What Are HD Acrylic Prints?

HD Acrylic Print TriptychIf you’ve spent any time researching the acrylic prints market then you may have seen the term “HD Acrylic Prints” out and about to describe the product.  There is no difference between a face mounted acrylic print and the marketing jargon of “HD acrylic print”.  It’s a clever way to market an acrylic print, but all acrylic photo products are HD (aka high definition).   Why is that?  The reason acrylic photo prints are so crisp, clear and vibrant is because of the way light interacts with it.  Instead of light simply passing through as it does with glass, light refracts within the acrylic creating an effect that appears to illuminate your photo.  The 2nd reason for this is an airtight bond between the acrylic and your photo print.

That said there are some components of an acrylic print that can add a bit more definition, vibrancy, pop .. or whatever you’d like to call it.  We’ve touched on these quite a few times throughout our website including our acrylic prints buyers guide which we highly recommend you read since there are many ways to produce these.

Components of an “HD Acrylic Print”

  1.  Face Mounted.  It must be printed to professional quality photo paper and face mounted using a process similar to the Diasec method.  Acrylic prints made by printing directly to the acrylic can look nice in some cases but they are no match for an acrylic face mount.
  2.  Metallic Paper.  With most acrylic face mounts you’re given the option of some kind of lustre/satin paper and a metallic paper option.  Metallic paper is the best option for most photos because it provides a bit more depth and pop particularly when paired with the acrylic.  Popular choices of metallic paper include the Kodak Endura, Fuji Crystal (both C prints) or the Lexjet Sunset Metallic (inkjet and our preference).  The only time we don’t really recommend metallic paper is when producing acrylic prints for family photos or photos with soft colors.
  3. Acrylic Thickness.  Remember the light refraction part we mentioned above?  It’s true that the more acrylic you have in front of the print, the more vibrant it can be (not to mention the cool 3D effect on the side).  Most companies offer acrylic in 1/8″ and 1/4″ thicknesses.  A typical gallery quality acrylic print will use the 1/4″ acrylic with a diamond polished edge.  While it costs more than the 1/8″, it does provide a more substantial looking piece with more light allowed to refract.  For a truly unique, stunning look consider 1/2″ or 1″ thick acrylic.  We offer both.
  4.  Art Lighting.  Not many have the ability to light up their acrylic prints with quality art lighting, but if you do it will make a significant difference.  In fact, any direct lighting on the acrylic will illuminate it more adding to the vibrancy and pop of your acrylic print.  The master at this is photographer Peter Lik who has galleries around the USA (several in Vegas).  He knows how to market his art by adding all the components of a truly HD acrylic print as described in this article.

If you’re looking for acrylic prints with high definition and incredible vibrancy you’re in the right place!  All our products are handmade in Seattle by skilled technicians that have many years of experience.  We were one of the first companies in the US to offer acrylic face mounting and continue to maintain the highest customer satisfaction rating in the industry.  We’d love to produce a gallery quality acrylic photo mount for you!  

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