CMYK black values

This article provides guidelines for CMYK black values for books created with our InDesign plug-in or PDF Uploader workflows.

Please note that the below are not precise measurements but rather basic recommendations about what our tests have shown to be the best mix of color for a good black.

  • Use a mix of 60C,50M,50Y,100K for any content in which a rich black is desired. (This is best for areas of large ink coverage).
  • For a cooler black try 80C, 20M, 20Y, 100K. For a warmer black try 20C, 70M, 70Y, 100K. (These values are for areas of large ink coverage such as background colors. Don't use these color values for black text).
  • For black text it's best to use only black ink (0C, 0M, 0Y, 100K). This will help avoid misregistration issues. 
  • We do not recommend using "Registration Black" (100% of all inks) because this will cause problems when printing.
  • For reverse text on a rich black background the smallest size we recommend is 10 points.
      • This may vary based on the properties of the font (i.e. X height, line thickness, light versions of fonts, etc).
      • If you are unsure of your font properties we suggest using at least a 12 pt font.

We recommend you order and review a single Blurb-printed copy before placing a large order or completing an important project. That way you can see how your colors, font choices, and  overall project look in print. You can then can correct any issues in your content or layout before placing the final order.

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