The Ultimate Guide to Choosing the Best Sublimation Paper
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Are you tired of searching for the perfect sublimation paper? Look no further! As an experienced professional in the sublimation business, I’ve tested numerous brands to bring you the top 5 sublimation papers that are sure to impress. In this article, we’ll explore each paper in detail, highlighting their strengths and compatibility with different printers and substrates. Whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned pro, this guide will help you make an informed decision. So, let’s dive in!
Quick List of the Top 5 Sublimation Papers
Before we dive into the details, let’s take a quick look at the top 5 sublimation papers and their standout features:
- A-SUB sublimation paper: Great for Epson printers and considered the best overall.
- Beaver TexPrint DT: Ideal for Sawgrass printers.
- HTVRONT sublimation paper: Perfect in terms of printer compatibility.
- Hiipoo Sublimation paper: Ideal for polyester fabrics.
- Printers Jack sublimation paper: Ideal for a wide range of sublimation blanks.
Now that you have the list, let’s explore each sublimation paper in detail.
1. A-SUB Sublimation Paper
Let’s start with the A-SUB sublimation paper, which I consider the best overall. With a competitive price point and easy availability, it’s a reliable choice. It works exceptionally well with converted Epson printers and even with Sawgrass printers. The vibrant designs it produces are impressive. Moreover, A-SUB sheets are compatible with various substrates, such as blended fabrics, polyester, and polyamide. The ink-based compatibility is extensive, making it a versatile option.
When selecting A-SUB sublimation paper, you can choose from an extensive array of sizes and basis weights (GSM) to match your needs. Additionally, it has a high transfer rate and a special clay-silica coating for excellent print quality. The tacky surface and heat-tape resistance add to its usability.
2. Beaver TexPrint DT Heavy
Beaver TexPrint DT Heavy is a market leader in sublimation papers and an excellent option for Sawgrass printers. With exceptional compatibility, it works well with pigment-based and sublimation ink variants. Its heavy paper design makes it suitable for various substrates, including metal, glass, ceramics, and more. You can choose from different sizes and GSM options to meet your printing requirements.
While using TexPrint DT, it’s essential to customize the temperature, pressure, and time settings based on the substrate. Its resistant coating and high transfer rate ensure top-notch print quality. However, keep in mind that the heat pressing settings can vary, depending on the GSM and substrate variety.
3. HTVRONT Sublimation Paper
If printer compatibility is your priority, consider the HTVRONT sublimation paper. It works seamlessly with various inkjet printers, such as Epson, HP, Canon, and SawGrass. The 13″ x 19″ size makes it suitable for larger surfaces. HTVRONT sublimation paper works exceptionally well with light-colored fabrics, including bags, t-shirts, and pillows.
You can choose between different pack sizes and sheet dimensions to fit your specific needs. The uniform 125 GSM basis weight ensures its versatility. When using HTVRONT sublimation paper, pay attention to the temperature, pressure, and time settings. Its high transfer rate, tackiness, and quick-drying mechanism contribute to its excellent performance.
4. Hiipoo Sublimation Paper
Don’t overlook the Hiipoo sublimation paper, known for its affordability, paper quality, and substrate compatibility. It works well with Epson, SawGrass, and Ricoh sublimation printers and offers excellent results with Hiipoo’s proprietary inks. This paper type is suitable for a wide range of substrates, including mugs, tumblers, plates, bags, and polyester-based fabrics.
Hiipoo sublimation paper comes in various sheet sizes and basis weights. The 120 GSM variant, in particular, is versatile and works well with most substrates. Pay attention to the temperature and pressure settings, which vary depending on the substrate. With a high transfer rate, quick-drying mechanism, and optimal tackiness, Hiipoo sublimation paper delivers impressive results.
5. Printers Jack Sublimation Paper
Last but not least, we have Printers Jack sublimation paper, a cost-effective option with extensive substrate compatibility. Compatible with various inkjet printers, including Epson and SawGrass, it offers a wide range of sizes and basis weight options. If you’re looking for versatility, this paper is a great choice.
To achieve the best results with Printers Jack sublimation paper, customize the pressure, temperature, and time settings to match the specific substrate. Its high transfer rate, quick-drying mechanism, and bleed-proof coating ensure exceptional print quality. However, some users have reported printer jamming issues, so keep that in mind.
Things to Consider While Selecting the Best Sublimation Paper
When selecting the best sublimation paper, consider the following factors:
Ensure that the paper is compatible with your printer. Look for options that work well with various printer brands and different ink types.
Choose a basis weight (GSM) that suits your substrate. Lighter paperweight is suitable for certain applications, while heavier paperweight works better for thicker substrates.
Some papers have a high-release coating, while others have a low-release coating. The coating type determines the compatibility with different ink coats and substrate colors.
Select the paper size that matches your substrate size. It’s helpful if the chosen paper is available in multiple sizes for versatility.
Do’s and Don’ts of Using Sublimation Paper
Now, before you purchase the ideal sublimation paper, here are some do’s and don’ts to ensure successful sublimation crafting:
- Set up the printer correctly and mirror the design before printing.
- Handle the paper carefully to avoid smudging or creasing.
- Use heat-resistant tapes when working with low-tackiness papers.
- Preheat the heat press to the optimal temperature.
- Use protective gear when handling sublimation ink.
- Don’t use regular printing ink or paper for sublimation.
- Don’t apply more pressure than recommended.
- Don’t overheat, as it may cause discoloration.
- Don’t expose the paper to moisture.
Remember, regardless of the brand you choose, always read guides like these to make an informed decision. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to reach out. Happy sublimation crafting!
What is the difference between light and heavy sublimation paper?
Light sublimation paper typically has a GSM rating of 70 to 100, while heavy sublimation paper has a basis weight between 120 to 150 GSM.
What is the best weight for sublimation paper?
The ideal paper weight depends on the type of substrate you plan to print on. In general, 120 to 140 GSM papers are widely available and compatible with various applications.
What is the difference between 120g and 125g sublimation paper?
The difference between these two paper weights is negligible. However, minor variations may lead to different pressure, temperature, and time requirements for specific substrates.
What temperature should TexPrint sublimation paper be?
The specific temperature varies depending on the substrate and required pressure. TexPrint sublimation paper performs well at high-temperature zones, reaching close to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
Is thicker sublimation paper better?
Thicker sublimation paper is not necessarily better for all applications. However, if you plan to print on metal, hoodies, bags, or thick substrates, papers with a basis weight of 120 GSM or higher are recommended.
What is the recommended paper setting for sublimation?
The recommended paper settings depend on the type of substrate. However, as a general guideline, the temperature range is typically 380-400 degrees Fahrenheit, the time can range from 45 to 60 seconds, and the pressure setting should be medium.
What sublimation paper should I use for cotton?
Sublimation printing is strictly for polyester-based fabrics and does not work well with cotton. However, some paper types, such as the Forever Subli-Flex 202, can work relatively well with cotton-based fabric choices, but fading and cracking may occur over time.
What sublimation paper should I use for tumblers?
For tumblers, it’s best to use smaller-sized sublimation papers that can handle curved surfaces. Options such as TexPrint-R or DT and A-SUB sublimation papers are ideal choices.