Sample 16-page Layout from IDImposer

Imposition Defined

“Imposition is one of the fundamental steps in the prepress printing process. It consists in the arrangement of the printed product’s pages on the printer’s sheet, in order to obtain faster printing, simplify binding and reduce paper waste.”

“Correct imposition minimizes printing time by maximizing the number of pages per impression, reducing cost of press time and materials. To achieve this, the printed sheet must be filled as fully as possible.”


Imposition Alternatives

When it’s time to turn your ‘reader-order’ InDesign document into an imposed ‘printer-spread’ document, what do you do?

A Prepress Printing Services Provider

Do you bring your job to a prepress printing service provider? Certainly that is the right choice for many types of complex or high cost jobs. Don’t forget to consult with your service provider as early as possible in the job production process.

A High End PDF Imposition System

Or do you export the reader-spread job to PDF, and then use one of the high end PDF-based imposition systems? That’s fine, if your budget and time allow, or if your job is already in PDF format. (Also see MultiPlace.jsx for building an InDesign document from a PDF file. It’s in the RESOURCES > HelperScripts folder, in the IDImposer folder.)

Acrobat’s Booklet Printing

How about Acrobat’s ‘Booklet Printing’ feature? It might suffice, if your needs are simple and you plan to print directly from Acrobat. But note that ‘Booklet Printing’ cannot write out an imposed PDF, and is limited to 2-up output.

InDesign’s Print Booklet

Why not use InDesign’s ‘Print Booklet’ feature? But Print Booklet is limited to simple 2-up layouts, on small sheets. And producing PDF files of the results is problematic. And there is no WYSIWYG preview before you print, often resulting in wasted time and paper.


This website describes a different tool, called IDImposer. IDImposer works with Adobe InDesign to turn your InDesign ‘reader-page-order’ documents into 2-up or more-up ‘printer sheet’ documents, ready for cutting, folding, and binding.