I don't know where to ask this, but I don't get the logic of some programs when printing. I did try Acrobat Reader and Powerpoint and they behave the same. When I select two side printing, I get the option how to turn the page, either like a book or "upwards". If we have a A4 (letter) page, it means on long edge (like a book) or short edge (upwards). This is at least the theory I understood.

If I want to print 4 page together, the logic seems to be rewersed. If I print two per page not.

I tried to thing of a reason, but I gave up. Right now I always print 8 pages first and see if they get printed like I want and then continue.

What is the logic behind the switch in the way 4-page and 2-page print are printed in duplex?

Example: On Acrobat Reader:

  • select Multiple page per sheet :4.
  • Print on both side of paper, flip on short edge.
  • Orientation Portrait.
  • How will it print the sheets?

enter image description here

Answer: it will print in a "notebook" way, that is the axis of rotation of the sheet is on the top (that is the long edge)

I am beginning to think it's a bug on the printer drivers.. (Ricoh Aficio)

  • 1
    What is your actual question? – CharlieRB Apr 7 '17 at 11:39
  • @CharlieRB I've updated the question with an example on how to reproduce what I meant. – maugch Apr 7 '17 at 12:12
  • please add also a screenshot to you example. Is "auto-rotate pages within each sheet" checked? I've tried your settings and it just works fine for me – Máté Juhász Apr 7 '17 at 12:20
  • 4 pages per sheet looks (and prints) just fine to me. Each of the pages is in portrait orientation on a portrait sheet of paper. Proportions are correct. Portrait orientation in the print dialogue box is the orientation of the paper sheets, not the document. Are all pages in your document portrait, or are some (or all) landscape? – hdhondt Apr 7 '17 at 13:00
  • @MátéJuhász I try with auto rotate – maugch Apr 7 '17 at 14:29

You seem to be confusing two separate things: duplexing and booklet or n-up printing.

Duplex printing means that the printer will print on both sides of the paper. In other words, page 1 will go on one side, page 2 on the other, and so on. When you do that you have the option of telling the printer how the paper should be "flipped". For a normal A4 portrait page, you would normally flip along the long edge, so the pages will be able to be read like an a4 book. If the A4 document is in landscape format, then it is more difficult to decide which way it should be flipped, along the long or short edge, The answer depends on what you are going to do with the finished pages. Do you want to bind them along their long edge (the top) or the short edge (left edge)?

2-up printing lets you print 2 pages on each A4 sheet side. To put 2 (reduced) A4 pages on one A4 sheet, two portrait pages will be printed on one landscape sheet. For booklet printing the printer/driver also rearranges the pages so that they will be in the correct order when all the sheets are put together and folded in the middle. In this case you you may not want to bind them along any edge. For a booklet the thing to do is to staple them together along the centre fold. As the printer needs to flip the sheets to duplex, the edge to flip them over is the short edge. If they were flipped along the long edge, the back of the page would be upside down compared to the front.

If you are printing more than 2 pages per side, then it is important to consider how you are going to read the printed document.

In all cases, if in doubt about the correct setting, consider how you will be reading the document (portrait or landscape sheets) and how you will be turning the sheets while reading. In portrait cases you will most likely turn the sheets like a book (flipping along the long edge). For landscape sheets both are equally likely. In this case, flipping along the long edge produces a "notebook" style print, where you flip the pages up instead of to the left.

To repeat, think about how you'll be reading the document and decide from that which edge is the one to flip along.

I hope this clarifies it somewhat for you. I'll try to respond if you have additional questions.

  • Well I print 4 sheets per page to save space, so booklet printing can be used to print more page in a single sheet side. If you add it to duplex you then have different behaviours. Try it yourself. I will update my question – maugch Apr 7 '17 at 12:09
  • To connect your explanation to mine, I should say that if you make a duplex of a 2 page per sheet, when I set orientation: Portrait, the mini A4 are portrait on a landscape sheet. BUT. If I set Duplex, the flipping is meant on the mini A4, not on the sheet it self then, right? – maugch Apr 7 '17 at 12:15
  • When you say "4 sheets per page" do you mean you are printing 4 pages per A4 sheet? In that case duplexing should normally be set to flip along the long edge. If you're printing 2 pages per sheet then it's along the short edge if you turn the pages left to right when reading. If you're flipping them up like a notepad then use long edge binding. It really all depends on how you want to flip the pages while reading them. – hdhondt Apr 7 '17 at 12:30
  • To re-emphasize my last comment: the important thing is to consider how you will hold the document to read it, and how you intend to turn the pages. I'll add that to my answer. – hdhondt Apr 7 '17 at 12:41
  • Thank you for your detailed answer, but it helps me only to understand that there is a real issue here. If I say "Flip on long edge", it means that the long edge of the piece of paper is the axis of the flipping, right? So the movement should be clear. What I want to do is always have a "Book flipping edge" (like you call it), so in a landscape page, I want to flip on the short edge. This does not happen if I select "Flip on short edge" and have 4 pages per sheet. – maugch Apr 7 '17 at 14:39

You'll have less confusion if you set these print settings on the printer's Properties rather than through this prompt - leave this section as if you were printing a regular A4 sheet, and use the combination print functions in the driver itself.

Use the 'Properties' button next to the printer name to do this; that way, it'll only apply to this document and not change your default settings.

  • I did set this on the printer indeed and had no issues. Google,Adobe and Microsoft have problems. – maugch May 30 '17 at 6:16

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