Convert PDF to Illustrator |Adobe Community

I have a street map (not created by me) as a reasonably high quality PDF file which I want to edit extensively. I can open it in Illustrator as a PDF and edit it. Or I can save it in Illustrator as a .ai file and edit it. Ideally I'm hoping for a vector file to work with for best quality. The .ai file I have created from the PDF is quite messy with lots of frames. It would be much neater if I created the map from scratch but that would be an awful lot of work. I am hoping to use the existing PDF to produce what I want. Also, I'm an wondering whether the .ai file created by opening the PDF in Illustrator and saving it as a .ai file is a vector or raster file? I know files created in Illustrator are vector files but I suspect that the file I have saved from PDF to .ai might be a raster file. So what I am thinking is, is it worth the trouble of converting it to .ai or would using the same PDF file produce the same quality. Many thanks. I welcome an tips or suggestions you can give me. Obviously I am not a 'power' user of Illustrator. I'm wondering whether the .ai file created by opening the PDF in Illustrator and saving it as a .ai file is a vector or raster file? I know files created in Illustrator are vector files but I suspect that the file I have saved from PDF to .ai might be a raster file. The easy way to check whether your file is vector or pixel based is to turn off the preview (Cmd/Ctrl+Y). If you can see the paths you are in business. If you just see a rectangle you're in deep spaghetti – your file is pixel based. It is not a good idea to work with Illustrator on pdf files and saving as .pdf. Things may look o.k. while you are working but any effects you use will become expanded when you save, close and reopen. It's not exactly 'converting' but yes, you can open a pdf file directly using Illustrator and then save as an ai doc. I believe, for pdfs generated by Illustrator v9 and up, you can change the extension from .pdf to .ai since the format is the same. For InDesign, you will have to place the file into a blank InDesign document and save that document. >, I believe, for pdfs generated by Illustrator v9 and up, you can change the extension from .pdf to .ai since the format is the same. No, it's actually the opposite. A modern .ai file consists of PDF data, with the original AI data added. If Illustrator opens a PDF, it first checks for this native data. If it cannot find it, it 'opens' the PDF. ('Opens' needs quotes because that's not actually what happens. Illustrator is *not* a generic PDF editor.) >, For InDesign, you will have to place the file into a blank InDesign document and save that document. That won't do much good either. In InDesign you can do even *less* with a PDF. InDesign is not a PDF editor either. Since a PDF can contain both bitmap and vector data, you cannot tell straight away if this file is 'editable' in Illustrator. Trying is the only option. The OP reports 'lots of frames' but it's so far unclear whether these are vector objects (which might appear as 'frames' for the uninitiated), or because it's a large bitmap that has been divided up into lots of smaller bitmaps (which is a common practice for very large bitmaps). ... In short, what Steve suggested. Open the PDF and look at the wireframe view, and you'll know lots more. Yep, just send another screenshot with the preview turned off (Outline view) and we will be able to see your problem much better. Here is a jpeg of the map created from the Illustrator (CS3) file with preview turned off. I highlighted some of the frames on the left which I hope you can see. Interestingly, each of the streets has a name on the map but each character in the street names is in its own individual frame. I don't know if that indicates that it is not a true vector file. Of course, the whole street name would be in a text frame in the original file. To fix all that now would be a lot of work (deleting and rekeying street names) but I may find a work around. So, my key question is: Is the .ai file I used to create the attached jpeg in your judgement a true vector file which I can confidently edit in Illustrator to give me a quality result? Interestingly, each of the streets has a name on the map but each character in the street names is in its own individual frame. Can Illy do anything about it, using the Type Tool, or what does the Document Info has to say about it if you select it? So, my key question is: Is the .ai file I used to create the attached jpeg in your judgement a true vector file which I can confidently edit in Illustrator to give me a quality result? Source.


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Last Modified: April 25, 2016 @ 6:04 am