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Dye Ink v Pigment Ink v Sublimation Ink

dye pigment ink

Printer ink cartridges are widely available everywhere with all sorts of brands and price points but, do you know what type of ink are you buying and why some are slightly more expensive than the other? Which type of ink works best with photo paper? Which type of ink has more color vibrancy. Let us give some perspective. Generally speaking, there are 2 types of ink- Dye Ink and Pigment Ink.

Dye Ink

Dye Ink they are generally more widely used and accepted in inkjet printing technology due to its low cost and efficiency. It prints exceptionally beautiful and vibrant colors and is partially water resistant (provided no external heavy impediments disrupt the prints). It is great for day to day printing jobs and produces highly vibrant photos.

Pigment Ink

Pigment ink on the hand other is slightly higher in cost in comparison to dye ink. Pigment ink prints are truer to its original color and with greater longevity. The prints are resistant to UV rays (i.e. sunlight) exposure and are also highly water resistant. It works well for printing photos and important documents expected to last throughout the years. Glossy paper will also help to bring out the color vibrancy of its prints.

Sublimation Ink

Sublimation ink is a type of dye ink that directly converts into a gas form with first liquefying by applying heat and pressure. This process forms very strong bonds with the material that is being applied on, making them highly durable, water and fade resistant. They are not as common as pigment ink or dye ink which we use on a daily basis to print our documents or photos. Sublimation ink is mainly used for printing onto different surface materials for example plastic, polyester, ceramic and many more

A Point Of Caution

Pigment ink seems to be the superior choice for printing. However, do bear in mind that each printer is designed with varying nozzle sizes, hence it may not be appropriate to use pigment ink on all types of printers (check with us if in doubt!).

A rule of thumb is to follow what the original brand ink type is using and you will be safe (at theinksupply we go to great lengths to do quality checks to ensure 100% machine safe for each printer model). Alternatively, if pigment ink is to be used, make sure that the dye ink is fully drained out of the ink reservoir before pumping new pigment ink in as dye and pigment ink should not mix.


In this technological advancement era, there are less noticeable print differences between the 2 types of ink, visible to the layman out there. Advancements has narrowed the cost between the 2 ink types and has plugged the gaps in each ink type. In the inkjet printer nowadays, it is commonly using a combination of both pigment and dye inks to compliment the shortcomings of the 2 ink type.

At theinksupply, we take pride in ensuring lasting and high-quality prints, hence we insist on bringing in certain pigment ink cartridges on certain ink models like compatible Canon Maxify 2700XL, Ink Tank Series Ink Bottles for HP Brother, Canon, Epson Brand. Always take extra precaution when purchasing ink cartridges to ensure that you are not short change in quality for an unbelievably dirt-cheap price. Feel free to check out our range of premium ink bottles and ink cartridges and subscribe to our newsletter for exclusive discounts and relevant content.

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Any and all brand name designations or references are made solely for purposes of demonstrating compatibility.