Digital Press for Labels
Prior to the digital press, label & sticker printing has been done on huge, mechanical flexographic printing presses. Printing this way has always been a complex and expensive process, involving outsourcing your artwork to film in order to create flexographic printing plates – which are then loaded on to the printing press. The inks are mixed and the machine is calibrated.This process must take place before you can print a single label or sticker.The digital press for labels changes all this – it brings custom label and sticker printing into the 21st century.
The Main Advantages of Using a Digital Label Printer
There are no plates to create, a custom label job printed on a digital label printer can be printed in minutes. Many flexographic printing presses can take several hours to set up for a four-color process job, but our digital printing press are ready to go almost immediately. Using our digital printing process, we can have 4 to 5 jobs for digital product labels out the door while the old style printing press is still being set up!
If you want high resolution and vibrant colors then you need digital printing. Our HP-Indigo WS4500 printing presses can print at 230 line screen, whereas most flexographic presses print at 133 or 150 line screen. You can really see the difference in the custom labels’ detail and color. If you are selling your products at the retail level, you really should consider digital label printing just for the quality of the label it produces.
Due to the fact there are no plates to create, no film to output and minimal machine setup, fixed costs are very low. So if you want to print a relatively small number of custom labels (say less than 25,000), you will always get a better price with digital printing. This way you can order only the products you need, rather than a huge number of custom labels just to get the best unit price – which obviously affects your cash flow in a positive way.
Additionally, custom label designs and content can change frequently. With digital printing you simply submit new artwork and we can start printing your new custom labels, whereas in flexographic printing you would need to have new plates made every time you make a change to your label or sticker.
“Gang running” – this is a term that refers to the ability to combine several different designs into a single printing press job. In flexographic printing, this is impossible – as each custom label design requires separate plates and setup and therefore each product carries substantial cost overheads. In digital printing, you can “gang” together multiple labels and designs (so long as they’re the same size) into a single job.
Perhaps digital printing’s greatest power is its flexibility. With digital printing you can print 1,000 custom labels and every label can contain different data. That’s right – completely variable data printing. Whether you want to include names from a database, consecutive numbers, multiple barcodes, or just several versions of the same label, digital printing can handle it with ease.