N – Glossary of Print and Design Terms

Welcome to our comprehensive glossary of print and design terms. We are continually seeking to grow and improve this glossary, so if you spot any definition you do not agree with, a term that is missing, or have any comments in general, please email our reference team.

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Natural Colour Very light brown colour of paper. Also called antique, cream, ivory, off-white or mellow white
NCR (Non-Carbon Required) Non carbon required (multi part sets such as invoices purchase orders etc)
Negative Film that contains the same images as the original print, except that all colours and shades are reversed. See also positive
Net Receipts The revenue that the publisher receives from the sale of the book, less any deductions for discounts offered to customers. Net receipts form the most common basis of royalty payments to authors
Network Scanners Scanners accessed and operated over a computer network, shared by a number of users
Neutral Grey Grey with no hue or cast
Newsprint A light, low-cost groundwood paper made especially for newspapers. See also groundwood.
Newton Ring Flaw in a photograph or halftone that looks like a drop of oil or water
Nipping In the book binding process, a stage where air is expelled from it’s contents at the sewing stage
Noise May appear as bright specks in dark areas of a scan due to electrical interference in the CCD sensor and associated circuitry
Nominal Weight When the basis weight of paper differs from the actual weight, the term nominal weight is used
Nonimpact Printer A class of printers that form images without striking the page, such as thermal, ink jet, or electrostatic
N-Up N-Up refers to a feature where you can print multiple pages of a document onto one sheet of paper. The ‘N’ in N-Up is the number of pages that can be printed on a single sheet. For example 4-Up would print four pages on a single side of paper. If this is combined with Duplex printing (printing on both sides of the paper) a single sheet of paper could contain 8 pages, four on the front and four on the back