Heat transfer printing is an immensely popular printing method that also has its own variations suited for different printing needs. Two examples are vinyl heat transfer and digital heat transfer printing.
In this guide, we identify the differences between them for your better understanding. This helps to better facilitate decision-making, should you be considering either one for your printing requirements.
Before we go into the details, here’s a brief introduction to the two printing methods. Find out more below!
Vinyl Heat Transfer
Vinyl transfer printing is primarily carried out through a heat press machine. A unique vinyl paper is used to print designs onto apparels. After a design is cut and weeded in coloured vinyl, it is placed on the shirt and heat is then used to transfer the picture.
This is a choice selection for group customizations like class t-shirt or sportswear printing because the individual names and numbers can be easily printed.
The resulting prints are also long-lasting and natural-looking depending on the apparel’s material. The finishes range from Matte to Glitter and can even have specialised variations like Flock.
Digital Heat Transfer in Singapore
You might have an idea of what this printing style covers in our article https://www.tshirtguys.com.sg/digital-heat-press/, but here’s a quick recap.
Like vinyl transfer printing, this commonly used printing method also employs a heat press machine to print. However, instead of vinyl transfer paper, it uses regular transfer papers, preferably inkjet. It doesn’t involve cutting out the design, but digitally printing it onto the transfer papers.
A preferred choice for small printing quantities because of its economic cost, it also offers stunning results for prints with bright and detailed colours.
Although both printing methods use heat as a main approach for printing and can print custom designs, they have their distinguishing differences.
For example, vinyl transfer printing can only produce prints with a single colour. It cannot print colour gradients. For prints that have more than one colour, the individual coloured areas have to be plotted out using machines separately and printed with the corresponding vinyl transfer paper.
Another restriction includes its inability to print complicated and fine designs even if there is only one colour.
It is also the reason why vinyl transfer is recommended for only simple prints to save time and effort.
On the other hand, multiple colours can be printed with digital heat transfer printing. The process is simplified and much less laborious because prints can be done straightaway without plotting. Hence, complicated and colourful designs can be effortlessly printed.
It also means that you have the flexibility of choosing any image you want of any colour(s) to be printed with no limitations.
Therefore, if you’re looking at printing plain, single-coloured images, go for vinyl. If you need full-coloured prints with extensive details, opt for the latter!
If you are still not sure which to go for, let us T-Shirt Guys recommend the type of methods for your t-shirt printing services. We are more than happy to chat and discuss your needs for any of your customised t-shirt printing.