18, 2018

In the digital era, you may expect that all commercial printing projects are done digitally these days — but that is not true. In some cases, you will get a better final product when you use offset printing. What is offset printing, and how does it differ from digital printing?

What Is Offset Printing?

Offset printing is a style that employs aluminum plates to print a picture onto a rubber "blanket." The rubber then rolls the image onto a sheet of paper. The method is called offset printing because the plates do not actually touch the paper with the final image.

Offset printing is the best choice when you have a high-quantity print order. People often compliment the color quality and clean lines indicative of this type of printing.

What Is Digital Printing?

Digital printing is an automated form that relies on toner or — for larger printers — liquid ink. People generally use digital printing when:

  • They have a variable in the print job, such as cards that need different addresses printed on each one
  • The print job is small

What Is the Difference Between Offset Printing vs. Digital?

Here are a few of the major differences

  • Digital printing allows you to print only what you need. You can do just a few copies of a brochure or card, whereas you have a minimum production number for offset.
  • You can use lots of different types of paper for offset printing, with varying textures and thickness.
  • Offset printing has options for both Pantone and metallic ink colors
  • Offset printing requires a much bigger run to be cost-effective, typically for corporate or business prints

Should Your Business Use Digital or Offset Printing?

The answer to this question depends on what you need to print. For example, say you're printing holiday cards to send to your customers. If you have a relatively small list of people to send to — such as 100 or less — and you want to have each client's name printed on their card, then digital printing would be the best method. You can set up a smaller production run and include the variable information of the names.

If, however, you plan to send cards to more than 1000 people and want some metallic colors on the card to make them stand out, then go with offset printing. Remember, the more you print for an offset printing run, the cheaper it becomes per card.

Trust Avanti Printing for Your Digital and Offset Printing Needs

Understanding the difference between offset and digital printing can help you save money and make the right choice for your business. Avanti Printing can also assist you in making a decision. Contact us today to get a quote for your project.