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Pre-inked Stamp vs Self-inking Stamp

pre inked vs self inking
Between pre-inked stamps and self-inking stamps, which do you prefer? Or have you decided which one is better than the other? Seems difficult when both types do have the same purpose.

If you are working at the office or have a pile of files at home, chances are you have these. You probably have used these stamps to get your paperwork done efficiently. With different title stamps available, you can sign important documents or stamp labels with various impressions.

Truly, there is always one better than the other. With this pre-inked vs. self-inking stamp comparative review, we are going to delve into their significant features and primary uses.

Which is Better: Pre-Inked Stamps or Self-Inking Stamps?

Both make a great impression in terms of quality. They do not need separate ink pads as well. However, there are still distinct differences between the two.
We shall learn more about the quality, design, and other aspects of using them as we go deeper into their comparative evaluation. Let’s get started!

Ergonomic Design

Pre-inked Stamps

Pre-inked stamps have a built-in ink reservoir within the stamp filled with oil-based or gel-based ink. Since you do not need to use a separate ink pad, this stamp is ready for use should you ever need it.

This type of stamp usually has a cover at the bottom for secure and clean storage.

Self-inking Stamps

Meanwhile, self-inking stamps are like automatic traditional rubber stamps that have real rubbers mounted on ink pads. Whenever you make an impression or stamp on a document, the die or the rubber goes back and forth to re-ink itself into the ink pad.

Some self-inking stamps include an ink pad, while others have a built-in water-based ink pad that re-inks after each imprint. Aside from that, you can change it into a different ink color for uniformed labels.

Both types feature a compact and space-saver design that can fit perfectly on your office table.

Impression Quality and Longevity

Pre-inked Stamps

Pre-inked stamps offer excellent and long-lasting ink quality that can create up to 50,000 impressions! This allows you to utilize the tool for quite a long time before refilling the ink. Not to mention that ink refilling is incredibly easy.

It only needs a couple of drops of ink into the reservoir. Afterward, you should leave it for hours, and then, you are all set to make another round of thousands of impressions. But take note that the ink refills should be from the same type or brand.

However, since it uses oil-based or gel-based ink, it does not dry as quickly as the self-inking stamps. Nevertheless, pre-inked stamps offer high-quality, sharp, and crisp impressions. Therefore, it is an ideal option for those who want to achieve clean impressions that do not smudge or feather, especially when signing important documents.

Self-inking Stamps

Self-inking stamps provide great ink quality that can render excellent impressions. Though they can deliver clear impressions, they are not as crisp and clean as the pre-inked ones. However, they do not bleed easily since they usually use water-based ink. Plus, they dry quickly.

With full ink, it can create up to 10,000 impressions. It may not be as many as the pre-inked ones, ink refills are incredibly easy as well. Simply add a couple of drops to the ink pad and you are all set. As mentioned, you can use different colors if necessary.

Fast and Efficient Impressions

Pre-inked Stamps

As mentioned, pre-inked stamps can accomplish up to 50,000 impressions before you ever have to refill them. This means that you can prevent the hassle of having to make any ink refills and work more efficiently.

Self-inking Stamps

Self-inking stamps may not deliver as many impressions as the pre-inked stamps, but they are reliable for quick and repeated stamping. Thus, this is ideal for rapid stamping tasks, typically for clerical work that needs to get a lot of paperwork done in a short amount of time.


Pre-inked Stamps

Considering the performance and longevity, pre-inked stamps are relatively pricier than self-inking stamp types. Besides the higher count of impressions, this type of stamp offers convenient yet high-quality performance. They have the best impressions, allowing you to render careful and neat stamping, particularly on important documents.

Self-inking Stamps

Although self-inking stamps are much more affordable than the pre-inked type, this does not mean that they have substandard quality and performance. The main reason is that they can offer fewer impressions, which means that you have to refill them more frequently.

The quality of impressions is also not similar to pre-inked stamps. Needless to say, self-inking stamps deliver fast, readable, and clear impressions.

Which Type of Stamp Should You Use?

which type of stamp should you use

It all comes down to your preferences.

If you need to create sharp, crisp, clean impressions with remarkably long-lasting ink, your ideal choice is pre-inked stamps. The only drawback is the price tag; they are expensive.

On a different note, self-inking stamps must be your best bet if you need rapid and repeated stamping regardless of the quality of impressions. Nonetheless, they are much more affordable.


To sum it up, this pre-inked vs self-inking detailed comparative review has unveiled the performance evaluation between the two stamp types. Although they are both designed for a sole purpose, they have their respective yet impressive ways to deliver the job that needs to be done – fast and efficient stamping.

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