Can You Use Any Printer for Sublimation?

Sublimation printers are distinguished from regular printers promoting color matching and permanent printing on fabric. They use heat mechanisms and go with the latest techniques for better printing. And yes, that’s the sublimation printing we perform to print a permanent design on fabric or surfaces compatible with sublimation. 
You can’t use any printer for sublimation; instead, you need printers that can vaporize the special or print ink into gas. And that’s impossible without giving heat to the ink. That’s because sublimation printers are often called thermal dye-sublimation printers. In this article, we’ll share everything about sublimation printers you need to know.
Stay here to get to know more. 

Can You Use Any Printer for Sublimation

Introduction to the Sublimation Procedure

Sublimation is found to be one of the best techniques in printing history. It has made things easier and introduced various applications. You can do dozens of printing ideas with this technique. Talking about what sublimation printing is, it works on a heating mechanism and turns liquid ink into gas to make it compatible with permanent printing. 
You will need an ideal design first in sketch form to make your permanent design accordingly. And it is also recommended by experts to avoid any mistake getting final prints. Keep in mind that you may found with printers that are modified, but you should avoid them because they are not so efficient. 
Always choose a printer compatible with the sublimation procedure and technique if you want to go with sublimation printing. For your better navigation, we’ve described the major types of sublimation printers so that you find the best one accordingly.
Check out below. 

Introduction to the Sublimation Procedure

Sublimation Printers and Types

As we’ve mentioned above, sublimation printers are those compatible with sublimation techniques. Plus, they’re caring for providing you with efficient colorized printing and several more features.
The sublimation printers are divided into various types according to their functionality and use. You can choose one, keeping in mind the usage and intent. 

 Calm Press Printer  

It is the type of sublimation printer promoting dye-sub technology and has the highest commercial importance because of its use. The printer is mostly adapted by companies and factories involved in producing fabrics, especially T-shirts. 
You might have seen the designs printed on the front of T-shirts. These designs are made by using the Calm Press printer. That is the reason behind the printer is often called a “T-shirt calm printer.” If you’re running a small business or starting a fabric business, this printer might be essential for you. 

 Swing Away Printer  

If you don’t know, the sublimation printing technique is not only restricted to printing on fabric. Instead, you can print on hard materials like photo frames and stuff like that. In this regard, the printers used to apply the sublimation technique on hard materials are swing-away dye-sub printers. 
Like Calm Press printers, they also have great commercial importance and are used by various photo frame manufacturing companies. 

 Flatbed Press  

As shown by the name, flatbed printers refer to the printing on flat surfaces using dye-sub technology. These are often called digital or UV printers because of their higher uses and applications. As peruses, they are divided into two basic types:

  • Automatic: it is the type of flatbed press printer that will promote all the procedures automatically, and you need to press the start button. It’s slightly more expensive than the second type.
  • Manual: Using this flatbed press printer, you might need to care for and supervise each step. You have to control the entire procedure on your own.

 Single Press  

Single Press sublimation printers repeatedly print a single design on objects. For example, you can print on a pen again and again without any hassle. These printers are mostly recommended to niche suppliers or hobbyists who print single objects.

They are small and available in compact designs so that you can place them quickly. They also cost you less than the other sublimation printers described.  

 3D Vacuum Press   

3D Vacuum press dye-sub printers are more efficient than flatbed ones. As we’ve seen that flatbed press printers only support printing on flat surfaces, while these printers support printing or irregular-shaped items. With the help of a printer, you can often print on the corners and edges of objects. 
These are the printers found to be most selling among companies commercially. And yes, they are essential and ensure the highest profit for factories printing irregular-shaped items. 

Importance and Uses of Sublimation Printers

Sublimation printers undoubtedly have great importance. However, you’re using it in homes, small offices, or factories. Depending upon the usage, you can choose the best one accordingly. Sublimation printers have individual applications and commercial applications as well. 
You may find the best uses of sublimation printers from all aspects. We have compiled a few ones you will indeed find the best. And here these are.


Sublimation printers are the best for decorating objects like upholstery, curtains, and other fabrics. Also, you can print random and irregular-shaped objects, corners of things, and even harder materials for decorating purposes. 
Most companies manufacturing decorating pieces and objects like that widely use sublimation printers, especially flatbed and 3D vacuum press printers.  

 Print on Fabric  

Sublimation printers are primarily used to print on fabrics. They might be of any type, and you can print them on shirts, skirts, and much more. As mentioned above, the calm press printers are widely used to print on fabrics. 
Resources have cleared that clothing brands are widely using Calm Press Printers for better clothing production. In essence, you can also design customized logos on clothes. 

 Signage and Advertising  

Another popular use of sublimation printers and techniques. For example, you can add value and effectiveness to your advertising procedures. If you are looking to design the best banner for advertising your product or services, you would need to get help from sublimation. 
Without using sublimation, you can’t design customized banners that have greater potential to get attention at first sight. Most graphics designing companies use sublimation printers, especially flatbed ones, to print advertising papers. 

 Custom Printing  

Well, you might have seen the gift packs or pictures of your beloved ones printed on coffee mugs and banners. Do you know how they are printed? Yes, they are printed using sublimation printers and technologies. With the help of sublimation printing, you can create custom designs and export final printings. 
What printer you should need to use depends upon the type of object you’re going to print on. Using a flatbed printer would be essential if you’re printing on a flat surface. In contrast, you should use 3D vacuum printers if printing on irregular-shaped objects like coffee mugs, corners, and edges. 

Can Regular Printer Be Used For Sublimation?

Undoubtedly, regular printers cannot be used for sublimation because of distinguished techniques. Let us explain the working mechanism of both so that you can understand them well. Talking about the regular printers, they are working on printing ink on the page top, without any permanent printing or anything, simply scanning and transforming. 
On the other hand, sublimation printers have changed the working mechanism. They work with heat mechanism, vaporizing especial ink into vapors, then mixing and printing permanently on the object. The object might be paper, fabric, or any other hard material. 

Is Getting a Modified Regular Printer Good?

Here’s a condition we need to explain: sometimes, you might be offered modified regular printers with dual capabilities of regular printing and sublimation printing at the exact moment. You can print on top of the pages or even promote sublimation techniques by switching. But we’d recommend you don’t get a modified regular printer. 
This is because modified printers don’t perform well all the time. They might be efficient for a specific period, and after it, they don’t work well enough. We have observed that modified printers sometimes affect the overall printer speed, impact other components, and don’t work well all the time. 
So, always get a specified printer. Get a regular printer if you’re looking for it or a sublimation printer if you need it. Don’t get one with dual functionality. It might not have a longer lifespan. 

How to get the best sublimation printer?

Nowadays, getting an ideal sublimation printer has become very difficult because of dozens of brands in the niche. You can see a number of different companies’ printers are now available in the market with different specs and powers. They are actually confusing you in choosing the best one. 
Pay attention – you should always well-known of your intent at first and for what purpose you’re getting sublimation printers because you should choose a sublimation printer depending upon the purpose. If you’re going to print T-shirts, you should get a calm press or flatbed press if you want to design flat surface objects. 
Keeping your concerns in mind, we have analyzed the different authorized brands manufacturing sublimation printers and compiled a few best sublimation printers. Now, you don’t need to search what printer can I use for sublimation or else. Just explore the below-mentioned ones and get the ideal printer for use.

Best Printers For Sublimation

Here are the few best sublimation printers with greater specs and features. You can explore them and get the ideal one for you to exhibit all the features you’re expecting. 

Canon SELPHY CP1300 

Canon SELPHY CP1300

Canon SELPHY is the best printer for sublimation printing and exhibits several appreciating features and technologies, making it efficient and effective for use. It is highly caring for providing you with the best resolution, speed, and procedures without any such impact. 
It is one of the fastest printers observed, providing compatibility with all telecommunication devices. Apart from all the appreciating features, it is also observed to be the cheapest printer for sublimation. For your better navigation and to get you aware of the core specs of this printer, we have compiled its few features below.

Pay thorough attention. 

  • The printer offers web-based and mobile application-based control
  • Providing connectivity via USB, Wi-Fi, and Wi-Fi direct for more functionality
  • Promoting SD card slot so that you can directly print pictures from device memory

And yes, you can print high-quality HD pictures by enhancing the default resolution according to your needs. But recommendations are that you should only enhance the resolution power when you print handwritten notes to get better quality. 

HP Stitch S500 Dye-Sub

HP Stitch S500 Dye-Sub

HP S500 is the second-best dye-sublimation printer on the list, which provides you with amazing results. It is one of the high demanding printers which is offering fast production, higher RAM, and speed along with the six-pass high-quality print export. 
The printer offers 300 DPI default resolution while more than 1200 DPI of maximum resolution, which means that you have no need to worry about getting HD quality export. Upon deep analysis, we’ve also seen that you’re getting four cartridges with a 3L size each. It means that you have no need to go for a refill after a short period. 
The cartridges ink types include magenta, yellow, cyan, and black, promoting colorful printing. Plus. 23 to 64 inches roll size and optimum weight. Undoubtedly, it has dozens of applications and uses in regular work. Mostly, it is used commercially by clothing production companies. 
It is safe and secured, and you are also getting a warranty from HP upon buying. This means that you can claim for a free inspection and setting or replace in case of any problem. So, if you were thinking that can you use a hp printer for sublimation, yes, you can.

Evolis Zenius Printer

Evolis Zenius Printer

Evolis is also the top brand involved in the manufacturing of sublimation printers. The best sublimation printer of Evolis introduced till now is the Zenius printer. It has easy to operate the system, so you can quickly understand the whole configuration. It promotes the printing of a wide range of products and much more else with higher resolution. 
Interestingly, it offers 16GB RAM speed which is efficiently enhancing the overall efficiency of all the components working inside. The most famous and appreciating feature of Evolis Zenius has made it the prioritized choice of customers – it supports 2 million colors so that you can get the right spectrum for amazing print. 
Getting all these features from the printer, which is available at such costs that you easily afford, isn’t amazing?
Absolutely it can be a good choice enough. 

Epson EcoTank ET-4800

Epson EcoTank ET-4800

You might be aware of Epson before because it’s a well-known and highly authorized brand that is specifically working in the printer’s niche. Epson has introduced dozens of sublimation printers series, but the most famous one includes EcoTank. Here we have mentioned the best printer of the EcoTank series – the ET-4800. 
It has all the ideal features and technologies, making it a good enough choice. It has introduced distinguished specs and features to the world. The most appreciating and prioritized ones include its secure and safe system, easy-to-understand operating system, HD color supports, excellent resolution, higher RAM power, efficient speed, and much more. 
Also, it provides you with deep scanning and hinges of 11 mm so that you can even print spiral notebooks, thick pages, and stuff like that without losing the optimum resolution. Besides, 8 bits R, 8 bits B, and 8 bits G – sRGB are present to get better export quality. 


So, it has been cleared that you can’t use any printer for sublimation. You necessarily need such a printer which is promoting sublimation heat mechanism and capabilities to vaporize the special ink into a gas, and then permanent printing. For your better navigation, we have shared the quality features of sublimation printers. 

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