Automator Example: 300dpi TIFF Print Plugin


In a previous post, I detailed some various ways of using Automator to enhance your productivity and efficiency in the Mac environment.  One of the built-in workflows shipped with every Mac is Automator’s Print Plugin for Saving a PDF to iPhoto – a great tool for taking a document on your computer, converting it to a picture, and saving it to your iPhoto library.  However, this workflow defaults to a 72dpi JPG, not always good enough for print quality.

Here’s a quick Print Plugin you can create in Automator take that existing idea, but turn it into a high-quality, 300dpi TIFF (or whatever other type of image/quality you want, for that matter!).

1) Launch Automator (Applications/Automator) and choose the Print Plugin preset.

Mac OSX Automator Print Plugin Preset
 2) Add the “Render PDF Pages as Images” action from the PDFs Library, choosing “TIFF Image” as format, typing “300” for the resolution, and increasing the compression slider to “best.”
3) Add the “Import Files into iPhoto” action from the Photos Library.
Automator Print Plugin Example | 300dpi TIFF Image
Your workflow should look like this!

4) Choose File < Save and name appropriately (ie: Save to iPhoto as 300dpi TIFF).


That’s it!  Adjust the workflow’s parameters to fit your needs. You can use the workflow whenever you’re in a Print menu!

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3 Responses to "Automator Example: 300dpi TIFF Print Plugin"
  1. Hi,

    Tried a variation to your print-plugin for automating print-jobs in Lightroom. Seems to work fine but I’m stuck on a problem though.

    While choosing 300dpi tiff in “render pdf as images” as output, the image is at 72dpi in Photoshop when opened through Lightroom as an original?!

    This doesn’t make sense, does it?

    • Hi Peter…

      Thas for reading. I don’t have a solid answer for you, but I do have a couple other things to try (hopefully they’ll fit into your workflow needs)

      1) Try creating the workflow as a Service instead of a Print Plugin. Services are accessible from the Finder and work with whatever files are selected.

      2) Open the file in Preview (when an image is open in Preview, you can go to Tools < Adjust Size and see if the workflow is actually doing what it's supposed to do). This will show if your workflow does indeed work.

      I also did a couple Google Searches and noticed some "Automator Packs" available for Illustrator and the rest of the CS suite…you might find those of use, too.

      • […] — You might find my copy and paste the full file path to the cbplioard finder plugin (created using Automator and a dab of AppleScript) helpful when needing the full path to a local […]

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