Best Sublimation Printers for T-Shirts: A Buyers Guide

Best Sublimation Printers for T-Shirts: A Buyers Guide

Are you tired of struggling to find the perfect printer for your t-shirt sublimation needs? Choosing the best sublimation printers for t-shirts can be daunting, especially with the many options available in the market. From budget-friendly options to high-end professional models, the choices are endless, making it difficult to find the right fit for your needs.

With so much at stake, choosing the best sublimation printer that meets your quality, speed, and price requirements is important. Don’t let the confusion and frustration get to you. Finding the right sublimation printer for printing t-shirts can be time-consuming and overwhelming. For this reason, we’ve taken the time to carefully examine and test some of the top and most reliable sublimation printers on the market. We aim to provide you with honest and accurate information that will help you make an informed decision when choosing the best sublimation printer for your needs.

We also cover the article on how to setup a sublimation printer.

Comparison Table

image product shop
9.8
Epson Expression Premium XP-6100
Epson Expression Premium XP-6100
Editor’s Choice
Technology: Inkjet
Printing Speed: 11.3 ppm (Color), 15.8 (Monochrome)
Connectivity: Wi-Fi
Print Resolution: 9600 x 9600 dpi
Weight: 14.60 pounds
9.7
Epson EcoTank ET-15000
Epson EcoTank ET-15000
Best for professionals
Technology: Inkjet
Printing Speed: 9 ppm (Color), 17 ppm (Monochrome)
Connectivity: Wifi
Print Resolution: 4800 x 1200 dpi
Weight: 27.5 pounds
9.7
Sawgrass SG500 Sublimation Printer
Sawgrass SG500 Sublimation Printer
BEST FOR BEGINNERS
Technology: Dye Sublimation
Printing Speed: 100 ppm (Color)
Connectivity: Wi-Fi
Print Resolution: 4800 x 1200 dpi
Weight: 27.2 pounds
9.6
Epson-Expression-XP-15000
Epson-Expression-XP-15000
Best for Large Prints
Technology: Inkjet
Printing Speed: 20 ppm (Color), 20 ppm (Monochrome)
Connectivity: Wireless, Ethernet
Resolution: 5760 x 1440 dpi
Weight: 18.7 Pounds
9.7
Sawgrass SG 1000
Sawgrass SG1000
BEST FOR Business
Technology: Dye Sublimation
Printing Speed: (600×600 dpi) – 15 seconds
Connectivity: WiFi
Print Resolution: 4800 x 1200 dpi
Weight: 37 Pounds
9.6
Epson EcoTank ET-2720
Epson EcoTank ET-2720
BEST OVERALL
Technology: Inkjet
Printing Speed: 5 ppm (Color), 10 ppm (Monochrome)
Connectivity: Wi-Fi, USB, Ethernet
Print Resolution: 5760 x 1440 dpi
Weight: 12.17 pounds
9.6
Epson WorkForce WF-7210
Epson WorkForce WF-7210
MOST affordable
Technology: Inkjet
Printing Speed: 10 ppm (Color), 18 ppm (Monochrome)
Connectivity: Wi-Fi
Print Resolution: 4800 x 2400 dpi
Weight: 32.8 pounds

Top 7 Best Sublimation Printers for T-Shirts Printing Reviews

Here is the list of the best sublimation printers specified for their expertise. Each printer’s best specialty is added, which will help you to choose the best that will serve you with your intended purpose.

Let’s now talk business and get right into reviving each printer.

1. Epson Expression Premium XP-6100: Editor’s Choice

Epson Expression Premium XP-6100

The Epson Expression Premium XP-6100 is a durable, small printer that handles many tasks with the most advanced features. The printer renders high-quality prints and has won the nod of editor’s choice title in our list of best sublimation printers for t-shirts

I have found the printer equally excellent with color and black-and-white printing. Although it has relatively high running costs with photos, its excellent results will make you feel it was worth the price. With 9600 x 9600 dpi resolution, you can expect detailed graphics, fine text, and accurate images as its output.

Considering the printer’s size, it proved to be convenient for me. I can adjust it anywhere conveniently without worrying about space. I have used the printer for years and constantly changed it on my desktop. The printer works smoothly without occupying much room.  

Furthermore, the printer’s connectivity options are more than enough. The options include Wi-Fi as well as USB for convenient printing. The printer also supports direct printing from a mobile device and peer-to-peer protocol. 

Highlighted Features.

  • 4″ x 6″ pictures can be printed quickly in as little as 15 seconds.
  • Achieve unparalleled print clarity with a 9600 x 9600 dpi resolution, delivering stunning, professional-quality images.
  • Dedicated photo and DVD trays for easy printing.
  • Hands-free, voice-activated printing for convenience.
  • Sharp text printing for professional-looking documents.
  • Built-in USB and memory card slots for easy file transfer and printing.
Pros
  • Exceptional quality prints
  • Sturdy construction
  • Great connectivity options
Cons
  • Can be costly with photo printing 

The Epson Expression Premium XP-6100 is an excellent choice for those seeking a robust printer that produces high-quality prints. Despite its high running costs for photos, the printer’s 9600 x 9600 dpi resolution, convenient size, and various connectivity options make it a worthwhile investment.

2. Epson EcoTank ET-15000: Best for Professionals

Epson EcoTank ET-15000

Epson EcoTank ET-15000 is our best printer for t-shirt sublimation, meeting professional standards. With less consumption of ink, its results are incredible. It’s the least ink-consuming printer I have encountered so far. Furthermore, it comes with a  2.7-inch color touchscreen giving you more control over its setting and navigation. 

Moreover, its connectivity options are worth considering as the printer is compatible with Alexa and Wi-Fi or Ethernet. You can operate it with voice commands even if you are far from the machine, which makes its operation convenient.

All these features combine perfectly to give your printing experience a great flair. Moreover, when converted for sublimation, the printer renders high-quality true-color prints that transfer effectively on t-shirts.

Highlighted Features

  • Low ink consumption for cost-effective printing.
  • Impressive print quality with a 4800 x 1200 dpi resolution, ensuring vivid colors and crisp details
  • Zero cartridge waste with high-yield ink bottles reducing waste.
  • Enjoy hassle-free, eco-friendly printing with cartridge-free systems, saving you money on expensive ink replacements.
Pros
  • Less ink consumption
  • Color touch screen
  • Compatibility with Wifi and Alexa
  • Great media handling
Cons
  • Requires regular maintainance to avoid clogging

The Epson EcoTank ET-15000 printer is a superb printer with great features and quality output. Its less ink consumption saves your costs without compromising quality, and its touch screen and connectivity options make it convenient.

3. Sawgrass SG500: Best for Beginners

Sawgrass SG500

If you are looking for a dye sublimation printer that doesn’t need to be converted and is ideal for beginners, I highly recommend the Sawgrass SG 500 printer. The Sawgrass brand is famous for its top-notch quality products and services and has won several prestigious awards. The printer is ideal for beginners as it is easy to set up and has reliable support. The Sawgrass printers come with a two-year warranty; in case of any damage during this duration, it is fixed free of cost.

Regarding its features, I loved this product for its ease of use, multiple color options with full-color printing, and ability to print on both the front and back of the fabric. 

The printer is beyond its competitors in its color range of ink options. The standard inkjet printers come with 2 to 4 ink options, and if you are using Sawgrass SG500, you can buy extra ink options without worrying about consistency in print results.

The product comes with software created by the company itself. Its built-in features and designs make its operation an easy feat. So all it takes is to upload it, put the paper in for print, and transfer the outclass prints on shirts that stand out in the market. 

Highlighted Features

  • Low running costs for customized products.
  • Achieve striking print results with 4800 x 1200 dpi resolution, offering vibrant colors and sharp details.
  • Wi-Fi connectivity, enabling effortless wireless connections and the freedom to print from anywhere in your space.
  • Two-year warranty and unrestricted technical support for the lifetime of the product.
  • Maximises quality and efficiency while minimizing ink and power usage.
Pros
  • Easy to use
  • Comes with warranty
  • Great customer service
  • Excellent quality prints
Cons
  • Slightly expensive

The Sawgrass SG 500 is highly recommended for beginners who want no fuss in their work while caring for quality. With its excellent customer service, Sawgrass SG500  is a trusted printer you can rely on for quality prints on t-shirts. It’s easy to use and renders high-quality prints in no time

4. Epson Expression XP-15000: Best for Large Prints

Epson Expression XP-15000

The Epson Expression XP-15000 is the best printer for printing on t-shirts, especially when printing large prints. Despite being able to handle large prints up to 13 x 19 inches, it doesn’t take up a lot of space on my desk.

XP-15000 has a high printing resolution which sets it apart from others in the market. With a maximum resolution of 5760 x 1440 dpi, the printer produces incredibly sharp and vibrant prints, essential for creating eye-catching designs on t-shirts.

I also appreciate the XP-15000’s compact size, which makes it easy to store and transport, and its fast printing speed. These features make it a convenient and efficient option for anyone who needs to print large quantities of t-shirts.

Highlighted Features

  • Professional ultra HD photo quality prints.
  • Remarkable print precision with 5760 x 1440 dpi resolution, producing highly detailed and vivid images.
  • Prints borderless sizes ranging from 4″ x 6″ to 13″ x 19″ on specialty media using a 50-sheet back tray.
Pros
  • Compact size
  • High printing speed
  • Wide format printing
Cons
  • Might produce inconsisten results after conversion

The Epson Expression XP-15000 is the best printer for printing on t-shirts due to its versatility, high printing resolution, compact size, and fast printing speed. Whether you’re a professional t-shirt designer or just seeking to create custom shirts for your family or friends, the XP-15000 is an excellent option.

5. Sawgrass SG 1000: Best for Business

Sawgrass SG 1000

The Sawgrass SG 1000 is a top-of-the-line sublimation printer perfect for businesses. I consider it one of the best sublimation printers for T-shirts because of its impressive features. One of the most notable features of the printer that impressed me most is its ability to print on different media sizes and types, making it a versatile option for businesses that need to print on various materials.

The printer boasts a high-resolution 4800 x 1200 dpi, producing high-quality prints with sharp details and vibrant colors. This and its energy efficiency make it a cost-effective and professional-quality printing solution.

The dye sublimation printing technology used by the Sawgrass SG 1000 produces vibrant, long-lasting prints resistant to fading, peeling, or cracking. This makes it the perfect option for businesses that produce high-quality, long-lasting prints, especially on t-shirts.

The printer comes with a 2-year warranty and unlimited tech support, which gives users peace of mind knowing that they are covered in case of any issues.

Highlighted Features

  • Its ability to print on different media sizes and types provides versatility.
  • A 4800 x 1200 dpi resolution produces high-quality prints with fine details and bright colors.
  • Its energy efficiency and high-resolution result in cost-effective and professional-quality printing.
  • WiFi connectivity and compatibility with various operating systems make the printer easy to use.
  • Dye sublimation printing technology allows for vibrant, long-lasting, high-quality prints resistant to fading, peeling, or cracking.
  • The 2-year warranty and unlimited tech support provide users with peace of mind.
Pros
  • Sharp images
  • Low ink consumtption
  • Durable prints resistant to fading
Cons
  • Can be costly on purchase

The Sawgrass SG 1000 is a great investment for businesses needing a high-quality, versatile sublimation printer to produce vibrant, durable prints.

6. Epson EcoTank ET-2720: Best Overall

Epson EcoTank ET-2720

The Epson EcoTank ET-2720 is an exceptional sublimation machine that I think everyone should consider when intending to buy a printing machine with the best performance. It qualifies for our best overall for its broader applicability with flawless quality prints and less ink consumption. If you are about to start your business in printing and looking for a printer that is best in every way, you won’t find any better option than Epson EcoTank ET-2720. 

Furthermore, it is easy to use and set up for sublimation thanks to its large ink tanks, which require ink refill. It means you won’t have to rely on cartridges whenever you want to print. Moreover, the printer has an ink reservoir you can fill as often as you need.

It has Wi-Fi connectivity, so you use your phone or ethernet cable; the Epson Eco tank supports you in prioritizing your convenience.

Highlighted Features

  • Zero cartridge waste to reduce landfill waste.
  • Dramatic savings on replacement ink with up to 90% less cost than cartridges.
  • Impressive print quality to meet high standards.
  • High-capacity, easy-to-refill ink tanks for great convenience.
  • Exceptional print quality with 5760 x 1440 dpi resolution, ensuring intricate details and vivid colors.
  • Built-in scanner and copier for printing-related tasks.
Pros
  • Easy ink refill
  • Wide applicabilit
  • Affordable
Cons
  • Large tank needs plenty of ink for printing

Epson EcoTank is highly recommended as it offers features that have left competitors far behind in the sublimation business. With great print quality, easy-to-refill, and broader applicability, it is a must-have machine to step in wisely in the printing world.

7. Epson WorkForce WF-7210: Best Budget Option

Epson WorkForce WF-7210

This is the third Epson product that has been added to our list, and you can have an idea of the company’s position in the printing world. The Epson WF 7210 is the most economical and efficient printing machine compared to other Epson printers. 

It is affordable in terms of its price and energy consumption. It consumes 80% less energy compared to other printers. Furthermore, it also consumes less ink while printing, making it an inexpensive choice.

The PrecisionCore Technology of the printer gives your prints the most detailed and accurate look that every professional seeks in printing. Moreover, it has two trays for easy paper handling. You can manage up to 500 papers in a double tray with convenience.

Another aspect that makes its operation handy is its 2.2-inch LCD. You can easily control its settings and navigations with your fingertips. The Epson Workforce supports wireless printing allowing you to print from devices such as a phone, tablet, or PC. 

Highlighted Features

  • Precision Core technology offers high-performance printing.
  • 4800 x 2400 dpi resolution allows for sharper images, more accurate colors, better text quality, and flexible printing options.
  • Uses up to 80% less power than color laser printers for cost savings.
  • Borderless printing allows for professional-looking marketing materials.
  • Inkjet technology offers high-quality printing, cost-effectiveness, and versatility in printing.
Pros
  • Dual trays
  • Affordable
  • LCD display
  • Wide media handling
Cons
  • Migt require extra software installation

With great features and efficient quality prints,  the machine comes at such an affordable rate that I consider it a wise choice for your printing business and personal usage.

Conclusion

The detailed descriptions of each product above tell you precisely what you need to know about the best t-shirt printing machines. These products were selected based on thorough research and personal experience.

The Epson Expression Premium XP-6100 is versatile and affordable, making it a popular choice for many users. The Epson EcoTank ET-15000 is a high-quality professional printer that can handle larger printing volumes. The Sawgrass SG500 sublimation printer is compact and beginner-friendly, making it ideal for those new to the process.

The Epson Expression XP-15000 is a large format printer ideal for larger printing projects. The Sawgrass SG 1000 is cost-effective and perfect for small businesses. The Epson EcoTank ET-2720 is the best sublimation printer with an eco-friendly design. Finally, the Epson WorkForce WF-7210 is a budget-friendly option for small businesses that still delivers good print quality. You can find the best match for your needs with our extensive list.

Buying Guide

Before purchasing any printer, I suggest you look at the details provided here that will make you an informed consumer. Also, the presented features knowledge will help you in the long run with practical usage and decision-making regarding printer purchases. 

A printer’s resolution is essential as it is responsible for sharp, precise, and accurate images on t-shirts. With high resolution, you will get much higher-quality images. Furthermore, printers with high resolution won’t create problems regarding image uploading and related issues. 

Connectivity Options

Printers these days come with a variety of connectivity options for the convenience of their customers. In an ideal printer, both wireless and wired connectivity options are available. With further advancement, more connectivity options are being added, and now you can use your mobile, PC, and Cloud storage to connect your printer with added convenience. 

Printing Speed

The printing speed is a vital factor to consider in a printer if you are using it for business. You might need the maximum number of prints, so consider the printer’s printing speed. The higher the printing speed, the better. However, for personal usage, printing speed is not a significant factor.

Media Handling

Consider the types and sizes of media the printer can handle. Some sublimation printers are only designed to handle specific paper types and sizes, so make sure the printer you choose can accommodate the media you plan to use for your T-shirt printing. Additionally, some printers may have special trays or feeders for thicker or larger media, so consider your needs when choosing a printer with the right media handling features.

Price

Another crucial consideration when purchasing a sublimation printer for t-shirts is the cost. The cost of these printers varies depending on the features and quality of the printer. While it can be tempting to choose the cheapest option, investing in a printer that meets your business needs and produces high-quality, durable prints is important. Ultimately, the cost of the printer should be balanced with the value it provides to your business, and you should choose the best option within your budget.

Frequently Asked Questions and Answers

How can you sublimate on dark shirts?

Printing on darker surfaces is still an issue, but it is not impossible. Sublimation on dark shirts requires a special type of sublimation paper that has a white base. The design is printed on paper and then heat-pressed onto the shirt. The heat causes the ink to turn into a gas, which bonds with the fabric, resulting in a permanent design. It is recommended to use bright colors when using dark fabric so that the colors are more prominent without getting lost in the effect of darker fabric.
Refer to our detailed guide on How To Sublimate On Dark Shirts.

How long does a sublimation printer last?

The life of a printer depends on its quality, and with more quality manufacturing, the printer lasts long. According to common consensus, a high-quality sublimation printer has a lifespan of at least 10 years.

Is sublimation printing permanent?

The ink is turned into gas through sublimation, leaving permanent imprints on the fabric. The prints are prone to fading with constant use and washing, but remember that they are embedded in the material, not lying on top. So it can be said printing is permanent.

Can I wash the sublimated fabric?

As the sublimation ink is immersed into the fabric and becomes part of it, the prints are permanent and can be washed without worrying about them wearing out. However, the prints’ fading varies with the ink’s quality, fabric usage, and wash. With more use and washing, the color of the print becomes dimmer and is more prone to fading.

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