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Illustrator: EMF export loses precision


Question

I want to include a publication quality vector graphic in MS word. EMF seems to be the only vector format which word handles without massive issues. Therefore I am exporting a figure from Illustrator as EMF. When loading the exported EMF figure again in Illustrator (same observation in word) I notice a significant loss in precision, look at the screenshots of the following zoomed in sections below:

original .AI:

original illustration (.AI format)

exported to .EMF and then re-loaded: exported .EMF

Is there any way how I can handle this resolution/precision? I tried - effect -> document raster effect setting -> increase the default 300dpi a lot without any improvement.

Word cannot handle EPS files in any decent way (very low res pixelation) so this is not an option, the only other vector format that would be supported is WMF but that one also gets pixeled badly.

I am using Illustrator CS6 (16.0.0 in Windows 7 64 bit)

Any help will be appreciated!

2015/09/24
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9/24/2015 11:18:00 AM

Accepted Answer

Welcome to the wonderful world of microsoft office. There just simply is no sane solution to this problem. Seriously microsoft what do you guys have against vector graphics in documents.

If your purpose is to view EPS inside of word then it dont work but when you print it and its again vectors. EPS works for print and PDF conversion beautifully, as long as you dont mind the preview of word and can ensure nobody tries to move, or hprror rotate, the image which causes the new word to permanently rasterize the image for good. But dont be fooled by previews if you actually want to print decent quality stuff in cmyk from word this is the ONLY way. (printer must support postscript though if not print via pdf)

EMF precision is a bit whacky yes, but still this is the next best option. Try scaling the image bigger in Illustrator before export. By say a factor of 2-10. This sometimes fixes the issue. Also run trough transparency flattening before exporting. If not then you are doomed to use EPS with no preview in Word. So if by publication you mean sending word documents your in a bad situation.

Word is actually getting worse at supporting vector images. Older versions of word an Powerpoint actually allowed one to copy paste from illustrator.

Next stop PNG.

2015/09/24
5
9/24/2015 8:03:00 PM

I want to include a publication quality vector graphic in MS word.

You are starting with the wrong foot. You can not do that. Well, of course there are many, many types of publications; electronic media, commercial printing, etc.

EMF seems to be the only vector format which word handles without massive issues.

Probably the only vector format that does not have massive issues is perhaphs drawing lines in power point and paste them in word.

increase the default 300dpi a lot without any improvement

Any dpi or ppi setting is NOT for vectors.


So let us start from the begining. Do you really need a vector image? Or you just need a good quality image, so when you print it you have a clean nice one?

Just import a nice and clean PNG file into word. Problem solved.

If you really need a "publication quality vector graphic" make a pdf.

2015/09/24