Photo Paper for your Printer

The technical developments in printing technology make it possible to print high-resolution image files as laboratory-quality photos with an ink-jet printer or laser printer using special art paper, the so-called art paper, also called photo paper.

Both the printing device, as well as inks and toners, but also the photo paper, on which the color of the printed image to be printed, are perfectly matched in terms of their technical properties and provide the reproduction of image files that match the quality and characteristics, such as they are standard in classical photography.

Photo Paper and Photo Printer - The right paper for the right printer

Now that the technology of digital photo printing has been successfully implemented, numerous devices for the printing of photos are on the market now available. The manufacturers of the photo printing printing devices are well aware of the technical requirements of photo printing in order to provide the printing accessories for their products, which meets the requirements for printing out the printer with the quality of a photo from the laboratory at a high level. Photo printers are built for the output of high-resolution digital image files and are designed based on the technologies inkjet printing and laser printing.

In ink-jet printing and in laser printing, the technology for the corresponding photo printer is equipped with improved technology, which allows a greater range of colors in the print and provides a high precision for the execution of subtleties. Not only are printer accessories such as ink and toner for photo printing provided with special technical features and have significantly higher light fastness and durability than inks and toners for normal color printing, also the option of printing the borderless printing is a special feature of the printing equipment in the field of photo printing.

Photo printers use more ink tanks - either more ink cartridges or more ink cartridges - than the popular four colors cyan, magenta, yellow and black in the normal color printing system. In addition to the additional pigmented black ink cartridges in many inkjet printing systems, at least one additional lighter shade of gray is used. High-quality printing systems rely predominantly on pigmented inks and toners, and also use colors that significantly expand the color gamut at the edge of normal printer colors, such as the colors orange, blue and red.

A decisive contribution to the printing of a high-resolution image file to a high-quality photo printing makes the photo paper, which must be adjusted not only on the technology of the printing device, but also on the nature of ink and toner exactly. Since the two priority printing technologies for photo printing use a different technique, the associated photo paper for inkjet printing is different than photo paper for laser printing. In inkjet printing, the ink drops hit the surface of the photo paper to dry. The surface of the corresponding photo paper must absorb the liquid of the ink without allowing it to run and promote the drying.

In laser printing, the paint is applied as a toner powder, which is fixed by heat and pressure on the paper. The photo paper for laser printing must therefore be heat-resistant, hard-wearing and tear-resistant. Depending on the requirements of the printed photo, the traditional paper manufacturers and manufacturers of printing equipment, including Hewlett Packard, Canon and Epson, offer many different types of photo papers for both inkjet and laser printing technologies:

  • Glossy photo paper - for special color intensity
  • Matte Photo Paper - for pigmented ink
  • Silky matt photo paper - for shine
  • Barite photo paper - for black and white
  • Structure photo paper - for artistic photography

Glossy paper is a photo paper of very high quality

Colors printed on glossy photo paper show high intensity and brilliance, as well as excellent precision in rendering subtleties, strong contrasts with spatial depth and great color fidelity. Photographic prints on glossy photo paper require special attention during handling during and immediately after printing and careful storage for long-term durability. Glossy photo paper is mainly used in printing systems that work with DYE inks.

Matt photo paper

Matt and semi-gloss photo paper shows no reflections in bright light and direct light and therefore reproduces the printed image in a particularly natural way. Semi-glossy photo paper is particularly suitable for the layman in photography because of its uncomplicated handling, its ease of care and its durability, in order to achieve gently glossy photos.

Baryta photo paper - was developed for classic black and white photography

Where it has been used for many years. The Baryt photo paper is characterized by a particularly clear reproduction of light and shadow and can be easily archived over long periods of time. Baryt Photo Paper has been further developed for use in digital printing for its excellent characteristics and high quality and is ideal for color photo printing in inkjet printers.

Textured photo paper

The structure creates special effects in the picture and is therefore particularly suitable for use in the creative and artistic field of photography. Canvas photo paper, for example, shows the structure of linen fabric, as it is used for painting oil paintings.

Photo paper - not just paper

The photo paper developed by many suppliers is a special paper that differs greatly from common office paper. Photographic paper usually has several layers of special surfaces, which - depending on the printing technique - have increased absorbency or water resistance, while the core of the papers allows a minimized permeability or must be particularly heat resistant and the additional barrier layer - the so-called barrier layer - swellable or must show microporous properties.

Photographic paper is thicker than regular printing paper and, at least 130 g / m2, is much heavier and denser than regular office paper. With an average grammage of about 260 g / m2, the photo paper is within the range of the weight of photographic prints from the lab. Photo paper for high-quality photo prints in gallery quality shows even higher grammages and in the range of the weight of cardboard. Paperboard in the grammage of cardboard is used for printing equipment in the professional field and used for correspondingly high quality requirements.

Swellable photo paper and microporous photo paper

Much of the photo papers on offer show a technique that carries either a swellable or microporous barrier layer. For the barrier layer, polymers are used which swell the coating of the photographic paper as soon as it comes into contact with liquid. Once the water content of the applied paint has evaporated, the coating of the photographic paper loses the swelling volume and the color particles remain on the surface of the paper. The swellable photo paper needs a drying time that can be between a few minutes and several hours.

During the dry season, the photo paper should not be exposed to any harmful environmental influences, as it is very susceptible to scratches or marks. Swellable photo paper is mainly used for printing systems that work with DYE inks and are offered only to a limited extent for pigment inks or toners. DYE inks are ink cartridges that consist largely of a carrier liquid water-soluble color particles. The microporous photo paper has a barrier layer as a PE film, which is composed of a layer of silica. The color ink is sucked in on photo paper with a microporous coating through the inner capillaries and deposited on microscopic spheres.

The paint on the microporous photo paper is dry a few minutes after printing. The swellable photographic paper exhibits greater color protection than the microporous photo paper, which is better sealed by swelling in the swellable paper, thereby providing greater durability, while the microporous photo paper is more durable and less susceptible to environmental stress.