Most clients expect to get high-quality digital prints when they visit a digital printing shop. Different types of printers and varied ink transfer processes greatly impact the quality of digital prints. 

Features Of Sublimation-Based Ink Transfer

Sublimation printing or sublimation-based ink transfer process gives good quality prints, but you must know about its features when you visit sublimation printer suppliers to get the best output. This blog post briefly explains how the sublimation process works and what users must know before they try printing. 

The Transfer Process

To understand the nitty gritty of the transfer process, you must understand how the process works. Under high-temperature conditions, the ink (to be used for printing) sublimates. Sublimation changes the ink to its gaseous form. This gas gets absorbed into the fabric on which the print is required. 

The heating opens or widens up the pores of the fabric on which the print is to be taken. Once the sublimated ink gets taken up in between the pores and the temperature cools down, the pores shrink. Thus, the heating and cooling process works to get the ink deposited firmly on the fabric’s surface, which makes the print so durable.

However, not all sorts of fabrics are suitable for the sublimation process. A specific type of polymer coating on the fiber is necessary before one can start the sublimation transfer process. So, although the quality of prints is good and long-lasting, the pre-processing time is quite long.

Accessory Items Needed In The Printing Process

The sublimation transfer process requires several accessory items like sublimation paper, hear-resistant tape ( which holds the fabric tightly when the transfer occurs), and heat press (which helps bond the ink with the fiber). Apart from this, the ink transfer requires a color correction plate, as this helps ensure that the color transferred matches the intended color. Finally, one needs dyes that respond to heat as the dye transfer happens under high temperatures.

The Ink Transfer Happens Only For Polyester

Most direct-to-film printers work well for all sorts of fabric, be it nylon, rayon or cotton, but when it comes to a sublimation transfer-based printer, only polyester is the ideal choice of fabric. If you have a cotton t-shirt mixed with polyester, sublimation transfer will still work, but the best results are obtained only with 100% polyester shirts. So, if you have a blend of 50 or 60% polyester with cotton, the color transfer will happen, but the image’s brightness will be compromised. 


Sublimation-based printers offer great prints, but the printing process is a bit tedious and requires a lot of accessories. Also, the sublimation transfer method works best for polyester, so if your fabric is a cotton-polyester or silk-polyester blend, you will get a dull print. But there is no denying that 100% polyester sublimation-based transfer works well, and if you wish to use only pure polyester, then the sublimation method of ink transfer is the best choice.

By Grace