PDF files print gibberish!

I am running Adobe XI. Recently PDF documents that I download with multiple pages are not printing correctly. Some of the pages are in English, but the rest of the pages are unintelligible words/numbers. For example, on a 44 page document only pages 32-44 are readable. This happened on another document also where only pages 22-35 could be printed correctly.
I am also having difficulty sending PDF files--they look fine on my screen but are not received in a readable format.
Any ideas for resolution are most appreciated!

Valerie Jones

3 Answers

Most printing problems with Acrobat or Reader are caused by a printer driver that is too old, so the first step should always be to update any printer drivers to the latest version.
You mention having problems sending files. Are these file you created? Can you please describe in more detail what happens. Which software are you using, Reader or Acrobat, and which version. Thanks.

Karl Heinz Kremer   

Start off... what does the 'gibberish' look like? Also, what is on those particular pages? Images, graphics, just text? Does it look like the rest of the document or something that was added at a later date (assembled with it)?

What happens if you print all the pages, but those? What happens if you only print those pages? Is this printer specific?

Finally, check to see what created the document? If it's available on the web, can you send a link?

Do you have Pro? If so, run a Preflight check on it to see if there are any problems. Report PDF Syntax issues would be a good start.

I think there is more here than just the printer driver - especially if the rest of the document is printing just fine.


Douglas Hanna   

This link shows a pic of gibberish and the solution


While the link addresses version 10, I am still using version 9 and as long as you de-select the specific setting I am fairly certain your gibberish issue will go away on your version 11. I just bought a new laptop with Win10. The Edge browser exhibited these issues after I reinstalled my Acrobat 9. I've encountered this issue on multiple laptops with different OS and browsers. THE FIX IS AS FOLLOWS:

While Acrobat and OS differences might cause the steps to be slightly different ... de-selecting ONE print option will solve your problem:

- Basically go to your Devices and Printers

- Right Click the Adobe PDF printer

- Choose Printing Preferences


- On the Adobe PDF Settings tab one of the selection boxes should say "Rely on system fonts only; do not use document fonts"

- DE-SELECT THIS OPTION and click OK / Save your change

- NOTE Sometimes I have to also THEN Right click the printer and choose Printer Properties, at the bottom of the General tab choose Preferences, then de-select the option ... or at least see the option is de-selectes and click OK / Save all the way until I'm out of the settings. Not certain if this is neccessary but sometimes my first print after changing this selection still has gibbersish ... or maybe I have to close the browser window/tab and then print form a new / refreshed page.

I think the idea is that using that option will enable your PDF files to be smaller. Of course, it does no good if your PDFs are messed up!

Peter Chocholak   

Please specify a reason: