UNDER THE SCOPE: Getting close and personal with packaging print.
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Flexographic v Rotogravure Printing
Without being an experienced packer, brand owner or packaging supplier, it can sometimes be difficult to determine the differences in quality between flexo and gravure printing techniques. While flexo uses flexible plastic or rubber relief plates to transfer design detail to the film, gravure uses etched metal cylinders. The laser etching of metal typically allows for better alignment and finer details for end designs compared to the plates used in the flexo method.
To show the differences, we’ve taken magnified images of both types of packaging prints as seen below.
As you can see, the ‘dots’ that make up the flexo image are larger and spaced further apart when compared to those used in the gravure print. The second gravure image also shows how vibrant solid colour can be achieved on the cylinder, with the blue showing through without ink contamination from the surrounding colours as seen through flexo.
If you need further information on flexo or gravure printing techniques read here.