Let’s say you wanted to buy a car. What do you do? You go down to the dealership, buy the car, and drive off. Another approach would be to buy the parts to a car and customize the car with the parts that you think would give you the best car. In other words, you do everything yourself – building, troubleshooting, maintenance, etc. In today’s world, that second option would be considered completely insane. The same goes with sublimation equipment.
One of the biggest challenges in sublimation is that there are so many components in a machine that if people buy a few things from here and a few things from there and put them all together, ultimately, it’s an unsupportable system.
For no more money, you can buy complete systems that are proven to be reliable, cost-effective, and easy to support. The solutions today match a printer with an ink, with a paper, with a substrate, and with a software for proper color management. Without such, it becomes a huge problem to get great flesh tones, and your graphics will likely have a strong yellow cast to them – for example, reds will be orange. A good sublimation system has parts that are designed to work together. You are not doing yourself a favor by buying cheap parts and assuming they can meet the same level of quality as a turnkey system.
-David Gross, Condé