Digital inkjet printing brings challenges and opportunities to screen printing
A few years ago, the traditional screen printing technology was the leading role in the large format advertising market. When digital inkjet printing technology appeared, the market situation changed. Some screen printers feel threatened by digital inkjet printing technology, and gradually fade out of this market area. However, some other screen printers hold a positive attitude towards large format inkjet printing, believing that large format inkjet printing technology provides them with an effective supplementary process, which can help them expand the market and increase profits. Perhaps, like art, screen printing prides itself on being an ancient, traditional method of commercial processing. But digital inkjet printing is totally different. The technology and economic solutions it provides are bringing real challenges to screen printers.
These challenges include:
·Small and medium-sized workpieces · complex workpieces (some complex formats are not suitable for screen printing) · proofing · strict schedule and on-demand printing demand · plane application completed in a very short time (curtain, building's external shelter). An analysis report on printing quantity shows that the optimal printing capacity of screen printing is more than 400 copies. The report also points out that more demand in the market is less than 200 copies. And there are also some requirements: short version, on-demand, more complex layout, etc. This is exactly the advantage of large format inkjet technology.
Screen printers enter this emerging market area by adding functions, including small and medium-sized self-adhesive printing, pop, rigid material printing and special printing. This is not only profitable for them, but also transforms the traditional screen printing operation into a "one-stop shop", which can provide more services to customers and attract new customers.
Large format digital inkjet printing can be fully integrated into the existing business model, the profit is obvious.
Printing work can start directly from digital file (standard format file), no longer need to prepare before printing cost or time-consuming screen production, a job from execution to completion only takes a few minutes. Jobs are processed in queues. When a job is being printed, a new job is scheduled. If the inkjet printer is equipped with a drying device, the previous job is already printing while the other is drying.
On the basis of comprehensive consideration of preparation time (as well as cost) and running time, screen printers analyze their business to determine whether digital printing or traditional screen printing is more economical. We will be able to arbitrarily arrange the printing capacity of two kinds of process called "critical print", usually, this print is 400 copies. Of course, this is only to ensure the best profit, and does not take into account the nature of the job itself and the printing schedule.
Large format digital inkjet printing can also achieve space and human efficiency. It's easy to manage, no waste. It can print accurately according to the demand, and the color accuracy can also be guaranteed by ICC feature file. The large format inkjet printer can also provide fast, high quality and accurate proofing samples on the final substrate for screen printing.
In addition to providing users with one-stop convenient services, large format inkjet printing can also provide some profitable value-added services. Fast market response time has become very important in today's society, digital printing can provide some related additional services.
"Short version" means as little as one sheet in digital printing. This means that digital inkjet printing is not only for special forms of images, but also for retail and various language versions. At the same time, the complete prepress software makes the volume to volume printing easy. Of course, these features and advantages of digital inkjet printing can not really threaten the survival of screen printing. In addition to transferring short, complex or low profit (or even unprofitable) jobs to digital printing, screen printing can still soar in the long version, spot color or three-dimensional operations they are good at. There is even a combination of digital inkjet printing and screen printing.
Although digital inkjet printing adopts very sophisticated technology, it has a high degree of user-friendly operation. Most of the work, including media processing to printing drying, is fully automated.
Digital inkjet printing adopts piezoelectric inkjet technology, each print head consists of up to 512 nozzles, and transmits ink through frequency conversion oscillation signal. Piezoelectric ink-jet ink is combined with the medium in the form of lay. The size and shape of the ink dots can be better controlled by applying voltage to the piezoelectric crystal and matching with the diameter of the ink jet. Therefore, in the same resolution, the image output by piezoelectric inkjet printer will be clearer and more hierarchical.
In order to ensure quality and compatibility, digital inkjet printers have a variety of sizes and formats, including roll to roll, roll to sheet, sheet to sheet. At present, screen printing occupies about 50% of pop market, which is equal to digital inkjet printing and offset printing. However, by 2008, the volume of large format inkjet printing will be three times that of 2003. 1. T. strategies predicts that the media using inkjet printing will grow from 1.1 billion square feet in 2003 to 3.3 billion square feet in 2008, and the output value will also increase from 2.03 billion dollars in 2003 to 5.13 billion dollars in 2008.