Printing with white ink – why?

Why is it such a big advantage to be able to print with white ink? It certainly seems to be rising in popularity in the wide format print industry. So what are the advantages?

Spiral Colour installed a Jetrix 3 metre wide flatbed printer in 2012. We opted for the capability of printing white ink to be included. This meant we could now print in CMYK-W (Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, Black and White.) This gives us extra print options.

Printing onto coloured foamex Dibonds.

The CMYK inks are designed to be printed onto a white background only. Printing onto a coloured background such as a red Dibond or black Foamex (see image) in CMYK only would result in poor and diffused colour qualities. Being able to print white ink before you lay down CMYK gives you the perfect CMYK colour balance.
This example for Slater Harrison shows our Jetrix has printed a full colour logo onto black foamex. This is much cheaper than printing black throughout and gives a much better result.

Printing white onto metallic vinyls.

gold vinyl 2
Printing CMYK onto metallic vinyls such as gold and silver always gives great and sometimes unexpected results. The metallic finish adds to the CMYK, so when adding white to the mix, the options are endless.
Printing white ink onto metallics also enables you to add gold, silver and bronze to your colour palette. By laying down white and CMYK and leaving the areas blank where you want the metallic elements to show gives you a stunning effect.

Printing onto clear acrylics.

clear acrylic
Printing onto clear acrylic has always given the problem of colour opacity. This has generally been overcome by adding white vinyl onto the back of acrylic, but this can look unsightly and sometimes you require a clear background. This was the case for the signage we produced for Fallibroome as shown above.

With white ink capability, it enables us to lay down white ink wherever the CMYK is being printed. This gives a full colour without a translucent effect. Printing on any clear substrate is made a whole lot easier using white ink.

Printing white ink on window vinyls.

Case study - Contra Vision Print and Installation contra vision6- fallibroome - Visual sense
Printing white ink on the reverse of window vinyls enables you to print window vinyls without the translucent, see-through effect you would otherwise get. First the image id printed in CMYK (in reverse) and then the white ink backs up this printed area. It creates a very solid, true colour otherwise unachievable without that white ink.

If this blog has given you some ideas why not talk to our team. Give us a call on 01625 435130 and we can discuss how we could produce some excellent looking print for you.