What is digital printing?
Digital printing is the process of printing digital-based images directly onto a variety of media substrates. There is no need for a printing plate, unlike with offset printing. Digital files such as PDFs or desktop publishing files can be sent directly to the digital printing press to print on paper, photo paper, canvas, fabric, synthetics, cardstock and other substrates.
Digital printing vs. offset printing
Digital printing differs from traditional, analog printing methods – such as offset printing – because digital printing machines do not require printing plates. Instead of using metal plates to transfer an image, digital printing presses print the image directly onto the media substrate.
Digital production print technology is evolving quickly, and digital printing output quality is improving continuously. These advancements are delivering print quality that mimics offset. Digital printing enables additional advantages, including:
cost-effective short runs
Digital printing technology
Most digital printing presses have historically used toner-based technology and as that technology quickly evolved, the print quality rivalled that of offset presses.
See the Xerox range of digital presses
In recent years, inkjet technology has simplified digital print accessibility as well as the cost, speed and quality challenges facing print providers today.
See how professionals can’t tell the difference between inkjet and offset
Learn about the Xerox range of inkjet digital presses
Digital printing advantages and disadvantages
Digital printing technology excels at producing on demand and short print runs quickly and cost-effectively. Digital printing is also an ideal platform for personalization. If you want to easily modify images and messages using variable data printing (VDP), then digital printing is the only way to go. With advancements in print quality and speed, digital printing’s previous disadvantages are quickly disappearing, and digital printing machines are closing the gap on offset output.
See how XMPie can enabled personalized communication in print and other media
Watch a video about effective, personalized messages
Digital printing inks
Digital printing inks include cyan, magenta, yellow and black (CMYK) toner and ink, as well as extended color gamut inks such as orange, blue and green as well as specialty dry inks for metallic, white or clear effects.
Explore the creative possibilities enabled by an extended gamut and specialty colors
See the Xerox digital presses that can print with an extended gamut and specialty colors
Types of digital print media
Digital printing machines can print on everything from thick cardstock, heavyweight papers and folding cartons to fabric, plastics and synthetic substrates. T-shirt printing is a very popular digital printing application, and some digital printers can print on other fabrics besides T-shirts, including linen and polyester.
Learn how the Xerox iGen 5 can handle card stock and extra long sheets
Check Out the Xerox Digital Printing Portfolio
ePrint Expands with the Xerox® Versant® 280 Press and Adaptive CMYK+ Technology.
Learn how ePrint expanded their business with new offerings, and boosted profits by keeping more work in-house, especially offset and metallic stamping processes.
How to Say "Yes" to Anything: M&T Printing Group Thrives with Inkjet
Ontario-based print shop can take on any print job now they have added an inkjet digital press to their fleet.
Five Key Challenges for Powering Print Profitability
Learn how the business model for print providers needs to include value, innovation, security and sustainability, not just quality, delivery and price.
Keeping embellishment work in-house with Xerox® Iridesse®
Beyond CMYK technology allowed Zuzu Print to keep 100% of their embellishment work in house—resulting in an astonishing 40% gain in profit.
Frisco Independent School District Reconfigures for Growth with Xerox Inkjet.
Frisco Independent School District print shop adds affordable color with room to grow with inkjet digital presses.
Adare SEC increases volume while maintaining quality with Xerox Inkjet
Learn how the Xerox® Baltoro® HF Inkjet Press increased capacity by 109%, delivering high-speed performance, exceptional value and brilliant color.