Labels are really nothing more than tags that are glued or pinned on to products illustrating the details of the product. Modern labels are mostly barcodes that contain all of the relevant information about a product. For instance, the manufacture date, batch and price might be some of the information included on a label. Label printers are devices that are used to print this coded information in the form of bars on the labels or they can directly print the information in common understandable English.
Label printers are also used at home and at work to place printed labels on envelopes and other types of documents, saving you the manual labor of continuously writing out people’s addresses. Most of these printers are portable and can be held in the palm of your hand. These types of printers work thermally as they use heat to melt ink onto paper. Some types of label printers can print directly to paper and other models print to a roll of labels that have an adhesive side on the back. You then stick each label to the paper. Most of these types of label printers have a small keyboard and can print labels quickly.
If you plan on using a label printer for mass mailings you may be better of with a regular laser printer that connects to a PC.
Selecting the proper label printer is very important, as it must suit your application and the frequency of use. Some of the common factors that should be considered include:
- Resolution – this is an important factor while choosing a label printer as it must be able to output the required information in the space provided and at the same it must be legible.
- Color – depending on the application you may need to select a printer that prints in color or black and white or both. Accordingly, the usage of cartridges must be calculated and budgeted.
- Frequency of printing – you must decide how many labels you will need to print and then select a printer that best suits your application and budget.
- Size of the labels – not all printers can print all sizes of labels so a lot depends on the size of label on which you print.
- Interface type – will the printer be connected to the computer using COM, LTP or USB port? The compatibility must also be checked.
You can use label printers to print just about anything such as CD covers, price tags, rack tags and general tags to be applied to cabinets or storage containers.