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Compare Thermal and Inkjet Disc Printing

CD DVD PrintersHawksM02 March 2010

The technology in the media printing industry has advanced dramatically over the past few years. From MicroBoards, Primera, Epson, to Rimage, printers have a variety of quality options to chose from, but the subtle differences in the brands may better lend themselves to certain market verticals or industry fields.

What is one of the most critical variables to consider? Thermal or inkjet?

Thermal Printing

Thermal is the newer of the two technologies. It applies heat and pressure to transfer the ink from a ribbon to the disc itself to create a permanent bond of ink resin. This technique is often used for monochrome, spot color and full color disc printing and often reduces smudges and drying time because the finished print surface is permanent.

Inkjet Printing

Inkjet (or laser) printing applies droplets of liquid ink to the disc, ejecting liquid from the print head onto the surface. Printers that are capable of printing on CD, DVD and Blu-ray should use inkjet printable discs. These discs have an Ink Absorption Layer. Inkjet printing method is often subject to smudging, especially when humidity is a factor, and should not be shipped in soft plastic envelopes to avoid sticking.

Today we’ll look at some of the most popular professional CD, DVD and Blu-ray inkjet printers:

MicroBoards Primera Epson Rimage
Ink HP Vivera Ink Lexmark inkjet printing MicroPiezo technology and six color six color cartridges,  3 picoliters uses HP Photo Ret and ColorSmart III color optimization technology
Compatibility Mac/PC compatible Mac/PC compatible PC PC
Software SureThing software SureThing software Standard and Network models include Total Disc Maker, Total Disc Monitor and Total Disc Setup Software; Network models also include Total Disc Net Administrator HP Photosmart Studio
Connection style USB USB USB or Ethernet USB
Standout feature Unattended operation and reduced vibration during printing Tuffcoat and watershield technology and robotics disc transfer with a stepper motor instead of a lead screw Robotics technology and embedded processor/hard drive for storing jobs Data-streaming technology smoothly transmits data to recorder to cut down on down time.


If you have questions or need help finding  the right printer for your company, give us a call. 1-866-409-1090

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