What is the Difference Between Thermal Direct and Thermal Transfer Label Printing?
A thermal transfer label looks the same as a thermal direct label, but to put an image on it, you must use a special ribbon (these come in many colors including gold and silver).
The ribbon and the label material travel under the print head at the same time and are heated in the same way that the direct material was heated. However, in this process material from the ribbon is transferred to the surface of the label, which generates the image.
How to tell what label roll you have?
Applications for thermal transfer and thermal direct labels
|Zebra ZD500 runs in direct thermal or thermal transfer mode.|
Other things to remember when talking about labels
|Zebra ZT410 runs in direct thermal |
or thermal transfer mode.
- What is the ideal external diameter of the label roll for your printer? – each label printer is designed to hold a maximum label roll diameter and will not work with larger rolls
- What is the ideal external diameter of the label roll core? – most large printers are designed to handle a roll core of three inches, but smaller printers have different sized cores, so check what core diameter your printer needs
- How are your labels wound onto the core? – the labels can be wound inside (with the face of the label pointing into the center of the roll) or outside wound (the face of the label pointing away from the core). Again, it is important to know which wind your printer works with for optimum operation.
- What label roll width is supported by your printer? – Each printer will work well with labels of a certain size (min size and max size). If you try to operate the printer with wider or narrower labels will cause issues.
- Are you running the printer with the ideal ribbon width for your label? – though not every width of label is supported by ribbon widths, and it is also impractical to stock every width of ribbon, it is best to use a ribbon that matches your label width. Using a ribbon that is much wider than you label can cause print problems, like ribbon wrinkle and of course wastes ribbon that you are not using to print on.
|Zebra 110xi4 runs in direct thermal or thermal transfer mode.|
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