Not all printing methods are created equal, but it’s not a competition about which one is better - it’s about which one is right for your job. Mitchell Graphics utilizes both often.
So let’s explore the differences and advantages.
Offset printing requires a separation of an image’s colors into color components. Each of these color components gets its own plate (made from aluminum) and is loaded on its own plate cylinder.
The non-image portion of the roller is dampened with water, and the image area is loaded with ink. The image from the inked plate cylinder then transfers to the blanket (or offset) cylinder, which does the actual inking of the particular color component onto the paper.
Since the offset roller does the actual inking of the medium (paper), instead of direct inking, it’s easy to see why it’s called offset printing. What you do get is a great quality choice for larger quantities, with very accurate color production. Your crisp prints have the professional look you need.
Unlike offset printing, digital printing transfers the color directly to the paper or another medium. The most common types of digital printers are
Digital printing works best for small jobs and jobs that need changes on the fly. Such an example of variable data printing is a direct mail job that produces postcards customized to individual customers or tiers of customers. Each piece in a variable data print run can get a unique code, address, image, or even product selection or offer.
The term “Digital Offset Printing” refers to a class of offset printers that manufacturers have been able to highly automate - streamlining the setup and changeover process. But offset printing is still offset printing.
Mitchell Graphics employs both digital and offset printing because each job is different. Generally speaking, small jobs with the quickest turnarounds are done on digital machines. The digital machines also get all of the jobs that require variable data printing.
Larger jobs, requiring unparalleled quality or special inks/papers find themselves on offset presses. The results are stunning, even if you don’t use fluorescent or metallic inks. But these are just some general guidelines. The best way to determine which technique is right for your next job is to call or email Mitchell Graphics. We’ll make sure you get the best quality prints either way, at the best price.