Comparison between dye sublimation printing and screen printing
Further, sublimation printing is done on white substrates.The reason for this is because the inks are actually transparent, when sublimated, and need a back ground to show up. White is the ideal background because it does not clash with the colors. Indeed, the white background actually enhances the colors.
Since its introduction back in 1907, screen printing has been the most commonly used printing method for custom T-shirts. Another common name for screen printing is silkscreen printing. In the start of this process, the artwork is first burned into the mesh screens. Next, you will load the screens to a printing machine and then add in the ink that will be used. Note that for screen printing, each color is printed separately so each color has its own mesh screen. The last step is to let ink on the T-shirts dry out.
Screen printing highly benefits from economies of scale, so the more T-shirts you print, the lesser the cost for the screen printing service. It is therefore more recommended for slightly bigger orders (often more than 10 T-shirts). Also, if you are having a simple design such as a logo or wordings, usually screen printing is the better choice.
However, Dye-sublimation print on polyester material does not affect the hand of the material and is more desirable than screen printing for home furnishing and wallpaper fabrics and the apparel industry. The colors are very vibrant, do not wash out and the process is less messy than screen printing, which requires messy solvents and dyes.
Sublimation is also very popular with sportswear manufacturers as many printed uniforms (cycle wear,soccer, basketball and lacrosse) on the market today are done via sublimation. Unlike screen printing,where the ink lays on top of the garment, the sublimation process produces permanent images that will not crack or fade. Also, sublimation infuses the image into the thread of the fabric so that it does not affect the breath ability of the garment. Most athletes prefer sublimated jerseys versus screen printing jerseys. Screen printing leaves a layer on top of the garment, which affects breath ability and the comfort of the athlete.
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