Digital Printing Vs. Flexo Printing

Digital Printing Vs. Flexo Printing

Printing Machines and Web finishing equipment

Brand labels are a huge component of marketing and improving brand recognition among consumers. Label production takes on two different forms: Flexo Printing and Digital Printing. Labels share important product information giving consumers the content they need to decide whether or not to purchase a product. Labels convey a story and are geared toward attracting consumers.

Depending on your specific needs, product labels can be printed using Flexo printing which uses a Flexo press, or can be printed with a digital printing process. Varied factors such as run size, lead time, and design complexity can be used to determine which printing option is best for you. Reviewing these details will help outline the difference between the two options.

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Flexo Press Printing

As the name implies, flexo printing requires a flexo press station. It is quite literally like a giant stamp that has ink applied to a rubber printing plate and then transfers the image to the substrate. Like a stamp, flexo printing has elevated sections of the plate to convey different details to the material the label is printed on. The number of elevated sections of the plate depends on the complexity and details of the design of the label.

Flexo printing provides the following features and benefits:

  • Printable On Many Materials and Specific Surfaces
  • Matching Pantone Colors
  • Cost Effective for Long Runs

Flexo press printing works with a wide variety of materials, allowing your labels to be printed on specific surfaces and can include things like laminating and foiling in the process. Flexo presses can also always match an exact Pantone color and are beneficially more cost-effective for long print runs. Flexo printing does require the use of print press operators and provides automated, high-speed label printing solutions.

Digital Printing

Digital printing applies toner directly to your product, much like a giant printer, copying the image directly without the use of plates. Digital printing is ideal for the following types of label printing jobs:

  • Variable Printing Capabilities
  • Embellished Labels
  • More Complex Labeling Graphics

Digital printing gives you the capability to apply unique variations to your labels. If the labels are the same size and shape, you can create unique customized options with digital printing presses. Variable printing with digital printing presses allows you to save time and money for certain types of print jobs. Digital presses are also great for flesh tone reproduction, a process that requires highly trained press operators on a traditional flexo printing press. Embellishment is growing in popularity as well and makes it easier for you to add foiling stamps, spot varnishes, and embossing making digital printing more preferred in overly complex designs.

Flexo Printing Options by Tamarack®

Digital printing and flexo printing provide benefits for specific types of printing requirements defined by your label printing process. They each can provide cost-effective options dependent on your end production goal and are unique in their own way. Flexo printing options like the P500 Inline On Flexo Press Integrated Labeling Equipment by Tamarack® Products provide an integrated inline labeling machine. Options with Tamarack’s servo-drive technology accommodate label production specifications with die cutting and gluing components to customize your flexo printing label requirements. The VERSA Web SE Offline Integral Labeling Equipment provides offline integrated labeling solutions on a servo press, engineered for scalability and customizable to your needs.

Tamarack® Products offers more than 50 years of experience in integrated label making and web finishing equipment. We design, engineer, and manufacture customizable offline or inline web finishing equipment to maximize your label printing productivity and efficiency. Contact us to learn more about our flexo printing solutions to meet your label printing productivity needs.


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