Ink is the most important element in the printing process. Due to the cut-throat competitive environment, quality ink products are available in the market. Modern inks produced should render color accuracy, brightness, high ink opacity, fast-drying, light and environment resistance, stable adhesion, rheological properties, ecological compatibility, and intensity. There are different types of printer inks available for commercial printing purposes.
One of the most popular of all is the laser printer or inkjet cartridge, generally used for desktop printing. Inks are also used for artworks and creative illustrations. Not all inks can be used on canvas and paper; hence it is important to understand different types of ink available in the market. Ink service providers sell quality inks for commercial purposes at affordable prices.
Types of printer ink
- Aqueous ink – It is a water-based ink. Water is used with dye or pigment to print. Dye-based inks are not waterproof and fade when they are exposed to sunlight. As the water evaporates, the ink prints the image on the paper. Whereas, pigment-based inks are made of water and powder similar to chalk and dust. Unlike other inks, it sits on the top, gets scattered through the light that makes colors look muted. Pigment-based inks are long-lasting as they are water and UV fade-resistant. The print can last up to 100 years. Pigment-based inks are used for canvas and fine paper art prints.
- Solvent inks – It is a very common printer ink used for commercial purposes. They are UV, water-resistant pigment-based ink comprising of volatile organic compounds as a substitute for water. Such ink printers work effectively on vinyl and other types of plastics, for example printing on billboards and outdoor signage. Solvent ink produces toxic fumes that may harm the ventilation of premises. Hence, such inks are not fit for canvas and paper.
- Indigo Ink – It is used in inkjet printers and it can print even tiny dots and minute details. High-quality indigo ink is made of an appropriate mixture of charged pigments and oil resulting in a fine print.
- Latex inks – Latex inks are a mixture of polymer dye and water as a substitute for solvent inks. Solvent inks produce a good quality print for vinyl but are not suitable for paper and canvas. Latex inks are well with vinyl, canvas, and paper. The latex ink retains the appearance of the print in direct light without lamination. There are innumerable benefits of latex ink, its dries immediately; it retains its print quality for up to three years without lamination and works well for artworks.
- UV curable Ink – Such ink is used mostly on hard surfaces such as metal, hard plastic, and wood. The ink produces vibrant colors and works well on uncoated surfaces. This ink is not used very commonly as it is very expensive.
- Toner ink – The toner is colored powder made of carbon, iron oxide, plastic. Many laser printers use toner to produce quality prints.