Can DTF Printing Really Compete with Professional Mousepads? We Put It to The Test!
While a typical workstation may not be equipped with a mousepad anymore, they are an integral part of any gamer’s setup in the gaming community. Professional mousepads tend to be larger, an almost full desk in length, but aren’t made from chunky rubber and poor quality felt like they used to be. These days they are slim, sleek, and covered in some genuinely unique prints.
DTF Superstore decided to see if they could create a professional mousepad that would hold up against some of the best one’s on the market that gamers are using.
What Gamers Look for In Professional Mousepads
In short, it comes down to feel and performance, as one would expect. We decided to take a professional mousepad and print designs on each half. One half would mimic a logo design, with sparser ink used, and the other half would be a full DTF print, covering much of the space. We got some pleasing results after a few test runs on the heat press at various temperatures and times.
The Test Results: Feel
We saw nearly flawless results on the logo half (or sparse ink side) of our professional mousepad. The ink dried quickly and smoothly and didn’t warp the rubber.
On the other half, where we used more ink, the results were good but could have been better. We noticed some of the ink was raised to the touch, and it took our tester a few attempts in the heat press to get the ink to apply correctly and settle.
The Test Results: Performance
The next part of our DTF experiment involved using the pad in an office and gaming scenario.
The side with more ink experienced some mouse dragging and could have been smoother. The side with less ink, where we mimicked a logo design, performed incredibly well. It was nearly perfect, and the mouse could glide around the space easily.
Some Tips for your DTF Mousepad Project
After our testing, we developed this set of tips that should help anyone wanting to explore DTF printing on pro mousepads.
- Use halftones and sparse patterns during the design for excellent results.
- Test at lower heat settings, to begin with.
- Apply strong pressure on the heat plate.
- Do a second press with parchment paper.
- Always lay the mousepad flat during cooling.
- Avoid “heavy” prints (using lots of ink).
DTF Superstore and DTF University
To learn more about all things DTF, visit our store and YouTube channels. There are plenty of tutorials and other helpful videos available. Be sure to check out our other tests, too, because you never know what else can be DTF’d!