Aug 08, 2013 / Written by Woody Myers

There are two types of thermal labels: Direct Thermal and Thermal Transfer. Thermal transfer and direct thermal labels are ideal for on-demand applications, especially those calling for variable data, barcoding, or human-readable numbering. There are advantages and disadvantages of direct thermal and thermal transfer labels and this video explains some of them.

Thermal transfer labels require a ribbon when printing. Thermal transfer printers apply heat to the thermal printhead, which transfers the image through a wax and/or resin ribbon to the label.

Direct thermal printers apply heat to the thermal printhead, activating the direct thermal media. Through a chemical reaction, the label turns dark where the heat is applied. With direct thermal labels, there is no ink, toner, or ribbon consumable – the only supply needed is the direct thermal labels.

View the Direct Thermal versus Thermal Transfer Printing video for more information on the advantages and disadvantages for both and how to quickly tell the difference between the two labels.

For more information or to place an order for labels, contact a RACO Product Specialist today at 1-800-446-1991.