Whether you're an organization that uses plastic ID cards for employee access or a small business looking to generate reward cards to your customers, a plastic card printer can help you meet this need. However, this is only the case if you choose the right model. When looking for a card printer, make sure you know what factors not to overlook.
Consider the model's printing capabilities. Models are available in either a single-sided or dual-sided form. The names are pretty self-explanatory in that single-sided models only print on one side and dual-sided models have the ability to print on either side of a card.
Don't automatically assume that more is better and that you needed this extra functionality. If your card designs won't require content on both the front and back of the card, there is no need for you to make this extra investment, as the cost of dual-sided printers is considerably more expensive.
The next factor you don't want to overlook is the quality of the card printer model. What level of quality you need is dependent on whether or not you plan to include photographs on your cards. If you aren't including a photograph, you can probably stick with a standard model. While the quality level of these units is higher than the average printer, they can distort images, which won't work if the card is going to be used for identification purposes.
Higher quality models use a dye-sublimation process. With this printing method, the color is transferred through a dye ribbon that transfers the printed image onto the card through a thermal process. The end result is a crisp and easy to view image.
Color is also important. Card printers generally come in two options, monochrome or color printing. It's important to understand that monochrome doesn't mean that you can't print in color. What this means is that a monochrome model can only print in a single color, whereas a color model can print in a variety of colors.
Again, let your needs be the guide. If you plan to use a colored card and only want the font in a single color, a monochrome model will meet your needs because you will be able to change out the color as needed. If you are using a white card and plan to have an image or a variety of colored fonts, you want a color model.
In order to ensure you make the right selection, it's also helpful to speak with a printing specialist to pinpoint your needs.