What Goes Up Can Bring Ink Costs Down
When conducting a paper trial for production inkjet printing, did you know that paper qualifications should be done differently for each paper type and weight? That the areas of importance for a book versus direct mail will have different print quality, coverage and ink coverage limitations? That coated inkjet paper will have different drying and ink thickness specs than a treated or uncoated stock? That coated inkjet papers require less ink than inkjet treated or uncoated papers? And it is imperative that a different color profile should be made for each paper surface type as well as thicknesses to ensure you are really getting your ink and paper’s monies worth.
The reason we all print on treated and inkjet coated is just to spend more money on paper, right? Of course not; it is because we require better ink hold out and print quality. So why are many printers buying inkjet papers and not conducting proper paper testing to evaluate the proper ink thickness for the paper before approving the paper for production? And why are many spending more money for paper that should produce better print quality and color, but not create a custom color profile for that paper?
Ok, I know we’re all busy and have just enough time to throw the paper on the printer and print some cute print samples with canned profiles and machine settings to qualify the paper. But this process is costing more money by using more ink than needed and isn’t even producing the print quality it should based on upgrading to the better paper.
Slowing down and following a “Best Practices” method to paper trials and qualification will save you time and ink costs by focusing on ink and paper surface compatibility. As your cost for a better inkjet paper and print quality go up, your ink usage should go down. But only if there are best practices in place.
Talk to your operators and see if there are proper test methods in place. If not, enact a plan with a professional who can help. You will be saving money in no time.