The Difference Between Inkjet Printing and Dye Sublimation Printing

                               The Difference Between Inkjet Printing and Dye Sublimation Printing

    The first term is the term ink. Now, to the eye, ink and dye appear pretty much the same. They are

both liquid, and both are printed using an inkjet printer. In industry, the printers are usually wide format,

maxing out currently around about 124 inches, or just over 10 feet.
    sublimation digital printing
    However, the printing machine, or inkjet printer, does not see ink and dye the same, and they cannot

be interchanged once a printer is printing either dye or ink without some down time as lines are

flushed and the like.
    wide format printer
    Inkjet printer ink is based on the CMYK color spectrum, which stands for Cyan-Magenta-Yellow-

Black, and prints down the yellow first, then magenta, then cyan, and finally black. I have often

wondered why it wasn’t called YMCK instead, but maybe people would’ve confused it with the YMCA,

who knows.

    An inkjet printer sprays fine dots of color, usually 300 dpi (dots-per-inch) up to 1440 dpi (unusual

because the printing speed is much slower and therefore costlier, and for most commercial printing,

the viewing distance makes it so you won’t see minor flaws that may be apparent at a lower dpi.
   sublimation printing ink
    Inkjet ink is printed on the surface of an item such as vinyl banner material or vinyl decal material,

and chemically “bites” into the surface of those materials and simply dries on the surface of the vinyl

aided by heat and air flow, or an ultra-violet curing system that is either built in or added to the printer.

    When converted to a dye sublimation printer, an inkjet printer doesn’t need a high dpi print to be

make a fabulous print because the dye is printed on a treated paper called transfer paper as a mirror


    Once the image is printed, the dye dries quickly on the paper, then it is joined together with a

polymer based fabric  usually polyester and is moved to a heated pressure roller. As the material and

paper are carefully fed through the rollers, several things happen. First, the dye is converted to a gas.

Simultaneously, the heat causes the cells of the polymer-based fabric or coating to expand and open

up. The pressure from the rollers forces the gaseous dye into the open pores, sublimating the dye into

the pores of the fabric, hence the term dye sublimation.

  dye sublimation paper

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