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Archive for October, 2010

The Role Of Printer Ink In A Vibrant Color Image

Monday, October 4th, 2010

Inkjet printer inks do not share uniform formulations. Several types of liquid media and colorants are used, with differing properties and are therefore more suited to one application or another. They also differ in which substrate they are best suited for. This can be plain paper, coated paper, vinyl, plastic, even cloth, when images are printed on tee shirts. So, the question of what specific role a specific type of ink plays in producing a vibrant color image depends on several factors: the type of inkjet printer used, the substrate used, and what sort of image is to be printed.

The two main types of ink jet printer ink liquid media used are aqueous and solvent. Aqueous based inks are meant for thermal ink jet printer types, as they require this medium to work properly. Solvent based inks can be used in thermal ink jet printers and also piezo ink jet printers, which propel ink onto the page using the flexing of a piezoelectric crystal to produce pressure. As to the colorant used, there are two main types: dye based colorant and pigment based colorant. Dye based inks have substantially more color range and brightness (but tend to fade quickly when exposed to light), while pigment based inks have more colorfastness and durability, but are not as vividly colorful. Aqueous inks do not bond to the page immediately, require special coated papers, and are not waterproof without a special overcoating. Also, since the water base of aqueous inks doesn’t dry immediately, the resulting image can appear unsharpened. So, for aqueous, dye-based inks, the end result can be a vivid color image that is not razor sharp and can fade or be damaged after printing.

Solvent based inks use volatile compounds as the liquid basis of the ink, and dry almost immediately as the solvent evaporates. This allows for very sharp edges on the printed image, leading to color images that are vividly well defined. Recent advances in ink formulation have led to brighter and more distinct colors for solvent based inks, so a solvent based ink with colors that are pigment based can result in very sharp and vibrant color images.

Yet a third type of printer ink that leaves both the aqueous and solvent based inks behind, as regards vividness and color, is UV-curable inks, which employ a acrylic basis for the ink. After the ink is deposited on the page, it is cured very rapidly by exposure to a strong UV source, which instantly makes it colorfast and impervious to smudging. The images they produce are extremely bright and sharp, and are virtually immune to fading.

Easy Tips To Conserve Printer Ink For A Large Company

Monday, October 4th, 2010

Large companies need to look at all of their operating costs in order to work efficiently. This is particularly true when it comes to IT budgets, as modern businesses often spend hundreds of thousands of dollars each year on relatively simple, commonplace technologies, including printer inks. Printer ink cartridges can quickly become a massive cost, especially for companies with dozens or even hundreds of printers. Taking a few steps to conserve printer ink is an absolute must for any company, but this is especially the case for large companies looking to properly manage their IT budgets while reducing waste.

One of the best ways to conserve printer ink is to change the default settings on every computer in a business or even on the printers themselves. Depending on the printers that a large business uses, this may be easier said than done; some printers have a “grayscale” mode that prevents any color printing unless the setting is changed. Printers may also have a draft mode, designed specifically to conserve printer ink. Regardless of whether an individual printer has these settings, every computer running a standard operating system will have them. It may cost a large business’s IT department a bit of time to change all of the default settings on every computer that doesn’t need to produce high quality color prints, but it’s a worthwhile investment. Most offices use printers for black and white documents, and these prints won’t be affected by changes in the default settings. The results will be immediately noticeable, and printer ink usage will often decrease by 30-50% (depending on the printer and the printer inks being used).

If this isn’t an option, large businesses should consider setting up special printers for standard print jobs and deluxe printers for color or high quality prints. The standard printers can be used as defaults, again reducing the overall amount of ink that’s used in the business. The higher quality printers can still be used when necessary. This has the dual effects of conserving printer ink while avoiding any reduction in an office’s printing capacity.

Buying ink online reduces the chances of a faulty cartridge, which also reduces ink usage. Every large business should also carefully look at its printer ink cartridge supplier, as this is one of the fastest ways to reduce costs. There are hundreds of companies online that sell printer inks for every type of printer in use, and looking at quotes from a few of these companies can yield instant savings. Large businesses can order ink in bulk, which reduces costs, and keeping a consistent supply of ink on hand can decrease ink investments.

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