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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Below is an interesting but deceiving video comparing washability results from well known POD printers.
The real cause of the failures is actually in the design (has areas with reduced opacity).
Reducing the opacity is basically reducing the amount of ink. A known issue in DTG.
Font Screenshot Number Parallel Document

You can also watch the "before wash" video here.

The video does however demonstrate some very important factors:
a) Same printer model + different company/operator = different results.
b) Heavier ink deposition = better washability.

The reason some prints performed better, is that the type of fabric and the amount of pretreatment affect the tolerance to low opacity.
Below are two examples demonstrating how varying the amounts of pretreatment and ink can affect washability.

1. Less pretreatment and more ink.
Amazon is obviously using very little pretreatment and compensate by using more ink.
This does increase the tolerance to low opacity areas in the design, but can cause the ink in opaque areas to bleed.
Photos show the print by Amazon after 3 wash+dry cycles, and the small bleed areas.
Black Textile Rectangle Purple Sleeve
Sleeve Waist Finger Gesture Thigh

2. More pretreatment and less ink.
This is actually the best print, using the right amount of pretreatment and ink to produce a really vibrant print.
Photos bellow show the print, before and after 3 wash+dry cycles.
As mentioned above, the cause of the failure is in the design (areas with reduced opacity).
Outerwear Photograph White Green Light
Product Sleeve Grey Sportswear Rectangle

4,379 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
Even same company, different day, equals different results. Maybe or maybe not a different machine and operator. Variability being the only POD constant.
True, but on the durability aspect, there is enough tolerance.
As demonstrated in the video, you have to reduce the opacity (effectively the ink density) quite a bit before the print fails.
Surely some prints will last 30 washes, and others will last 50+ washes, but that's acceptable in DTG.

The variability in apearance is one of the reasons I don't like white ink DTG.
CMYK on white shirts however, or hybrid DTG for dark shirts, print the same every time.

4,379 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
CustomCat / MyLocker is rolling out a process they call DigiSoft. It is supposed to be more consistent than DTG. I'm not sure exactly what it is as of yet, but white comes out well.
What garments use DIGISOFT™ technology?
DIGISOFT™ is currently used to print our activewear & hoodies. Soon, our embroidered products will be made available with DIGISOFT™. We know everyone is begging for DIGISOFT™ on cotton t-shirts, but that will take a little longer.
How is DIGISOFT™ different from DTG or DTF?
DIGISOFT™ technology combines the streamlined manufacturing power of DTG printing with the print vibrancy, clarity, & durability of DTF printing, vastly improving the print quality & durability from that of DTG while also upgrading the color quality & handfeel of a DTF print.
DIGISOFT™ is just a marketing term they decided to use for DTF.
Using a trademarked term makes it look "special".

Obviously they are now using DTF for printing on:
a) thick hoodies, and
b) polyester garments.

The reasons for DTF:
a) hoodies and polyester tees are difficult to print in DTG, and misprints can easily cost $5 to $15.
b) DTF is actually looks and feels pretty good on hoodies.
c) DTF is a good alternative to vinyl for polyester athletic garments.

My guess is they are keeping cotton tees on DTG for a few reasons.
Here are some of them:
a) In many cases DTG looks and feels a lot better than DTF on t-shirts... especially on white t-shirts.
b) They will need to figure out how to allocate design types to each method, without totally messing up consistency. Printing one shirt in DTG and the next in DTF will cause confusion, complaints, and returns.
c) Their existing customer base have DTG samples for their designs.

4,379 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
They say they are going all DigiSoft, just that poly and hoodies are first.
Well... maybe they are and need time to transition... Replacing equipment etc.

They also imply that it is not DTF, as they claim DigiSoft has the best features of both DTG and DTF without the downsides of either.
It will be a film transfer obviously. Probably a variation of DTF. Otherwise why mentioning it?
Let's wait and see... but I wouldn't expect much.
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