Digital printing is an alternative printing process to offset. It involves the reproduction of digital images onto paper. It is generally used for short run prints and for customisation of printed media.
It differs from traditional printing in several ways:
Every print can be different (Variable Data Printing)
Less wasted chemicals & paper
Toner used instead of Ink
Toner is adhered to the paper using a heated fusion process
Less set up time
No film or plates are used
Advantages of the digital process is variable data printing and that it offers quicker turnaround times due to its minimal press set up.
What is Offset Printing...
Offset printing is a commonly used printing technique where an inked image is transferred or 'offset' from a plate to a rubber blanket, then onto a printing surface.
It differs from digital printing in several ways:
Every print must be the same
Chemicals & papers are used in setup
Ink is used instead of toner
The ink absorbs into the paper
Longer set up time
Seperate plates are used for each page
Cost effective for large runs
Better image quality
The most important advantage of offset printing is that it offers substantial cost savings on large runs compared to the digital print equivalent.