.pdf layout prints the viewport with black ink


We run a dual brand office where some work off Microsoft Windows, and some work off of apple Mac’s.

My issue pertains to only Mac computers printing .pdf files in which the viewport prints as black.

  1. Sketchup 2018 Pro installed.
  2. Layout version 18.0 installed.
  3. export layout files to .pdf (the .pdf files show up just fine on the computer screen for both windows and mac.)
  4. when I print the .pdf from a windows computer, everything is normal.
  5. when I print the .pdf from a mac, the area of the viewport is printed as black!

Please help or ask more questions if more info is needed.


This happens to me as well.

Layout PDF: Unwanted Black Background Appearing in Printout = Catastrophic Failure (Mac Related?)

Can you share the LO file?

What happens if you render the viewport as Hybrid instead of Raster?

Got the file. Since it contains your contact information as well as your client’s, you might want to edit the post and remove it.

Back shortly.

Can you try printing the PDF I sent you in a private message and see what you get? It was exported from LO2019.

Any solution to this or idea of what is causing the black viewport?

still printing with black viewport…

You never did tell me if the PDF I sent you printed correctly.

Any updates on this topic, we are still getting Revit threats if this issue isn’t resolved…?

Wow, great support. None, that is. What’s going on here? No fix huh?

AFAIK it is fixed in SketchUp 2020.

Nope, not for me but thanks. The only fix I have is rendering the final plans in vector but you lose textures.

Well, it clearly works fine here. This is LayOut 2020 and the exported PDF on my machine.

I think you need to look at your system. Maybe graphics drivers need to be updated.

My pc and printer is fine. I have clients that this happens too and I don’t know why. On my end it’s fine but it’s frustrating when my clients are having issues that can be cleared up with a vector rendering but I lose textures.
Just because you don’t have an issue doesn’t mean there isn’t one. But it’s clear that there isn’t a fix to this if that’s your response.

It should be clear from my response that this problem isn’t necessarily a LayOut problem. By the way, I’m just a SketchUp and LayOut user. I don’t work for Trimble.

Yet, I didn’t start this thread but am having the same issues from time to time. Hmmmm.

Can you reproduce the steps that you do to make this happen? Is it only when printing to paper or does it also happen when viewing? Which PDF viewer do you use? If it is your clients that see this while it looks OK to you, are your clients using a MAC? Macs have something called colour profiles that might be interfering. Can you post a LayOut file and a PDF exported from that that shows this problem?

Have a couple clients that have this happen when they print. There are no steps that I do to create this. It just happens on their end. I don’t know what or how they are printing their sheets but it’s clear I’m not the only one that has heard of this. I just use Vector to fix it for the one’s that have a problem but lose the textures.

A development from my original post has found our office where all of our Microsoft Windows computers do not have the issue where a plotted sheet of paper results in the black background where the ‘viewport’ is situated.

The issue was ONLY on Mac devices and what we found is that the Mac’s were printing from a separate app that was not Adobe Acrobat. When the Mac was updated to download Adobe Acrobat the issues seem to be resolved.

Let me know if this works.

Having the same issue where a client is reporting that the viewports are printing black.
I have suggested to him that he install Abobe Acrobat on his Mac per @BMPD 's Suggestion.
I have not heard back yet and hope that fixes the problem.
Either way, I’m not super comfortable telling customers what PDF viewer to use and I hope Trimble is looking into compatibility issues so it is compatible with as many viewers as possible.