What are some of the most popular printing methods?

17 November 2018

What are some of the most popular printing methods?

Printing is one of the most valuable inventions. Imagine the world, where copy something you would need to rewrite and redraw it over and over. That’s why and how printing was invented. And now we can’t imagine the world without it. We use printing for everything and everywhere. If you live in a regular city, there is a chance that you come across hundreds and hundreds of printed materials on a daily basis. And even though we come in contact with them very often, the process behind it is still a mystery for many.

So if you are curious about how professionals create decorations, stands, displays, books, and brochures around you, then you will find this guide very helpful.


One of the oldest printing methods that we still use today is rotogravure. People often also call it gravure printings. The best thing about it is that allows for the high-speed production of saturated images, all thanks to the variety of colors that can be used in the process of printing. The image is transferred directly from an acid-etched metal cylinder that has the engraving that needs to be printed to the paper. That direct contact with the paper allows for high-speed production.


Gravure is not the cheapest printing method. To print different colors, you need to create engravings for each color used in production. That is why it might not be the best option for short runs, but it is perfect for long-run productions.


However, Rotogravure is one of the best types of printing for high-volume productions. It allows for millions of impressions. That is why printing houses mainly use this method to produce packaging, wallpaper, and wrapping paper. Sometimes they might use it to produce high-volume advertisements and magazines.

Offset Lithography

Offset lithography is one of the most versatile and frequently used methods of printing. It gets its name from the fact that the image is not directly transferred onto the paper, but on the offset cylinder from the plate cylinder first. The main principle used in the offset is the scientific fact that oil (or oil-based ink in our case) and water do not mix. The water adheres to the blank area, and the ink adheres to the places where the image and text area.


Even though printing professionals use different color models in offset printing, the CMYK color model is the most popular. Some machines print only one color, but some of them already come in the set of four. Since it is the most popular method of printing, people use offset to print on all kinds of rough-surfaced media. There is a  high chance that all the books, stationeries, newspapers, packaging, and branding materials you encounter every day were printed using offset lithography.


Commonly known as flexo, the method is similar to offset printing. To produce the prints, papers need to go through similar looking rolled cylinders. What makes it different though is that the ink is water-based, and the images and texts are not printed from standard, but rubber plates. The advantage of flexography is that the colors dry out a lot quicker and that allows for faster production. Printing houses also use flexo plates to reproduce quality prints on many types of both absorbent and non-absorbent materials.


In the offset, the machine uses separate paper sheets to create the print. The quick drying speed of prints created using flexo plates allows using rolls of paper with almost no interruptions. That allows for even higher volume production. It all makes flexo the best printing method for printing continuous patterns. Companies mainly use the method to print wrapping papers, wallpapers, product packagings, and labels.


Digital Printing

Digital printing is the one that many of you might be familiar with. In this method, a computer sends files directly to the printer. It also means that there is no need to have large machines with printing plates. Even though before many thought that the quality of digital prints was not as good, it is not the case anymore.

It is the perfect choice for printing low volume copies. It is both convenient and cheap, and for that reason, people use it to print posters, signs, labels, newspaper, menus, and letters. Most of the time it is the best printing solution for small businesses and individual interpreters.


If you are looking for high-quality prints and pre-press solutions, then stay here. You came to the right place at the right time. NDigitec works in close partnership with Dubaiprint.com — the best digital printing platform in the UAE. They offer a wide variety of printing solutions and services for your personal, corporate, and business needs. Besides on-demand printing of stands, marketing materials, and displays, the platform also has design support. If you still have questions about anything, contact us! We will be happy to help.


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