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What is the best substrate or media to print on for any particular job or application? This is a great question, but the best answer may not be the obvious one. With so many substrate and media choices available today as well as new materials appearing all the time.

The final choice may be a difficult one to determine.

Abstract Image Group offers a wide selection of both flexible and rigid substrate options for a host of applications. So let us try and break down the basics of selecting a printable substrate or media for lage format printing.

  1. Application:
    Applications can vary today. Abstract Image Group has materials and printing solutions for a host of applications that you have probably not even imagined. From materials that can be printed on and submerged under water to substrates like tiles that can be used in backsplashes or wall displays. So one of the first things we need to identify is where the print or graphic is going to be used. The most basic part of that question would be is it being used in an indoor or outdoor application. Outdoor applications need to address special weather conditions including: extreme exposure to sunlight or at a ski resort extreme cold and or even snow. In a water park, the resistance to water could be an important factor. Indoor applications too might need to address specific issues like exposure to direct sunlight. Other determining issues could be high moisture applications like in a kitchen, bathroom or flower shop.
  2. Durability:
    How durable is a specific printable substrate or media and does the durability of the substrate meet the application criteria. Durability of the substrate is extremely important if the print or graphic is going to need to sustain things like heavy foot traffic “ floor graphic applications”. Does the substrate scratch easily if it is going to be stored or transported a lot “Trade Show Graphics”.
  3. Quality:
    Are the graphics for a museum, trade show display, lobby display or are they temporary graphics or signage for a retail store sale, meeting or show. Each material will print differently and knowing the expectations of your audience can help you make the proper cost effective selection.
  4. Volume and Quantity
    Abstract Image Group has the capabilities to output 1 pc to very large quantities. Sometimes utilizing a specific substrate your cost can vary dramatically as your volume increases or decreases as we try to maximize the substrate for gang runs.
  5. Size:
    Substrates are limited by size of the material. But in most cases Abstract Image Group can panelize the actual the actual printing in order to Achieve Huge Displays like 50 foot walls.
  6. Installation:
    How are you going to display the Print or Graphic. You may not realize this, but mounting hardware or glues can impact the substrate that you are printing on. Some substrates may even melt if you use improper adhesive.
  7. Shape and Contour Cutting:
    Does the substrate or material have to be a specific shape or fit a specific space. Abstract Image Groups Flatbed Cutting Services allows us the flexibility to cut a host of materials into precise shapes. There are materials that may be able to be shaped but the cost may be outside the allotted budget.
  8. Material Cost:
    You can select a premium substrate or media because it looks cool, but it really boils down to how much you’re willing to invest in any particular project. Are there alternatives or additional cost effective solutions that will give you the same look and feel.

Answering the above questions will help identify the right substrates that will ultimately produce a cost effective dynamic printed solution for your project. Cotact the production and design team at Abstract Image Group to discuss your next project and be shure to get the most from your investment.

This is the first of a series of large format printing substrate and media blog posts that will be posted. So check back for more information about printing substrates and media, and thier practical applications.

Abstract Image Group Ltd.

631-439-9098 • 720 Old Willets Path Hauppauge, NY 11788
Your Large Format Printing and Dynamic Branding Experts