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The Next Generation of ID Card Printing

Entrust Datacard has applied Pigment Ink Technology — which has a proven track record in the financial card market — to the desk top printer. Retransfer printing with pigment ink technology now delivers the best printing solution in the world.

The retransfer printing process enables true over-the-edge printing, even on uneven surfaces such as smart cards. When coupled with 600 DPI color pigment ink technology, the retransfer printer produces higher quality images with true color. The images on the card matches the image on the computer screen, text is legible down to 1.5 point font (including Chinese characters and fine line requirements), and UV fade-resistant cards will not diminish over the life of the card.

To date, the industry standard has been dye sublimation ink technology in both direct-to-card and retransfer printing. However, this process can show wear and tear over time. 

In this blog series, we’ll explore the application of pigment ink technology — an exciting new innovation for ID card printing that can combat the top three most common and costly challenges facing ID card programs.

Part One: Environmental Exposure

Exposure to environmental factors, such as UV light, can impact an ID badge when someone wears it in a visible way during work (both outdoors and indoors). Exposure to fluorescent lighting can take its toll on the badge and it’s even worse when employees are working outdoors in direct sunlight. When people get done with work and put their ID badge on the dashboard of their car during the drive home, the effects are compounded.

Many organizations will try to address this issue by buying expensive UV blocker laminates. And they often have a higher reissuance of cards due to damage from exposure to light. 

When it comes to degradation from environmental exposure, Pigment Ink has many advantages over Dye Sublimation and can help eliminate the need for workarounds.

UV Fade Resistant
A benefit of Pigment Ink is that it is UV Fade resistant so the cards will not diminish over time. This will extend the life of the card, which reduces the need for costly re-prints due to fading from exposure to light. The graphic below illustrates what can happen over time when ID cards are exposed to UV. 

Notice how over time the portrait becomes harder to see on a typical dye sublimation printer. The blue bar, for example, has changed so much that it’s hard to recognize. Also, the logo in the upper left has become harder to distinguish. And the lighter background details are washed out and difficult to see. All of these features are preserved when using an Entrust Datacard™ CR805™ Card Printer that uses Pigment Ink.

Learn more in our new whitepaper "Retransfer Printer with Pigment Ink." >>

Next in the series, we’ll explore how Pigment Ink addresses image integrity.

Martin Hoff

Martin is the Product Marketing Manager for Desktop Printers at Entrust Datacard Corporation. Over his 17-year career, he has worked in a variety of Field and Corporate Marketing roles in both hardware and software companies: Sprint, Calabrio, and Patterson Dental. In his product marketing role, he’s responsible for positioning and messaging that differentiates the entrust datacard desktop printers in the secure ID space.