I spent some time trying to make a good PDF of a drawings with both wireframe and shaded views. Thought I would share what I found here as this information is hard to find on the forum.
What I learned:
Use print to PDF for wireframe drawings.
Use save as PDF for drawings with shaded views.
High quality print setting in Solidworks is useless.
An option for a good render instead of using TIFF - use Save to PDF with a 600 DPI, then convert the PDF to PNG with PDFXchange.
Some of what I tried below...
Using Print to PDF:
The printed PDF without the shaded view is 250kb.
By default, the wireframe views look great (vector lines I think), but the shaded view has ~100dpi and looks like crap. 400kb file.
If I select "high quality" inside solidworks, & "standard quality" (600dpi), inside Adobe distiller, the whole sheet is pixelated to 300dpi. 700kb.
If I select "high quality" inside solidworks & "high quality" (2400dpi) inside Adobe distiller, the whole sheet is still 300pdi. 2200kb.
Couldn't get better results with PDF reDirect.
Using Save to PDF:
The saved PDF without the shaded view is 430kb.
By default, the "Shaded/Draft geometry DPI" is set to 96. Looks identical to the default PDF print. 560kb.
If I set the "Shaded/Draft geometry DPI" 300, the PDF looks exactly how I want it to with vector wireframe lines, 300dpi image. 1400kb.
Can't figure out how to get the "Shaded/Draft geometry DPI" setting to apply to printing, would be ideal.
The image when saved as a lossless PNG is 4000x2500 pixels and has a file size of 200kb.
So the ideal file size should be 450kb PDF.
But PDF's don't seem to compress pictures very well.. guess that is not SW's fault. =)
If I'm overlooking something please let me know...