The Cost Curve Comparison Chart

A Useful Guide for Selecting Printing Methods


Like much in our world, the printing landscape is rapidly changing with new advances in digital technology.  At Ardent, we continue expanding our digital printing capacity through the addition of new equipment, new staff and new skills.  Our most recent press addition, an Inca X3, now allows us to print in high speed and high resolution on an expanded variety of substrates, including paper, corrugated, acrylic or wood. 

Our customers now have many more options, and as a result, more complex decisions to make. Those of you that have spent time with me in meetings know that I am prone to grabbing a marker and sketching on the nearest chart pad, white board or napkin.  One of my favorite doodles is my Cost Curve Comparison ChartTM which helps customers to consider COST and QUANTITY when selecting either digital, flexo or litho printing.

The third, and often most critical consideration, is QUALITY:

Digital Printing

This evolving technology offers a much higher quality alternative to flexo, and approaches litho quality with the newer presses now available.

Flexo Printing

Great alternative for high quantity requirements where quality is not as essential.  Flexo requires printing plates, higher startup costs, overages and custom inks.

Litho Printing

For the highest quality requirements, go litho … although the latest digital printing technology has nearly closed the gap.  Litho is also a great approach for high quantity packaging.

Donald Budnick
Display Chef, Founder and CEO
Ardent Displays


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