I need to generate a PMS swatch chart for all current PMS colors to do print tests off large format printers. We have old charts but need a current one. I am hoping there is a way to generate this chart in Illustrator CC without having to manually make one
Are you trying to have a physical swatch booklet? Then it would be better to go to Pantone website and buy from their industry standard swatch book.
If you are just needing to use it in your design in illustrator: Swatches panel > Open swatch library > Color Books and choose your desired PMS book of colors.
@DA01 I think you are missing the point. You are correct that spot colors can't be printed via a CMYK printer. The Pantone to CMYK values provided by illustrator swatches also don't always accurately match Pantone Book colors with what comes out of the printer.
The large format print solution to this problem is to print an entire CMYK pantone chart using the values provided in illustrator, and compare what the printer prints to the swatch book. 300C illustrator values may come off the printer looking more like the 302C in the book due to device profile limitations among other issues.
The point is that I can grab a book (which is the standard that the customer wants to see) and compare it to what the printer is actually printing. If the print color is off I can then use the printed chart to pick the printed color which more closely resembles the pantone color in the book, and use matching printed value in my file to compensate for shift, and inaccurate device profiles.
In the past Pantone has provided an printable .AI or .EPS file with current CMYK values for comparison, but this no longer seems to be available.
Unfortunately, the only solution I currently know of is to create your own file, or find a legacy file provided by pantone.