I'm going to refer you to a post I made in the La Catrina Dead Edition thread back on October 13, 2016:
sinjin7 wrote:So let's talk about NPCC, since this is the printer that's relative to this discussion. I have no issues with their stock. Its stiff and of substantial enough thickness with decent snap, and they seem to exhibit good resistance to atmospheric variation (eg. humidity levels). Since they have not been around long enough, I can't speak as to the long-term durability of the stock, but based upon what I feel after handling their cards in the short term, I think they project to be fine. The quality of printing is good, with sharp definition and good color brightness and contrast. Where NPCC falls short is their finish. Fresh out of the box, they seem to have decent slip, but when you fan and spread the cards, they are inconsistent and somewhat clumpy. For whatever reasons, the calendaring (dimpling) pattern and chemical composition of the finish do not produce an even enough coefficient of friction for the cards to spread and fan in an exceptionally even and consistent manner required for more demanding manipulation of cards. Do NPCC decks handle well enough for regular card play? Sure, you can get though an evening of poker sufficiently. Would cardists consider NPCC decks as a first, or even second or third, option for cardistry? Probably not. To call NPCC one of the "crappiest" printers is overly harsh and inaccurate. But with all due respect, NPCC does not belong in the same class as the USPCC, or even EPCC/LPCC.
That was over a year ago. I have generally avoided NPCC decks until this year when I decided to give them another shot based on alleged improvements to their finish and got a half brick of Midgard decks. Here is my updated examination of NPCC decks.
STOCK: Still very good. They are almost as thick as a deck of Ohio-produced UV500 stock from E (which is considered among the very best stock for cardistry, or for any other purpose), which makes them about two cards thicker than a deck of standard Bicycle Rider Backs. The Midgard decks have a Modern cut, in other words they faro naturally from the backs to the faces of the cards. I prefer a Traditional cut so that you can do face-down table faros, but if you know what you're doing you should be able to faro either direction regardless of the cut, it's just a little easier to go with the cut instead of against. I didn't have any issues faroing in either direction. The stock still has very good stiffness and snap, so springs were excellent but the manipulated cards returned to their original shape fairly well, indicating good elastic deformation. No one should have any complaints about the stock.
FINISH: A huge let-down in this area. Despite some claims out there about improvements in finish, the Midgard decks were every bit as bad a I remembered from a couple of years back. Fresh out of the box, this deck didn't fan, it clumped. Terribly. Spreads were only a little bit better. A closer examination of the calendaring pattern seems to reveal dimples that aren't deep enough to provide an adequate degree of slip between the cards. The two main problems with too shallow dimples is the cards aren't likely to be able to be broken in much further to completely even out and they won't hold powder well, thus eliminating two primary methods by which fanning performance could be improved. However, despite handling like crap, at least they don't feel overly plastic-y like some EPCC/LPCC decks. My criteria for good fanning is that every card in a fan should be precisely and evenly spaced from each other, and in a face-out one-handed fan, you should be able to see the index and suit in the corners of every single card in the fan. Even with considerable breaking in, the Midgard decks couldn't attain even this fundamental cardistry standard.
I'm not going to waste much time and space on tuck boxes or design or printing since none of these factors have any significant impact on handling. Any deck designer can contract with a 3rd party tuck box manufacturer and make them as blinged out as they want with embossing and foiling. The artwork on the Midgard decks are exceptional. The actual printing and colors are very good, and all the NPCC decks that I've ever had (granted, its only two: the Midgard decks and some deck with a lot of skulls from a couple of years ago that I can't even remember the name of) were perfectly registered.
Unfortunately, my opinion of NPCC hasn't been changed by the Midgard deck. The handling for cardistry purposes of NPCC decks is completely inadequate. Unless all you perform is exclusively packet cuts only, NPCC decks have no place in a cardist's arsenal.