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BEST GRAPHIC FILE FORMAT FOR DTF PRINTING

Updated: Jul 27, 2023

Using high-quality artwork is extremely important for printing top-quality DTF transfers. The quality of your designs dramatically affects how your prints will turn out. Even the best inks and printers can't correct issues with the artwork. So, starting with good-quality designs is crucial to get the best results.

  • Transparent background: no one wants a white rectangular print. Ensure that your artwork's background is transparent.

  • Understand the Power of Pixels. When working with PNG format, remember that it is pixel-based. The resolution depends on how many pixels fit within a square inch or DPI (dots per inch). Higher DPI translates to clearer, higher-quality images. Remember, with raster art, you can only decrease resolution, not increase it. For example, you can't take 72 DPI art and make it 300 DPI, but you can take 300 DPI art and make it 72 DPI. Start with high-resolution artwork to ensure optimal results.

  • Exceptions: there's just one! If you have an image with extremely large dimensions, such as 3,200 pixels by 2,400 pixels (45" x 34") at 72 DPI, there is sufficient DPI at these scales to resize the image while maintaining high print quality.

  • Have realistic color reproduction expectations: Keep in mind that colors may vary from monitor to monitor and printer to printer. While most artwork is created using RGB settings, DTF printers, like any other printer, use CMYK plus White. If preserving specific colors is crucial, please email us for color match services.

  • RGB vs. CMYK: DTF printers use four-color CMYK inks, plus white for the underbase and highlights. Our software is optimized to convert the commonly used RGB colors to CMYK+W. Color variations are to be expected as a result of this transformation.

  • If using any bright colors such as bright blue, lime green, highlighter yellow, bright magenta pink, and similar shades, please understand that these colors may not print as bright. These colors tend to suffer the most during the RGB to CMYK transformation process.

If you're uncertain whether your artwork is suitable for DTF printing, don't hesitate to contact us at order@pnwprintco.com. If your files are of low resolution and your goal is a high-quality end product, our partner designers, for a small fee, can vectorize your low-quality artwork for beautiful DTF-printed results if needed.


PLEASE NOTE: We cannot be held responsible for the printing outcome if low-resolution images are provided. Additionally, we do not proof-check your gang sheets for overlapping designs or evaluate the quality of your artwork. Often, we only see the quality or resolution of your artwork once your order is printed. Therefore, once it reaches this stage, we are unable to cancel your order, and you will receive what was ordered. Please ensure to check your files thoroughly before sending them for DTF printing.

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Is there a sample sheet I can order to see if my design will work for my hats and koozies? I just had my design digitized for my embroidery machine and sent the file in for png or pdf and was 300 dpi. thank you for your time answering any and all questions.

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Yes, please email us at order@pnwprintco.com.

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