Understanding the Difference Between SYNAPS Synthetic Paper

5 Minute Read
Posted by Tianna Vanderhei, Nekoosa on 9/8/21 9:00 AM

In today’s marketplace, there’s no shortage of synthetic paper options. And while on the surface the choices for synthetic paper seem relatively similar, SYNAPS synthetic paper offers the durability and digital productivity necessary to suit a variety of applications. What’s more, SYNAPS synthetic paper is available in two grades for maximum optimization with specific printing platforms.

SYNAPS OM and SYNAPS XM are both waterproof, tear-proof and weather resistant polyester synthetic paper. A polyester base stock gives SYNAPS the extra strength needed for both indoor and outdoor applications that require extra durability. These features also make SYNAPS an ideal alternative to traditional lamination which is prone to wrinkling, fraying on the edges or delaminating. SYNAPS synthetic paper is commonly used for restaurant menus, membership cards, plant stakes, produce tags and pocket manuals.

SYNAPS paper also prints and dries the same as uncoated paper, but also allows for precise color registration at the time of printing. In addition, this material can be scored, die-cut and folded, and will lay flat even after being rolled or manipulated.

So, the question now becomes how are the SYNAPS synthetic paper grades different? What are the advantages of the OM versus XM, and what do you need to understand in selecting the right SYNAPS synthetic paper product for your application? Let’s examine each grade in greater detail to answer this and many more questions about what makes SYNAPS the synthetic paper of choice.

Defining SYNAPS OM

SYNAPS OM is offered in 5, 8, 10 and 14 mil thicknesses. With SYNAPS OM synthetic paper, ease is the name of the game. While printing on synthetic paper can present some challenges, SYNAPS OM synthetic paper offers a simple, user-friendly experience. Whereas printing on other synthetic papers can present long drying times, registration issues, and complications from special inks, SYNAPS OM dries quickly without the need for special, offset inks. For projects that require a fast turnaround time, SYNAPS OM provides dual-sided printing capability.

SYNAPS OM is also offered in wide format rolls. Most commonly used by latex and UV wide format printers to produce retractable banner stand graphics, SYNAPS OM is built from a durable polyester that will not bow, curl or wrap. Because SYNAPS OM is opaque and features a double sided matte white finish, it can also be used for double sided hanging graphics, banner stand graphics, trade show panels, stanchion frame graphic inserts and aisle invaders. SYNAPS OM lays flat and will stay flat, even after being rolled.

Defining SYNAPS XM

SYNAPS XM is offered in 5, 8, 10, 12 and 14 mil digital cut size sheets. Its antistatic topcoat ensures strong toner adhesion and smooth feeding throughout the length of the print run. SYNAPS XM is well known as an alternative for traditional pocket lamination, and typically used to produce restaurant menus, hole punched tags and manuals. Printers who run dry toner/laser equipment have relied on SYNAPS XM’s consistent performance for nearly ten years, making it the top digital synthetic sheet in North America.

SYNAPS XM is also a great alternative to traditional lamination. Printing applications on SYNAPS XM prevents common flaws in the lamination process like de-lamination, wrinkles, frayed edges, squareness and higher total costs. From a standpoint of durability, efficiency and cost-effectiveness, SYNAPS XM is ideal for use in a variety of applications such as menus, instruction manuals, catalogs, maps, ID cards, business cards, book covers, sales collateral and direct mailing pieces.

It’s All About the Printing

There is always the perfect tool for the perfect job. You wouldn’t use a hammer to remove a screw or bolt, just as you wouldn’t use a screwdriver to drive a nail into a piece of wood. This same logic applies to determining which grade of SYNAPS synthetic paper is right for your application, and the most foundational element of this decision is the printing process and the kind of printer being used.

SYNAPS OM synthetic paper is compatible with offset, HP Indigo, latex and UV wide format printers. Superior dry times using standard offset conventional inks make SYNAP OM synthetic paper the optimal choice for short run, on demand printing. SYNAPS OM is also a great choice for HP Indigo printers who offer synthetic paper options for their customers. SYNAPS OM’s polyester base stock provided a dimensionally stable solution for consistent and precise color registration throughout the entire print run. Between its dimensional stability and matte white finish, HP Indigo printers can produce high quality images that rival offset printing.

SYNAPS XM on the other hand is compatible with digital dry toner/laser printers. SYNAPS XM also provides flexibility and versatility as something of a turnkey synthetic paper solution as it is designed to perform on all dry toner-based platforms, ready for on demand, high quality printing, and results in minimal scrap or waste compared to lamination. In addition, printing with SYNAPS XM is a less time-intensive process compared to traditional lamination, which reduces the manpower and resources necessary to see your project to fruition.

Regardless of your application, SYNAPS OM or SYNAPS XM synthetic paper offer the durability and versatility companies need to ensure a quality product with a long service life and robust return on investment.

To request a sample of either type of synthetic paper, please visit the SYNAPS OM or SYNAPS XM webpages pages to order through the Nekoosa website or contact samples@nekoosa.com.