Print smart cards

Smart Card Printing

  • Smart Card Source is your complete Smart Card solution supplier. We may easy be the last Smart Card Store you will ever need.
  • Smart Card come as white blank card looking like this
 

chipcard1

Cards can be printed on using special card printers. Look into your wallet and most likely you will find whole bunch of cards printed with artwork conveying issuer’s logo, advertising, contact information, picture or anything else. After personalization card can look more like this:

printed smart cardsIt can be full color on one side and B/W on the other (look at your credit cards) or full color on both sides.

OUR SERVICES

We can print your smart cards or other PVC cards in full color. We are using dye sublimation or film re-transfer technology printer providing vibrant colors and glossy prints. This is ideal process to print few or few hundred smart cards quickly and efficiently.

CARDS PRINTED BY ALMEX

PRINTING QTY COST QTY COST QTY COST
FULL COLOR, SINGLE SIDE 40-99 1.50 100-999 1.20 1000+ 0.95
BLACK PRINT, SINGLE SIDE 40-99 1.00 100-999 0.80 1000+ 0.65

 

LIMITATIONS – SMALL JOBS > PLEASE READ BEFORE SUBMITTING ARTWORK

  • Prices in USD, per one card (side) printed, 40 + 1 cards minimum, same artwork.
  • We don’t print ID badges where every image is different.
  • We don’t print cards that are copies of official documents unless institution (owner) sends order in written.
  • We use best film re-transfer technology card printer however, because of chip placement / purely mechanical reasons we need:
  • Artwork that will be white around chip since color might not print well around edges of the chip (see picture below)
  • Artwork for the back of the card must be shifted slightly to the right side of the card since surface right behind the chip will not print well so if there is a text you want to print in the back of the card you need to move that text slightly away from the chip (see picture below)
  • NOTES: when creating your own smart card artwork have in mind that card is pretty small to start with. Use strong (saturated) colors for best results. Avoid light gray or light blue color since it is poorly visible when printed on the card. Font smaller then 8 points will not be clearly printed. Same with thin lines. Bear in mind that chip takes some space and you have to make artwork around it. If you don’t want to worry about all this things our artist can make custom smart card artwork for you for99.00 USD each.

 

COMMON PROBLEMS WHEN PRINTING CHIP CARDS:

 

printed-card-errors

All problems described above do not exist when printing card in factory, before chips are implanted into the PVC cards. We are able to get printing for all smart cards that we carry. Also, above problems do not exist when printing contactless only cards (like Mifare).

 

QUALITY ARTWORK IS NEEDED!

High quality prints require quality artwork.

  • PC artwork format is accepted.
  • Adobe Illustrator 8 and 9, Adobe Photoshop 7, Corel Draw 9.
  • Use high resolution, at least 300 dpi when creating and saving your artwork.
  • Artwork must be sized to proper smart card dimensions, see below.
  • Ensure that all text is converted to curves or you must include all fonts.
  • Files should include fonts + photos + images + text.
  • Do not include keylines in design.
  • Non bleed art (not going over the edge) should be within 3mm (0.125″) inside finished edge of the card.
  • All bleeds should extend 3mm (0.125″) over the edge of the card.
  • Reverse type that knocks out all printed color should be at least 8pt in San Serif typeface.

Typical smart card dimensions:

smart-card-dimensions

Learn more about printing – Choose your options

We can print your smart card in 4 ways. Check best option for your application:

1. Cards can be printed on the desktop direct to card printer (thermal dye sublimation).

PRO: almost instant results, can print quickly, can print small quantities from few pieces up to few thousand cards in just day or two, easy to change artwork, ideal for small custom jobs.

CON: cards are protected by varnish and will get scratched by heavy use, less then perfect printout, gray and light colors will not print properly, thin lines and very small fonts will not print clearly, sometimes there is a hair thin line on one or two edges of the card because of inability for card printer to consistently print edge to edge graphics, other side of the card can have imperfections in print quality because of the chip location.

2. Cards can be printed on the desktop directly using film-retransfer technology.

PRO: almost instant results, can print quickly, can print small quantities from few pieces up to few thousand cards in just day or two, easy to change artwork, ideal for small custom jobs, cards are laminated and will last fr long time.

CON: higher price than with dye sublimation technology, can waste a lot of cards before getting right settings, other side of the card can have imperfections in print quality because of the chip location.

3. Cards can be printed on the big ink jet or litho machine.

PRO: professional superior print quality, vivid colors, large number of cards can be printed quickly, lowest per card print cost factor.

CON: printers will not print less than 2000 cards, there is possibility to have up to 2% spoilage factor for machine adjusting and imperfections with cards, other side of the card can have imperfections in print quality because of chip location, 2-4 weeks lead time.

4. Cards can be printed at smart card manufacturer’s location.

PRO: excellent print quality, cards get printed before implanting a chips, same quality on both sides of the card, durable printout since there is a clear protective overlay, moderate price, slightly higher than litho-ink jet printing with printers.

CON: 210 cards print minimum for ZC cards, 2-3 weeks lead time. 5000+ cards for some other cards that we carry.