Multilingual typesetting/DTP services for UK business

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30 years of expert translation & interpreting

UK Foreign Language DTP/Multilingual Typesetting Services
Proofread, press-ready, SME-friendly

Multilingual DTP/typesetting & translation typesetting in
Quark – InDesign – Publisher – Illustrator – Photoshop…
Foreign language typesetting/DTP services at SME prices in
Arabic, Russian, Chinese, Korean, Japanese and more

Foreign language typesetting/multilingual DTP services are in high demand by succesful exporters. As one of the first providing true Arabic typesetting, our proofread press-ready multilingual DTP – whether round-trip translation typesetting, or clients’ provided translation typesetting – is particularly popular with SMEs.

“EXTREMELY happy with Lifeline… spectacular work”      – Griffin Communications, USA

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Multilingual typesetting/DTP in-house – not just over-the-fence subcontracted!

Foreign language typesetting is all too often subcontracted out by providers, often to China or India, with little or no QA. Instead we handle our typesetting in-house, our years of experience and in-house linguists ensuring our product really is press-ready. Quality is guaranteed through close liaison between our expert linguists, project managers and Adobe-certified DTP team. Particularly exotic languages are handled by our trusted network of multilingual typesetting professionals and proofreaders, allowing us to reliably typeset languages from Akuapim to Zulu.

Multilingual typesetting & DTP projects handled to date range from fashion magazines and 200-page technical catalogues to burger packs, via 2,000 pages of Arabic typesetting we re-created from scanned copy. Working in Quark, Illustrator, InDesign, Photoshop and more, on PC or Mac, our expert translation typesetting team handles Chinese, Russian and Arabic DTP plus less frequent flyers like Uighur, Georgian, Amharic or Croatian.

Foreign language DTP & multilingual typesetting to trust

Our SME-friendly multilingual DTP/typesetting services deliver your design, perfectly typeset into one or more foreign languages. Proofread and press-ready, whether our language translation, or yours. On-time, reliably, and cost-effectively.

Our foreign language typesetting team also maintains the latest DTP apps, avoiding those tedious “We’ve only got version X, can you downsave?” requests.

Always remember that in exporting, the first experience most customers have of your operation is your product’s presence on the shelves or at the trade show. You get ONE chance to make an impact – so make sure it’s the right one. That’s why we’re here.

Multilingual DTP delivery formats

The native format – e.g. Quark Xpress, Illustrator, Photoshop, or InDesign – is an option in simpler languages, but make sure your print service REALLY IS multilingual-ready. Most aren’t – a bad thing to learn on the day you go to press!

Outlined, with text converted to vectors, is much safer while retaining layout flexibility for graphics etc.

Safest but least flexible is press PDF which we make to your requirements.

“What’s so hard about foreign language typesetting?”

The trick in multilingual DTP isn’t what you do – it’s what you KNOW. Simply replacing English text with Chinese – often offered as “Chinese typesetting” – is actually easy, which is why it’s common. But making that Chinese typesetting work in China – with all the impact in face, style, colour – THAT’s hard.

Arabic DTP – or Hebrew or Farsi typesetting, or other right-to-left (RTL) languages is REALLY error-prone unless you know what you’re doing, and we’ve seen lots of “Arabic typesetting” that is, quite literally, backwards. But there’s far more to it than “flipping” layouts – graphs, flowcharts and tables need reversing too. But what catches out most wannabe providers is that the text itself needs to be (kind of) reversed. Except numbers… or to the Arabic reader the result is pure gobbledegook.

Asian languages also bring a myriad of font issues. Did you know that Hong Kong Chinese has characters not found in most Chinese fonts? Or that Chinese outside China is different to Chinese INSIDE China?

Then there’s basic stuff that most non-linguist typesetters miss – like the spaces,  numbering and names in French.

“I’m getting weird characters – what’s that about?”

Most fonts omit characters needed in multilingual typesetting. Sometimes that’s obvious – for example, where “boxes” appear instead of characters. More dangerous are fonts that omit just one or two glyphs, especially when your app auto-substitutes another character – Tajik is one example. That’s why professional proofreading MATTERS.

While Unicode fonts are continually developing, older fonts are often problematic even in “easy” languages like Greek & Turkish, Russian, or CE languages (Czech, Bulgarian, Hungarian…). Many languages – such as Tamil, Amharic or Georgian – have unique character sets, and most Indian and other Asian languages can be problematic. RTL languages really do need professional handling.

“Amharic and Tajik? Wow… Anything else?”

Common issues are too much text (French can be 30% longer than English) – too little (Finnish can be 25% shorter!) – or word length. German compound words can be very long indeed – correct hyphenation is essential, and when badly done is an instant turn-off to the German reader.

The proof’s in the print.

Here’s a small selection from our production, all here with customers’ blessing – PDFs, they’ll open in new windows/tabs. Acrobat Reader is available here.
Something Arabic…(129KB) – with thanks to Liquid Plastics
Something Chinese…(1MB) – with thanks to Till & Whitehead
Something Bengali, Gujarati, Hindi & Urdu…(700KB)
– with thanks to our Chamber of Commerce
Something Japanese…(606KB) – with thanks to BPI
Something Hebrew…(708KB) – with thanks to Amnesty International
Something Russian…(914KB) – with thanks to Hawke International
Something Spanish…(683KB) – with thanks to Tangerine Holdings
And something for the kids – more Chinese…(671KB) – with thanks to Harper-Collins, and some Hindi…(296KB) – with thanks to B3 Creative!

“JUST what I need! What now?”

Great! Just drop us a few details (in total confidence of course) and we’ll get straight back to you, or give our helpful team a call on UK Freefone 0800 783 4678 (Intnl 0044 1772 558858)

foreign language typesetting example

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