miss the skinny curly braces that were a part of the original smufl spec…)

I’m not sure how much I can help you, since I try to stay away from SVGs – especially since Qt has some limitations in their handling. But one thing popped up to my eye: what do you mean by built-in? Isn’t Roman Ionic just a Roman design, without bold and italic typefaces?

I recently googled ‘PDF wrong page sizes’ and loads of results appeared from users using a wide range of programs. I am not qualified to say Adobe have a problem but there does seem to be a common thread in all those posts. Is there a fundamental issue with Adobe and not Dorico?

Surely your better bet would be to export PDFs from Dorico and then fix the fonts used by the bold italic type in the destination program once you get them there? Certainly the PDFs are going to have fewer problems than the SVGs overall.

I would guess that most of these issues come from the difference between “document page size” and “print paper size”. PDF generators that rely on the OS’s printing framework can only use the list of paper sizes that the printer drivers know about. That may not match the document page size.

That’s usually not so much an Adobe problem as a user problem. There is no fundamental issue with page size in PDF, which is a very mature technology.