For the new in the printing area, which will be better? dye sublimation, Thermal, or uv printers? that's a very complex question. Off the cuff, dye sublimation would be my first answer, but that's not very thorough of an answer because there are different substrates for different uses, and each has its own special ink set.
For instance, if you need a polyethylene OSHA warning sign, you are not going to be using dye sublimation. You'll either screen print or use a flatbed digital printer, most likely an inkjet printer that uses liquid solvent inks. If you need a lot of signs, screen printing will probably be the most cost-effective method, unless it is a 4 color process print.
Continuous tone printing is accomplished with the dye sublimation process. Using the CMYK, the dye is printed on a transfer paper. Then once the paper is printed, it is matched up to whichever fabric the client has ordered - banner, oxford, satin, outdoor, stretch - and sent through heated rollers at about 400F.As the fabric and transfer paper go through this heat/pressure combination, the dye printed on the paper is converted from a solid to a gas instantaneously, and is fused to the fabric in a continuous tone print, similar to a photograph.
The difference between most printing and dye sublimation fabric printing is that most, including screen printing, and all types of digital printing, use a dot pattern to create color, whereas dye sublimation cloth printing has a continuous tone, just like pictures that you get developed from your camera.
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