Process Printing vs Digital Printing

Process Printing Vs Digital Printing

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Process Printing vs Digital Printing - The Pros & Cons

Due to the boom in promotional marketing and technology as a whole, the demand for higher resolution and detailed images which can be applied to promotional products is swiftly increasing. A number of end-users are no longer satisfied with the limited capabilities of some mediums. Process Printing and Digital Printing are two options available, however it's sometimes hard to know the most appropriate method to use for your clients corporate logo. It's important to consider the pros and cons of each process when deciding which technique to use. Important factors to consider include, price, quality and clarity.

Process Printing is a technique widely in use throughout the world, particularly in the promotional marketing industry. This technique is an extremely effective way for recreating simple designs and logo's, however is more limited when high detail prints are required.

Process Printing is a decoration technique where an image is separated into 4 different colour values, Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Black. This process (frequently known as CMYK,) results in a colour separation that, when transferred to printing plates or screen printing, reproduces the original colour image. The four inks are placed on the paper in layers of dots that combine to create the illusion of many more colors. (See images below.)

Cyan (C)
Magenta (M)
Yellow (Y)
Black (K)
Composite Print

Process Printing is ideal for simple images with block colours, however is less so when shading or Photo Quality is required. On close inspection, high detailed print can appear grainy or slightly pixilated. The overall quality of this process is quite high, and also very affordable. The main restriction of a process print is that it cannot guarantee complete and accurate colour representation. This is due to the nature of the printing process, the nature of the product material and the restrictions these both afford. This is where Digital Prints come into play.

Digital Printing is ideal when full colour, or photo finish images are required. This process utilises the latest print technology available, allowing full colour graphics and photo images to be printed at an impressive 1440 DPI, or dots per square inch. This means it is possible to produce outstanding results which cannot be achieved with traditional screen methods. Colours are vibrant, accurate and photographic in quality. Images are digitally produced and printed onto the transfer material. A solvent is applied and the transfer is placed under a heat press, which fuses the colours into the fabric.

Unlike Process Printing, Digital Prints ensure consistency and true depiction of colour which is important for corporations with strict rules regarding the presentation of their corporate image. e.g. Coca Cola. When comparing the quality finish of this process it is easy to understand the difference in pricing between the two techniques.

Process Printing and Digital Printing both have their place in the promotional industry, and compliment each other. Both have different capabilities which should be considered when choosing decoration methods. It is important to pin point which aspects are most important to your client's image, price, quality, accuracy or clarity. By considering these factors you will be able to make an informed decision resulting in a suitable print in and an effective marketing tool.

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(Courtesy of JEM Promotional Products ©2007)


If you have any questions relating to promotional products, please don't hesitate in contacting us. JEM Promotional Products
Phone: (02) 8205 1334
E-mail: enquiries@jempp.com.au
Website: www.jempp.com.au

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