Water vs Ethanol: Quick tips to match the right ink to your substrate

Quality coding and high productivity are achieved through Domino's Thermal Inkjet (TIJ) inks. Developed in compliance with the highest industry standards, Domino's inks are rigorously tested to ensure the highest levels of reliability, dependability and consistency for your coding needs.

Domino have developed two TIJ inks to be used in conjunction with the G20i outer case coder. TIJBK640 is a water-based black ink designed for coding onto cardboard including data matrix coding, and TIJBK140 is an ethanol-based black ink, developed for coding into non-porous substrates such as glossy surfaces, foils, wrappers and blister packs.

Not sure which type of ink you need? Our experts have shared some advice to help you choose ink compatible with your material's substrate.

Water vs Ethanol

Both types of TIJ inks offer different benefits, and are each compatible with a wide range of surfaces. Domino's water-based TIJBK640 delivers rapid drying time with high print contrast on carton board, while the ethanol-based TIJBK140 provides excellent coding results on non-porous substrates such as gloss cartons and confectionery wrappers.

There are a number of key factors to consider when choosing your ink type, including the ink basis, suitability, adherence, dry time, contrast and required prints per cartridge. Below is an overview of the vital characteristics of the water and ethanol-based G20i inks to help guide you in selecting a compatible ink cartridge for your G20i coder.



Ink basis




Porous substrates (paper, carton), general use

Non-porous substrates (blisters, glossy surfaces, foils, wrappers), food packaging safety testing supported

Drying time

Typically less than 1.5 sec on carton board

Typically less than 1 sec

De-cap time

Excellent (clear first print after line stops in excess of 8 hours)

Very good (clear first prints after extended line stops in excess of 4 hours)


Very high print contrast

Good print contrast

Prints per cartridge

575,034 (32 character message over 3 lines at 200 x 300 dpi)

573,546 (32 character message over 3 lines at 200 x 300 dpi)

G20i ink being put into cartridge

G20i printing on chococlate boxes

G20i printing with keyboard onto boxes

G20i printing on Cardboard boxes

Check out our G20i Starter Pack including Water-Based Ink

This pack contains a Domino G20i coder and a water-based Domino ink

Buy Now

Check out our G20i Starter Pack including Ethanol Ink

This pack contains a Domino G20i coder and an ethanol Domino ink

Buy Now

Want to find out more about the Domino G20i printer?

Benefits of TIJ Inks

Domino's TIJ inks consistently deliver sharp and clear prints that are durable over the product's lifecycle on a wide variety of substrates including paper, cartons, blisters, foils and wrappers.

Benefits of G20i ink

Want further advice on ink cartridge selection, or on getting the most out of your TIJ coder?

Contact our friendly team if you would like more information about Domino G20i inks. We can even test your substrate to find the most suitable ink for your material's surface.

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