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What are AutoCAD print styles?


Plot style table is used to control the color, line width and other effects. In the layer manager, every layer comes with a plot style parameter.

What's a plot style?

When we go further, you will find out that plot styles are not only available for layers, but also the basic property of every graphic object. Choose a straight line, and open the property panel (CTRL+1), then you will see the plot style in the regular properties as shown in the following.

BYCOLOR is the default plot style of objects. In the Layer Manager, plot styles are named as the color code of layers, for instance, if the layer is color 7, the plot style will be named as Color_7, if it's red, the plot style will be Color_4, and if it's true color, such as 255,255,255, then the plot style will be named as its similar index color, Color_7, as shown in the following. 

autocad file conversion

Neither the BYCOLOR of an object nor the plot style named by color code of the layer can be modified. But why should we apply this parameter? Why can't the default setting be modified? When can this plot style be set according to your requirements?

First, let's go through what the plot style is and why it can't be modified.

Click the Print button to open the print dialog box. In the dialog box, select a CTB file, and click the Edit Plot Style button to open the Plot Style Editor, as follows. 

autocad file conversion

AutoCAD uses CTB by default, which is a color-dependent plot style table. We can see that the plot style table on the left is defined by 255 index colors, and named from Color_1 to Color_255 as shown in the layer manager, while the list on the left is the characters of plot style, namely, plot style parameters, with color and line width as the main parameters.


In a CTB file, some plot style parameters, such as, acad.ctb for color, may vary with color,output, but some may not, such as monochrome.ctb for black and white printing. We can also adjust some relevant parameters according to our requirements.

As we use CTB files by default, so the corresponding plot styles will be applied automatically for the layer and the object color, and there is no need to make settings or adjustment.