Thread: Thermal Transfer Printer or Direct Thermal Printer?

  1. #1
    Registered User
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    Jul 2017

    Thermal Transfer Printer or Direct Thermal Printer?

    What’s the difference between direct thermal printing and thermal transfer printing?

    As i know, thermal transfer printing utilizes a thermal ribbon and direct thermal printing does not. Thermal transfer involves the thermal print head elements (dots) heating the backside of a thermal transfer ribbon to melt and transfer the compounds on the front side of the ribbon to the label material, thus creating the printed image (an example from here 5146477 Phoenix Contact - Computers, Office - Components, Accessories - ICRFQ ). Direct thermal printing requires a heat sensitive label material. The print head elements come into direct contact with the heat sensitive material where the heat from the elements causes a color change in the material to create the printed image.

    Direct thermal label printing has traditionally been a niche technology used across several narrow vertical markets including meat, poultry and dairy. However, developments in thermal paper technology have resulted in a broader range of products that are now suitable for use in many applications across nearly any vertical market. The result has been increased interest in direct thermal as the technology choice for new or upgraded applications.

    A better suggestion would be highly apriciated. Hope someone can help further.

    Kind Regards

  2. #2
    and the hat of int overfl Salem's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    The edge of the known universe
    Was that a rhetorical question?
    You seem to have answered your own question as to "What’s the difference between....".
    Or at least copied it -> Thermal Transfer vs. Direct Thermal: Five Key Considerations | SATO America

    > A better suggestion would be highly apriciated. Hope someone can help further.
    Better for what?

    You didn't say what your niche actually is to even begin to guess whether either of your choices is appropriate (now or in the future), whether other technologies would work now, or whether any other emerging technologies might be better in the future.
    If you dance barefoot on the broken glass of undefined behaviour, you've got to expect the occasional cut.
    If at first you don't succeed, try writing your phone number on the exam paper.

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