Illustrator alpha channel


I´m trying to place an image with alpha channel in Illustrator, But it isn´t working. I´ve tryed to save the image as Photoshop PDF but the image placed looks like low quality. The job is a company newsletter and it will be printed in off set.

There is a way to place high quality images in an Illustrator artwork?

Thanks in advance,


can you not place a .psd file? a 300 pdi .psd will come in at 300dpi when placed in illustrator…it willl retain all transparency and look as good as a .tif

Hi scb,

I´ve never tryed this. I thought that psd files could´t be placed in illustrator.
I always use tif for images, but I´ll try it.

Thanks a lot.

Best regards,


If you’re using any of the versions released within the past 3 or 4 years you can place them. Also, while in Illustrator, you can just directly open a photoshop file and you have the option of flattening it or importing the seperate layers, though I’ve never done it with the layers option.

since adobe makes both illustrator and photoshop it would be silly if a .psd could not be placed…

i have done many offset print jobs where the final .eps files contained placed cmyk .psd files…it’s all good :slight_smile:

Thanks a lot. Here, in Brazil, things are a little different.

Unfortunately, the old guy’s fear the innovations, so we can’t try ways different than that old ones, with the old softwares.

When a new one came, we just don’t have a choice to try it. But I’m going to do like you all said. I always thought that it could be possible to place a psd file in an Illustrator artwork, but you know, there always an old guy near you! :smiley: :smiley:

Thanks a lot, guys.

Best regards,

Ricardo Araki


I´m back! :smiley:

I´ve placed a 300 dpi psd file in my illustrator artwork, but when I send it to press (in this case I´m making a pdf file) I see in the summary window that the artwork contains some artwork that requires flattening.

I´ve tryed to flatten the transparency objects with the tiff that I´m using as a background. But it still appears in the flattener preview as separeted objects.

Is that right? Or it´s better to select all my artwork and flatten everything up?

Thanks in advance,


I use AI CS but I do believe this also works in the previous version. When you save your pdf be sure that ‘save transparency’ box is checked.

You should be able to bring PSD files in. Have you tried creating a clipping path? Have you tossed out the background layer?

The real issue is that you are bringing raster images into illustrator. Yes it can be done but you are much better off placing them into a page layout application like InDesign or Quark. Your AI file is going to be huge… even if the image file is linked (rather than embeded.)