A sublimation printer uses heat to transfer dye onto a variety of materials like plastic, card, paper, or even fabric. The entire idea of sublimation lies in the transition from the solid-state to the gas state without going through the liquid state.
Ideally, a sublimation printer is an inkjet rather than any other type of printer. These inkjets are used for photo printing on T-shirts, cards, mugs, etc.
Buying a good sublimation printer that you can use for your business or home studio is a little bit more complicated than you think. The main reason it’s not that easy is that there is a wide variety of these printers on the market and each offers you different features. So, one printer would be suitable for one job and not right for the other.
In this guide, we are going to talk to you about the best sublimation printers that you can find on the market in 2021 and what you can do with each.
Table of Contents
List of The Top Sublimation Printers 2021
- Epson Workforce WF-7710 – Best Sublimation Printer for Business
- SAWGRASS VIRTUOSO SG400 – Best Sublimation Printer for T-shirts
- Canon SELPHY CP1300 – Best Portable Sublimation Printer
- Epson Stylus C88+Inkjet – Best Affordable Epson Sublimation Printer
- Mitsubishi CP- K60DW-S – Best Sublimation Printer for Beginners
Our Favorite Picks:
|SAWGRASS VIRTUOSO SG400
|Canon SELPHY CP1300
|Epson Stylus C88+
|4800 x 2410 dpi
|1200 x 1200 dpi
|300 x 300
|5760 x 1440
|300 x 300
|Maximum Printing Size
|13 x 19 inches
|8.5 x 51 inches
|4 x 6 inches
|8 x 11 inches
|6 x 8 inches
|Wi-Fi, NFC, Ethernet
|Basic computer connections
The 5 Best Sublimation Printers in 2021
1. Epson Workforce WF-7710 – Best Sublimation Printer for Business
Epson Workforce WF-7710 is a multifunctional printer that is designed to enlarge an innovative business and increase its productivity.
The printer uses pristine printing technology with a high-density print chip that can generate about 40 million pinpoint dots. The PrecisionCore Technology is implemented in a way that ensures high accuracy and impressive speed.
The printer uses DURABrite Ultra 252-series ink cartridges with an ISO print speed of 18 ppm for black and 10 ppm for color. You can print up to a size of 13 x 19 inches with a maximum resolution of 4800 x 2400 dpi.
It has two trays; the front one can handle a maximum of 500 sheets, whereas the rear tray is for printing on special paper and envelopes.
Moreover, It supports Auto duplexing and has a wide range of connectivity, including wireless connectivity that is compatible with AirPrint and wired Ethernet connections.
Epson Workforce WF-7710 is an impressive inkjet. It offers laser-sharp prints while costing 40% less than laser prints. You can connect it to multiple devices, including smartphones and tablets.
It works with a reasonable amount of Eco Features and supports double-faced printing to avoid wasting your paper.
2. SAWGRASS VIRTUOSO SG400 – Best Sublimation Printer for T-shirts
If you have been looking for a sublimation printer for a while, then you probably heard of SAWGRASS VIRTUOSO SG400. The printer is one of the most affordable options you can find on the market, and you won’t be compromising the quality of your prints while using it.
You can use this printer to print on cotton shirts, polyester fabrics, plaques, glass, and even acrylics.
The printer is capable of printing 157 pictures an hour if the resolution is 600 x 600 and 34 pictures in the same duration if the resolution is up to 1200 x 1200 dpi.
When it comes to connectivity, there are a USB 2.0 and Ethernet ports. In addition to the main paper tray, there is a bypass tray on the back of the printer.
The tray can hold 100 sublimation paper sheets.
SAWGRASS VIRTUOSO SG400 is one of the most popular printers, and it is suitable for both personal and commercial use. It has a lot of unique features, and even though it is a little pricey to change the cartridges, the printer has self-cleaning features to avoid getting ink clogs and paper jams.
3. Canon SELPHY CP1300 – Best Portable Sublimation Printer
Canon has always focused on producing user-friendly devices and Canon SELPHY CP1300 that they can sublimation printing a simple task.
The printer isn’t the best option for commercial and business use, but it is an excellent choice for someone who wants to print durable photos for families and friends.
The machine is on the top of the list of the most compact sublimation printers. It is comprehensible, simple, and easy to use and move around.
Canon SELPHY CP1300 can print about 55 prints in a single battery charge, which is a significant improvement from its previous model that could only print about 35 pages.
You might think that a printer that compact won’t do a great job but that’s not true. The quality of the prints produced by Canon SELPHY CP1300 stands out, not to mention that its portability makes it easy to take it with you to your family gatherings and when you travel.
It is one of the best dye-sublimation printers that operate by the thermal method, and surprisingly, it can use 256 shades per color with a dedicated color ink cartridge.
You can connect to the printer with a USB or wireless LAN.
Canon SELPHY CP1300 is an amazing compact printer that is both pocket and user-friendly. You might have some limitations while using it like the image size and the battery life; however, it is an excellent option if you are on a budget and you just need to save some memories.
4. Epson Stylus C88+Inkjet – Best Affordable Epson Sublimation Printer
Epson Stylus C88+is an affordable printer that you can get for less than $100.
Despite being that cheap, it offers an impressive image quality, and the prints are still durable.
Just like the previous Epson model we talked about, this printer uses DURABrite Ultra pigment ink. The ink dries instantly and is resistant to water, fade, scratch, and smudge.
The printer supports automated paper handling, and it can print around 20 pages in a minute.
You can choose to print borderless pictures or variable ready frame sizes. The tray can handle 120 sheets.
A lot of customers buy this printer because it has software that supports creating calendars, photo books, and other exciting prints. It is compatible with both Windows laptops and Macbooks and supports wireless connectivity.
Epson Stylus C88+ is a good printer that you should get if you are planning to start a new business from home, and you don’t want to break the bank. The printer is one of a kind and the only sublimation printer that can be used for printing 8.5 inches wide banners with a length that can extend up to 44 inches.
5. Mitsubishi CP- K60DW-S – Best Sublimation Printer for Beginners
Mitsubishi CP- K60DW-S is an Eco-Value dye-sublimation printer with power-saving features.
The printer is compact yet; it produces decent colors with high quality and a resolution of 300 x 300 dpi. You can also use the printer for printing Instagram photos with an aspect ratio of 1:1.
One of the best features of the printer is that you can get flossy laminated finish prints that make them look more valuable.
It has a speed of 11.2 seconds for a 4 x 6 inches print, and you can use it to print wide formats.
Another exciting feature that the printer has is the ability to rewind the ink and roll it back, which optimizes the prints. This helps you utilize most of the consumables and use the entire printing surface without any wasting.
The paper tray can handle paper rolls up to five or six inches.
It can connect to all computers including Macbooks and there is a USB 2.0 Port.
Mitsubishi CP- K60DW-S is a great sublimation printer for beginners. It is easy to use, and you will get your prints fast and with great quality. It is a little bulky so that you won’t be moving it much, but the smooth finish it gives your print will make them seem more professional.
Uses and Benefits of Sublimation Printing:
- More durable prints that don’t fade over time
- Smooth surface and soft texture
- More economic when it comes to low-volume printing
- The printing process is of no threats to humans or the environment
How to Pick a Sublimation Printer
Most people need a sublimation printer for starting a business or for printing family and friends photos. There are some essential factors to consider while buying a sublimation printer; let’s go through them briefly.
When you are chasing a sublimation printer, keep in mind what you will need it for and the material that you will use for printing.
Some sublimation printers do a better job with fabrics than others, and on the other hand, some will do a better job with paper or cards more than others.
It is best to get a printer that has a wide range of functionalities.
You can always settle for an average quality if you need the printer for personal use, and you rather get an affordable printer that simply gets the job done. However, if you are planning to use the printer for business, then it is better to get a printer that produces high-quality prints that will attract more customers.
A lot of affordable printers are efficient and will do a decent job. Before you look into the sublimation printers on the market, set a budget for yourself that you can follow.
Frequently Asked Questions:
How Long Does Sublimation Ink Last?
Well, it depends on the make you are using. However, sublimation ink is a liquid state, and this means that if you keep them for a long time, you will be more liable to get clogs and color shifts.
On the bright side, most of the sublimation ink cartridges will last longer than the expiry date on the cartridge yet; it is better not keep them for more than six months after installation.
How Much Do Sublimation Printers Cost?
Sublimation printers are not really expensive; on the contrary, they are one of the affordable printers on the markets, especially when compared to other printers like 3D printers.
The average range of a sublimation printer with average capabilities and printing paper size will cost you between $300 and $600.
You can still end up paying more if you choose a printer on the higher end with more capabilities and higher printing quality.
Can You Use Any Printer For Sublimation?
Some printer models can be used for sublimation printing. For instance, when using an Epson Inkjet, you can buy refillable ink cartridges and a separate sublimation ink to place in its compartment.
This will save you some money, and you will still be able to fulfill your sublimation needs.
Finding a perfect printer isn’t an easy task, so now that we are done with our list of the best sublimation printers that you can find on the market, let’s sum it all up and help you figure out which one of these you should consider buying.
Mitsubishi CP-K60DW-S is an excellent choice for beginners who are still experimenting with the process and want their prints to look more professional.
Workforce WF-7710 is excellent if you have an established business and you are looking for a printer with a high speed that is capable of producing good quality prints. However, if you are starting a business then Epson Stylus C88+Inkjet Printer is a more convenient option.
If you are starting a T-shirt business, then SAWGRASS VIRTUOSO SG400 is the way to go. Lastly, Canon SELPHY CP1300 is the right option if you are looking for a portable printer that you can take with you on holidays and use during friends gatherings.