Determining what inks to buy for your printing projects can be overwhelming. Not only are there so many printers to choose from but the choices of inks make it tough, especially if you just want to make your purchase and get back to work. The dilemma comes when there is a budget to stay within or no budget at all. Let’s face it, ink is expensive. It is important to include printer supplies in your office budget. Pricing inks at different stores and online websites are the best way to find the cheapest inks suitable for your office’s printing needs. The challenge comes to photographers, graphic designers and other artists who depend on quality printing for their livelihoods because you want quality over everything else. Yet also need to keep your costs down.
Moreover, this comprehensive inks guide will go over what inks and toners are available and explain the different uses of each one. We hope it will enable you to make a wise choice for your printing projects.
Firstly How do you make a choice? Printer ink connects to the actual printing. Therefore, to choose the correct link, you must choose the correct means to print. What are the most common ways to print? That is offset and digital.
The digital process stores the image on your device and then it is sent straight to your printer. There are printers that will take paper, thin plastic or vinyl, these printers would contain “wide-format” in their descriptions. Other printers will print on hard plastic, poster board or foam board. This means printing is best for quick print jobs.
These printers spray very small drops of inks from a row of tiny spouts right onto the print material. Epson printer heads have a piezo crystal located in them. This crystal causes a slight electrical charge, which then prompts the inks to come out of the spout. Canon and HP use thermal inks heads. These differ in that heat causes the inks to vaporize in the spout, which then creates a gas that makes the inks come out.
The ink must have a thin consistency to fit through the tiny spout and has bits of dye or pigment. These are water-based ink and both dry at different rates once it is sprayed onto a material.
On the other hand, Dye-based inks are what you typically find in the store for inkjet printers. The pros are they produce bright, beautiful prints. The cons are these vibrant colors have a tendency to fade as time goes by. They are most suited for home and personal projects that will be kept for a short time.
Pigment-based ink is known for maintaining color vibrancy longer. This means it is best for photos, art and documents meant to be kept for long periods of time. This ink can last upwards of 200 years when the right paper is used, and it is stored in the proper manner.
The cons to pigment-based ink are it does not have dye-based ink’s vibrancy or an as wide array of colors.
Laser Printers – Toner based
Dry ink is Toner base ink. Laser printers use electricity and heat to get the ink to stick to the paper. The printing process is electro-photographic.
Pros to these printers are they print fast and the toner lasts longer. Check out our printer supplies for toner today.
Solid Ink Printers
Solid ink printers use ink that resembles a big pre-school crayon. This crayon type ink is solid ink. The print head takes ink that melts and places it on a drum will heat than the image press onto the paper. This process is not that different from offset printing, which is mentioned further down in this post. are very fast and offer vibrant colors.
Also, pros to solid inks are it does not splash onto your clothing. It does not dry out. There are no cartridges to recycle.
As well as Dye-sublimation printers are the best choice for awesome quality photos, t-shirts, mugs and hats. This dye cannot wash out, the colors will not fade, peel, crack or scratch. The amazing thing is: once these products come out of the printer, the ink is already dry and ready to use or wear.
This printing is for big print jobs. The inked image is put on a printing plate to be transferred to a rubber cylinder and then onto paper, etc. There are sheet-fed and web in offset printing.
A. Sheet-fed sheets are 28 x 40 inches, 14 x 20, and 7 x 10. Businesses use them for their marketing materials.
B. Web-offset is basically a huge roll of paper that is fed through the press in one piece of paper uninterrupted. This is cheaper than sheet-fed and used by companies printing catalogues, magazines or newspaper inserts
We have discussed at length the differences in ink options. There are OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) ink cartridges, which are the most expensive. Then there are compatible ink cartridges. They are made with new materials by a third-party manufacturer. And cost much less than OEM inks. Finally, there are remanufactured ink cartridges made again by third-party manufacturers. But with recycled cartridges, which have been repaired, refilled and reused, at a reduced cost.
Last but not least, we hope this guide enables you to make more right decision the next time you need to buy more printer supplies.