When Should You Specify a Digital Print instead of Vinyl?

Digital and vinyl printing have some similarities and differences. When considering either process for wholesale prints, it’s important to consider the advantages and disadvantages of each.

Digital Printing

Signs that are digitally printed can print according to the pantone matching system (PMS), or color-specific, shades. They can also match the shading and fading of today’s complex logo designs.

The disadvantage of digital printing is that it doesn’t last as long as vinyl. While a vinyl sign can last 5 to 10 years, a digital sign can last only about 3 years before it starts to fade or other signs of wear and tear begin to show. Lamination can add another 2 to 3 years of life expectancy. Digitally-printed signs are also subject to scratches, which is not an issue with vinyl. For wholesale digital prints, the cost is much less when you need to use multiple colors.

Vinyl Printing

Printing with vinyl is like creating a decal that can be cut into letter and shapes. It has adhesive on one side that sticks to the sign face. Vinyl has one distinct advantage -- its longevity. The sun can fade vinyl, but you can get anywhere from 5 to 10 years out of it. There are instances where some vinyl signs last even longer than 10 years.

The biggest limitation to vinyl is that it cannot produce the widest range of colors. Sometimes, the colors available won’t match the PMS of your logo exactly. You also cannot do shading or fading with vinyl colors. Logos and lettering that use blended colors, shadows, and fading can’t be done with vinyl.


While both digital printing and vinyl applications are adhesive materials placed on the letter or logo box face to change how a channel letter set appears, there are distinct differences that you need to consider when choosing digital or vinyl printing. Contact us at 866-278-5543 and we’ll answer any questions you might have about which process to select. 

Channel Letter Logo Box with Digital Print

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