1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Semi industrial printer for a4/3 prints and gift cards

Discussion in 'Printers' started by pburrows145, 15 Jun 2020.

  1. pburrows145

    Associate

    Joined: 15 Jun 2020

    Posts: 1

    Hi everyone - this is my first post (here’s hoping someone can help).

    My wife is about to re-launch her Etsy shop and previously we used Printed.com for a bulk of our orders which provided very nice deliverables.

    However, she would now like to move into custom design and offer faster turn-around times and hence we need a major printer upgrade.

    Can anyone recommend a good printer for the job? It must be able to:

    • Print in full colour on a3/4 (single sided) - Paper and Card
    • Print on cards (typically A6 size when folded)
    • Provide edge to edge printing where required
    • Be good value for money

    Thanks in advance for any advice. I’ve scoured various forums and I am struggling to come up with the best plan.

    Current budget is up to around £200... (though this may need adjusting...)

    Thanks in advance
    Paul
     
  2. WJA96

    Capodecina

    Joined: 13 Jul 2005

    Posts: 15,813

    Location: Norfolk, South Scotland

    When you say ‘full colour’ do you mean photographs? That would usually mean dye sublimation printing or litho printing. Neither of which would be in your £200 budget. There are lots of print shops who will allow you to upload your own artwork and will post out the cards same-day.

    Doing it yourself at home to a professional standard will be very expensive and would take years to cover the investment cost.
     
  3. Avalon

    Soldato

    Joined: 29 Dec 2002

    Posts: 5,919

    Er... You don't use dye-sub (which is inkjet based) to print on paper/card as an end use, the paper is coated and just a carrier medium that you print on mirrored and then heat press it onto a polymer coated substrate or polyester/poly mix fabric. It's also horrifically expensive compared to pigment/dye based inks.
     
  4. Quartz

    Capodecina

    Joined: 1 Apr 2014

    Posts: 12,099

    Location: Aberdeen


    She should factor in running costs. She might find that a (business!) relationship with a local print shop might be more appropriate.
     
  5. Journey

    Sgarrista

    Joined: 18 Oct 2002

    Posts: 8,622

    Location: West Midlands

    What is it that she is selling that requires printing?

    I only ask as other have suggested a close relationship with a local printing firm may end up being the best option for quality, and good turn around time if you do a reasonable amount with them. I used to have a guy that items for me same day (mostly) and sometimes while I waited if it was urgent, I used to look after his PC's in return for a great rate.
     
  6. WJA96

    Capodecina

    Joined: 13 Jul 2005

    Posts: 15,813

    Location: Norfolk, South Scotland

    Well, we have 3 small (A5 card sized) dye sub photo printers that we use to print onto a variety of substrates. Including paper. It’s about the only thing that gives us a true photo finish.
     
  7. Avalon

    Soldato

    Joined: 29 Dec 2002

    Posts: 5,919

    The thermal transfer ribbon type? That’s a variation on the process that doesn’t use ‘ink’, but a thermal head and ribbon, it’s normally only used for things like ID cards, though 20+ years ago Gerber? did try and market it as a large format option with the ‘Edge’ and Roland rebranded it as the P60/P600, but it was a commercial flop as soon as solvent became a thing and took over. It wasn’t aware it was still being used beyond photo ID card printing, but then again Oki decided to use wax a few years back, so life is full of surprises. Conventional sublimation is very different, the image printed onto a carrier sheet usually as a mirror image, then heat pressed onto a polyester substrate or a polymer coating on an object, it transfers over and virus it’s way into the polyester layer, think photo mugs or mouse mats/t-shirts or specially treated aluminium/plastics, it’s not a process that goes onto paper and stays on it.
     
  8. WJA96

    Capodecina

    Joined: 13 Jul 2005

    Posts: 15,813

    Location: Norfolk, South Scotland

    They’re Konica-Minolta. It was a printing company that put us onto them. It’s about £3 to print an A5 sized photographic print onto card. We use them for personalised quotes. And obviously we all make our own birthday cards ;)