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Digital Printing Vs. Offset Printing

Regardless if digital or offset, both types of printing results in extremely high in quality print products, making it suitable for any type of professional purposes needed. However, there are other factors that make customers choose one over, and one of this is the capacity of the print project and functions to be used for every project requirement. When it comes to volume, the difference between offset printing and digital printing is that digital printing is ideal for short-run printing, while the offset is better suited for bulk printing.

Aside from this, According to Red Deer printing Company, their customers are considering other differences between offset printing versus digital printing like the quality of colors and sizes of paper sheets that differ. In this article, details about these alterations will be further discussed especially for print buying.

The opposing technologies used in offset printing versus digital printing

Technologically, the difference between these two modes of printing is on how the images are transferred in the paper. This variance affects the economic cost of running these technologies, and this difference can affect the printing customer.

Offset printing set-up is more time consuming and expensive unlike the digital printing. The imprinted metal plates are used which can be applicable to ink onto a sheet of paper. Each of the metal plates, depending on the color to be used, need to be etched, then applied to the rollers that transfer the ink to the paper. Afterwards, the press has to do some “warm-ups” by running it on a scrap paper until the plates are properly inked.

Meanwhile, digital printing uses “drums” or its electrostatic rollers which is used to apply toner to the paper. The drums, one per each color being printed, is like having a toner density, using an electrostatic charge attracting the toner. The toner is then applied and fused to the sheet, then passed through a high-heat unit to the paper.

From here, we can see that digital printing can make an easy print out of one sheet of paper or a copy of a booklet doing a minimal setup. On the other hand, offset printing requires a substantial amount of time for its setup time and material. Economically, the ink and each paper sheet from an offset press is less expensive than that of a digital press, but you will feel the convenience and savings if the print job is done at a high enough volume.

Aside from the number of sheets, the number of copies also matter. Offset only makes sense if making a few thousand copies of the same sheets. That is why offset, despite of the hassles produced by setting it up, has the capacity to do short run printing. This kind of printing has the capacity to produce bulk sheets because each sheet would require its own plate to be made.

So, depending on what type of business you have, each of this printing has its own advantages. If you have a venture that needs frequent, quick, and constantly changing print content, digital printing should be the one to use. On the other hand, businesses that print in bulk while not changing its content opt for offset printing.

Other differences between offset printing versus digital printing

These are other considerations that you when you are shopping around for printing services.

First of these is the size of the paper sheet. In digital printing, it typically runs smaller sheet sizes. Usually, the paper size is 19” sheets going up to 29”. On the other hand, offset printing typically runs presses that are between 29” and 40” on paper sheets. Offset allows for some printable purposed that cannot be done on smaller sheets, posters, books requiring large covers, and larger kinds of brochures.

When dimensional print size is important while the print volume is not needed, customers frequently rely on the digital wide-format presses, as long as it is for short-run printing. However, there are some wide-format printing cases which that cannot be done using digital wide-format presses, for instance, certain kinds of printing surfaces like packaging material and plastics.

The second difference is the color illustration. Different printing modes also offer somewhat different color clarifications and the ability to control as to how colors get applied onto a page. In offset, it provides some controls in color that are more excellent than digital printing. This aspect is important especially for large corporate brands where consistency in colors is where they are profiting from.

Finally, another difference is that digital presses are significantly cheaper and recommended to use for fast-turnaround projects. Digital printing offers implausible reversal times because of its knowingly smaller setup time. This type of printing provides its same-day and next-day printing much more proficiently and cheaper than with offset printing.

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