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Offset vs. Digital Printing

Offset Printing

Offset printing technology uses plates, sometimes made from aluminium, that are use to transfer a picture into a rubber “blanket”, then rolling that picture into a sheet of paper. It’s referred to offset because of the ink isn’t transferred directly into the paper. Offset printing is that the most suitable option when larger quantities are required, and provides correct color replica, and crisp, clean professional looking printing.

Digital Printing

Digital printing does not use plates the way offset does, however instead uses options like toner (like in laser device printers) or larger printers that do use liquid ink. Digital printing shines once lower quantities are needed; think of a run of 20 greeting cards or 100 flyers. Another advantage of digital printing is its variable data capability. Once each piece needs a unique code, name or address, digital is the only way to go. Offset printing cannot accommodate this need.

While offset printing could be a fantastic way to produce great-looking print projects, several businesses or people don’t want large runs of 500 or more, and therefore the best solution is digital printing.

Some benefits of Offset Printing:

  • Large quantities will be printed cheaply
  • The more you print, the cheaper the worth per piece
  • Large types of paper varieties with custom finishes can be used
  • Special custom inks like metallic and Pantone colors are available
  • Highest attainable printing quality, with bigger detail and color fidelity

Some benefits of Digital Printing:

  • Setup prices are lower for short runs
  • Print only the quantity you need, once you want it
  • Variable data capability (names, addresses, codes or list can be done easily)
  • Improved technology has made digital quality acceptable for more uses

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