enter image description here I'm working on a product packing design, so I need to have a barcode on the packaging. But when I attached the barcode PNG in Illustrator and exported the file to PDF format to print. The barcode turns out Gray color! I tried to "Unembed" the PNG and export it to PDF again; the barcode turns out normal. I don't understand why this is happening, and I'm not sure if it's ok that I do not embed the PNG and just send the file to the printer. So, questions: When I print the PDF file, will the "Unembed" PNG barcode still turns out normal? enter image description here

  • Are you SURE the barcode background is PURE white ? (#FFFFFF) Commented Aug 28, 2016 at 11:28
  • Yes, I embed the PNG and export to PDF file on the other packages everything was right. Beside this one, I cannot embed the PNG because it will become gray barcode on PDF format. I don't understand why this's happening....AND, I checked, the barcode background really is #FFFFFF.......I need to submit this PDF file to printer....not sure it will shows up right!!!
    – Ying
    Commented Aug 28, 2016 at 11:31
  • 1
    A thought occurs - you will be exporting to CMYK presumably, It could be as a result of converting the PNG from RGB. Can you convert the PNG to CYMK before inserting? Commented Aug 28, 2016 at 11:33
  • Thank you Digital Lightcraft!! It works!!! The PDF file shows white barcode now!!! Thanks for the heads up!!!!
    – Ying
    Commented Aug 28, 2016 at 11:37
  • 1
    Just clicked the diamond mark. First time user here!
    – Ying
    Commented Aug 28, 2016 at 11:47

1 Answer 1


You need to convert the PNG to the CMYK colour space before importing. When you export out to a CMYK PDF for print, the white can be discoloured during this process.

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