Is DTF Transfer the Same As Sublimation?

Is DTF Transfer the Same As Sublimation?

DTF transfer is a unique printing technology as it is different from most printing methods. Transfer printing applied on special paper allows it to be transferred onto fabric or wood. Since there are three different transfer printing methods, the differences between them are curious. These are silk screen transfer printing, sublimation transfer printing and DTF transfer printing. Among these printing methods, the difference between sublimation and DTF transfers is most curious.

What is Sublimation Transfer Printing?

Sublimation transfer printing is a method that allows the image prepared on the computer to be transferred onto transfer paper. Although it is similar to DTF transfers, it has some differences. It is applied with the help of sublimation ink and printer. It enables the design prepared with a heat transfer machine to be printed. Sublimation transfer, which has a low investment cost, can be used in personalized prints. It is also a printing technique that can be preferred when creating promotional products.

What is DTF Transfer?

DTF printing is a printing technique that creates special designs that can be applied on different products. This printing technique uses inkjet technology and heat technology. Since it is a digital printing technique, the application time is very short. In the first step of the process, it uses four colors called RGB or CMYK.

Then it uses PET film called polyethylene terephthalate. After applying ink on the PET film, it prints the design on the film. During this printing process, glue is applied. This glue makes the print harden and adhere better to the surface. The image is transferred to the product surface with a heat press and the print is ready.

What Are the Differences Between DTF Transfer and Sublimation?

Although there are similarities between DTF transfers and sublimation, there are some significant differences. The printing process and durability is one of the differences to be emphasized. Both use heat in the process of transferring the design to the product. However, in DTF printing, glue is applied when transferring the design to the product. However, since sublimation inks are strong, they immediately bond the print to the fabric.

On the other hand, print size is also a notable difference. DTF printing usually prints at 12 "x15" while sublimation printing can print up to 16 "x20". Therefore, DTF printing produces smaller prints than sublimation printing. Based on this, we can say that DTF transfers will be applied in smaller projects.

Print texture is also an important difference between DTF transfers and sublimation. In DTF printing, the ink is applied directly to the fabric. This creates a soft and smooth texture when the design is applied to the surface. This is because the ink sits well on the surface of the material. In sublimation printing, the material absorbs the ink, resulting in a hard texture on the fabric.

Does DTF Last as Long as as Sublimation?

To measure how long DTF transfer and sublimation last, you need to compare the ink quality. DTF and sublimation both use unique inks. Correct and high quality DTF ink can be more durable than ordinary sublimation ink. This is also true when quality sublimation inks are applied. Printer performance is also another factor affecting image durability.

The longevity of DTF transfers and sublimation prints also depends on the frequency and method of washing the fabric. Prints are durable when washed in cold water in a short time. However, to summarize, we can say that DTF printing is more durable than sublimation. However, sublimation printing is more cost-effective than DTF transfers. Nevertheless, if you want to make a high-quality and aesthetically pleasing print, you should invest in a good printer.

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