Image armor VS Firebird Pretreatment

Posted by needtshirtsnow 11/29/2017 0 Comment(s)

Image Armor VS Firebird Pretreatment



Which is the best Pretreatment for dtg printing?


What is pretreatment?


Pretreatment is a solution that is required to use for dtg printing when you are printing white ink on custom t-shirts. It is not necessary for CMYK but after you see the difference that it makes you can not go back not using it. From my understanding, it is similar to a starch solution.


There are multiple manufacturers that produce pretreatment. So in this article, I can give you my personal experience of using these pretreatments when using DuPont inks. If you are using Firebird inks than of course we suspect firebird pretreatment will work best for that and the same goes for Image armor but I can not be sure because for this review we used DuPont inks. That, on the other hand, is not the case for DuPont inks.


For white t-shirts, both Image Armor and Firebird produce a good pretreatment but I will be telling you from hands-on experience when its best to use each of these.


FireBird FBX Vivid Pretreatment


  • This is for white t-shirts or light color shirts using CMYK inks only. No white ink.
  • Cost $45 a gallon.
  • Produces the best wash results compared to Image Armor.
  • You need to use a lot more pretreatment compared to image armor making it more expensive in the long run.
  • Does not leave a yellow heat press box on white t-shirts like Image Armor.
  • Will stain other light color shirts like pink and light blue if you do not hover the heat press over the wet pretreatment before curing the pretreat.
  • Prints can get the same vibrate looks as image armor but you will need to use a lot more.
  • It says nonstaining but it still will stain.


Image Armor light Pretreatment


  • This is for White t-shirts and light color shirts using both CMYK & White ink
  • Cost $50 a gallon
  • Produces better washability then you would get when not using a pretreated t-shirt.
  • You need less making it actually cheaper than Firebird in the long run.
  • Have noticed it likes to leave a yellow tint on white t-shirts but does great with other light color shirts.
  • Prints look better between the two using a lot less.


The Better of the two is? 


They both are great but it depends on the job. For white shirts hands down Firebird Vivid is our choice. For Light Pink CMYK or any other light color shirt, Image Armor Light is better in my opinion.


We didn't do a comparison of dark shirt pretreatment because we stopped using Image armor dark a few years back because we were having issues with it staining our shirts. Especially colors like charcoal. One of the batches even stained all of our black t-shirts.


They may have renewed their formula and might have better results now so feel free to comment below and let us know your experience with two of these companies. 


Also if you haven't already checked out our article about the best dtg printer make sure you go and check it out.


Find out which is the Best DTG Printer


Find out which is the Best Automatic Pretreat Machine


Find out which is the Best Vector Graphic Software


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