The 5 Best Printers for Heat Transfers in 2019 Reviewed

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For all of you dealing with fabric printing on a regular basis, heat transfer prints have become an essential part of your lives.

The flexibility and versatility of getting high quality designs straight on to your fabrics is unbeatable by any other comparable technique as of date, especially if you’re a hobbyist.

Hence, choosing the best high quality heat transfer printer for your prints becomes one of the most important tasks.

Worry not, however – today, we list out 5 of the best printers for heat transfer on the market as of date.

Then, we follow it up with a small guide on choosing the best fabric printer according to your preferences, and which parameters you should be on the lookout for.

Without further ado, let’s start with the product reviews!

Best Printers for Heat Transfers

  1. Epson Stylus C88+ Color Inkjet Printer

If you’re in the market for a reliable, robust, inexpensive yet effective machine, the Stylus C88+ is a formidable option. It comes with a capability of CISS for both pigment based and sublimation inks, which makes it an effective printer for transferring prints. It also comes with an in-built image editor software to give your prints those final touches.

Epson Stylus C88+ Inkjet Printer Color 5760 x 1440 dpi Print Plain...
  • Product Type: Inkjet Printer, Recommended Use:...
  • Number of Colors: 4, Parallel Port: Yes, USB: Yes,...

Experience

This is the best printer for home users, in our opinion. This is for the sole reason that it can handle regular printing jobs at home with equal ease as it can handle prints on heat transfer paper. Further, it also supports borderless printing. It can support incredibly high quality prints of resolution up to 5760 x 1440 optimised dpi.

It comes with 4 different pigment inks, which means you get superior print quality with every print. It’s been on the market for well over a decade, and besides the lack of modern day connectivity options, you really do not miss out on anything much – further, the presence of high end pigment inks makes this a brilliant product for a relatively cheap price.

Pros
  • Comes with pigment based inks instead of regular inks 
  • 4 individual cartridges make replacements easier 
  • Borderless printing is an added plus with the printer 
Cons
  • Lack of some connectivity options which are expected in 2019 
  1. Brother HL-L2320D Mono Laser Printer

This printer is different from other options, given that it’s a black and white printer. The intended use of it here is to utilize colored heat transfer paper, which is becoming much more common these days. The print quality is such that those prints are much higher quality than colored heat transfer prints from most other printers.

Sale
Brother HL-L2320D Mono Laser Printer
  • Print Speed: up to 30ppm; Mono
  • Hi-Speed USB 2.0 interface for local connectivity

Experience

This printer is a laser printer – built for high volume, and decent quality applications. If you’re someone who deals with large quantities of heat transfer, you should definitely consider the HL-L2320D. It also supports a direct USB connection, so if you have pre-designed prints you won’t need a computer at all!

For startups and small entrepreneurs, this machine can turn out some serious volume and becomes highly-cost effective over the long run. However it also doesn’t feature wireless connectivity, but comes at a much lower cost than you’d expect of a laser printer. All in all, a wonderful machine for large quantities of heat transfer prints.

Pros
  • Highly economical in the long run 
  • Gives you high volume of prints with a quality which is much higher than regular prints 
  • Compact, comes with a USB port to print directly 
Cons
  • Skimps on a number of modern day connectivity options, but it is ultimately an economical printer 
  1. Epson WorkForce WF-7110 Inkjet Printer

For those of you who are interested in quality over quantity, you will have no trouble adjusting to the WF-7710. Although not a heat transfer printer per se, it can easily handle heat transfer prints with a high quality of each print. This one also uses pigmented ink, which means longer lasting prints and definitely a bump in quality, although these inks are fairly expensive.

Sale
Workforce WF-7210 Wireless Wide-Format Color Inkjet Printer with Wi-Fi...
  • Get Performance Beyond Laser - the WorkForce...
  • Print-shop-quality color graphics and laser-sharp...

Experience

These prints largely come out wonderfully, and transfer without much fuss or any loss to the fabrics you intend to print on. This printer comes with four inks for each color, making sure each print job doesn’t mean replacing all the inks – some jobs might be heavy on red, for example. This saves a lot of time and money. Borderless printing gives you more efficient prints.

It comes with all wireless capabilities to print without fuss, and also comes with a number of options on the color multi-function touchscreen panel. It keeps track of how much ink is being used and can alert well in advance to avoid hassles. It is also an all-in-one device, allowing you to use it as a regular printer if you’re an occasional user of heat transfer paper.

Pros
  • Comes with 4 pigment based inks which give superior longevity and print quality 
  • All-in-one multi-function capabilities are very versatile, allowing you to use it as a full fledged regular printer as well 
  • Can be set up to auto-replenish your empty ink cartridges via Amazon 
Cons
  • Pigment inks can be expensive, make sure they make financial sense before buying 
  1. Okidata 62439301 C711wt Professional Printer

The weird name aside, this one is actually the only true heat transfer printer on this list. It’s only meant for professionals and hobbyists who use them very frequently – it is also rather expensive. It can handle up to 10,000 sheets of heat transfer paper before requiring servicing – a level of robustness nowhere to be found on other printers.  

Okidata 62439301 C711wt 120v [std. 1 Year Onsite Warranty]
  • FREE SHIPPING INCLUDES TRUCK SHIP TO A COMMERCIAL...

Experience

This printer comes with a laser based color and monochrome printing set up, which means much lesser waiting times and a much higher volume which can be dealt in a single print scenario. It works great with pretty much all kinds of fabric you can think of. You can also directly use it to print labels, small banners etc.

This printer also comes fitted with a white toner – this gives you access to a wide range of colors, perhaps the widest color gamut of all printers reviewed. It comes with its own set of recommended heat transfer papers, which could cause a jam if left unused – so be careful. Otherwise, the volume and quality this printer delivers are nearly unbeatable.

Pros
  • Comes with the highest color gamut of all printers tested 
  • Supports a wide range of heat transfer papers and labels 
  • Can print a large variety of sizes and designs 
Cons
  • A bit dated to operate; feels as old as it really is 
  1. HP Laserjet Pro M452dw Wireless Color Printer

If you want quality, volume and reproducibility, you’re bound to consider this printer. It comes with all the trappings and features that you’d come to expect out of a wireless printer in 2018, and then some. Print quality is great if not the best, but then this is a printer you buy for volume – quantity is the raison d’être of laser printers.

HP Laserjet Pro M452dw Wireless Color Printer, (CF394A)
  • Fast printing. Strong protection. Grab pages and...
  • Breeze through multipage documents with two-sided...

Experience

This printer features the best of connectivity technology of all the printers we’ve reviewed here. Further, it comes with a capacity of over 50,000 pages per month recommended. It has a 1.2 GHz processor which can handle large quantities of prints and large images rather easily. However, the resolution is limited to a maximum of 600×600.

You can directly print via USB, WiFi based options or even NFC for devices that support it. It can print a large variety of pages, all of which can be printed borderlessly for the best quality experience. Further, you also get 4 different toner cartridges instead of the regular 2. For fast and high volume prints, this machine is a formidable competition to the rest.

Pros
  • Can print a huge volume of heat transfer prints in one print cycle: up to 150 
  • Comes with the best of connectivity tech of most printers this year
  • Quality is decent for high volume applications 
Cons
  • Resolution might be too low for the highest quality of print 

Now that we’re done with the product reviews, it’s time to head towards the buyer’s guide – an attempt from our side to make sure you buy the product which suits your specifications and preferences in the best possible manner.

These factors listed out below are absolutely crucial to the volume and quality of heat transfer prints you can reasonably expect out of a particular kind of printer. Hence, it’s important to know which printers give you the best experience.

Which kind of ink does the printer use?

This is the most basic form of differentiation between printers, with sub categories in each kind of printer.

  •  Inkjet printers

Dye based inks are considered to be the cheapest inks, but they are also very likely to wash off and bleed after printing. UV exposure is also a major cause of concern in the case of these inks. Hence, one should only get them if it’s incredibly important to get prints done within budget. Definitely not recommended for generic use.

Then come the sublimation based inks. They’re much better than dye inks, but they require specialized knowledge of the printer as well as the transfer for each type of fabric being used.

The pigment based inks are the pinnacle of ink based printing technologies, and give water protection as well as stability in humid conditions. These are not going to bleed in general, neither in the shorter or longer runs. These are more expensive than the other two inks, however.

  •  Laser Printers

Toner cartridges are used in the case of laser printers. These printers are already based on a heat-producing process, and hence it is important to know which paper to use – it can absolutely destroy your prints in certain cases! A white toner is also necessary in order to get color reproduction just right.

Which kinds of printers on the market support heat transfer printing?

Broadly speaking, there are three types of printers which support heat transfer based printing. These are inkjet printers, dye sublimation printers as well as laser printers.

  •  Laser Printers

These are the first up, because they’re the easiest to get heat transfer prints out of – since they already use heat to “burn” ink on paper, you can directly use these. Some care is required, however, as some papers can cause jamming, and more dangerously, overheating which can damage your printer as well.

  •  Inkjet Printers

Inkjet printers are your regular run-of-the-mill printers that you use at home. They can be of two major types as described above – ones that use dye based inks or ones that use pigment based inks. Pigment based inks are more expensive but have a lot more benefits, as you already know.

However, do note that there are specific techniques to get prints on fabric via heat transfer, and those are not always compatible with inkjet printers. Make sure that your printer supports them!

  •  Dye Sublimation Printers

Possibly the rarest item we’re covering today, dye sublimation printers possess the ability to print directly to fabric without the use of an intermediary heat transfer paper. However, it’s possible that some printers support a particular kind of fabric better than the others – quick glances at the spec sheet can reveal as much.

Another method exists which involves making an image look like it is a part of the print itself. This can allow you to print for a variety of plastic items as well as fabrics

Conclusion

This wraps up our buyers guide, which hopefully has given you enough information about the best kind of printers which will fit your budget as well as your quality and volume requirements. You’re now ready to go out there and get the printer you’ve been waiting for – we wish you the best in shopping!

If you are looking for more printers for architects on Architecture Lab you can find the best A3 photo printersbest A1 plottersbest laser and inkjet printers for envelopebest 11×17 printers for architectsbest printers for art printsbest A2 photo printer,best archival and giclee printers and the best large format printer for photographers.

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