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Why You Should Not Buy a Cheap DTF Printer

Direct-To-Film, or DTF, has become an industry standard option for T-shirt customization. With unmatched print speed and vibrancy, many businesses choose DTF for printing t-shirts. For new DTF businesses, it is important to recognize one thing when facing the startup cost. There is a difference between a Cheap DTF Printer and the Right DTF Printer. Consider that savings upfront can mean extra costs and hurdles later. Let us look at a few tiers of DTF printers and highlight why you should not buy a cheap DTF printer.

"Converting" DTF Printers | Why Going Alone is Not Worth It

In search of a cheap DTF printer, some people will consider a DIY method such as "converting." To convert a printer to be able to print DTF means changing out significant parts of the interior. It is like upgrading a car to the point where it is unrecognizable inside, but the promise of a DTF printer is enough for people to try this method.

The first potential cost of this approach is having a compatible printer. This method only works with certain types of printers to begin with. Going through with converting the printer is also a permanent process. So, some people will think they can skip buying a printer altogether, but they are out of luck. For those with a compatible printer, there are several steps before printing begins. This includes steps like installing software, swapping inks, and adding print head parts. Each of these steps involves research and investments.

There is also an equal opportunity for technical issues and failures like those in any other DTF printer. Because of the DIY nature of this technology, there is also no easy maintenance. It is possible to convert and create an at-home DTF printer, but going this route removes a lifeline with any issues, like warranties and support.

So, after converting a printer to DTF, it is time to start printing. All the steps in converting the printer are trying to match the quality of retail DTF printers. Many printers work within a specific color range: CMYK. CMYK means a color range of cyan, magenta, yellow, and black. The benefit of purchasing a printer from a trusted vendor is a guarantee of quality. This is because the vendor tests the inks, the films, and all the aspects of the printers for the best result. Meanwhile, printing with a converted DTF printer can provide inconsistent results. With the wrong print heads, even using high-quality film will still create a washed-out image. Plus, the color profile through the RIP software might not match the final product. These factors might be worth overcoming for personal print jobs. However, for a customization business, inconsistency creates frustration and wastes time and money.

Converting to make a DTF printer may seem like a hidden trade secret to make a cheap DTF printer. Yet, the amount of research and potential issues may be too much. The money saved upfront from converting to make a DTF printer is not worth the extra time and struggle it takes to get it printing correctly.

Heat Transfer Paper

Third Party Vendors | Only a Cheap DTF Printer

So, converting a printer into a DTF printer is not on the table, but the prices from popular vendors are still out of reach. The next option that many will consider is purchasing from a third-party vendor. Lower prices and easy shipping draw plenty of customers in, but these cheap prices come with some major caveats.

Let us first consider the status of the third-party vendor. Many third-party vendors offer machines from the manufacturers themselves. These are un-branded machines that have the same capabilities as other standard models. But in return for buying an alternative to the big names, there is no lifeline that a business can depend on. There are no guarantees of support, training, or warranties. This method may provide a working printer, but it is up to the owner to learn how to operate the printer. That same responsibility covers any potential maintenance that is needed. So going through a third-party vendor may fulfill that dream of a cheap DTF printer, but that dream, and potential business, may be short-lived at the first hurdle.

With a third-party vendor, you will not have the support to guide you and your business needs. Simple questions may go unanswered like "Can I customize this item?", or "Will I need a heat press as well for this?" Any of these can create a potential domino effect of delays and even more questions. Then you will have spent $1,000+ out of pocket and an unused printer collecting dust. Another concern is the lack of knowledge from the third party. This can ruin business ambitions before they begin. If this DTF printer was like a car, any potential buyer would want to see the car in person and even test drive it. Meanwhile, a third-party vendor, with a cheap DTF printer, will only want one thing. They want you to see that cheap price, and not think about anything else.

The other thing to consider is the lack of supplies and available parts. Many vendors will include the necessary inks and films to start printing. Third-party vendors may only offer the machines. This means that the owner will need to buy film and inks from a secondary source. Utilizing a third-party vendor to buy a cheap DTF printer still creates several issues down the line. Many businesses need support, training, and supplies to find success and avoid downtime.

First Party Vendors | The Best Business Decision

The best method of buying a DTF printer is to understand the value of choosing a first-party vendor. The machine that becomes the backbone of a business is worth the right investment. That's why it's important to research a first-party vendor. Many vendors have a plethora of knowledgeable people who can answer any questions. Along with the answers for the right machine, many vendors have training and support as well. Having a way to buy the machine, as well as the support needed to get up and running, is pivotal for success. It's also important to know the best way to buy replacement parts and supplies. Take the ColDesi DTF line of printers for example. Purchasing a DTF Printer from ColDesi provides everything a business needs for success including in-person or online machine demonstrations. Each ColDesi machine has been setup and tested before leaving the facility. ColDesi has a multitude of DTF supplies and consumables available. The purchase of a ColDesi machine also includes warranties, support, and even full online training courses. These may seem like simple factors, but they will be a lifesaver for the business.

Utilizing a first-party vendor provides knowledge. From what to print on, daily maintenance, and pricing for transfers, starting a DTF business can lead to a ton of questions. Many trusted vendors will spend time discussing the machines and answering these questions. This information can be given through in-person or online demos, tutorials, support videos, and more. Talking with a representative from these vendors can have the same result. Many of them have experience or knowledge from seeing these printers in action. Talking with a pro can be the easiest way to answer questions and calm nerves.

Another crucial point is the quality of the printers. With every DTF printer that ColDesi ships out, the machine passes a series of quality tests. Our warehouse staff makes sure that the machine that any owner receives is at its best and ready to go. This extends not only to the printer, but also to the films and inks. Working with the printer allows our experts to create the most vibrant inks. The films and powder are also tested to create the best quality prints. The DTF films and inks that ColDesi offers are the best options for the DTF printers they offer. That means as a first-party vendor, businesses know they can turn to ColDesi.

Even with the best printers and supplies, none of this is possible without training. Luckily, ColDesi also offers in-depth training for each DTF Printer model. This training covers every aspect of the DTF printing process, from setup to daily maintenance and software. New owners will start on the right foot.

No business goes on without a few bumps. ColDesi understands this and offers lifetime support of the machine. This team of nationwide expert technicians can help with any technical issues encountered along the way. Unlike a third-party vendor only selling the machine, a first-party vendor provides in-depth training and support that will give the advantages of getting up and running and staying that way.


Purchasing a DTF Printer | Invest in Yourself

Starting a business is a sizeable investment and finding the best DTF printer to fulfill your businesses goals is a hard decision. A thriving business wants the highest quality, fastest speeds, and least downtime. These are ambitious goals to be able to achieve the most success, so there cannot be any cut corners. Trying to save money with a converted printer or a third-party vendor will cause issues down the road. Take the time, do the research, and have professionals help to start a business. Do not buy a cheap DTF printer. Buy the right DTF printer.

To learn more about ColDesi's complete line of customization solutions, visit our website and Live Chat with a Pro, or call 877.793.3278.