Printing is now commonly used for business cards, digital printing, banners, brochures, flyers and documents. Print technology has developed and evolved over the years and there are so many types to choose from. Here are some of the main ones.
Digital Printing, Flexography and Gravure Printing
Digital printing is fast and affordable. It uses two kinds of new age technology inkjet and xerography. Printing services in Ireland use inkjet printers on posters and books while the latter is used on documents, direct mail and brochures. Digital printing uses less chemicals and paper, eliminating the need to make plates because it is based on digital imaging technology. Flexography prints on materials used in packaging. It uses raised rubber plates with printed areas. It has taken the food packaging revolution to a whole new level. Gift wraps, gift bags, cellophane paper, newspaper inserts and bottle labels all use flexographic printing. High quality printing or photographic books, promotional material or even art work makes use of a very expensive form of printing know as Gravure. This includes printed wallpaper, printed upholstery and vinyl floorings.
Embossed, Electrostatic and Letterpress Printing
Embossed printing involves creating a raised, 3 D image on a sheet of paper either through dry or heat embossing. This process is used on textiles too. Printing services in Ireland provide business cards that are embossed because they are known to have a greater retention value that plain ones. Electrostatic printing is akin to photocopying. It prints without contact or ink and is more ideal for short orders. One of the oldest methods of printing is letterpress printing. Its’ plates work like a rubber stamp and this technology is fast becoming obsolete. Letterpress printing is now mostly used on tickets, government documents, membership cards and invitation cards.
Thermography, Offset and Screen Printing
Thermography is also known as imitation engraving, where thermal powders are heated to melt, fusing it with ink to produce a raised image. In this type of printing one of a kind customized appearances of print letters can be created. Letterheads, greeting cards, envelopes and business cards all benefit from thermographic printing. Offset printing offers the best quality in printing using either the sheet fed type or the web. Offset printing can be used in any type of paper printing. This technique is very economical and does not take a long time to set up. The steps involved in offset printing include platemaking, wetting, inking and offsetting. The most versatile of all the forms of printing is screen printing. It can be used on various materials ranging from plastic to metal and even glass. It is also known as silk screening since it passes ink through a screen almost like a stencil. Although it costs less to print here, the production process itself is very slow. This type of printing is especially used by printing services in Ireland to wrap images around an object like a mug or a glass bottle.
Each of the printing services have their own pros and cons. Always keep in mind the quality and the cost before you make your decision.