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Canvas vs Metal Print: Your Ultimate Comparison Guide

user iconby Maria Johnsonclock icon5 Minutescalender icon2024-01-31

Canvas vs metal prints – which should you choose, and why? Our experts tell you everything you need to know before making your choice!

Deciding on new custom wall decor for your home can be challenging – especially these days, when there are so many different print formats available. Two of the most popular styles today are prints on canvas and prints on metal, and many of our customers say they find it hard to choose between the two.

If you’ve been weighing up the advantages of canvas vs metal prints, this detailed comparison guide will help you decide. Keep reading to learn about the metal prints vs canvas debate!

Metal Prints vs Canvas: a Quick Comparison

Canvas vs metal print: a canvas print and a metal print hanging on the wall

When it comes to character, canvas and metal prints are worlds apart.

Canvas prints have an arty, vintage feel to them. Their soft, slightly textured surface is forgiving of small imperfections in the photo. And they’re the perfect choice for portraits, as the canvas fabric adds a gentle glow to the image and softens the appearance of skin.

Canvas prints are a bit more susceptible to UV and moisture damage than some other prints, but with appropriate care they can stay in great condition for a lifetime. They’re the most affordable print format in our range – the entry price starts at just $5 for an 8” x 8” print.

On the right, a metal print. And on the left, a canvas print.

Canvas vs metal print: on the right, a metal print, on the left, a canvas print

By contrast, metal prints boast deep, rich colors and ultra-crisp definition, bringing out the finest details of your photo. They’re great for high-contrast photos, majestic landscapes, and nighttime shots.

Metal prints are very slim and have a smooth surface. Here at CANVASDISCOUNT we produce our metal prints with an elegant matte finish.

Metal prints are premium products and command higher prices than canvas prints. They’re superbly durable and will look as good as new for decades unless mistreated.

  Canvas Prints Metal Prints
Style Artistic, vintage feel Bold and contemporary
Surface Subtly textured canvas fabric Sleek aluminum sheet
Finish Matte Matte
Works best for Any photos High-res photos with rich colors
Durability 75+ years with reasonable care Lifetime performance

Read on to learn more about canvas and metal prints – such as the best ways to design and display your prints…

What is a Canvas Print?

Canvas vs metal print: a canvas print hanging on the wall

A canvas print is an image reproduced on a piece of canvas fabric – digital printing is the norm in today’s market. The fabric is usually wrapped over an inner timber frame called a stretcher frame.

The textured canvas surface and borderless design bring a warm, tactile feel to your print. Canvas prints bring to mind traditional canvas paintings. So if you’re an art lover looking for a creative and elegant way to decorate your home, canvas prints should be your first choice.

Pros & Cons of Canvas Prints:

Pros Cons
Perfect price-quality balance Not waterproof or tearproof
Unmatched versatility Susceptible to direct sunlight and humidity
Artistic charm  
Forgiving to minor photo imperfections  
Suitable for huge range of image types  

What Is a Metal Print?

Canvas vs metal print: a metal print displayed in the interior

Metal prints are photo reproductions printed directly onto a backing made from metal. The composition of the panel and the print’s aesthetic can vary depending on the provider you choose. At CANVASDISCOUNT, we print on composite metal panels consisting of two silvery sheets of aluminum each side of an obsidian-black core.

Metal prints have a beautifully sleek finish that’s perfect for high-definition photography with intense colors. It’s also an excellent choice for black-and-white photos, because metal enhances contrast.

Pros & Cons of Metal Prints:

Pros Cons
Sleek modern design More expensive than some wall art formats
Ultra-slim composition Require high-definition photos for the best results
Unmatched color vibrancy and pixel-perfect photo reproduction The contemporary aesthetic won’t always suit interiors in a classic, rustic, or romantic style
Built for lifetime performance  

What About Frames?

Canvas vs metal print: a canvas wall art display in the room

Of course, metal and canvas prints have a lot in common too. One similarity is that in both cases the design means they can be displayed without frames. For many buyers, this is part of the appeal – they prefer borderless print as these will integrate seamlessly into their current wall decor.

However, if you buy canvas prints from CANVASDISCOUNT, we give you a choice. Many of our canvas sizes are available with an optional premium frame. These additional external frames follow the “shadow gap” design, where a space is left between the printed edges of the canvas and the outer frame.

If you want to learn more about our elegant premium frames, check out our canvas prints page.

How to Display Canvas Prints and Metal Prints

Canvas vs metal print: a metal print hanging on the wall

Because metal prints are heavier, with smooth surfaces, they’re trickier to hang than canvas prints. We recommend using a dedicated hanging set to get the job done – and we’re happy to say you can add just that to your order when you buy metal prints from CANVASDISCOUNT!

We offer a choice of two hanging solutions – the hanger plate for small/medium formats and the aluminum backframe for medium/large formats. You can add them to your cart for a modest extra price after uploading your photo.

Canvas prints are the more convenient of the two designs when it comes to installation. They’re lightweight options that can be hung on the wall easily with just a nail or two. But we like to make things as easy as possible for customers, so we offer a hanging kit for canvas too! You can add our simple hanger to your order for a price of just $4.

Canvas Prints vs Metal Prints: Our Conclusion

Canvas vs metal print: a canvas print leaned against the wall

It seems like the canvas vs metal print debate will run and run. In the end, we think that what matters most is your personal preference and the ambience you want to create with your wall art display.

Both print formats can turn your image into a statement piece worthy of a gallery – so really the most important choice to make is your choice of print provider. That’s why we recommend going with an established, reputable company like CANVASDISCOUNT.

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