How do I achieve a high-quality image on metal using my laser?

Just like a cook trying to teach a student how to bake the perfect cake, each person has his or her own tricks to achieve the best result, in this case, high-quality images on metal. Whether using pre-coated sheets such as AlumaMark or DuraBlack, or applying a coating like CerMark to metal, there are many steps and opinions to improve results. Here are a couple that apply broadly when marking both:

  1. Quality of the graphic is imperative for yielding quality results. Lasers are like printers – they cannot add detail and resolution if it is not there in the beginning. Vector images are ideal and can easily be scaled to any size. Raster graphics copied from a website at 72 DPI will not be nearly as crisp and clean as a 300 DPI image.
  2. Always follow the manufacturer’s recommendations and contact them for technical support if needed. When determining proper settings, dialing in settings prior to processing a live order is highly recommended. Not using the proper laser settings can result in images looking too light, marked areas bleeding too much, and inconsistent marks, just to name a few. 
  3. Some metals have the ability to yield quality halftone images, just like AlumaMark. To achieve this, most lasers have some halftone options in the software to control the pattern and density of the mark. Sometimes additional control is helpful, then a photo editing program like Adobe Photoshop can be utilized in creating a halftone screen or fixing hot spots or overly dark/light areas in photos. 

   —Horizons ISG

Karly Baldi, Horizons Incorporated

Karly Baldi

Karly Baldi has 12 years of experience marketing AlumaMark and DuraBlack, having held the position of international sales and marketing manager for Horizons Incorporated since 2008. She is responsible for managing distribution, marketing, and technical support of the two brands.

View all articles by Karly Baldi  

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