Digital and Offset Printing
Written on the 28 March 2015
Not every graphic designer will offer print services. A small graphic design company may not have the equipment to offer print services directly. In that case, you may need to find a separate printer or your designer can potentially recommend a printer.
If they can print, then find out more about what this involves. Whether they use digital or offset printing is one question to ask, as this will effect cost and the final print product. Offset printing is designed for mass-production printing, where the desired image is transferred onto metal printing plates, then 'offset' to rubber blankets or rollers, then transferred onto the printing surface. The advantages of offset printing are that it is high quality and can work on a large number of different printing materials. It is the most cost effective way to print large quantities of material.
In digital printing, an image is sent directly to the printer using digital files. This process eliminates the need for printing plates used in offset printing. The pros of digital printing are that it is quick, and cheap if you are printing a small amount of material. By printing digitally you can customise and make variations without slowing the process down. This is handy if you want market directly to customers, or write to current customers. Every print is the same. More accurate counts, less waste and fewer variations, due to not having to balance ink and water during a press run.
Key Tip: Be clear about what the 'result' entails. Imagine, on an important deadline day, being handed a CD instead of the physical brochure, banners and letterheads that you were expecting.
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