Printing Ink and its Types

Are you confused about the type of Printer Ink you need, Specifically in regards to Printer Price in Pakistan? It is no surprise considering the abundance of Ink types available. The choice boils down to what printer you have and what job you need to do with it. This is definitely not a one-size-fits-all situation. So, today we will guide you about the variety of Ink types and their specific uses. Let's begin.

Types of Printer

As mentioned before, each type of Printer requires a distinct Ink type. Currently, there are two types of Printers widely used.

  • Laser Printers use Toner

  • Inkjet Printers use Liquid ink

  • Solid Ink Printers use Solid ink

  • Dye-Sublimation Printers use Dye-Sub ink

You need to be familiar with the pros and cons of each type of ink, in order to make the right choice for a new printer or buying ink for your existing one. Let's dive into the details of each kind.

Laser Printer Inks

These printers are commonly found in offices as they are quite economical and easy to handle. These required a powdered substance called Toner to print stuff on a page. The prominent benefits and cons of using a toner are:

  • The Toner is dry so it doesn't have a sticky or wet impact on the paper. Thus, it provides much cleaner results as compared to inkjet printers.

  • They work splendidly with most kinds of paper including commercial, marketing, and text-based material.

  • Comparing the cost of toner with other inks indicates its cost-effectiveness.

  • The worldwide usage of Toner in office scenarios and business agencies has created trust among the user base.

  • It results in accurate and precise prints which are the primary requirement of most businesses.

  • The strong lifespan of toner compliments the premium quality it provides for both text and images.

  • Laser printers are faster than inkjets but the color print quality is comparatively low.

Inkjet Printers Inks

The main factor that makes these printers the safe choice for home use, is they are pretty cheap and easily repairable. Furthermore, the size of these printers is compact and ideal for tight spaces. The primary process of printing happens via a heating mechanism that vaporizes the ink to print a document. There are several kinds of liquid inks which are used in these printers.

  • Pigment Ink

It is fundamentally a fine quality colored powder utilized majorly in photography by professionals. The strong point that favors this ink is the longevity it provides. Documents with pigment-based ink can last decades due to the ink's ability to resist heat and light. Pigment-based ink is also utilized for creating Professional art like stickers and a variety of colored signs.

One disadvantage of using this ink is the price point. The average quality pigment ink can still cost more in comparison to other options out there.

  • Solvent Ink

All the printing jobs related to plastic, uncoated vinyl, and similar surfaces, tend to use solvent ink. The core component of solvent ink is that it is oil-based. The drying speed of this ink is fairly slow but it results in rich, vibrant, and sharp color quality. Solvent ink is extensively used for billboards and banners but to top it all off it aids in quick production in a commercial setting.

So, if you have the same needs as mentioned above, solvent ink can be the right choice for your inkjet printer.

  • UV Ink

UV ink is used for non-absorbent material as well. The unique trait of this ink is the speedy drying process. It falls in the same category as solvent ink and can be bought as its alternative. As the name suggests, Ultra Violet rays are used while printing which is the reason for its quick-drying capability. 

The show banners and broadway sized posters are the end result of UV ink printing.

Apart from the benefits of UV ink, the weak link is its price range. Even the cheapest brand breaks the bank of most customers.

Solid Ink Printers

This is a special and distinct category of printers. The ink used by them is equally unique as well. In solid ink printers, there is a medium or a bridge between the ink source and paper. This medium is called a drum and unlike inkjet printers, the ink is jetted into the drum before it hits the paper.

  • Solid wax is used as ink instead of traditional cartridges.

  • The wax acts like a big crayon which produces bright and flamboyant colors.

  • It is eco-friendly and produces zero toxins as compared to other types.

  • A wide variety of uses include graphical design tasks and media printing.

  • The prints are long-lasting and generally won't smudge over time.

  • One downside to these printers is the required warm-up and cool-down to work efficiently.

  • The cost factor is comparatively poor and it can be a major turn-off for buyers.

  • The ink also takes a while to become properly heated for usage.

Dye-Sublimation Ink

Customized inkjet printers are used for dye-sublimation purposes. In this type of printing, the ink is composed of heat-sensitive dye which sticks to the printing sheet. The end results on a special kind of transfer paper are visually intense.

  • The ink doesn't fade away and gives off a solid print effect.

  • T-shirts, bags, and similar day-to-day items are printed by dye-sublimation.

  • The entire domain of digital textile printing revolves around different uses of dye-sublimation ink.

  • The final print fabric doesn't scratch or peel off.

  • The printing output is ready-to-use upon exiting the printer.

  • Price is a major factor in the limited use of this ink. It ranges from hundreds to even thousands of dollars.

  • The process of printing is quite burdensome and time-consuming as compared to regular inkjet printers.


At the end of the day, the type of ink you need should be determined by:

  • The type of printing task

  • Budget

  • Commercial value

  • The printer you own or want to buy

Analyzing the different use cases and contributing factors of each printer ink type will lead you to make a well-informed decision. Happy printing.



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