A heat press is the machine that presses a transfer onto an imprintable substrate. Using high temperatures and heavy pressures for a certain amount of time, the transfer is permanently embedded into the product.
Heat presses are recommended for professional and satisfying results simply because standard laminating devices and home hand irons can not get even near the temperatures required for a reliable transfer. Standard transfers require anywhere from 375° to 425° F demand serious force in pressing often from 40-80 psi. These temperatures and pressures are simply not possible with other heated devices.