[Solved] Problems with printing

I have a Brother MFC-J6910DW printer which is a large A3 capable inkjet with duplex printing which I use for printing orchestral/band parts A4 on A3 sheets in booklet format. The only drawback is that it needs a 20mm clear bleed on the front and back edge of an A3 sheet for paper handling when it is printing duplex. To compensate for this I set up my pages as mirrored pairs with 22mm as the outer margin and 10 mm as the inner. This worked with sibelius as far as page setup was concerned but as sibelius never seemed capable of booklet printing with the Brother, I used to out put to PDF, load the PDF into a template in Adobe In-Design and use the In-Design ‘Print Booklet’ facility to print.

I thought that Dorico with its inbuilt booklet facility would improve on the steps above above but I have hit a snag. I have set Dorico up to duplex print A4 sheets in booklet format on A3 paper. I have set up mirrored margins of 62pts outer and 28pts inner (I calculate 1mm = 2.8pts) in page set up. The visual shows the correct imposition with the correct mirrored margins however when Dorico comes to print the whole image is offset approximately 26mm to the right on the page. This means that the right hand edge of page 1 goes into the 20mm no print zone truncating the last bar or so of every stave and the left hand edge of page 4 has a huge margin ( it is only a four page part). Similarly with pages 2 and 3. Either I am missing something fundamental (unlikely as the graphic representation of the printed page is correct) or the printer has certain characteristics which Dorico doesn’t pick up. I don’t have any problems printing booklets with In-Design.

I can always (and have) output to PDF and print via In-Design but it seems a pity.

When Dorico prints, we tell the printer to use the entire area of the paper, i.e. to assume that it can print right up to the edge of the page and to ignore whatever the printer reports as its unprintable area, on the basis that it’s highly unlikely you would choose to make margins that are smaller than that unprintable area, and thus it’s easiest to get a predictable result if you specify margins in the application in absolute terms relative to the page size rather than to the arbitrary margins the printer actually uses (and may or may not report).

Does the problem occur if you print e.g. a single A3 page at full size? It would be interesting to know whether the problem is introduced when Dorico does the imposition for you, or whether it always happens.

Thanks Daniel for your reply. If, as you say, Dorico is set to print to the edge of the sheet then my settings which allow for the printers non printable area should work. Further playing around with various options has enabled me to isolate the problem. If the setting under ‘Duplex Printing’ is to ‘print on one side only’, then it works as envisaged without a problem. However, if the setting is ’ Print on Both sides automatically’ then the printing is offset 26mm to the right on both sides, causing the problem I have described earlier.

I’m seeing this problem as well. I have an HP eStn C510 (rotten printer, not recommended) and with duplexing off, Dorico prints booklet or spreads correctly. However, when duplexing is on it appears as though the margin on the left is doubled causing the music to shift to the right and into the unprintable portion of the page.

ETA: Manual duplexing works fine, it’s only automatic duplexing that has the issue. Also, if it matters, I’m on Win10, latest update.

We’ve been looking into this and we have not yet been able to reproduce the problem with either of the printers we have here in our London office, either on Windows or Mac. I think both of you are on Windows, yes?

Is it possible for you to try a different printer driver for your printers? I know that often the generic Microsoft drivers don’t provide support for special features like duplexing, but if it’s possible for you to give it a try I’d be interested to know if this makes any difference.

Thanks for the reply, Daniel, It spurred me on to do further testing as the route to loading a microsoft driver was looking a bit obscure and I have found a solution (for me, at least, I’m not sure if it will apply to sjanssens on the HP).
I had not set any of the Brother own printer preferences, assuming that they would probably be set by Dorico. The Brother has duplex preferences of none, duplex or booklet in its settings. This was set as none by default. I changed this to duplex and, to my delight, the printed (booklet) layout was correct with no strange margins.

Many thanks for comming back to me on this. I realise it must be an impossible task to take account of every bit of hardware out in the field.

I will just add that I’m on my fourth project (all transcriptions) with Dorico and the more I get into it and master the short cuts the more I appreciate what a great piece of software it is.

I already had the latest driver installed, but just as a sanity check, I removed the printer and reinstalled from scratch. Now it works!

Wonderful news! I’m glad that both of you have now got a solution to this problem. Thanks for following up.

One final point on printing. It would be useful if there were a link to printer preferences in the printing section so that one can check the actual printer settings before pressing the print button. At the moment I have to load another program which does link to print settings so I can do the check to avoid getting into the problems I describe above.

Yes, I agree with this, and I hope we will be able to implement this relatively soon.