File Formats in QuarkXPress

By Jay J. Nelson

QuarkXPress 2016 can directly open documents that were last saved by QuarkXPress 7 and higher; documents earlier than version 7 require conversion first, as explained in the next paragraph. You can also copy entire pages from Adobe InDesign or Illustrator as well as import pages from PDF files, and convert them to native QuarkXPress items.

Every version of QuarkXPress has allowed you to “downsave” a copy of your document to the format understood by the previous version. That way, you can hand off your QuarkXPress 2016 document to someone using QuarkXPress 2015. To downsave to the previous version, open your document and choose File –> Export –> Layouts as Project. In the resulting dialog box, choose 2015 from the Version pop-up menu. Unless you want to replace your existing project, give the new one a different name — perhaps add “qxp2015” to the end. QuarkXPress 2015 then happily opens the exported document just as if it had created it. However, any page items that use features not in that version will be either translated to something that version can understand or removed entirely. (For example, multicolor blends are converted to two-color blends, cross references are lost, and variables with line wraps are lost.) Use with caution!

If you use a Mac, you can use its QuickLook feature to preview QuarkXPress documents that were last saved by version 9 or higher. To do that, click once on the file in the Finder and then press the spacebar on your keyboard. The first page of the document appears in a preview window.