Inkjet vs Thermal Printers.

Inkjet Printable Vs. Thermal Printable - Which is best for you?

Many different types of printable media exist. Inkjet white, inkjet silver, hub printable, clear hub, thermal printable, which one is right for you? I hope I can give everybody a better understanding on the different types of printer technologies are available.

Thermal Printable vs. Inkjet Printable

What's the difference between the inkjet printable and thermal printable? And which one's the best for you? The following comparison will help you decide.

Inkjet Printable

In inkjet printing, the ink solution is sprayed onto a disc surface that is specially designed to receive, hold and absorb the ink droplets. The technology produces photographic quality results for sophisticated, multi-color, high-resolution graphics, and images on your DVDs and CDs.

Inkjet CD DVD printers are generally lower in price than thermal printers with the Bravo SE Autoprinter selling for just over $1,200 inc. The main disadvantage of inkjet printable discs is that the discs are more susceptible to smudging and require time to dry. Lick your finger and rub an inkjet printed discs, it's going to smudge. The release of Taiyo Yuden WaterShield CD-R media and Taiyo Yuden WaterShield DVD-R media has eliminated the smear-factor.

In short, if you are looking to print full color images, you don't expect to print large volumes, and you can factor in some drying time, then inkjet printing could be the right choice for you.

Thermal Printable

Thermal printing employs a heat transfer ribbon that bonds the images to be printed directly onto the thermal printable DVD or CD. Thermal ribbons cost more than inkjet cartridges, but the throughput of thermal ribbons is higher (about 2,100 black full discs using the Rimage PrismPlus. The print surface is of thermal printed discs is more durable. Thermal printed discs do not smudge like inkjet printed discs.

Thermal CD DVD printers are also faster than inkjet printers. The Rimage PrismPlus will print a full disc in 10 seconds for one color, 18 seconds for two color, and 27 seconds for three color.

The major drawback of thermal printing is images. Thermal CD DVD printers are not meant for printing discs with high quality graphics or fancy color patterns. Thermal printed CDs and DVDs look best when used for simple one color printing such as simple text, logos, and line art. If you are looking for to printing simple text and are looking at printing a higher volume of discs, thermal printing may be the right choice for you.

And while a variety of color ribbons are available, including some two- or three-color ribbons, thermal printing is designed more for basic, one-color applications, such as simple words, logos, line art, etc. And though some new thermal printers now offer photographic quality to compete with inkjet printers, the equipment and consumable costs are still on the high side. So if you don't need fancy graphics or photographic quality for DVD/CDs, but you do have a lot to print and you want a more durable, smudge-free surface, thermal transfer printing is probably your best bet.

Rimage Everest & Teac P55 Thermal Retransfer Printer

Then there is the Rimage Everest and the TEAC P55 printers. No other printer compares to these two printers. These two printers provide for amazing photo quality prints coupled with high durability.

The Everest and p55 printers utilize a retransfer printing process. The CMY panels are first printed to a clear retransfer ribbon inside the printer. Then, using heat and pressure, the printed image and a layer of the clear ribbon are applied to the disc. The finished product emerges dry, durable, and ready to handle. As soon as the discs come out of the printer, they are ready to handle. No stickiness or smearing here.

The Everest printer uses special media made specifically for it. Everest compatible media is a little higher in price than standard printable discs.

The TEAC P-55 just released a new ribbon they call VersaMax With the Versamax ribbon, you can now print on almost any type of CD or DVD media. There is no need for special coated discs, this equal majors savings on media.

If you're looking for the cheapest way to produce discs, the Rimage Everest or the Teac P55 is probably not for you since the cost per print for both of these units runs about $.43 - $.55 a disc. However, if you want to produce the highest quality discs with ease and quickness, you might want to inquire about one of these elite disc printers.

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