Digital Printing Pros and Cons
Digital printing has certainly grown in popularity over recent years, in fact in 2017, digital printing accounted for 16.2% of the global print market value (1). As a result of it has increased in popularity, many people often believe that digital printing is the best option for them, which isn’t always the case.
At Evans Graphics, we believe that the outcome you would like to achieve for your project is best served by utilising our experience and knowledge which in turn will determine which print method to use.
Digital printing uses high resolution, digital based files to produce an image or graphic onto the chosen printed material providing great speed, flexibility and accuracy. This however doesn’t make it the perfect print method in all instances.
This post will take a closer look at some of the most prominent pros and cos of digital printing, helping you to make an informed decision before committing to a print method.
Quite often when looking to print promotional materials you will be faced with a very tight deadline to not only design the graphics but also print them. Turning this around to meet a specified deadline can be a challenge and so the speed at which your printer can get this done and delivered is crucial.
Compared to other methods of print like screen printing, digital printing offers a quick turnaround time due to the lack of set up and manual intervention required.
Any good print provider will also be able to turn this around in a short amount of time, many within days and some within 24 hours. However, it is always best to check with your print provider, how long they need to get the job done.
At Evans Graphics our lead-times are of course subject to current workloads and the type of project that is in question, saying this however, quite often for small run digital printed items 24 hours is on average our standard!
You Can Print in Lower Quantities
If you are looking to print in lower quantities, digital printing can be much more cost effective and offers an almost ‘printing on demand’ service which is ideal if you are looking to print just a couple of posters, 1 or 2 display boards or a small number of pull up banners.
As a result of the minimal set up process, there is rarely a minimum number of units required by printers and often, you won’t be charged extra if you only want a couple of prints, or a short print run.
More Accurate Proofing
Getting to see an example of your design before committing to printing 100s of units is crucial and can make the difference between having a perfect design and making a mistake that will last forever, potentially costing your business money!
One of the beauties of digital printing is that you get picture perfect, accurate proofing before committing to print. The proof which will often be presented as a PDF and will offer an opportunity to see the final design and give you a chance to review and identify any changes in design, typos or errors in judgement in the confidence that you haven’t wasted your print budget.
Digital printing also has the ability to produce each and every unit in a way that ensures each unit looks exactly the same.
Limited Colour Matching Capability
Despite the constant improvements in digital printing, it can unfortunately still be difficult to match Pantone colours exactly when using digital printing. This is due to the differences in inks, rasterization techniques and toners used with each printing machine, causing slight differences in colour finish when printed.
Digital printing also can’t achieve metallic and fluorescent colours within design which isn’t ideal if you are looking to achieve something slightly more eye catching. If you are looking to print a design with fluorescent or metallic colours, screen printing would be a more suitable method as it gives much greater flexibility in terms of colour available.
When large format print first entered the print arena limitations of materials were endless. These days with the huge improvements in ink and material technology it is possible to print successfully onto a host of materials ranging from woods, plastics, glass and PVC’s. There are of course some material such as some polyesters and polycarbonate where screen print wins hands down for ink key.
Digital printing offers a reasonable standard of durability particularly those who offer UV curable inks. Whilst it cannot be said that ink fade will never happen if the correct materials for the project are used as a rule a 3-4 years life can be expected on externally exposed items.
We’ve Got You Covered
Evans Graphics has extensive experience providing digital print solutions and can work with you to meet your individual digital printing requirements whether it be for exhibition graphics, display boards, window displays or signage.
If you would like more information on our digital printing capabilities or would like help with your print project please get in touch or give us a call on 01628 773 630 and we would be happy to help.