TSC specializes in the design and manufacture of thermal printers. TSC offers a variety of thermal printers that support either direct thermal printing only, or both thermal transfer and direct thermal printing capabilities.
The difference between thermal transfer and direct thermal technology is important to understand in order to select the correct printer for your application.
To help select the correct print technology for your application consider the following:
If you answer "yes" to any of the above questions you should strongly consider using a thermal transfer label printer rather than a direct thermal printer.
TSC direct thermal printers require the use of heat activated labels and do not require a ribbon. While somewhat durable, direct thermal labels are prone to darkening over time due to age or exposure to extreme light or heat. Direct thermal printing is popular in applications such as mailing, small parcel delivery, retail and the food industries where most items are stored away from heat and sunlight, and the expected life of the label is less than 1 year. The primary benefit is an overall lower cost since ribbon is not required, and direct thermal printers are easier to operate.
Thermal transfer printing requires a printer that works with a thermal transfer ribbon and media. TSC manufactures both low cost thermal transfer “desktop” printers designed to print up to several thousand labels per day, and “industrial” thermal transfer printers capable of printing many thousands of labels per day. TSC thermal transfer printers are designed to print using either thermal transfer or direct thermal technology.
Thermal transfer printing requires the use of a carbon based ribbon which is chemically transferred onto a label’s substrate when heat is applied, hence the name "thermal transfer."
Thermal transfer ribbons can be many different formulas and colors, so the user is not limited to black print. The print quality is crisp and durable which makes thermal transfer printing an excellent choice for printing high density bar-codes and labels that require longevity. Another benefit is that thermal transfer printers can print on paper, film, and even foil substrates.
Please note that the proper selection and match of label stock and ribbon is critical to the overall quality and performance of the printed media.
The TDP-225 direct thermal printer features a compact design and high performance engine that make it ideal for retail and other labeling applications.
The TDP-225W wristband thermal printer is custom-designed for patient ID and entertainment ticketing.
TDP-244 with a durable and reliable design is an ideal direct thermal printer for product marking, shipping, retail and other labeling applications at the best price.
The TTP-245C desktop thermal printer offers a price-performance combination and easily fits into cramped workspaces.
The ME240 series of industrial thermal transfer printer with all-metal construction and die-cast aluminum print mechanism engine was designed to offer the right features at the best value in the industry.
TTP-268M Series of 6 inch wide industrial thermal transfer printers has been specifically designed for applications that require high quality wide format thermal transfer or direct thermal labels.