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  • 5.0 out of 5
    Aura produced 2 x roller banners for me in 24hrs. Fantastic quality and a lower price than other companies offer. I Would not hesitate to recommend them or to use them again.

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    An email I sent to Aura Print:

    A pat on the back for you and your team - please pass this on to your team for me….

    I wanted to send you a quick email to thank you and your team for doing a quick turn around for me on my order. I needed it urgently, and your friendly and helpfulness - plus of course your efficiency resulted in me being more than satisfied. I will definitely be using you again in the future.

    Thanks very much.

  • 5.0 out of 5
    I ordered 2 banners from Aura Print for my dj business. One for on the front of my booth and the other for outdoor public events to put on railings etc. Their website allows you to enter custom sizes of the banner to suit your needs. My booth is 4ft wide so I entered 4ft by 1ft in the appropriate boxes and it gave me the size I wanted at a low price. They sent my banners out by next day delivery and they came super quick. The quality was exceptional and I will be ordering with them again infact i'm designing a new banner now! They also have a thick hem on the banners which is extremely important as they increase the strength of the banner and prolong the life of the banner when used outdoors.

  • 5.0 out of 5
    Delivered as expected on time.

  • 5.0 out of 5
    AuraPrint are simply the best place for all your promotional needs! Honest and reliable with outstanding customer service, you can actually speak to a really helpful human and everything if you have any questions! Super fast turnaround and superb quality printing at astoundingly reasonable prices. We have used them for the last three years and wouldn’t go anywhere else.

  • 5.0 out of 5
    I have used Aura Print for Posters and Banners over the last couple of years and have always had a first class service, quality product, fast delivery and very helpful staff. Highly Recommended.



Spot Colour Printing vs Four Colour Process Printing – Which Should You Choose?



This entry was posted in by Aura Print.

There's quite a few different ways to get just about any kind of printing done – and we know that it can seem a bit buzzword-heavy at times. What does it all mean? Which is cheapest? Which looks the best? Which is the most convenient?

All good questions. This time, we're going to look at the difference between four colour process printing, and spot colour printing, to help you work out which is best for your design or project.

Four colour process printing – the most common form in the industry

It might be an unfamiliar name, but you know four colour process printing well – particularly if you've ever changed the ink on a colour laser printer at work.

In this method, four different colours of ink are combined to create all the colours needed for a design. Cyan, magenta, yellow and black (perhaps confusingly referred to by the initials CMYK) can be mixed to make just about any colour – though it will struggle to reproduce some colours exactly as you see them on your computer screen.

This is because your screens create colours slightly differently – through a mix of red, blue and green (or RGB for short). Sometimes, the colours made from one palette can't be replicated exactly in the other.

Because the colour is being mixed every time, it's also possible that different printers will produce your colour of choice slightly differently.

That said, it's rare you'll have any major issues in this area for the majority of standard print jobs, which is why four colour process printing powers most commercial and domestic print machines. The alternative, spot colour printing, is mostly for more specific uses.

Open pantone book showing many colours for printing

So, what is spot colour printing, then?

Rather than combining four different inks in the printer to produce every colour in your design, spot colour printing uses pre-mixed inks to print your colour directly.

These colours have a set "recipe" that's always the same, all across the globe. These will be familiar to you, we're sure, in forms like Pantone colours – the Pantone Matching System is the most widely used spot colour catalogue in the UK and US.

That set colour recipe means your colours will come out exactly the same, every single time. No matter the printer, that ink will always be identical.

Is spot colour cheaper or more expensive than four colour process?

The short answer is… it depends.

Four colour process printing requires four printing plates for each print job – one for the cyan, one for the magenta, one for the yellow, and one for the black.

If you're printing a design with three colours or less, then you're using less printing plates, and less inks. If you're printing a lot of this design, you can start to see a big saving on the cost of your ink, as well as a reduction in setup time.

However, as soon as you're printing a design with four colours or more, you'll need four plates anyway – so CMYK printing will be cheaper. If you have a design with 10 colours, you'll only need four plates in four colour process printing. For spot colour, you'll need 10 plates.

It'll also cost more to have the spot colours produced at first – although they're standardised, there's 1,867 Pantone spot colours, and it's very unlikely that a printer is going to have the exact one you want just lying around!

So, there are times when it's more cost-effective to use spot colour, and other times when four colour process is the cheapest printing option.

If cost is an issue, it's always best to get in touch with your local printer for some advice on the most cost-effective option.

Choosing a shade of blue from a colour chartWhen is it best to use spot colour printing?

Spot colour printing is ideal for colour designs that just have a few colours with them. Company letterheads that are black with one additional colour, for example.

Corporate colours are also best-handled by spot colour printing – you don't want to risk them coming out slightly differently across two different CMYK printers, so using a spot colour ink will guarantee it's always consistent.

Spot colours can also be much more vibrant than those mixed from a CMYK palette – so when you want a design that really pops, spot colour could be the way to go.

Anything that you're planning on printing again and again could also benefit from using spot colour – once the specific ink and plates are made, the set-up time and cost is going to be cheaper if you stick with the same printer.

However, if you're planning to print the same thing at multiple different printers, spot colour is also ideal – as it means you'll get the same results whether your printer's in Huddersfield, West Yorkshire, or Huddersfield, Jamaica.

When is it best to use four colour process printing?

If you've got a design with a lot of different colours, like a leaflet, a brochure, a flyer – or anything with full-colour photographs – then CMYK is the way to go.

One-off designs may also be better suited to CMYK – if you're only going to be using a specific spot colour once, is it worth it to pay for the plate? Unless you have to have a specific colour that four colour process printing just can't produce, it may be best to keep it simple.

Still not sure what to choose?

If you have any more questions, then it's often best to get a quote and see what your options are – get in touch with us today and we'll be happy to help!