We manufacture over 100 sizes of labels, in both direct thermal and thermal transfer stocks, for all makes and models of thermal label printers.
Here is some information to help you decide the right solution for your application.
Direct thermal (DT) labels are heat and light sensitive and do not require ribbons (toner) for printing. The scratchproof image is burned directly on to the labels using heat generated by the printer head. However, as DT labels are light sensitive they may discolor and/or fade over time. Therefore, they are ideal for short-term applications, such as shipping labels or perishable food labels.
Thermal transfer (TT) labels, on the other hand, do require thermal transfer ribbons (TTR) to image. As TT labels are more UV stable, they are ideal for long term applications; there are even fade resistant labels for archiving.
Many people assume that TT (with the added ribbon cost) will be more costly than DT, but in reality the two options are very close in price, even with the ribbon costs factored in.
Some advantages of using thermal transfer over direct thermal:
Sharper printed image
Longer print head life
Ability to print on other substrates such as foil, clear, fluorescent etc.
Both direct thermal and thermal transfer labels are available in paper or synthetic stock (if waterproofing is desired), and with a variety of adhesives, from removable to aggressive. We can also manufacture custom shaped labels, as well as pre-print your logo on your choice of DT or TT labels. Ask us!
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