Japan Printing

160 Broadway, Ground Floor New York, NY
Phone: (212) 406-2905

Offset Printing

Offset Press Business Cards Printed in NYC

Japan Printing and Graphics provides high quality, offset printing in NYC with many different styles and finishes to meet your business needs. Offset printing is a printing technique that utilizes a series of cylindrical rollers and etched plates to transfer an image to a desired medium, typically paper. Offset printing utilizes oil- based liquid inks, which are critical to the production process. This method of printing is among the most common forms of printing in existence today. Developed over a century ago, offset printing has unique properties that make it the most efficient printing method available for large volume print runs.

Offset printing was developed in the late 1800’s, and started to see mainstream use in the early 1900’s. The core technology has been refined over the years, but the concept remains nearly unchanged. Offset printing, also known as lithographic printing, is widely considered to be the highest quality print method for high volume print runs. Its advantages also include excellent reliability and consistency.

Offset printing utilizes three cylinders for production. These cylinders transfer ink from one to the next as they roll against each other. A printing plate containing an etching of the image is wrapped around the first cylinder. A rubber blanket is mounted to the second cylinder. When these two cylinders come into contact, the image is transferred from the plate to the blanket. This blanket is a synthetic rubber mat which is used to transfer the image to the printed surface. This final transfer occurs when the second and third cylinders come into contact. The third cylinder is responsible for holding the medium during the final transfer.

An offset press can be used with a four-color process (CMYK) or Spot colors. Depending on the specifications of the press, anywhere from one to six colors can typically be loaded at a time. Each color is loaded into its own individual tower, then applied to the printed surface one at a time. All offset presses require thorough cleaning between runs to prevent any residual ink from contaminating subsequent runs.

Offset printing is highly efficient for large scale print runs. This makes it ideal for commercial printing. A few of its common applications include: newspapers, magazines, brochures, stationery, business cards, and books. Its efficiency results from the low cost and effort required to operate the press once it has been configured for production. Conversely, small runs are highly inefficient and costly. This is because the configuration is essentially the same for small or large print runs. The factor that determines efficiency is the run size. If the configuration is spread across a large volume of prints, the unit cost is very low. However, if the configuration is spread across a low volume of prints, the unit cost is high. This efficiency will typically determine whether offset printing is a viable option for any particular print project.