Best Heat Press Machine of 2017

There are countless heat press machines on the market and that may be overwhelming for many customers who are out searching for the best one for their needs. That is why I decided to write this selection of products, in order to help you figure out which is the best heat press machine for your needs without having to loose time on research.

Since the aim of this review is to save you time and ultimately money, I did not include a huge variety of press machines, just the ones that I found to be the best in terms of value for the money and quality.

PowerPress Industrial-Quality Digital 15-by-15-Inch Sublimation T-Shirt Heat Press, Black

If you want value for the money and a quality you probably can’t find a better heat press machine than this one. The highest temperature it can reach is 500F and this is more than enough for most semi-professional and even professional projects from T-Shirts to all sorts of fabrics and materials.

It features adjustable pressure for various materials so you won’t burn an item or not receive the desired results. The working surface is 15 X 15 inches which is reasonable although it can limit you if you plan on working on bigger projects.

You can also set a stopwatch and when it is done you will be announced by a series of annoying beeps  đź™‚

The closing system is using a clamp and it is fairly easy to use, although I found that it is not the best system in the long run. The closing system that I prefer the most is present on the heat press below.


Mophorn Digital Swing Away Rigid Steel Heat Press Machine for T-Shirts, 12×10 Inch

You probably can’t beat the price on this heating press and at the same time deliver the same quality. The Mophorn Digital Swing Away Rigid Steel Heat Press Machine for T Shirts is a great choice for the beginners, but is reliable for the experienced customers as well.

The working table is rather small, at 12 X 10 inches, which is more suitable for home and semi-professional projects. This is a press machine suitable for a large variety of materials, from cotton to ceramic, glass and even metal.

Talking about the good parts on the machine has to begin with the closing system that actually makes it stand out from other models. With the Swing Away system not only that you can fit a T-Shirt easier on the press but you will also better avoid getting burnt while trying to fit the T-Shirt or the fabric. With the standard clamp system, this is not possible as long as the press sits on a table and the space between the working area and the table is too small to do all these operations. That is why I definitely prefer a swing away system to a classic clamp system.

I also like the elevated lower plated that is upgraded, giving you room to easily place and remove t-shirts from the machine.

The adjustability of the machine is another good point and the full-range pressure-adjustments knob helps you set the pressure according to the thickness of the material you’re working on. This definitely gives better quality of the finished transfers.

The directions on the machine are easy to follow and the machine is easy to use. It heats up fast and it’s lightweight. Let’s not forget you can’t beat the price, considering the quality you get.

Listing the most important pros:

  • The machine has a Swing Away closing system
  • It’s adjustable and dependable
  • It’s lightweight and easy to use
  • It’s great for beginners

The cons aren’t major:

  • You can only use it for small projects and it’s a challenge to step up the game with it
  • The alarm may go off on its own

The issues aren’t deal breakers for me and I only focus on the good quality and performance you get for a rather small price.


Hotronix Fusion 16″x20″ Heat Press Swing-Away MADE IN USA – Heat Transfer Press Machine Built To Last!

Let’s get one thing straight. The heat press machines above are made in China. They do offer a great value for the money, but we all know when the price is so low there will always be some quality concerns here and there. Hotronix, however, is a brand that manufactures their machines in the USA. The quality of this machine cannot be easily matched by any other chinese brands. So if you want professional results and quality then you should definitely give this machine a look.

I like the number of features and the customizability of those. It actually has an internal storage that stores all previous projects and records all the pressing cycles. It also has digital timing along with temperature and pressure indicators helpful for those working with a large variety of materials and fabrics.

The 16 x 20 inches working table has an aluminum frame and the heat retention system works very well thanks to the 3/4 inches platens. The swing away closing system is very good offering great flexibility and ease of use at all times. This is a perfect press machine for T-Shirts and clothing because it comes with plenty space underneath the table and a dedicated frame. If clothing is not your main business you can check other versions with a clamp closing system below.

The preset program is a great feature and the machine comes with clear explanation on every little step you need to take for operating the machine. The high tech touch screen is responsive and quite easy to understand.

I don’t typically do that, but we’d say that this is indeed the best heat press machine in the price range. It is reliable, high-quality and it delivers great results. If you have the money then we would definitely recommend investing them in this machine or the other USA made machines from bellow, because the quality is way better.

Going over the big things once again:

  • The machine has a great quality and build
  • It comes with high tech touch screen
  • It’s a commercial grade machine
  • It has various features and adjustability functions for easier operation

The minor issues don’t bother us much:

  • You need a couple of hands to move this around as it’s pretty heavy
  • It’s not quite cheap so you may want to put aside a buck or two for it

For the high performances and reliability on so many types of projects, the machine really is a good investment of your money.


Gecko T-Shirt Sublimation GK100 Heat Transfer Press Machine, 15 x 15-Inch, Black

This Gecko heat press is special for many reasons. First and foremost it is more compact than other machines because it only encapsulates the necessary parts without any fancy yet unnecessary features. It comes with a working table of 15 x 15 inches and a very useful non-stick sheet.

While the closing mechanism is the same as on most other heat press machines I like how they designed it. The materials used are better than the competition, I would say and the handle offers a great grip for easy open and close of the lid.

The highest temperature it can reach is 435 F and that is enough for most projects / materials, although I would have liked to see at least 500F as on the previous model.

Again, this might not be the absolute best heat press machine money can buy, but considering the price range, the value for the money and the quality of this unit, I would say it definitely deserves a place in my selection.

Check out this article on the best heat transfer paper if you need to buy along with your heat press machine.


STAHLS HOTRONIX Auto-Open Clam 16×20 Heat Press

Yet another Hotronix machine, the Stahls Hotronix Auto-Open Clam 16×20 Heat Press doesn’t feature a swing away closing system, although the standard is better implemented than what I have seen on cheaper machines. I say this mainly because it has a very clever auto-open clam so you won’t have to sit near the press at all times.

This may not be the best heat press machine for T-Shirts and other clothes because it doesn’t have dedicated space underneath and various other accessories to help in this process. I would rather use it for fabrics that are not finished products and other industrial applications. Although if you have experience in this domain you may definitely use it for clothes and T-Shirts.

It can reach temperatures as high as 400 F, it comes with all the needed features like automatic timer, temperature and pressure controller, rubber bottom pad, and on top of that, a smart latch system, which allows you to change the platter in less than 20 seconds.

You don’t any tools for installing or using the machine. It’s lightweight which makes it highly portable and doesn’t take a lot of space either.

The list of good features is quite long and includes the auto sleep mode, a patented magnetic Assist Lock down, patented magnetic auto open digital controls for temperature, but also a patented over the center pressure adjustment. You may also have two independent time settings (the Twin Timer feature).

The machine has a rugged build and it’s scratch resistant thanks to it powder coat finish. The Teflon coated heater is stress relieved for minimizing warping.

Highlighting the most important good things:

  • The machine has a rugged build although it’s lightweight
  • It comes with many adjustments and features
  • It closes/opens very easy
  • It’s easy to use and has a small footprint

We only notice some flaws:

  • The machine heats slower than you’d expect in the beginning
  • It’s not a low priced machine, for sure

Hotronix always made machines worth investing into. This is yet another example of a high-quality machine made in the USA that can deliver outstanding results when used properly.


Hix Heat Press SwingMan 20E: 16″x20″ Swing-Away – MADE IN USA – Heat Transfer Press Machine Built To Last!

The Hix Heat Press Swingman 20E: 16″x20″ Swing-Away is a machine and a brand that I like very much. Despite the fact that it is of very good quality and can be used in professional applications, it also has a beautiful design, which is pleasant to the eye. Other brands only concentrate on the pragmatic features and on the end results; however, Hix seems to have invested in the design department quite a lot. The design is also simplistic and anything by confusing.

The swing away closing system is simple and intuitive and more importantly, it is better than a standard clamp system. I previously wrote why I think this is true.

The machine has a strong construction and is made here at home in the USA and the swing-away motion works very smooth. The temperature ranges up to 400 degrees, which makes it a reliable choice for the hobbyists and professionals alike.

The adjustment features aren’t impressive, but the machine does come with an analog temperature controller and a separate digital timer as well. You may depend on the pressure control and the versatility of the machine. You may work on materials of various thickness, up to 1.75” thick.

The heat and pressure are consistent and you may depend on the machine for a long time. It comes with lifetime heating element warranty and that’s important to note.

Let’s make a very short list of pros:

  • The machine comes with swing away closing system
  • It’s dependable and versatile
  • It has a strong build and it’s made in our USA
  • It gives consistent heat and pressure

We’re not shy about mentioning the cons either:

  • It doesn’t come with many fancy features
  • It has some manual controls

All in all, if you want an America press and you are willing to put more money at stake, you can make a very smart choice with this heat press machine.

 


ShareProfit 12’’ X 15’’ 6 In 1 Digital Heat Press Adjustable Multi-spring Balancer Heat Press Machine

When it comes to the ShareProfit 12’’ X 15’’ 6 In 1 Digital Heat Press Adjustable Multi-spring Balancer Heat Press Machine, I must admit I really like its versatility and the fact that I get to use it for so many things.

The machine comes with a Teflon coated platen press so I know it’s gonna heat up fast and that it’s gonna take the intense use for quite some time. You also get a hat/cap press, mug press (actually two diameter options) and some plate presses differently sized.

It’s a good heat press machine that has a good temperature range (from 82 to 390F degrees) and you don’t have to wait that much for the machine to heat up (the manufacturer says you need up to 999seconds, but I didn’t check it).

The long arm handle has a sturdy built and it has a cozy rubber grip so you work easier and faster, with minimal strain for your hand and shoulder.

The platen press element is high quality and doesn’t stick, presenting minor risk for scorching of transfers. You don’t need a separate silicone/Teflon sheet when using the machine.

I shouldn’t forget to mention the digital timer control that is adjustable (like I said, up to 999seconds) or the removable base.

I like the machine as it’s not only easy to use, but also safe as it lets you move the heating element safely aside.

As for the dual digital LCD display, it’s very clear and you always know the time and temperature also.

The machine leaves me a durability feel and is so easy to use.

Positives

  • It has a good built
  • It’s easy and safe to use
  • It comes with plenty of useful items and features
  • It has a long arm handle with rubber grip

Negatives

  • The instructions that come along aren’t quite helpful
  • The temperature may be set only to Celsius degrees

Leaving aside the minor issues, I like the machine for the plenty of items and features and the good built that gives me confidence it’s gonna serve you well for quite some time.


BestEquip Heat Press Machine 8 in 1 Digital Transfer Sublimation T Shirt Heat Press

I’m not necessarily into the new era devices with LED and digital features, but maybe some would appreciate the BestEquip Heat Press Machine 8 in 1 Digital Transfer Sublimation T Shirt Heat Press.

The digital LED temperature and time controller sure make it easy to use the machine and you don’t have to be a brainer to operate it.

The machine isn’t quite the beast of the marker, but it does come with a full 360-degree rotation of swing-away design, which is so helpful on many projects.

I do like the machine as it comes also with so many helpful tool: hat press, 4xmug presses, 2x plate presses, one silicone pad, and cotton pad that are easy to remove. For those of you who aren’t that great with the technical stuff, it’s a great thing that the machine includes an operating manual that is easy to follow.

The versatility of the machine is sure something worth mentioning and you may use it for various materials: ceramics, textiles, chemical fiber, nylon and glasses.

Once is all warmed up (which takes a bit for the first time), the heat presser machine works just fine. It’s quite a reliable machine that never damages/discolors your t-shirts.

Easy to use and versatile, the heat presser machine is a sure buy for any small business.

Positives

  • It comes with a 360-degree rotation of swing-away design
  • It includes presses for hat, mug, plate, and silicone pad
  • It’s dependable and works well
  • It doesn’t damage/discolor your t-shirts

Negatives

  • It’s a bit slow on the initial setup
  • The top plate is a tad loose

Despite these minor issues, I still think this is a dependable option that could help a new business.


RiCOMA High Pressure Flat Heat Press Machine

I’m kind of sitting on a fence with this next heat presser machine as it brings good things and not that great things altogether. The RiCOMA High Pressure Flat Heat Press Machine gives a good working area (24”x16”) and offers quite some temperature range: 0 to 599F degrees.

The manufacturer says the machine needs from 0 to 999s to heat, but sure seems like forever when you’re trying to use it.

I like the machine as it has a pretty good built and doesn’t seem to have any troubles any time soon. It’s dependable and you may use it to transfer onto T-shirts, sweatshirts, mouse pads, magnetic material, bags, and license plates. As a matter of fact, there are so many materials that you may use it for.

The machine opens up around 70 degrees and takes press items up to 1” thick. I really like the details of the machine that help you use it easier. Going through the details, I find very useful the thermometer for heat platen temperature and the heat indicating light. The thermostat is adjustable and the baseboard is made of silicone. This way, the board is able to take temperature up to 575F without deform.

I didn’t notice any color difference after heat transfer, which is a concern when using a heat presser machine.

The pressure on the machine is adjustable and the machine comes with electronic time control. As for the electronic constant temperature control I notices it’s accurate and safe.

I think the machine makes a better choice for  the entry level and definitely for the personal use.

Positives

  • The machine has a good built
  • The working area is good
  • The temperature range is from 0 to 599F degree
  • It has plenty of features for easier and safe use

Negatives

  • It sure takes time to heat up
  • The heat distribution is not even
  • The body is a tad thin

I’m not saying this is the worst option out there, but I do think the machine would need some improvements, as it’s a shame for all the good things that already has.


Techtongda New 15x15inch Flat Heat Press Machine Epson

Bringing plenty of good features to the table, the Techtongda New 15x15inch Flat Heat Press Machine Epson sure makes a good impression on many users.

As all heat press machines, you may use this one for heat transferring images to T-shirts, mouse pads, tiles and pretty much on all flat surfaces. What’s even greater is the fact you can do it by foil, sublimation, inkjet and other ways also.

I like that the machine comes with an adjustable digital temperature control (maximum is 410 F degrees). You may select the display of the temperature in Fahrenheit or Celsius degrees (why would you choose Celsius, anyway?).

When I talk about the performances, I think it’s important that I mention the clear details, the accurate arrangement but also the nice colors. They are quite bright, clear, whereas the lines are constant and the nozzle is non-clogging.

The kit includes also a printer, which comes with a manual and software. It prints borderless photos in common sizes and its built seems durable and long lasting.

You also get an Ink Cartridge for the printer and all kinds of useful items: transfer paper (light and dark), heat vinyl with 4 colors, and tools for the machine.

Due to its built and features, I think the machine is a good choice for both beginners and professional heat pressers. It’s quite user friendly and sure serves you well for a good amount of time. It comes with two Teflon sheets, which is always good to have.

I have to mention the full touch digital built-in meter that is efficient and useful.

Positives

  • The machine is versatile and works well
  • It comes with plenty of items and tools
  • The images are clear, the colors are bright
  • It has a good built and it’s easy to use

Negatives

  • The printer isn’t the most performant out there
  • It’s not quite cheap for the personal use

These cons aren’t deal breakers for me and I still think this set may serve well so many type of customers.


Hotronix Cap Heat Press Auto Open

If you want a heat press machine especially for caps, I think you definitely can’t go wrong with a machine like the Hotronix Cap Heat Press Auto Open.

I’m not gonna lie: the fact is made in our USA made me look closer and I sure did enjoy what I have seen.

The machine comes with so many details that count for the easy use. For instance, you don’t need an air compressor for the machine and the opening release is automatic. The lock down is magnetic so everything is safe in place as you work.

I notice all the controls that ease the use. The machine comes with controls for the digital time, temperature and the pressure as well. You may even use the two independent time settings through the Twin Time function. The under Center pressure adjustment gives you more accuracy on the jobs.

You don’t need to use much effort in order to get maximum pressure so no strain on that either.

The list of features continues with the 5 additional, optional lower platens and the quick-change lower platen.

The machine comes also with a silicone pad and a Teflon coated heater that is stress relieved for minimizing warping.

So many details on the machine create the image of a reliable, long lasting heat press machine. It comes with a heavy-duty pin and bushing pivot points, whereas the cast in tubular element every 2” makes sure there are no cold spots when in use.

Last, but not least, the machine comes with warranty for all its parts.

Truly, this nice unit, well made provides smooth operation for a long time.

Positives

  • The machine has a good built
  • It’s easy to use and operates smoothly
  • It gives maximum pressure with minimal effort
  • It includes many features for accuracy on the jobs

Negatives

  • It comes only with a standard platen
  • It’s only for caps, so you need to know for sure if only want that

These minor flaws don’t make me change my mind about this machine that is durable, easy to use and, let’s not forget, made in our USA.


Promo Heat 15 in. x 15 in. Sublimation Heat Transfer Press Machine Clamshell

One great thing about the Promo Heat 15 in. x 15 in. Sublimation Heat Transfer Press Machine Clamshell is that it comes ready out of the box so you may use it the second you get it.

The machine presents plenty of good things that make it a fair, reliable option for family use and even for some early start-up business. You may use it for customizing t-shirts, tote bags, license plates, mouse pads and so on.

There are plenty of adjustment features on the machine that gives it versatility and ability to handle various jobs and materials. The electronic and heat control lets you get the right set for the best results and it’s sure very easy to adjust the pressure as the machine features a pressure knob.  An audible alarm informs you when time is complete, minimizing risk for over exposure.

The clamshell design means not only ease of use, but also a smaller footprint. The pressure adjustment knob is easy to access and its top mounted.

The parallel arm handle has an ergonomic foam-grip so the strain for your arm is minimal. You may comfortably use the machine for a long time without feeling tired.

I also notice a multi-spring balancer that is adjustable and the handle that applies pressure evenly thanks to the spring and pressure-plate system.

The Teflon-coated element is non-stick and doesn’t need a separate silicone/Teflon sheet.

The things I appreciate the most on the machine would be:

  • The machine comes ready to use right out of the box
  • It’s dependable and easy to use
  • It comes with Teflon-coated element
  • It’s great for family use

As for the minor drawbacks, I only noticed some:

  • The Teflon element does slide
  • You do need to put some effort into it at times

For the money you pay, I’d say you might easily depend on the machine, as it’s easy to use and versatile.


OrangeA Heat Press 5 in 1 Swing Away Heat Press Machine 1000W Hat Press 15X15Inch Heat Platen Multifunction Hat Mug Plate Cap

designed with a hobbyist needs in mind, the OrangeA Heat Press 5 in 1 Swing Away Heat Press Machine 1000W Hat Press 15X15Inch Heat Platen Multifunction Hat Mug Plate Cap comes with everything you may need for your hobby.

The package includes along with the machine, 1 hat press, one mug press, 2 plate presses, 1 silicone pad and one cotton pad. The operating manual is helpful, even though some noticed it could be clearer than it is at the moment. Important note: the machine is ready to use right out of the box as it comes fully assembled.

The platen press is just the right size for your projects (15×15 inch), whereas the full 36-degree rotation of swing-away design lets you safely move the heating element aside. The risk for accidental contact is minimal this way.

The adjustments are good and the machine comes with digital LCD timer and temperature control function for more accuracy on all jobs. Additionally, an audible alarm informs you when everything is over so you don’t over heat the project.

The versatility of the machine is also something to talk about and you may use it for plenty of jobs: t-shirts, bags, garments, ceramic tiles, cups, mugs, and so on.

The long arm handle is easy to use and the lower platform is detachable. The machine features also an adjustable multi-spring balancer and a built-in fuse for safer use. Its adjustable feet are great when working on uneven floor. As for the build, the machine comes with aluminum alloy cradle, including metal and plastic in the construction as well.

You may use the Fahrenheit or Celsius scale (why would you, anyway?) and set the temperature anywhere from 32 to 430 F degrees.

Let’s go over the main features once again:

  • The machine has a swing-away design
  • It has many adjustable features
  • It has a good build and an adjustable height
  • It’s great for many and various projects

I would’t stumble in the minor downsides if I were you:

  • You need to press hard the buttons
  • It only fits the 11oz. mugs

As long as you know you’re getting a machine that handles the small projects at home and it’s not build for the commercial use, you’re definitely in a safe zone with the machine.


FancierStudio Power Heat Press Industrial-Quality Digital 15-by-15-Inch Sublimation T-Shirt Heat Press

The new model FancierStudio Power Heat Press Industrial-Quality Digital 15-by-15-Inch Sublimation T-Shirt Heat Press comes with improvements from the previous model, including included coated sheet and coating on the heat platen.

It’s an ideal for applying transfers, letters, numbers, and images on t-shirts, garments, bags, mouse mats, jigsaw puzzles, ID bags, ceramic tiles, and other items.

The heat press machine comes with great details in the design and one of the things to notice is the silicon rubber base that is glued. I like the compact shape and its upward-opening design, which also means a smaller footprint. This makes it easier for you to display and store it.

If you want value for the money and a quality, you probably can’t find a better heat press machine than this one. The highest temperature it can reach is 500F and this is more than enough for most semi-professional and even professional projects from T-Shirts to all sorts of fabrics and materials.

It features adjustable pressure for various materials so you won’t burn an item or not receive the desired results. The working surface is 15 X 15 inches which is reasonable although it can limit you if you plan on working on bigger projects.

You can also set a stopwatch and when it is done, you will be announced by a series of annoying beeps  đź™‚

The closing system is using a clamp and it is fairly easy to use, although I found that it is not the best system in the long run.

I really like a lot the good quality build that gives us quite a heavy-duty heat press machine. Easy to adjust, the machine sure has a durability feel to it.

Let’s pinpoint the most important pros:

  • The machine has a strong build
  • The silicon rubber base is glued
  • It presents many adjustments and it’s versatile
  • It’s easy to use and doesn’t take much space

I do have some downsides to mention:

  • The heating may be uneven
  • Due to its weight, it’s not quite a portable machine

Nevertheless, for the adjustability, good build and reliability you definitely can’t go wrong when getting the machine.

If you need a laser engraver or cutter you can check out my article. 

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