Digital printing has come a long way since its inception back in the 90’s. Many people are probably unaware of the effect digital printing has had on the printing industry and the incredibly diverse range of businesses it works with.
The majority of our own experiences with digital printers are limited to the desk top inkjets and photo copiers we use at home and work, blissfully unaware of the of how many processes have changed as a result of the new technology and how it has affected them.
These changes aren’t limited to traditionally print focused industries either, and innovative new ways to use the print technology are constantly being developed.
It was fairly obvious that the advent of digital printing would make printing small batches of items like business cards vastly easier and cheaper. However, furniture making is not an industry anyone would have associated with quick and cheap printing a few decades ago, but that is exactly what is happening now.
In an effort to cut down on the cost and long lead times of manufacturing, furniture makers are beginning to use state of the art digital printers to create fashionable cloth patterns on demand. This removes the cost of holding stock or having potentially undesirable designs needing to be sold at reduced margins – improving margins, lowering prices, boosting sales and increasing profits.
Interior decoration applications don’t stop there either, with wall sized graphic images printed onto wall vinyl and wallpapers now readily available, and even backlit designs printed onto clear acrylic sheets to create dramatic conversation pieces.
Digital printing is even now being used to print on ceramics using specialist printers, where its ability to produce intricate but identical results is proving extremely useful.
For more traditional print work, the possibilities are now almost endless as the versatility of the technology has allowed for printing on just about any material in very small quantities, reducing costs and increasing accessibility.
Wall graphics, indoor and outdoor signage, promotional materials, banners and posters, are just some possibilities available no matter the size of print run thanks to digital printing.
There was a genuine concern that the emergence of digital printing would actually mean the end for several of the older printing methods, most notably lithographic and Screen printing. While this may still become a reality in the future, currently digital printing is supplementing these older methods instead of replacing them which is good news for all within these industries.
Digital printing still costs more per page to produce than other methods, but it recoups these costs by removing the need to have multiple set ups. With the current status quo, longer run tasks are served better by processes other than digital printing, while it excels at short to mid length runs with short turn-around times.
The technology is still developing and is constantly pushing forward the length of run it can handle before it stops being the better economic option. Dependant on the size of the printed piece anything up to a thousand copies is very much in the digital domain, but with every new printer design the number increases and now several thousands of copies can be handled for less.
For now, we reside in the middle ground where there is still an abundance of choice to provide you with the ideal solution no matter what your printing needs are.
Evans Graphics provide bespoke digital printing solutions with expertise in a wide variety of industries. Our motto is ‘you think it, we’ll make it’ because we are committed to turning your design ideas into reality, no matter what print method you choose.