UV DTF printer and DTF printer

Differences Between DTF Printing and UV DTF Printing, Which One to Choose? Why?

With the rapid development of printing industry, traditional DTF printers fail to meet some needs of the market. For example, DTF printers cannot print on mugs. So as to make up for the shortcoming in this aspect, manufacturers produced UV DTF printer, which can print on the substrates that DTF printers are unable to print on. 

The main difference between DTF printer and UV DTF printer are: DTF printer works with DTF film, DTF powder, DTF ink while UV DTF printer works with UV ink and AB film, in addition, DTF printer needs shake powder and oven drying while UV DTF printer needs laminating. As a result, DTF printer is suitable for soft surface: T-shirt, hoodies, etc. while UV DTF printer is for firm ones: luggage, mug, phone case, etc.

Learn More: the comprehensive explanation to the differences between UV printer vs UV DTF printer.

Similarities of DTF Printer and UV DTF Printer

During the printing process, both DTF printer and UV DTF printer need to print on the PET film first, and then transfer to the substrates.

DTF film
DTF film
UV DTF film
UV DTF film

Differences Between DTF Printer and UV DTF Printer

As introduced at the beginning, DTF printing and UV DTF printing are different from consumable (supplier), working process, application and ink type, following table gives clear view to understand in a second:

Comparison Table: DTF Printer vs. UV DTF Printer

Key Differences Between DTF and UV DTF


DTF Printer

UV DTF Printer


DTF film/DTF powder/DTF ink/Heat press machine

UV ink/AB film

Working process

1. Design

2. Print

3. Shake powder

4. Oven drying

5. Heat press and transfer

1. Design

2. Print on A film

3. Laminate B film

4. Cutting

5. Paste on items


T-shirts, hoodies, pants, blouses, hats and etc

Luggage, mug, phone case, bottle and etc

Ink type

DTF ink

UV ink

Different Consumables of DTF Printer and UV DTF Printer

DTF printer uses DTF ink, which is water based ink while UV DTF printer uses UV ink that is oil based ink. As terms of other consumables, DTF still needs DTF powder, PET film and heat press machine. But UV DTF mainly needs AB film.

Different Working Process of DTF Printer and UV DTF Printer

Working process of DTF printer

  1. Design patterns on the computer
  2. Print patterns
  3. Powder shaker and oven drying
  4. Cut pieces
  5. Heat press to transfer the patterns to objects
DTF-600series Ultra II WorKing Process
work flow of DTF

Working process of UV DTF printer

  1. Design patterns
  2. Print the design on print film(A film)
  3. Laminate the transfer film (B film) on the top of printed film (A film)
  4. Cut UV DTF crystal labels
  5. Stick UV DTF sticker on substrates, and slowly peel the backing film off
work flow of UV DTF

Different Ways to Transfer Patterns

DTF printer uses heat press machine to transfer the patterns to items.

UV DTF printer utilizes laminating process. After laminating the B film on A film, press the film on substrates and then peel off the film.

Different Applications of DTF Printer and UV DTF Printer

Applications of DTF Printer

DTF printers are mainly applied in the garment industry. Patterns of DTF printers are of high accuracy and vibrant colors. Besides, patterns will not fade or break easily. They are of long durability. For these reasons, DTF printers are good at printing on fabrics.

  • T-Shirts
  • Hoodies
  • Pants
  • Jeans
  • Blouses
  • Hats
  • Dresses
  • And more

Applications of UV DTF Printer

UV DTF printers own the capacity of printing on hard substrates. Under this situation, UV DTF printers are often used in home decor, advertising and retail industry.

  • Tile walls
  • Glass sliding doors
  • Luggage
  • Mugs
  • Packaging box
  • Bottle
  • Phone case
  • And more
uv dtf coffee mug
uv dtf transfer printing on wood
uv dtf transfer printing on acrylic
uv dtf transfer printing on glass
uv dtf transfer printing on box
UV DTF Application
uv dtf transfer printing on leather

DTF Printer vs. UV DTF Printer: Benefits and Drawbacks

Pros and Cons of DTF printer


  1. DTF printer can print on all types of fabrics, whether dark or light color.
  2. DTF prints have longer and stronger durability.
  3. Compared with DTG printer, DTF printer does not need pre-treatment steps.
  4. Printing speed of DTF printer is faster than other traditional printers.


  1. Patterns of DTF printing are not as breathable as that of sublimation printing.
  2. Relatively speaking, printed patterns lack gentleness and smoothness.

Pros and Cons of UV DTF printer


  1. UV DTF printer breaks the limitation of UV printer that fails to print on surface with slopes. That means UV DTF printer is able to print on flat or frosted surface.
  2. UV DTF printer supports varnish printing. In addition, it is easy to transfer. Therefore, it can ensure high productivity especially for small orders.


  1. UV DTF uses special UV ink, which is poisonous and harmful to human body and environment. Hence, when you operate UV DTF printer, you must take care of it.
  2. As UV DTF printer is the combination of advantages of DTF and UV printer, the price is a bit high.

DTF or UV DTF, Which to Choose? Why?

DTF and UV DTF printer enjoys both similarities and differences. If you want to enter garment printing industry, DTF printer is a best choice. UV DTF printer is mostly applied to hard substrates such as glass, mugs, wood, acrylic, crystal and more. Under this situation, you need to make your printing needs clear before making a decision.

Looking for help of making a decision? Refer to Sublistar’s experts for professional suggestions.


Can a UV DTF printer print on any object?

UV printers can print on many different substrates, including wood, plastic, ceramic, metal, leather, PET, acrylic, glass, etc.

With sublistar’s UV ink, the finished product is waterproof and fade-resistant, and the printed surface is scratch-resistant and durable.

UV printers print on substrates directly while UV DTF printers print on AB films first, and then attach to the substrates. UV DTF printer is extended from UV printer to make up for the shortcomings of UV printing.

You need to prepare UV DTF printer, UV ink, AB film and cutter.

UV DTF printing is environmentally friendly. It is not toxic.

5/5 - (1 vote)

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