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Digital or Traditional printing?

At Newspaper Club there are two types of printing: digital and traditional.

Digital printing

By digital newspapers, we mean newspapers that have been printed on a digital printer. It's our most popular method of printing a newspaper. It uses a large, fast, laser printer to print anything from one copy to hundreds at an affordable price. The newspapers are printed in a batch (or 'print run') onto one giant roll of newsprint, which is then cut and folded by machine into individual newspapers.

Most digital newspapers are delivered within 2-5 working days in the UK and overseas. It is possible to print hundreds of copies digitally, but usually becomes cheaper to print traditionally around 300-500 copies.

Traditional printing

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What we call traditional newspaper printing uses a web-offset press, just like most daily newspapers. The traditional press is huge - it's designed to print thousands of newspapers at a time. As it's such a large press, it is not cost-effective to print less than 300 copies traditionally. In fact, most newspaper printers won't print less than 1,000 at a time.

If you would like a newspaper that has the look and feel of one you'd find in a newsagent this is the method to go for.

What is a web offset press?

A web offset newspaper press uses giant reels or 'webs' of newsprint and four colours of ink – cyan, magenta, yellow and 'key' (black), usually abbreviated to CMYK. The artwork is imaged by laser onto aluminium printing plates, one for each colour. The colours are then printed onto the running web of paper, in sequence Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Black, resulting in the complete full colour image.

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The separate webs of paper then come together and are slit, cut again, folded, stacked and packaged. The whole process is very fast – it typically takes less than 30 seconds from the ink going onto the paper to the finished newspaper being boxed, or palletised for distribution.

How to choose

Order size

For most orders, the number of copies required determines the printing type. Fewer than 300 copies are printed digitally, and more than 300 copies are usually printed traditionally. Between 300 and 1000 copies there is a choice between the two types of printing, depending on the amount of pages and type of newspaper you are printing. Please contact us if you’d like to talk through different options.

Paper stock and finishing

With traditional printing there is a greater choice of paper stock and finishing options. Find out how to choose your newspaper.

Print quality

Some people prefer traditional printing to digital and vice versa. Digital newspapers are often more forgiving with fine detail as registration isn't an issue, and the colours can be richer and deeper than traditional printing. The choice often depends on the individual newspaper so please contact us if you're unsure about which one to go for.

Speed

We send all orders out as quickly as possible. For more information on turnaround times, please email us with details of what you’re planning to print.

Proofs and test prints

With digital printing it's easy to print one copy to test something out. With traditional printing it's not possible to do this as hundreds of copies need to be run through the press to print a single copy.

See a sample

If you would like to see examples of digital and traditional printing, you can request a free sample.