Digital vs. Offset

Digital vs. Offset

Depending on the scope of work, offset printing may or may not be the best technology for your project. The table below will provide you with information on which is right for you. Please contact us if you have further questions!

OFFSET

DIGITAL

Quantity High quantities, 750+ Low quantities (short runs) less than 750
Colour Pantone® (PMS) or CMYK CMYK
Turnaround Drying time required Need it quickly, short turnaround
Price Prints higher quantities at much less cost Prints lower quantities at much less cost
Quality Higher image quality, higher resolution and no streaks/spots. The ability to produce gradients, vibrant colours, solids and metallics High image quality not a factor
Sheet Size Largest sheet size available: 12x18 Most digital presses only print up to a 14x20 sheet although 12x18 is the most common sheet size
Variable Text No Can print variable text or images where each sheet off the press is unique in some personalized way (database driven, e.g. mailing lists, marketing materials, direct mail pieces, letters, etc. with a different name/address or number/code on each printed piece)
Finishing Must dry or be coated before handling Once a sheet is off a digital press it can be cut, folded or finished immediately
Special Inks Yes - metallics, fluorescents, PMS colours No special inks (metallics, fluorescents) since all colors will have to fall within a CMYK gamut
Stock/Printing Surfaces Works on a wide range of printing surfaces including thick paper, rough paper and
specialty papers
Limited choice of stocks available
Proofing If you need hard copy proofs, very accurate colour proofing can become expensive Offers more accurate proofs, since what you see is an actual sample of the printed piece. Printed using the exact process as the intended run