Frequently Asked Questions

How to choose the right barcode printer for your point-of-sale system?

In most cases, Barcode Printers are used in industrial businesses, such as distribution and manufacturing warehouses, but their variation in sizes and applications makes them ideal for other markets as well. For retail and office environments, desktop barcode printers are most common.

There are several features and functions to look for in a good quality barcode printer. When choosing the right barcode printer, it is important to consider the following:

  • Label size, and lifespan of the bar code
  • Parallel / serial / USB interface
  • Size of footprint and speed
  • Supported bar code languages
  • Anticipated volume and amount of labels required
  • Potential damage in your facility
  • Portability
  • Warehouse Management System and printer integration
  • Barcode verification to ensure bar codes are up to standard
  • Levels of print quality and print resolution

What is the difference between a Direct Thermal Printer and a Thermal Transfer printer?

Barcode printers utilize two different printing technologies: ribbons versus thermal. Direct thermal printers employ a printhead to generate heat that causes a chemical reaction in specially designed paper, turning the paper black. The Zebra 2824dt is a great example of a direct thermal printer

Thermal transfer printers use heat as well, but instead of reacting with the paper they melt a waxy or resin substance on a ribbon. The heat then transfers the ink from the ribbon onto the label or tag. The Biloxon SLP-T400 is a perfect example of a thermal transfer printer.

How much should you pay for a Barcode Printer?

Barcode label printers range in price. They can cost as low as a few hundred dollars up to $6,000. To put it simply, if you spend less, chances are that the barcode label printing may be of lesser quality, and its lifecycle will be shorter than more expensive barcode label printers. You may also have speed of print limitations or lack of flexibility in label sizes or materials. However, the lower cost options may be perfectly suitable for office or small-run environments.

Direct thermal printers are less expensive, but its labels can become unreadable if exposed to heat, direct sunlight, or chemical vapors.

It makes sense to get the right barcode printer for your point of sale system the first time you buy. Speak with a Step One POS representative today and benefit from professional, friendly, and objective advice on finding the right barcode printer for your point of sale.

Call us toll free at (877) 337-7767 or take a look at our great products to buy now in our online Point of Sale shop.

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