Application Segments

Application segments have been defined on Inkjet Insight based on the types of material being produced and specific to the visual coverage and ink coverage used to better evaluate suitability. Suitability is also based on weights and types of media the devices support. Below are the definitions used on the site:

Books – Monochrome refers to the book block for educational, trade and others printed in black only. Visual coverage is typically less than 15% and more commonly 10% and uses black ink only (K) rather than CMYK to produce black.

Books – Color are a step below Fine Art Books in print quality and use full color. This market includes both book covers and book blocks. Total visual coverage ranges from 15 – 30% while Total Ink Coverage (TIC/TAC) ranges from 200 – 220. Papers range normally range in the 40-75 gsm range manufactured to a determined PPI to ensure overall finished project thickness. This market relies on pigment ink to deliver higher optical density. 

Books – Fine Art includes books printed primarily for aesthetic and visual display purposes. Focuses on museum quality art, painting, drawing, graphics and architecture. Visual coverage ranges from 25-85%. Typically printed on 75-90gsm or higher quality coated papers, TIC/TAC requirements range from 240 to 300. This is not yet a major market for production inkjet.

Catalog and Magazine ranging from 15%-75% visual coverage, pages for this market can vary quite extensively. Catalog and Magazines normally require coated type paper stocks in the 40-75gsm range which are made to a specific PPI to ensure final product has a controlled overall thickness upon finishing. TIC/TAC requirements range from 180 to 220 depending on paper type and thickness. This market has been slow to adopt inkjet printing however there are devices suitable to this segment.

Commercial–Marketing Collateral addresses applications printed on heavier paper with very high color quality requirements. Applications may include brochures, posters, greeting cards and calendars with the potential for virtually 100 percent Visual Coverage and Total Ink Coverage (TIC/TAC) of up to 260 percent.

To make information more relevant, the category of Direct Mail Marketing has been broken up into several market segments that better describe the specific inkjet related requirements of the applications produced.

Direct Marketing – Self-Mailers includes direct mail advertising with middle-of-the-road color requirements. Visual coverage is on par or slightly higher than Transitional mail pieces at 15 to 30 percent visual coverage. Total Ink Coverage (TIC/TAC) however, is typically higher at 200 to 220 percent. This market segment is color sensitive and concerned with both color matching and color consistency with a wide range of price sensitivity. 

Direct Marketing – Postcards & High Color Direct Advertising covers more challenging direct marketing applications with Visual Coverage at 25 to 40 percent and Total Ink Coverage (TIC/TAC) of up to 240 percent. This market generally relies on pigment inks to enable high ink coverage.

Newspapers – Inkjet has limited application in Newspaper printing but this market is emerging. Using thin papers of 30 to 45 gsm, this market traditionally requires excellent small text clarity while print quality for photos and images is less critical. With show thru an important factor on these thin papers, typically the TIC/TAC is 140-180 the lowest of all inkjet markets. This market requires low cost reproduction and finds using uncoated recycled grade papers quality suitable. Newspaper buyers tend toward pigment based inks as water resistant print is a necessity.

Packaging (future)–This market includes a wide range of product and quality requirements. Packaging includes the printed liner, direct to corrugated, folding carton and label printing markets for product packaging, outer packaging, protective and shipping containers. Print quality requirements can range from high resolution product images and graphics to general product packaging text and barcode information. All of these markets except labels use uncoated, treated or coated substrates in the heavier range of 180-200gsm range. Whereas labels can be composed of various stock types including paper, plastics or synthetics ranging from 60-85GSM. TIC/TAC requirements for all packaging market products are found to be much higher in the range of 280-400 as show thru, curl or cockle is not an issues with labels or packaging materials. As this market emerges, Inkjet Insight will be breaking out Packaging into submarkets for better tracking.

Traditional Transaction Print includes bills, statements, confirmations, notices and simple letter mail that has only 10-15% visual coverage of the page. Total Ink Coverage (TIC/TAC) is less than 200% and is typically centered on logos and brand elements.

Transitional Print sits at the intersection of Transaction Printing and Direct Marketing Mail. It is characterized by transaction documents and letter mail with more images, graphics and overall use of color. Documents in this category have 15-25% visual coverage. Total Ink Coverage (TIC/TAC) is usually less than 200%.