Large Format vs. Small Format Printing


Are you familiar with the differences between large format and small format printing? While it’s a bit more complex than it sounds, there are some basic details that will help you understand the primary differences between the two.

What is Large Format Printing?

Large format, also known as wide format, is any print with a width between 18” and 100”. Anything in excess of 100” is known in the industry as grand or super wide format.

There are many applications for large format printing, including but not limited to: banners, flags, vinyl lettering, aluminum signs, and vehicle graphics.

While there are many methods for printing in this format, the use of digital printing is the most common. In the past, large format printing often resulted in grainy images. Fortunately, the most advanced digital printers never have an issue with this, but instead print clear images with vibrant color.

What is Small Format Printing?

Small format printing is what most people are familiar with, as you’re capable of doing this at home. For example, the personal printer sitting in your home office is considered small format.

Common applications include: postcards, business cards, flyers, brochures, and stickers.

There are many benefits of small format printing, such as:

  • Some projects can be completed with personal printers
  • Inexpensive when compared to large format printing
  • Ability to print almost anything imaginable on virtually any material

What Format is Right for You?

Now that you better understand the differences between large and small format printing, you should have a clear idea of which one is right for you.

As the name suggests, large format printing is used when you need to print a large item. So, if you’re faced with a project that requires a print size of 18 inches or more, you’ll want to turn to this method.

However, if you require a smaller print size, small format printing is the answer.

If you have any questions about large vs. small format printing, don’t hesitate to contact us. We can point you in the right direction, and of course, help you with all your printing needs.

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