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Pad Printing Vs Screen Printing: Explained

The history of printing has been traced back as far as 3500 BCE to cultures using tools for documents written in clay. Since then, printing has become an integral part of modern technology used every day. As technology continues to evolve, so too, do the various methods of printing. There are many methods used to complete the printing process that will produce different results. Screen Printing Service and pad printing are two specific forms that allow for images to be tailored to a particular design. Both methods have benefits and limitations that should be considered depending on the intended application use.

Pad Printing

The early days of pad printing were completed by hand using soft gelatin material to transfer an image. For unusually-shaped objects such as plates, coffee mugs and even m&m’s- pad printing works very well.

Pad printing involves pressing an image into an object similar to the way a stamp works. It will present a crisp image with an excellent resolution. When it comes to printing reliability, pad printing excels. If time is not a factor but the quality is a concern, pad printing will offer a better alternative. The downside can be the increased production costs. For halftones, defined edges and other fine details that provide a better experience, pad printing works best.

Screen Printing

Early Chinese cultures utilized screen printing for art for centuries. Today, many modern artists are still utilizing those same practices. Although the oldest process, screen printing has been developed into more streamlined automatic presses. Screen printing methods involve high color count screening typically completed with a mesh, which allows for a photo-realistic look to any product. Often referred to as silk screening, screen printing utilizes only four colors during the screen print process- cyan, blue, yellow and magenta. Typically, these colors can be utilized to form most photorealistic images. This is a benefit for any white, grey or light background materials that need printing. It can also be used for layering colors. With higher ink opacity levels, it can conceal material beneath any colors. The lack of fine details can be a drawback for some. Registration issues slightly creating minor discrepancies tend to detract users from this process. However, this method is typically the least expensive option and is widely used for its speed benefits. With easy access and widely-used applications, screen printing may prove to work best for some printing needs.

T Formation is leading the path to the future of printing by using state of the art equipment and systems. Established in 2005, T Formation is ready to provide the experience, technology and a well-experienced team of over 100 employees to produce custom-built designs on request. Our screen printing and pad printing processes will provide the highest quality images from start to photo finish. T Formation believes that only colors should be pressed, not our customers or their time. Contact us today at 1 (800) 223-7919 for even the most challenging deadlines.