What is duplex printing? Duplexing, more casually known as double-sided or two-sided printing, is a feature of many printers that allows for the automatic printing on both sides of a sheet of paper. Office printers may have a duplexing unit that reverses a piece of paper after the first side has been printed. And higher volume printers may have two print engines that are able to print both sides at the same time.
Look at duplex printing meaning and duplex printing devices here…
A Brief Explanation
Duplex printing with a digital printer can be achieved in two ways – auto-duplexing – and manual duplexing. When printing yourself it’s important to know what your machine supports to get the result you’re after.
Duplex printing functions differ between printer models but generally fit into one of two categories.
Auto duplex printing
Selecting this option on a printer that supports automatic duplex means that the paper will be automatically flipped after each impression to have the second face printed on also. Take care to test carefully to be sure your document is flipping the way you expect as there are many options.
Manual duplex printing
When manual duplex printing, rather than printing all in one go you will need to print in two passes to achieve a double-sided result. If your machine cannot flip sheets you’ll need to set your machine to print for example all odd pages then be fed again to print all even pages.
This method can be tricky to get right the first time and can become tedious if you have a paper jam but is a useful technique on older style printers that don’t have an auto-duplex printing function built-in.
Not all print is suitable to be fed back through without damaging your equipment in the long run so be sure to check if your printer has recommendations.
The Duplex Printing Process
How does duplex printing work? The most common method is with a single-engine duplexer – this automatically flips the sheet of paper after the first side has printed. Then the sheet is fed back through the machine to print on the opposite side.
A double-engine duplexer allows both sides to print at the same time, via a multistep process. Usually available only in very high-end machines this method allows for maximum efficiency and accuracy.
Print direction is very important and refers to the orientation of how the artwork is placed.This determines how a single-engine duplexer reads a print task and the page direction to print. Depending on how you plan to display your document this setting will need to change. A document that you want to flip like a book for example will need a different print direction to one that is to move like a calendar. Getting these settings wrong can be costly so we recommend printing a page or two as a quick test.
The majority of printers follow the same basic steps to enable duplex printing and these are:
- Click on file and then print
- Select the printer you want to use from the drop-down menu
- Enable the option for duplex printing (possibly print on both sides)
- Check your preferences to confirm the print direction
- Click print to confirm
You can save a lot of time and money with a duplex printer and take advantage of:
- Duplex printers cutting down on you paper waste to be more eco-friendly – waste is halved whilst still printing the same amount of content
- Large print projects made much more manageable to keep and bind
- Double-sided printing lowers energy costs as the printer has to do less work when processing one sheet instead of two
- Time saving. Automatic duplex printers typically print documents faster double-sided than single-sided
Outsource Your Duplex Printing Projects
If you don’t have the means to purchase your own duplex printer why not consider letting professionals complete your printing for you? You’ll be guaranteed the help of print experts to get it right with all the latest digital printing technology on hand. Local print shops stock a much wider range of paper than even office supply stores and your printing will be produced with industry leading machines and a quality guarantee.
When you need speedy, quality-assured, local printing MBE is the team for you!