The sublimation printer is different from the regular printer. A regular printer uses ink to print texts, images, and graphics onto various papers. A sublimation printer prints design onto ceramic mugs, clothes and others, using a carrier material.
So the sublimation printing process differs from the normal printing process. But one popular question is this: what printer can I use for sublimation?
We’ll discuss the list of printers you can use for sublimation printing and share some tips to help you understand the printing process better.
What Is Sublimation Printing?
Sublimation printing is a process that involves transferring design to a range of materials using carrier material.
Professionals use sublimation printing to create custom keychains, ceramic mugs, and even T-shirts. So the designs you find printed on mugs, clothing, and other materials are done by sublimation printers.
Sublimation printing works for a range of surfaces too. For example, you can use it to customize boards, picture frames, tags, and even metal plates.
Here is a list of items you can print on via sublimation:
- Cutting boards
- License plates
- Phone cases
Another thing you need to know is you can use sublimation printing for 100% polyester fabric. Examples include:
- Top mouse pads and other materials made from polyester.
Can You Use Inkjet Printers For Sublimation?
Sublimation involves transferring designs on a material or fabric via ink and heat. Inkjet printers can only print on paper. They cannot print on fabric, or ceramic,.
The printing head makes inkjet printers different from sublimation printers. While inkjet printers are best for document printing, sublimation printers are used to print graphics onto plastic substrates.
So there’s no way you can use an inkjet printer for sublimation printing. Again, inkjet printers print ink on top of the documents or paper, but sublimation printers don’t. Instead, they permeate the material, in question, with ink vapors.
Printers You Can Use For Sublimation Printing
Several printers you can use for sublimation printing exist. Let’s discuss them in detail.
1: Epson EcoTank ET-15000:
The ET-15000 is an all-in-one sublimation printer. It works as a copier, printer, scanner, fax, and Ethernet.
So, if you’re seeking a versatile sublimation printer with an impressive online rating, the SuperTank ET-15000 will make a wise choice.
How versatile is this printer? We already explained that it could handle diverse printing processes.
It can print up to 13 x 19 inches through the rear feed. Furthermore, it can copy and scan up to 8.5 x 11 inches via scan bed or 8.5 x 14 inches via ADF. So, this sublimation printer has the capacity to print large pages.
It boasts a 2500-sheet front tray capacity, including rear specialty paper feed. Another impressive feature is the 2.7-inch touchscreen that lets you easily set up the printer and in less time.
The color touchscreen isn’t the only feature that shows how highly innovative Epson is, including how advanced the ET-15000 is. This printer also boasts voice-activated printing technology.
A refillable ink tank printer, this Epson ET-15000 printer’s cost-effectiveness makes it a wise choice for users on a budget. The printer itself costs more to acquire but doesn’t cost much to use.
However, note that factors like printing volumes, tasks, and usage conditions will always influence the cost of using your sublimation printer.
The printer is wireless. Thus, you can connect it to your Wi-Fi with ease. Adding papers to the paper tray is a breeze. Setup is also a breeze, though the instruction on how to use the printer isn’t detailed enough.
Having tons of advanced features sets this Epson ET-15000 apart. Its inks are so inexpensive and a breeze to refill. Plus, you can print large formats, cards, and more.
However, this printer has some drawbacks. First, you can only use Epson inks to protect the warranty. Note that Epson won’t assume responsibility for damages incurred when you use a different ink in the printer.
Another drawback is that the Epson EcoTank ET-15000 boasts a high price point, though you’ll get value for your money.
2. HP ENVY Photo 7855 Sublimation Printer:
As the name suggests, the HP ENVY 7855 boasts the features and quality to make your sublimation printing work the envy of your competitors.
This printer is a wise choice for printing photos. It delivers detailed outputs and is one of the best for printing emergency photos.
It boasts diverse connectivity options and is a breeze to set up. You can easily connect it to USB, dual-band Wi-Fi, Bluetooth smart, Ethernet, iPrint, and others. You can see the wide range of options available.
The HP ENVY 7855 prints quality photos for less than 5 cents, making it one of the most affordable printers at this price point. Another impressive feature of this printer is its versatility.
You can use this photo printer to scan, print, fax, and even perform wireless and borderless printing. Also, there’s an SD card slot to insert your mobile device’s SD card to print photos captured during holidays and other memorable outings.
In addition to having a slot for an SD card, the HP ENVY 7855 lets you print directly via USB too. And what’s more, you’ll have the opportunity to view and edit photos before printing them.
The HP smart App makes setting up this wireless printer a breeze. And you can print from social media, scan files with your camera, and print from Dropbox, Google Drive, Cloud, etc.
Another impressive feature is the color touchscreen that makes setup a breeze. In addition, it boasts a dedicated paper tray that adjusts itself to match print settings, including paper type.
Furthermore, this printer supports a wide range of paper sizes. Plus, it is a breeze to set up and use. You can even start printing photos with it out of the box.
This HP ENVY’s drawback is that you can only use cartridges that boast HP circuitry. Unfortunately, any cartridge that boasts non-HP or modified circuitry won’t work on this printer.
Overall, this sublimation printer is reasonably priced. In addition, HP instant ink is also affordable.
3: Brother HL-L3290CDW Compact Sublimation Printer:
Brother makes good quality inkjet printers, and they did not disappoint in this sublimation printer. This Brother HL-L3290CDW is one of the best entry-level sublimation printers on the market.
This Brother color printer can copy and scan. Additionally, in a minute, it can print approximately 25 pages. The printer is also a breeze to set up and connect, making it a wise choice for beginners.
The Brother HL-L3290CDW’s solid construction and ruggedness make it a wise choice for heavy users. It can withstand any amount of printing work thrown at it.
This sublimation printer is compact, meaning it will fit into your small office or home. In addition, it boasts laser printer technology, and it is budget-friendly.
It boasts one set of the starter toner cartridge, capable of printing approximately 100 copies. So, if you want entry-level sublimation printing that will help you to save money, the Brother HL-L3290CDW fits the bill.
The flatbed scan glass makes scanning and copying a breeze. In addition, the toner saves modes, and automatic duplex printing lets you save on toner and paper.
You can determine the output of this printer by choosing toner settings. In addition, there’s an option to choose between Standard and High Yield toner, with the former helping you to save big on toner.
The LCD screen makes accessing this printer’s efficiency and productivity features simpler. And it offers versatile connection options.
So, you can connect via Wi-Fi and print wirelessly from your laptop, desktop, mobile phone, or table. Another highlighted feature of this printer is its flexible paper handling.
You can use a wide variety of paper sizes and styles in this printer. However, note that this printer has drawbacks too. One of the drawbacks is that it doesn’t have an ethernet option.
Another thing you need to know about this sublimation printer is that it’s small. Thus, it’s not a departmental printer. Instead, use it in your small office or home office.
What printer can I use for sublimation? Firstly, as stated in this post, sublimation printers differ from regular printers. The printing mechanism and outputs aren’t the same either.
Sublimation printing is a technique where you can transfer any design effortlessly onto various materials. The process involves using ink and heat.
The designs on ceramic mugs, clothes, tags, etc., are a result of sublimation printing. And we have identified top sublimation printers you can choose. So go through the list of options and choose the printer you want for your creative journey.