7 Best Heat Press Machines of 2019

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Looking for the best heat press can be overwhelming for the uninitiated. There’s a vast variety of these machines available from multiple brands. The size, price, features and user-friendly appeal also differ significantly between models. My guide removes all the confusion and helps new and experienced users make better buying decisions. It’s an easy yet practical read that I call heat press 101.

Super Deal 9×12 Swing-Away
Type: Swing Away
Plat Size: 9 x 12 inches
Direct top-to-bottom pressure, built-in Teflon coated platen.
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Best Value
Fancierstudio 12×10 Swing-Away
Type: Swing Away
Plat Size: 12 x 10 inches
Convenient size, easy to operate, electronic timer, full heat control.
Check Amazon
Top Pick
TUSY 15×15 Clamshell
Type: Clamshell
Plat Size: 15 x 15 inches
Large plate, strong arms, anti-slip pressure handle, LCD control board.
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Heat Press Machines Defined

It’s important to know what a heat press is—specifically. These machines exist to imprint designs and graphics onto a whole variety of surfaces. The most popular garments include t-shirts (tees), sweatshirts, hats, aprons, and even socks. They’re also used to imprint custom designs onto harder surfaces. Coffee mugs, placemats, and smartphone cases are a few prime examples.

The machines work by applying heat and pressure—hence Heat Press—for a set time. The preset times depend on the transfer method and the surface in use. A decent heat press has a simple digital control panel to set the specified time and temperature. There may also be a pressure adjustment knob. The manufacturers provide the settings for the type of surface and transfer.

Iron-On Vs. Heat Press

Some hobbyists use regular house irons to imprint designs onto clothing. Temperature, pressure, and timing are just as vital with this approach. Ironing is a manual process that takes some practice. It’s also less predictable than a heat press, especially with certain materials. The results can still be professional with the right approach. Irons are too slow and unpredictable for business use, though.

Transfer Materials

There are a variety of transfer materials available for a heat press machine. User choice or client demands can determine what type or brand to use. Here are some examples:

  • Digitally treated heat transfer paper
  • Heat transfer vinyl, cut using a vinyl cutter machine
  • Embroidered patches
  • Rhinestones transfers
  • Screen printing
  • Sublimation

Heat Press Buying Considerations

One of the first buying considerations should be usage. Think about what you want the heat press to do both now and further down the road. A simple list of needs and expectations can be invaluable here. What size images do you intend to transfer? That’s a vital consideration as the size of a heat press platen is as large as you can go. It’s a simple yet often overlooked point among newbies.

About My ‘Best Heat Press’ Guide

The reviews are easy-to-read and only cover what you need to know. You won’t find any long-winded waffle or technical jargon here. The 7 products on this page are the result of personal research. I also took the opinions of industry experts and real user reviews into consideration. The first three are Best Budget, Best Value, and the Top pick. The table below shows the order of these reviews.

Heat Press Machines Comparison Table

1. Super Deal Sublimation Transfer Press | Best Budget

Super Deal Sublimation Transfer PressView on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.7/5

The Best Budget pick goes to the Super Deal sublimation transfer press. It’s an excellent choice for the hobbyist or those starting a small business. It can do various size jobs and works on different surfaces.

  • Best feature 1: Industrial strength
  • Best feature 2: Digital LCD temperature control
  • Plus points: Direct top-to-bottom pressure, built-in Teflon coated platen, digital timer control
  • Minus points: Challenging for raw beginners

Suitable for: T-shirts, bags, various garments, materials (cotton, fiber, ceramic, metal, glass), jigsaws, mouse mats, plates, ceramic tiles, and other hard, flat items.

Super Deal Heat Press Highlights

Super Deal’s sublimation transfer press is a durable machine that boasts industrial strength pressure. It’s a swing-away design with 360° rotation of the upper platen. Users can adjust the pressure for the material and its thickness. This model comes with a digital LCD panel to control the timing. And the heating element stops warming the moment it reaches the preset temperature.

A digital timer control allows adjustments up to 16 minutes (999 seconds). Direct top-to-bottom pressure guarantees level contact every time. And the built-in 12×10” platen has a Teflon coat with a collection of heating coils. Combined, they ensure consistent results with every transfer.

The Not So Good

There’s little to fault considering the features and price of this sublimation transfer press. A handful of users report alignment problems, but it doesn’t seem to be a widespread issue. The only real downside to this swing-away model is that it’s not so easy for first-time users to grasp.

Tech Specs
Brand: Super Deal
Design: Swing-away
Color: Black
Heat Platen Size: 12 x 10”
Dimensions: 16 x 14.5 x 13”
Product Weight: 30 lbs.
Temperature Range: 0–399°F
Time Range: 0–999 seconds
Wattage: 600W
The Pros
Durable build
Industrial strength, pressure
Digital LCD temperature control
Direct top-to-bottom pressure
Built-in Teflon coated platen
Digital timer control
The Cons
A tad awkward for beginners

2. Fancierstudio Swing Away Heat Press | Best Value

Fancierstudio Swing Away Heat PressView on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.5/5

Our Best Value heat press goes to the Fancierstudio’s 9×12 inch model. It has a swing-away design and is suitable for casual domestic use or light business operations.

  • Best feature 1: Personal or light commercial use
  • Best feature 2: High temperature and heavy pressure
  • Plus points: Convenient size, easy to operate, electronic timer, full heat control
  • Minus points: Small platen size, smelly, noisy

Suitable for: Various garments but marketed primarily as a t-shirt heat press.

Fancierstudio Heat Press Highlights

This heat press uses heavy pressure and high temperatures to ensure permanent, long-lasting transfers. The machine is an ideal size for people with space restrictions or those who don’t need a larger plate. Another attraction is that it’s easy to set up and use at the beginner level. The electronic timer, heat control, and adjustable pressure make light work of using this capable little press.

The Not So Good

Buying a heat press of the wrong size is a common mistake (see introduction). It’s also avoidable. Some users say the machine is too small for their needs. The makers clearly state the product dimensions and size of the platen, as do these reviews. The smaller size is only a downside if it fails to meet your needs. Two other gripes are the noise and smell this product emits.

Tech Specs
Brand: Fancierstudio
Design: Swing-away
Color: Blue/black
Heat Platen Size: 9 x 12”
Dimensions: 16.5 x 15 x 13.5”
Product Weight: 29.3 lbs.
Temperature Range: 0–500°F
Time Range: 0–999 seconds
Wattage: 1100W
The Pros
Easy to set up and operate
Convenient smaller size press
Domestic or light business use
High temperature, heavy pressure
Full heat control
Electronic timer
Teflon sheet
The Cons
Small platen size

3. TUSY Digital Industrial T-Shirt Heat Press | Top Pick

TUSY Digital Industrial T-Shirt Heat PressView on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.8/5

Our Top Pick is a TUSY clamshell heat press. It’s an industrial quality machine with a large 15×15” plate. It’s an easy-to-use product that repeatedly produces high-quality transfers.

  • Best feature 1: Anti-overheating feature
  • Best feature 2: Pressure adjustable
  • Plus points: Large plate, strong arms, anti-slip pressure handle, LCD control board
  • Minus points: Default Celsius setting, irritating beep

Suitable for: T-shirts, bags, garments, blankets, banners, mouse mats, (cotton, fabric, etc.).

TUSY Heat Press Highlights

This machine is well-made with a large heat plate. Users feel confident operating the press with its strong arms and anti-slip handle. First-time users find setting the time and temperature a cinch from the LCD panel. The pressure setting is also straightforward using the adjustment knob. An audible alarm lets you know when printing is complete.

TUSY’s digital t-shirt heat press comes with a safe, anti-overheating feature. It works by shutting the machine off if it detects temperatures that are too high. That’s reassuring as it safeguards against scorching, burning, and potential fire risk.

The Not So Good

US customers need to know that the default setting for this heat press is Celsius. You can change it to Degree Fahrenheit, so it may be a good idea to make that the first job. Another negative is the beep the machine makes when it’s ready, and it won’t stop until you start using it. That’s not a bad thing, but some users do find it irritating. It also beeps when the job’s done, but you’re ready for that.

Tech Specs
Brand: TUSY
Design: Clamshell
Color: Black
Heat Platen Size: 15 x 15”
Dimensions: 30 x 19 x 17”
Product Weight: 50 lbs.
Temperature Range: 0–482°F
Time Range: 0–999 seconds
Wattage: 1400W
The Pros
Easy to use heat press
Anti-overheating feature
Pressure adjustable
Large size plate
Strong arms
Anti-slip pressure handle
LCD control board
The Cons
Default Celsius setting
Irritating beep

4. Nurxiovo Heat Press Machine for Garments

Nurxiovo Heat Press Machine for GarmentsView on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.6/5

The Nurxiovo heat press is a digital clamshell design and an excellent choice for tees. It has a large 15×15 inch plate and a silicon rubber sheet that makes operating it safe and secure.

  • Best feature 1: Digital time display
  • Best feature 2: Heavy duty build with steel frame
  • Plus points: Eco-friendly silicone sheet, easy to use, fast heating, pressure regulating handle
  • Minus points: Some reports of uneven heating

Suitable for: T-shirts, garments, bags, jigsaw puzzles, ceramic tiles, and other flat surface items.

Nurxiovo Heat Press Highlights

This heat press is a heavy-duty product with a steel frame structure. It has a professional look at feel to it which is not something all machines can boast. The silicone rubber sheet is an eco-friendly material. Nurxiovo’s heat press has a digital time display to make setting up jobs foolproof. The device uses a labor-saving pressure regulating handle, heats fast, and is easy to operate at any level.

The Not So Good

There are reports of uneven heating though it’s not something all users experience. It’s possible that a few machines are faulty, like a warped platen for example. It’s most likely user error, though, caused by not applying enough pressure. The Nurxiovo heat press does have a pressure regulating handle.

Tech Specs
Brand: Nurxiovo
Design: Clamshell
Color: Black w/ red silica gel pad
Heat Platen Size: 15 x 15”
Dimensions: 23.62 x 15.74 x1 2.59”
Product Weight: 62 lbs.
Temperature Range: 33–482°F
Time Range: 0–999 seconds
Wattage: 1200W
The Pros
Digital time display
Eco-friendly build
Heavy duty
Easy to use
Fast heating speed
Pressure regulating handle
The Cons
Some reports of uneven heating

5. PowerPress HPM-1515-BK Quality Heat Press

PowerPress HPM-1515-BK Quality Heat PressView on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.4/5

This machine is the PowerPress HPM-1515-BK clamshell. It’s an industrial-quality sublimation t-shirt press with a large 15×15 inch heat platen. The product is suitable for domestic and light business use.

  • Best feature 1: 6 safety protection features
  • Best feature 2: Teflon coated surface
  • Plus points: Easy to operate, LCD control board, pressure knob, excellent value
  • Minus points: Heat setting may be off, hard to open

Suitable for: Various garments but marketed primarily as a t-shirt heat press.

PowerPress Heat Transfer Highlights

The PowerPress HPM-1515-BK has 6 safety protection features. They include protections for short circuit, reverse polarity, overvoltage, under-voltage, over-temperature, and over-current. This model’s Teflon-coated heated plate means there’s no need for coated sheets. It also looks smart and is simple to clean. The LCD control board and pressure adjustment knob make using this machine a breeze.

The Not So Good

Some users say the heat setting of their machine is off by about 15+ degrees. It’s not an issue shared by all heat press owners. Even so, there’s enough feedback for it to be a potential issue with some machines. It’s wise to test the settings on 1 or 2 throw-away projects, and then compensate if necessary. The other gripe is that the door’s quite hard to open once the machine’s in use.

Tech Specs
Brand: PowerPress
Design: Clamshell
Color: Black
Heat Platen Size: 15 x 15”
Dimensions: 26 x 15 x 15”
Product Weight: 48.5 lbs.
Temperature Range: 0-450°F
Time Range: 0-999 seconds
Wattage: 1400W
The Pros
6 safety protection features
Teflon coated surface
Easy to operate
LCD control board
Pressure knob
Excellent value
The Cons
Heat setting may be off
Hard to open

6. F2C Pro Multifunction Digital Heat Press

F2C Pro Multifunction Digital Heat PressView on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.3/5

The F2C Pro is a 5-in-1 swing-away design digital transfer sublimation heat press. The machine has a 12×15 inch plate and 360° rotation. It’s a superb choice for hobbyists and small business.

  • Best feature 1: 5-in-1 multifunctional appeal
  • Best feature 2: Industrial strength
  • Plus points: Easy to use, LED controller, Fahrenheit/Celsius scale, timer, audible alarms
  • Minus points: No clear instructions, needs space to operate

Suitable for: T-shirts, garments, hats, mouse pads, custom coffee mug, plates, placemats, etc.

F2C Heat Press Highlights

Multifunction heat presses appeal to folks who need to do more than just print t-shirts. This is a 5 in 1 model and comes with a variety of hat, mug, and plate attachments. It’s strong and durable which makes it an excellent choice for regular, long-term use. Most important of all is that it’s easy to assemble and simple to use, even for novice users.

The digital LED controller gives full control from one handy panel. You can choose Fahrenheit or Celsius, set the accurate temperature, and the precise time. The heat press also has an audible alarm that notifies you once the transfer is complete.

The Not So Good

The main complaint with this heat press is the lack of instruction. It’s easy to set up and use with the proper guidance. It’s hard to fathom at first because the booklet it comes with is useless. There are helpful videos on YouTube, but new owners shouldn’t have to go searching.

The second negative is something to be aware of rather than a fault. That is, the swing-away design and 12×15” plate need space to function.

Tech Specs
Brand: F2C
Design: Swing-away
Color: Black
Heat Platen Size: 12 x 15”
Dimensions: 20.6 x 19.3 x 20.2”
Product Weight: 45.8 lbs.
Temperature Range: 32–430°F
Time Range: 0–999 seconds
Wattage: 1200W
The Pros
5-in-1 multifunctional appeal
Industrial strength
Easy to use
LED controller
Fahrenheit/Celsius scale
Timer, audible alarms
The Cons
No clear instructions
Needs space to swing

7. VEVOR 15×15″ Multifunctional 5-in-1 Heat Press

VEVOR 15x15 Multifunctional 5-in-1 Heat PressView on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.5/5

The last of our reviews is the VEVOR 15×15 inch multifunctional 5-in-1 heat press. The machine is a 360° swing-away design and a perfect choice for small business or heavy personal use.

  • Best feature 1: Multi-functional 5-in-1 heat press
  • Best feature 2: Overload protector
  • Plus points: Teflon coated 12×15″ heat platen, pressure adjustment knob, digital LED timer
  • Minus points: Poor instructions, thin Teflon sheets

Suitable for: T-shirts, lettering & numbers, fabrics (cotton, nylon, flax, chemical fiber), caps, ceramics (plates, coasters, tiles, mugs), jigsaw puzzles, mouse pads, glasses, and much more.

VEVOR Heat Press Highlights

Consider the VEVOR 15×15 inch, 5-in-1 heat press if you do multifunctional projects. The machine arrives fully assembled and ready to go. It includes the platen press, hat/cap press, a mug press, and two plate presses. The platen press has a Teflon coat, so there are no scorching issues to worry about. Other standout features are the overload protector, pressure adjustment knob, and a digital LED timer.

It’s easy to set the transfer time and exact temperature with the digital LED controller. Users can also choose either Fahrenheit or Celsius. An intelligent audible alarm sounds once the transfer ready.

The Not So Good

The instructions are inadequate both in guidance and in print quality. It seems to be an issue with a lot of heat press machines so let’s hope the makers are listening. At least there’s YouTube. Still, buyers deserve an easy-to-follow setup and operation guide. Another con is the thinness of the included Teflon sheet. That’s a potential flaw as it’s vulnerable to tearing and provides little cushioning.

Tech Specs
Brand: VEVOR
Design: Swing-away & pulley
Color: Black/yellow
Heat Platen Size: 15 x 15”
Dimensions: 23.6 x 19.3 x 18.1”
Product Weight: 51 lbs.
Temperature Range: 200–450°F
Time Range: 0–999 Seconds
Wattage: 1450W
The Pros
Easy for beginners to operate
360-degree swivel design
Multi-functional 8-in-1 press
Overload protector
Pressure adjustment knob
Digital LCD timer
Teflon coated heat platen
The Cons
Poor instructions
Thin Teflon sheet
0/50 ratings