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Exporting graphics to PDF - huge file

I have a figure that is created to use in a paper. Here it is:

h = 5.8;
a = 0.6;

pl3 = Plot3D[
  If[x >= 2, 
     0.5*(-Tanh[2*(Sqrt[x^2 + y^2] - 5*(1 + x/Sqrt[x^2 + y^2 + 0.01]))] + 1),
         0.5*(Tanh[If[y >= 0, a*x + h - y, y + a*x + h]] + 1)], {x, -15, 
{y, -10, 10}, PlotRange -> All, Ticks -> None, 
PlotPoints -> 30, 
AxesLabel -> {Style["x-Vt", 18, Italic, "TimesNewRoman"], 
Style["y", 18, Italic, "TimesNewRoman"], 
Style["\[Eta]", 18, Italic]}, 
ColorFunction -> Function[{x, y, z}, Hue[.65 (1 - z)]], 
BoxRatios -> {1.7, 0.7, 0.4}, ViewPoint -> {1.81`, -3.52`, 1.642`}];
plX = Graphics3D[{Red, Thick, 
        Line[{Scaled[{0.868, 0.256, 0.5}], Scaled[{0.956, 0, 0.5}]}]}];
plY = Graphics3D[{Red, Thick, 
        Line[{Scaled[{0.865`, 0.269`, 0.5}], 
          Scaled[{0.972`, 0.494`, 0.5}]}]}];
txtX = Graphics3D[
       Text[Style["x'", 24, Italic, Red, Bold], Scaled[{0.989`, 0, 0.5}]]];
txtY = Graphics3D[
       Text[Style["y'", 24, Italic, Red, Bold], 
        Scaled[{0.979`, 0.633`, 0.5}]]];

fig1A = Show[{pl3, plX, plY, txtX, txtY}, ImageSize -> 350]

However, if I directly save the notebook containing this picture into the pdf format it appears to occupy too much memory.

On the other hand, if I export the picture itself into say, jpg ot tiff or gif formats, the file size is OK. However, if I then import the obtained jpg, tiff or gif files into the notebook it appears that the image has dramatically lost its quality becoming unacceptable for the publication.

One problem of this image is that it contains both the "useful" surface part that is on the front view and the one behind. The latter is useless, but is contained in the image file.

Is there a way to decrease the memory used by such an image?


marked as duplicate by rcollyer, Verbeia, Mr.Wizard Mar 28 '12 at 11:50

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.


Try to use something like the following depending on the rasterization resolution you are seeking.

Export["fig1A.pdf", fig1A, "AllowRasterization" -> True,
ImageSize -> 350, ImageResolution -> 600]

This issue was previously discussed here and I am referring to the solution by Heike. Searching the site before posting a new question is the right thing to do.


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