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Barcodes are machine-readable codes. We are familiar with these codes on goods and books that are read by scanners in POS systems.

Bar codes are often referred to as EAN and GTIN, i.e. European Article Number and Global Trade Identification Number, although these are only two variants of possible bar codes.

Barcodes consist of so-called “modules”, as bar elements, which can be either white or black. In addition, there are often empty zones in front of and behind the barcodes, i.e. areas that must not be inscribed.

Different codes can carry different information. If the EAN, GTIN and ISBN codes are only numbers, Code 39, Code 93 or Code 128 barcodes can also contain letters and characters, and thus, for example, a designation can be inserted into the barcode.

Depending on the barcode, there is a comprehensive set of rules that ensures that barcodes can be read optimally. For example, it is important not to fall below or exceed certain sizes and to define minimum heights for the codes.

Discounters, for example, require proof of a certain quality of the barcode. For example, ALDI and Hofer want to have at least a “3B” quality in all test disciplines of the barcode on packaging for ALDI. You can also order such a barcode test in our shop.

Baseline grid

The baseline grid guarantees that the font lines in a document are at the same height in a layout.

Basic colour

The term basic colour is mostly used in connection with the Pantone Matching System. The Pantone colours – since 2014 a total of 1755 colours – are mixed from 18 PANTONE basic colours in different mixing ratios. The 14 original basic colours had a four colour extension  after the abolition of PANTONE GOE. These four new basic colours are PANTONE colours themselves, but are just as well used for mixing other PANTONE colours.


Bleed or the bleed allowance is used in printing and prepress to describe the area that is still being printed but which is outside the actual print and is cut off at the end.

Bleed is important because paper is a medium that is never exactly 100% identical in the printing press, and these fluctuations increase in every processing step such as folding and stitching. If the data were delivered in the “plain” final format alone, a white margin would often be visible at the edge – sometimes at the top, sometimes at the bottom, sometimes on the right and sometimes on the left – which is caused by the offset of the printed image during printing and further processing.

Most printing companies do well with 3mm bleed, Flyeralarm can also cope with a tolerable one millimetre, sometimes the bleed specifications are also in between or – as for large displays and mega posters – much higher, as fabric or tarpaulin warps even more easily.

If in InDesign or other layout software or in imposition software auxiliary marks are placed on the PDF or the print data, then there are also bleed marks that indicate the inner area to which the bleed is applied and the outer area to where the bleed reaches maximum.


The BleedBox is one of the five PDF boxes. It describes the part of the PDF, including the content and the bleeding. In printing a bleed of 1 to 3 mm is usually required. A PDF file with an A4 page for printing so usually has a Trimbox of 210×297 mm, the trimmed page format. The BleedBox has with 3mm bleed around the page the size of 216x303mm.


Bundesverband Druck und Medien: The German Printing and Media Industries Federation (bvdm) is the central association of the German printing industry. As an employers’ association, political trade association and technical trade association, it represents the positions and objectives of the printing industry vis-à-vis politics, administration, unions and suppliers.

The bvdm is supported by nine regional associations in which the printing and media companies are organized as members.

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