Differences between pigment ink and dye ink printing

A pigment is a particulate, water-insoluble coloring material; ink particles remain on the paper surface. Because of the water insolubility, blurring can be reduced, even when wet. 

Dye is a water-soluble coloring material; ink seeps into the paper together with the water contained in the ink. The ink leaves no roughness on the paper, and the print result will be more vivid than that using pigment ink.

Printing on gloss paper using pigment ink sometimes results in uneven glossiness due to the light dispersion caused by the varying height of the adhering ink. Chroma Optimizer, Canon’s own transparent ink, comes with PIXMA PRO-1 and PRO-10 and solves this problem. The ink helps provide uniform glossiness by evenly coating the surface of the print.

 

Pigment Ink

 

Dye Ink

 

Benefits
  • Water resistant and less blurring
  • Prints have excellent stability and longevity
  • Excellent color saturation on gloss paper
  • Faster printing speed
 Disadvantages 
  • Print on gloss paper may produce uneven appearance due to reflection
  • Weak against rubbing and peeling
  • Weak against water and easily blurs
  • Some types of dye ink show less print stability and longevity compared with pigment ink
Tips
  • Use Chroma Optimizer to eliminate the uneven ink surface
  • Avoid contact with glass and other flat surfaces in storage
  • Dry prints thoroughly until the ink becomes stable (leave 24 hours or longer before framing the picture)
  • Store in relatively air-tight conditions, such as framing with a glass cover

 

Selecting the Clear coat the entire page checkbox in Print Studio Pro specifies Chroma Optimizer to be printed to make the entire paper surface even, including non-colored paper areas.