ID cards are an important component of security in modern workplaces, whether that’s helping with control access for buildings, logging into IT infrastructure or adding extra security to other resources. A key component of this technology is issuing ID cards to members of staff, visitors and other individuals with access rights. To do this, companies employ ID card printers to instantly issue personalised ID cards as soon as they are needed.
In this article, we’ll look at the different types of ID card printers available today, as well as their key features and some key things you’ll want to consider when choosing the right ID card printer for your needs.
ID Card Printer Pricing
Diving into the world of ID card printers might feel a little daunting, especially if it’s new to you. One of the most important questions you’ll want to ask yourself is, ‘how much does an ID card printer cost?’. By defining how much you can afford to pay – and what functionality you’re looking for – you’ll be in a much better position to find the best ID card printer.
Single-sided printers are one of the more cost-effective options available, making them a popular choice for smaller businesses and companies that don’t need large volumes of cards on a regular basis. If you’re looking to get a bit more utility out of your ID card printer, such as bulk printing, encoding cards or additional security features, you’ll want to look at dual-sided card printers. Although pricier, these printers come with a lot more functionality and throughput.
Knowing what you want out of your ID card printer – as well as your budget – will largely determine what ID printer will suit your needs best.
ID Card Printer Technologies
One of the biggest factors to consider when selecting your ID card printer is what it can do for you. Choosing the right ID card printer technologies will help you get true value out of your purchase and will help address your needs to the letter. So, let’s take a look at the different ID card printer technologies available, their pros and their cons:
Direct-to-card printers are some of the most popular ID card printers available, offering fast print speeds at a very affordable price. This technology prints directly onto cards via dye-sublimation, which uses a printhead to strike through a ribbon and mark the surface of the card.
This type of ID card printer is great because it provides consistent results and solid colour replication, but it does have drawbacks. You won’t be able to use over-the-edge printing and your cards will have a small, white border around their edge. So, you’ll want to decide how important design is for your cards – if you want to use all of the card space for logos or designs, then this printer won’t fit the bill.
Re-Transfer ID Card Printers
Re-transfer ID card printers have a solid reputation for offering exceptional print quality and over-the-edge printing. These printers use the re-transfer process for printing, which prints a design onto the card via overlay film which affixes to the card’s surface. This extra layer also acts as added protection, enhancing the overall durability of the cards. They are also unique because they can print directly on to access cards, making them essential in some circumstances.
Inkjet ID Card Printers
Inkjet ID card printers strike a balance between the other two options mentioned above. These printers provide a decent print speed, can print high-quality image or text and can handle over-the-edge printing, making them a versatile choice in terms of design and throughput. It’s also designed with ease of use in mind, so if you’re looking for a printer that’s user-friendly, an inkjet is a great choice.
Single-Sided or Dual-Sided ID Card Printers
ID card printers can either be single-sided or dual-sided, with each option providing their own benefits and shortcomings. To help you decide which option is right for you, let’s take a look at these two types below:
Single-Sided ID Card Printers
Single-sided ID card printers are the most cost-effective of the two printer types. They are ideally suited for basic ID cards that only feature information on one side of the card, such as temporary passes or name tags. They also tend to be affordable when compared to their dual-sided counterparts, making them a viable option for tighter budgets.
Dual-Sided ID Card Printers
Dual-sided ID card printers tend to cost a little more, but they offer enhanced functionality. These printers can print on both sides of ID cards, allowing for more information or graphics to fit onto the card. This could be useful for things like directions to a certain area of a building or to include useful information on visitor cards.
Additional Security Features
Depending on how you intend to use your ID cards, you might want to consider some of the additional security features that ID card printers can offer. These features can help bolster the security of infrastructure and assets, so look out for: