19 Sep 2019

Sihl's Ian Turnbull discusses media options for roll up and pop up displays

Sihl Frog And Logo

Ian Turnbull, Operations Director at Sihl Direct UK, discusses the importance of selecting the right media for the right application.  In this article, his focus is on roll up and pop up displays...

"You would be right in thinking that there is very little difference between roll up and pop up displays. They are virtually the same, except that with roll ups the retraction is normally done by rolling the media away, whereas with a pop up, it is usually folded down.  Both types of advertising are a must for companies wanting to be permanently present in the market.

To get the best out of either version - roll up or pop up - the display needs to be printed on the right material.

The opacity factor

Simply put, the higher the opacity the better, when it comes to roll up and pop up banners. A banner with 100 per cent opacity allows absolutely no light through, which means customers get a much clearer look at the display than one which is letting in light. This is why Sihl‘s products are usually equipped with a grey back which blocks out almost all backlighting.  However, Sihl does offer alternatives to the grey back. The Mirano POS Photo Paper PE 220 satin 3674 has a white back, but contains an opaque film in its composite structure, which also enhances the paper‘s edge tearing resistance. This means that despite the thinness of the paper, an almost perfect opacity of 99.8 per cent is achieved.

Colour consistency

When using roll up and pop up media for an exhibition stand or something similar, a combination of stiff and flexible print media is often required. 170-220 μm thick films are usually used in roll up systems. For pop ups, a more rigid 300-450-μm material is needed in order to guarantee enough stability. Different media usually produce different whites and colour rendering in the printed picture. Even when colours are properly managed, an inconsistent overall picture is unavoidable. For this reason Sihl offers product groups with identical coatings in a variety of thicknesses.


No one wants their pop ups and roll ups to curl.  Ideally, the edges of a print remain absolutely flat and neither curls forwards or backwards. The way the material has been stored and transported can affect whether it curls or not, as can the structure of the material. For example if the components react differently to changes in temperature and humidity. Polyester or rigid PVC based Sihl media barely react to environmental influences and usually remain perfectly flat.

Scratch resistant

These kinds of displays are often used several times and in different places so inevitably they are exposed to a certain amount of wear and tear. Ideally, a pressure sensitive lamination is applied to these products for protection against damage, but this not only means additional expense, it can also cause one sided tension on the front. Sihl media, especially films developed for solvent inks, are extremely scratch resistant and are therefore suitable for use without additional protection. The SuperDry Roll-up Film 190 satin 3471 and Mirano POS Photo Paper PE 220 satin 3674 in combination with pigment inks, are also highly scratch resistant thanks to their satin surface texture. Therefore they are suitable for use without additional protection.

Something all these films have in common is that with or without lamination, they are significantly less expensive than the products which combine a laminate layer, print medium and reverse side light barrier. Above all, ply bond strength and printing quality are significantly better with Sihl’s products.

Whether the display needed is a roll up or pop up, Sihl Direct UK can offer the most suitable media for the right use."

About Sihl Direct

Sihl Direct UK is part of the global Diatec group. The company is a leading coated media provider for the large format printing industry. In addition to media for the latest generation of digital printers, Sihl Direct sells a wide range of media for photo, office and large format applications.

For more information, please visit www.sihl-direct.co.uk