Posted By Seamus Barton
6 Types of Professional Printing and How They Can Help Your Business
As a business owner, you are often looking to hire individuals who understand how to deliver quality work. We might live in a digital age, but commercial printing services are still thriving due to the popularity and importance of traditional marketing methods like direct mail.
Businesses who are looking to promote their products or services should look into the services that professional printing can offer. You might have heard terms like digital printing, screen printing or laser printing etc. before, but do you know the difference between them? It’s important to understand the range of printing methods available as each is suitable for different needs.
Here are 6 of the most commonly used types of commercial printing:
1. Offset lithography printing
Offset printing or litho printing is typically used for printing on rough surfaces like wood, canvas or cloth. It’s a very versatile method of printing as it can be used on a variety of products like books, paper, stationery etc. which also makes it a very popular choice.
The process involves two metal plates that transfer an image onto a rubber blanket. This blanket then transfers the image onto paper or whatever medium you are using. The process is called “offset” since the ink is first transferred from plate to blanket instead of going directly onto the paper. Offset lithography is perfect for producing consistently high-quality images.
The process can be quite time-consuming and the costs related to set up, plates and ink mean that this type of printing isn’t cost-effective for small batches of printing. It is typically only used for very large volumes.
2. Digital printing
Digital printing is a more modern method that encompasses other techniques like inkjet printing and laser. The digital presses utilize powder toner instead of traditional inks. By using digital printing, your image will go from file to print with no steps in between (eliminating the need for a printing plate as in offset litho). This can help save some time and money and makes it the best choice for smaller amounts of printing, or if you need customized or personalized marketing. Digital printing also has short turnaround times making it a good choice for businesses who need on-demand services.
In its early stage, digital printing couldn’t compete with the high quality produced by other printing methods. However, with the advance of technology over the last few decades, the quality has improved so much that it is hard to see the difference between digital print and litho colours.
Digital printing is typically used for small batches of posters, signage, labels, newsletters, postcards, menus and letters. If you go with digital printing for the right job, it can result in a campaign that is cost-effective and high quality.
3. Screen printing
Screen printing has been around since the early 20th century and it can be used to print onto materials like fabric, wood, glass, signage etc. During screen printing, fine material or mesh is used to transfer an image onto the print material. The mesh is stretched so it creates a screen. The ink is then pressed against it to print the image.
Screen printing is a popular choice when businesses need to print graphics onto clothes or other pieces of fabric. It can also be used for paper or metal.
As screen printing requires a lot of set up, it is best used for printing items in bulk. So, if you’re looking for a lot of the same standard image, then this is a great, cost-effective method of printing.
Flexographic printing is typically used for packaging, labels, wallpaper or anything else that needs continuous patterns. It is also a good choice for printing on uneven surfaces. It uses quick-drying, semi-liquid ink that can be used for high volume jobs.
This process involves the use of flexible photopolymer printing plates wrapped around rotating cylinders on a web press. The inked plates will have a slightly raised image of the content on them and they rotate at high speeds to transfer the image onto print media.
Flexography is a good solution for those needing high press speeds, long runs and those who need to print on a large variety of media including plastic, cellophane or metallic film.
5. Large format
As the name suggests, large format printing is meant for the maximum print roll width. This method is perfect for use with traditional advertising mediums and businesses looking to make a big impact with their customers. With large format printing, you have a much bigger area to work on than is possible with digital printing.
Instead of printing onto individual sheets, large format printing uses rolls of prints that are fed into the print to produce one large printed sheet. Large format printing is best for large print media such as building wraps, billboards, banners and murals.
No other printing option can produce these large-scale items. Many businesses choose large format media to make flat items that can not only be hung on a wall but can also be folded or stand up on their own.
6. 3D printing
3D printing has allowed businesses to print out 3D objects which can leave a great impact on your audiences. The desired object is created using digital modelling or other electronic sources. Then compound mixtures are fused together to produce the 3D object and bring it into the real world.
3D printers have continued to advance, becoming more and more sophisticated. Today, even 3D objects with moving interior parts can be produced.
For more information about commercial printing services in Toronto, call Troi Mailing Services at 1-866-486-9350 or contact us here.