Digital Printing vs Engraving

Most name tags produced today are imprinted by one of two methods, digital or engraving. Both methods have pros and cons depending upon your preferences. The following is a brief explanation of the two processes. Each style is suitable for creating badges however there are some differences that one should be aware of when making a purchase.

Oval staff name badge


Digital Printing
Digital printing is a process by which name tags are created by transferring an image into the surface of the name tag material. This can be accomplished by a digital card printer or heat transfer method. The process is long lasting and the image is generally scratch resistant. Some of the advantages of digitally printed name tags are:

  • Full color printing at an affordable price, even on small quantities.
  • Tags are printed one at a time making reorders of even one badge quick and easy.
  • One color or One Thousand colors – same price.
  • Full color edge to edge printing.
  • PMS color matching for your design. This allows for custom color backgrounds and logo colors.
  • Available on metal name tags or plastic name tags.
  • Fast production time. Most orders shipped in one to two days.
  • Rounded edges provide a nice professional finished appearance.
Restaurant staff name badge


Engraved Printing
Engraving is the traditional method of personalizing name tags. Engraved name tags are created using a two part laminate material that features a surface color and a core color. The image is created by etching through the surface laminate with a laser or rotary engraver, displaying the core color for the graphics. The result is a two color name tag with a surface color and a letter/graphics color. Engraved name tags have been the industry standard for many years and offer many advantages, some are;

  • Durable, the plastic is fairly scratch resistant and extremely durable.
  • Small quantity orders are easily produced.
  • Fast production times on any size order.
  • Available with logos or graphics.
  • Wide range of two color combinations available.
  • Classic good looks.
  • Custom shaped name tags available
  • Available with beveled or rounded edges

The disadvantages of engraving are that PMS color matching as well as multi-color imprinting is not an option.

Either printing method will produce a high quality professional name tag; however each printing method has its unique advantages that need to be considered when making your purchasing decision. If you have any question just give one our professional staff a call at (888)754-8337 and they will be able to answer any question you may have.