Best Sublimation Printer For Beginners
Sublimation can be lucrative and entertaining, but it is also a complex process that requires some knowledge of the technology involved. The reason is simple you need to know how your design will look on the finished product before designing it. This means knowing what type of ink or substrate you are using and understanding the different types of printers available to get the most out of your investment. If you are looking to get into this exciting new industry, then we have compiled an extensive list of the best sublimation printers on the market today. We will look at sublimation printer reviews in detail to know exactly what you need before making your purchase decision.
Our Top Pick: TopSublimation Printer
Disadvantages Of The Sublimation Technology
For sublimation printing you need special printers and sublimation inks. As a result, the initial costs are higher compared to some other methods. In addition, the printers work slowly.
Materials other than polyester can only be used to a limited extent. They must be able to be coated, which is not always the case. Also, white color cannot be printed. If the motif is supposed to contain white or light colors, you need a white background. In addition, you must take into account a slight shrinkage of 1 to 4 percent in designs with sublimation.
As an alternative to sublimation printing, printing with white toner or white toner printers can be used. With toner transfer, you transfer the motifs to a transfer foil and then join it to a so-called B-paper on a transfer press. The B-paper contains a heat-activated adhesive that combines with the print on the A-foil. After separating the A-foil and B-paper, the design can be transferred to any textile. Unlike sublimation, the choice of material doesnt matter here. A wide variety of textiles can be printed, such as cotton, polyester, mixed fabrics, felt, or other materials like silk, wood, or cardboard. Thanks to white toner, it is also possible to print on dark and colored substrates.
Epson Surecolor F170 Dye
Epson is a pioneer in producing some of the greatest dye-sublimation printers in the world today. And this printer by Epson is one of the most reliable sublimation printers. If you want to create amazing designs on mugs, mousepads, t-shirts, and other products then this is the product that you must have in your workplace.
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Brother Inkjet Mfcj6945dw Sublimation Printer
If you need a reliable, durable, and versatile printer, Brother Inkjet Printer MFCJ6945DW might be your ideal solution. It features an automatic document feeder, so you wont have to load paper into the tray manually. Youll find plenty of valuable tools at your fingertips, including a handy magnifier glass, LED status indicators, and an electronic scale.
A 500 sheets monthly duty cycle ensures that you get ample room to complete projects. Plus, the units auto-shutoff feature saves energy by turning itself off after 60 minutes of nonuse.
The best part? With this printer, youll save money over the long term. And because it has a quick start technology, all you have to do is turn on the machine and go! No complicated setup or calibration is required. Also, you will never run out of ink, thanks to the convenient refill system. Just pop open the top of the tank and fill right from inside the machine.
Features of Brother Sublimation Printer
This printer uses wireless technology, allowing users to easily move their devices anywhere within range without connecting wires. In addition, since it does not require a network connection, it works well if youre using multiple computers throughout different rooms.
Automatic Document Feeder
With the ADF function, documents are automatically fed onto the printing surface and printed. There are no manual operations involved making it easier to operate.
Print Speed and Duplex Printing
Best Sublimation Printer Review
What is the best sublimation printer?
Youve decided you want to move your crafting or small business into the world of sublimation printing and now you need to know what is the best sublimation printer out there. Congratulations! Now, SawGrass Vs Epson sublimation printer is the big decision we all have to make. Which is best will be determined by what stage youre at: are you wanting to make sublimation transfers at home or for business?
Sublimation heat transfer is a way to make high-quality customizations that look and feel great and will withstand lots of washing and use. Whether you are a beginner making your first t-shirt, or youre running a business printing mugs, glassware, or one of an endless list of great blanks for sublimation printing, this review will help you choose the best printer for your needs.
Notice that as of 2020, SawGrass has released new and improved versions of their SG400 and SG800 printers. The updated SawGrass SG500 and SG1000 have the latest and greatest sublimation technology and print resolution.
Here are the sublimation printers well take a deeper look at down below:
Before we dive in here are a few things you need to know before you buy any sublimation printer.
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The Best Sublimation Printer For Beginners: A Buying Guide
You want to make sure you buy a top sublimation printer, so heres everything you need to know! Ill cover what makes a sublimation printer for T-shirts special.
Plus, Ill share the most important things to look out for to make sure you get a great sublimation printer.
A top sublimation printer will have excellent print quality and a good output speed. But just as important is the price and the ongoing cost of the printer, too. .
Keep these things in mind, and it will be easy to find the right sublimation printer for you.
Why Sublimation Printing Is Better
Sublimation offers more room for creativity and unique designs that utilize full color printing. The field of what can be printed on is also more fast compared to screen printing. For quick, simpler designs, screen printing can be useful. But, for the most part, sublimation is the better option in most cases.
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What Epson Printers Can Be Used For Sublimation Printing
All of the Below models are what most people are using for sublimation when they use an Epson printer. Please note that no matter which printer you select, you must buy Sublimation Ink because, rememberwith the exception of the F-150, F-570 and F10070H are NOT sublimation printers. They will come with regular ink so you need to buy sublimation dye ink. .
WF3540 WF3520 WF3640 WF3620 WF7010 WF7110 WF7510 WF7520 WF7610 WF7620 WF7710 WF7720 WF7210 WF2750 ET2720 ET2650 ET2750 ET4700 ET15000 ET 16000 ET 16500
Its worth noting that Epson regularly retires model numbers and creates new ones. If you have an opportunity to buy a discontinued model, do not be afraid. There is plenty of support in the sublimation community.
This table includes affiliate links to amazon. If you see a blue link, you can click it to check pricing and availability on amazon marketplace.
Dont forget, you can also buy right on Epson.com. Sometimes they are out of stock, but when they are in stock, you will pay just the MSRP and thats good news. You can click the link or banner below to check pricing and stock on Epson.com actual website:
Different Types Of Sublimation Printers & Their Applications
Sublimation printing is the best method for printing onto multiple surfaces, including fabrics, plastics, aluminum, or glass. When using a sublimation printer, ink is printed onto transfer paper using a wide format. From there, heat transfers the ink on the paper using a press, sublimating the ink so that it is absorbed by the desired material. While a complex process, sublimation printing provides a large variety of uses. Below we will go over the different kinds of dye sublimation printers, as well as the many sublimation printer uses.
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Which Printers Are Suitable As Sublimation Printers
Printers suitable for sublimation printing usually work with water-insoluble disperse dyes . These are often also called sublimation printers or subli printers. Due to the consistency and temperature sensitivity of the ink, special sublimation printers are required. Regular inkjet printers can only be used with special water-based inks. However, changing between normal and special inks is not recommended due to contamination of the print heads and tubes with residues.
How To Choose A Sublimation Printer
The top of the reasons a sublimation printer is designed is to provide tremendous help when you want to print materials of value to you. An excellent way to figure out how well your printer could serve you and if it is worth the purchase is by studying how well the design could work with varying printing materials.
1. Access the printer structure
Its either the printer can work with printing directly on the t-shirts, or it has to work with a transfer medium where you print your pattern of choice before transferring it to the t-shirts.
2. Observe the materials you would be working with
There are different types of materials require in printing. Some printers cant handle varying fabrics, save cotton, and probably paper. Its better to opt for a printer that works with all kinds of materials.
3. Learn how the cartridge works
You need a cartridge that doesnt have technicalities to handle the dye sublimation printing. Cartridges that work with an individual color are encouraged for your printing needs.
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What Are The Downfalls To Sublimation Printing
Though the list is quite short, there are a few drawbacks to using the dye sublimation printing process. First and foremost, while the sublimation process itself is cheap, many of the materials that are printed on are more expensive, since the process will only work on specific materials. There is a price mark up there. Additionally, once the dye is transferred, a process known as dye migration can potentially occur. Dye migration occurs when a garment, such as a t-shirt, gets too hot in a dryer causing the inks to be reactivated and then bleed onto other clothing while washing or drying.
On What Products Can I Sublimate
A few examples of substrates that have been treated for sublimation include hardboard , glass cutting boards, ceramic and aluminum Christmas ornaments, and cell phone cases made of a special plastic that can take the heat. You can also sublimate on polyester garments. Ive had luck with polyester shirts from department stores, but your vendor will also supply these.
In order to understand why only certain items are good for sublimation, you will need to first understand what the process of sublimation is. Dont worry, Im not going to get too scientific. Basically, sublimation is when a solid turns to a gas without first becoming a liquid. Dry ice is a great visual example of sublimation. It goes from a solid state directly to a foggy gas as Im sure you have seen many times in stage theatrics. With dye sublimation, the ink is actually a gel that is printed on special paper, becomes a gas when heated, and then turns back into a solid state on the substrate. Most of your customers dont really care to hear all of that, but it is good information for you, the expert, to have. I usually just tell my customers its magic!
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Important Things If You Decide To Set Up Your Printer
Best Sublimation Printers Buying Guide
Sublimation printing is a versatile field in modern business formats. You can explore versatile areas with unique sublimation printers. Sublimation printers for mugs, sublimation printers for t-shirts, and other media have distinctive features. You can read about each in relevant articles about each category.
So, if you plan to start up a new business or need a sublimation printer for personal or office use, then following the buying guide will ease your selection process.
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What Type Of Printer You Can Use For Sublimation
Normally, Inkjet printers are used for sublimation. The sublimation ink is used in these printers to transfer the image onto the substrate. Earlier, only a few types of printers could be used for this purpose but now with the evolution in technology. Now a day almost all inkjet printers can be used for sublimation printing.
Everything You Need To Start A Sublimation Printing Business
Its an exciting time to live in! Starting a personalization business has never been easier. In fact, dye-sublimation printing has empowered many creators, makers and entrepreneurs like yourself to build lucrative businesses producing and selling high-quality custom products. With a few pieces of equipment and a little elbow grease, you can have your own personalization shop up and running in no time.
Now, lets dive in and look at everything you need to start your sublimation business!
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Is Vinyl Or Sublimation Better
Vinyl is a popular option because it is affordable and fairly easy to apply. The vinyl is applied with a sticker or sticker paper, and the design is cut out. Sublimation is a more expensive option, but it is more durable and vibrant. The design is created in a digital file and transferred onto a material.
Common Problems You May Face When Printing On Fabric With A Normal Printer
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Is Dye Sublimation Better Than Screen Printing
The quick answer to this is it depends. Read on for a list of pros and cons.
- Sublimation Pros
- There is no hand to the design. This means you cannot feel it on the garment as it actually becomes part of the garment itself.
- No mess! Just a matter of designing, printing, and heat pressing.
- It is easy to customize. Since it is so simple to print, its no problem customizing each print with, say a name.
- It is fairly cost effective. If you have a very large order, screen printing would be cheaper, but sublimation is not too far behind.
- Easy learning curve. The most difficult thing to learn is the software. If you are already using design software for HTV, youll be fine.
Are There Any Cons Of Sublimation Printing
Because sublimation ink is transparent, you really need to use a white or light-colored base material for the best results. Also, your white or light colored surface needs to either be made of polyester or have a polyester coating so those that prefer natural materials like cotton will sublimation frustrating. If you want to sublimate onto dark or black things, you need to press white sublimation heat transfer vinyl onto the surface and sublimate onto that, and that kinda defeats the purpose of sublimation. And, of course, you need to buy or convert a sublimation printer. Thats about the only drawbacks!
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What Do I Have To Consider And What Are The Advantages Of Sublimation Printing
Using the right material plays a major role in the success of the printing result: We recommend polyester fabrics or textiles with at least 80 percent polyester content. Also important is the color of the material to be printed on. Desired motifs, logos and images can be implemented much better on light-colored bases. These limitations, however, have produced a huge range of sublimation-friendly blanks over time. They range from cell phone cases and key chains to mugs and medals. Your choices are enormous!
But thats not all: sublimation printing also has the advantage of being cheap and fast. This means that quite large quantities can be produced in a short time. Promotional objects, small gifts and much more can be produced either for stock or especially for a trade fair or your store. With a sublimation printer, very delicate images and photos are also transferred sharply and cleanly in an excellent manner.