Comic Book Printing
Let your imagination come alive with our world-class comic book printing services
“Comics are fabulous. They’re a place you can do things that nobody has ever done before”
— Neil Gaiman, writer and comic book creator
In comic books, literature and art collide. Exciting, intriguing, emotive, funny. Between their pages, we find adventure, imagination, comedy and tragedy. If Shakespeare was still writing now, he’d write comic books!
At QinPrinting,we believe comics merit the same high quality production values as any art or literature. Our passion—together with an exceptional team, technological wizardry, and personalized customer care—position us among the most successful independent comic book printers anywhere in the world.
“I self-publish because it’s easiest. I want to make a book, I make the book, the book gets published.”
—Kyle Baker, award-winning comic creator
Custom Comic Book Printing Costs
At QinPrinting, we work closely every day with self-published creators to print exceptionally beautiful comic books of outstanding caliber. But we fully understand that many talented independent creatives must still work within a restricted budget. That’s why we strive constantly to work as efficiently as we can to deliver comic books of unmatched quality at prices that you can’t beat.
Don’t take that on trust. You can get an idea of your comic book printing costs with the simple price chart below. The exact cost of printing your comic book with us will depend on the paper you choose, the coating and finish for the cover and interior pages, and other factors. To get a precise, project-specific quote, use our Online Printing Cost Calculator. Unlike other offset printers who have an MOQ (minimum order quantity) of 500 or more copies, we’re happy to print as few as 100 in a single run.
Comic Book Printing Price Chart (6.7″ x 10.2″)
- Please note that all prices are EXW our facility and do not include shipping costs.
- 105gsm/70lb art paper for interior, 200gsm/80lb cover with gloss lamination, Sewn and perfect binding
And don’t forget that we’re real people at QinPrinting and we’re always willing to answer questions you may have. Just get in touch by whichever means you prefer — email, telephone, Skype, or our handy online contact form. One of our expert team members will be delighted to assist.
Popular Comic Book Sizes
We can print any size comic book you want, although unusual custom prints will cost a little more than standard sizes because of the extra work involved in preparing the plates and setting up the machines. The most common size for a comic book is 6.7″ by 10.2″. From a commercial perspective, it’s often in the self-publisher’s interests to stick to this format. It’s effective and inexpensive, meets customer expectations, and cuts down on set-up time, leading to a faster turnaround.
On the other hand, why not experiment? If you have good reason to innovate, you could try a larger 7.3″ by 11″ tabloid size comic, a smaller 5.5″ by 8.5″ pocket edition, or switch things up with a landscape rather than portrait orientation. It’s all possible. The only limits are your imagination and how the comic-buying public will respond. Check out this handy comic book print size chart.
|6.7” x 10.2”||7″ x 10.375″||5” x 7.5”||6″ x 9″|
|7.3″ x 11″||5.5″ x 8.5″||8″ x 10″||8.5″ x 11″|
Comic Book Paper Options
The paper on which you choose to print your comic book changes its appearance, durability, and the cost. Many commercially produced comic books use lightweight, 105 gsm / 70 lb uncoated paper stock for black-and-white interiors and heavier, 120 gsm / 80 lb coated paper for color interiors. These standards are fine for most comics.
But at QinPrinting we recommend 157gsm / 100 lb coated paper or 120gsm / 80lb offset paper for color interiors as it gives a lovely crisp, vibrant finish to the artwork and makes the text easy to read. It will also stop the artwork “bleeding through” to the other side of the page. If you’re really strapped, the thinnest paper you could get away with would be 70 gsm / 50 lb uncoated paper. But that would only work with simple black-and-white printing and you might see the “ghosts” of the images from one side of the page through the other.
Paper for the cover of your comic depends on your choice of bindings. Typically, we make comic book covers of heavier, gloss art paper. But you can also use the same paper as your interior, in which case we refer to this as “self-covered”. A saddle stitched, perfect bound, or hardcovers are the best options for comic books you want to last and look truly professional.
Bindings For Comic Books
While many comic books are “self-covered”, the style of binding you choose depends on the genre, length, reader expectations, and your budget. The most popular options for professional comic books are “saddle stitching” and “perfect binding”. Comic book creators may also choose hardcovers for special editions or series collections.
- Saddle-stitched — this means that we make the comic of folded sheets stacked inside each other, often with an added cover sheet of glossy art paper, and then stapled together down the spine. The name comes from the original process of sewing the pages together with binding thread. This binding is only possible with a page count divisible by four, to a limit of 48 pages
- Perfect bound — this is the binding used for standard paperback books. We collate the interior pages into a block, glued together, and then glued into a wrap-around cover made of heavier art paper or lightweight card stock
- Hardcover — in this binding, we organize the interior pages in “signatures” which are then sewn and glued into a hard cardboard casing covered with a printed sheet to form the cover
Self-covers are the most inexpensive option and hardcovers are the costliest, with saddle-stitched and perfect bound editions falling somewhere in-between. The final cost always depends on the materials, size, length, and number of copies printed in a single run.
Comic Book Design and Artwork Tips
The quality of your artwork reproduction is always important, but never more so than when printing a comic book. Whether your comic is a series of short cartoon strips designed to raise a laugh, an exciting story for children, or a complex narrative for adults, you want your artwork to “leap off the page” into the reader’s imagination. With that in mind, here are a few useful tips to help you when you’re preparing your files for the printer.
Export your files as vectors in PDF format for the best results. Our recommended software options for comic book design are Adobe InDesign or Adobe Illustrator. These will also allow you to convert your color space from RGB to CMYK which you will need to do for offset printing
If you can’t deliver vectors — say, if you’re exporting bitmaps from Photoshop — then make sure the resolution is at least 300 DPI. With vectors, you needn’t worry about resolution, but all other images must have a high definition to tolerate resizing without becoming fuzzy and “pixilated”
You’ll need to add a “bleed zone” of 3 mm around all your pages. A bleed is an extended zone at the periphery of your artwork, which falls outside the area that your finished page will cover. Once we’ve printed your pages, we’ll cut them to the exact size needed for your comic book format. This “bit extra” gets cut off and makes sure that the finished image fills the page with none of it being lost. You should mark bleed zones as red lines
Inside your bleed zone, don’t forget to mark the “trim lines”. These should be green and will define the final dimensions of the finished page. Make sure that any necessary elements of your images stop at least 4 mm short of the trim line
If you’re working with a professional designer to create your files, they should understand what’s needed to make everything “print ready”. But if you’re working with design software yourself for the first time, these are the vital tips to remember before you submit your files. Still, our team of experts will always manually check all your files before we go to press. If we find any issues, we’ll let you know and help you resolve them. We won’t print your comic until we’re sure we’ll get a perfect result.
Sample Comic Books and Crowdfunding
We understand that for self-publishers and independent creatives, ordering a large print run can be a considerable commitment. That’s why we’ve developed our sample book service. Commissioning a sample of your comic book is a great way to preview your finished work without committing to large quantities. Many creators—especially if they’re running a crowdfunding campaign on Kickstarter or promoting to supporters on Patreon, Ko-Fi, and similar platforms — find this a helpful strategy to attract investors and guarantee presales.
Example of a sample comic book specification
- Comic Book Sample Size: 7.3″ x 11″ (you may also use a custom size)
- Type of Printing: Full-color CMYK offset printing
- Sample Book Cover: 250 gsm / 90 lb gloss art paper with 110 mm flap on the front and back covers
- Comic Book Cover Surface: Matte laminated and spot UV
- Interior Pages: 105 gsm / 70 lb gloss art paper
- Number of Pages: The sample may be up to 200 pages
- Binding Type: Sewing and perfect binding
Unlike several other printing companies, we genuinely care about all our clients — not just the check! We genuinely want you to succeed. So, if you’re running a crowdfunding campaign, say on Kickstarter, talk to us first. We’ll be happy to help you with comic book design templates, free artwork checking, and special discounts on a range of optimal printing solutions.
If you’re an indie author or a small press wanting to print a comic book — and only the finest product and unbeatable customer service will do — we should talk. Get in touch today to chat through your needs or to ask for a no-obligation quote. We can’t wait to help you make your next comic the best!