To understand which label printer is right for you, you need to determine two main parameters for yourself:
1. The maximum print volume per day/month.
2. The quality (resolution) of the print. This is especially important if the font of the text or the barcode applied to the label is small enough.
According to their class, label printers are classified into:
– mobile printers
– entry class label printers (desktop printers)
– industrial label printers
Mobile printers are designed to perform periodic tasks such as repricing in a store, relabeling items in a warehouse, and so on.
Entry class printers are stationary printers.
According to manufacturers’ recommendations, the maximum allowed printing on such printers should not exceed 1,500 to 2,000 labels per day.
So if you know (or plan) that you won’t be able to print more than the number of labels you print per day (usually two rolls with standard labels), then you can safely consider purchasing an entry-level printer.
Industrial grade printers are designed for higher workload and performance than the entry-level class.
The load that an industrial printer can handle is up to 35,000 labels per day.
In addition to performance, industrial-class printers can use such additional modules (accessories) as:
– rotary knife
– internal rewinder
– ribbon economizer
– automatic applicator
– expansion boards
If you have already decided on the printer class, now you have to choose the type of print head.
There are three types of printheads that provide different print quality: 203 dpi, 300 dpi, 600 dpi.
If you need to print only a barcode with minimal text information across the entire width of the label, then a printer with a print head of a minimum resolution of 203 dpi will suffice.
If there is a need to print small print text on the label, then the minimum requirement for the print head is 300 dpi.
Also, when deciding on the choice of a label printer model, it is worth considering such parameters as:
- printing method - thermal or thermal transfer.
The thermal printer only works in thermal mode without ribbon.
The thermal transfer printer operates in two modes: with and without an ribbon (the option is set in the printer driver).
Therefore, if you are sure that you need a printer to print only on thermal labels, then there is no point in overpaying.
- maximum print width
- maximum print speed
- ink ribbon winding
- ink ribbon core diameter
- connection interfaces (if necessary)