The dye sublimation printing and heat transfer printing both are not the new terms for those who are working in the Direct to Garment printing fields like T-shirt printing, mug printing, and other personalized printing stuff. But, which among these both is more useful? What is the difference between sublimation and heat press technology? Let’s find it out here in this article.
Sublimation Vs Heat Transfer
Initially invented for the plastic items printing like the sheets, awards, etc., the sublimation printing technology has been used for a long time now. In this digital printing method, bonding is made on the material on a molecular level.
In the sublimation printing, sublimation ink and a sublimation paper are used to do the printing work. Microfiber, polyester, etc. like materials are best printed using the dye sublimation technology.
In the heat press printing, pigment ink and a transfer paper are used to do the printing job. Including the cotton and polyester, you can use any kind of material to apply the heat transfer technology. It is a similar kind of method of a screen printing or a DTG (Direct to Garment) printing.
Differences of sublimation Vs heat press
- Prints made by the sublimation technique, have permanent and realistic images which are having soft feelings on hands. When you use the heat transfer technique, heat is transformed through the light based paper and sticks on the fabric.
- The sublimation method uses the sublimation ink, while the heat transfer method uses pigment ink, dye ink, solvent ink, etc.
- Though the heat transfer technology can be applied to all types of materials, mostly it works perfectly for the 100% cotton fabric. While the sublimation technology is widely used for polyester, banner, and hard surface like a mug, aluminum pot, etc. kinds of materials.
- The sublimation printing uses less pressure and temperature than the heat transfer method & prints in less than 1 minute of time.
- The objects with sublimation printing have permanent, high-resolution printings which do not peel, while the prints through the heat transfer process are having some different appearance than the surrounding fabric.
- The sublimation printing machine has easy setup process and also has a low cost of maintenance.
- A dye sublimation printer has a longer lifespan than the heat transfer printing machines
Both the technologies are useful, beneficial, affordable, and the printing can be done with simple-to-follow steps. So, the choice is yours. But I suggest getting the heat transfer printer if you are only sticking with the garment printing business. If you are going to work on other things like ceramic printing, plastic printing, tiles printing, etc. then go for the dye sublimation printer.