The Best Low-Range Industrial Printers of 2023
Industrial label printers offer very high print speed and are suitable for printing a large number of labels continuously. Compared to their desktop counterparts, they are much larger and more robust. Though they are made with industrial environments in mind, these printers are extremely versatile and have proven useful in a diverse array of applications. This type of label printer is used in factories, distribution centres, manufacturing facilities and warehouses.
Each brand usually offers three tiers of industrial printers: low-, mid- and high-range models. We work with a variety of makes and models from multiple manufacturers, which means we have a solid knowledge of how a variety of printers perform in comparison to one another and in different environments.
Let’s take an in-depth look at low-range industrial label printers from three different brands so you have an idea of which one might be best for you.
The ZT231 delivers the winning combination of the right features at the right price, along with the long-lasting quality you expect from Zebra. Fast print speeds, high-resolution print quality, large colour touchscreen, future-forward design and more – all in one space-saving footprint.
The Zebra ZT231 was released in 2022 so in terms of features, it is packed with all the latest technology. A 4.3-inch colour touch screen is one such feature, which dominates the front view of the printer. It has three buttons beneath this, for pause, feed and cancel. However, we found that the touch screen is slightly clunky to navigate, making us wish there was the option to use arrow keys and a select button.
It features a print speed of 12 inches per second at 203 dpi, which is very fast for a low-range industrial printer. They are priced very reasonably too, starting at around $1,200+GST for the thermal direct version. All Zebra printers come with a 1 year manufacturer’s warranty.
These thermal label printers are value leaders for 4-inch-wide light industrial label printing. The MB series offers users a small footprint, an easy to understand operator interface, and a full set of options to meet nearly every light industrial printing application.
The MB240 has a print speed of up to 10 inches per second, and also feature a colour touchscreen, this one only 3.5-inch. However, in our opinion it makes up for this with the 6 button interface underneath, meaning navigating the menu is a breeze.
Unlike the ZT231, the cover is also entirely metal, except for the media window, meaning it is slightly hardier for those tough environments.
The base version of the MB240 has thermal transfer as well as thermal direct built-in and is priced around $1,000+GST. TSC printers come with a 2 year manufacturer’s warranty.
The Datamax M-Class has been one of the most popular low-range industrial printers for the past few years, and with Honeywell recently announcing it as End of Life, they needed to produce something good to replace it. The PD45S is the official replacement, at a similar level and price as the M-Class.
Uniquely designed using minimum internal mechanical parts and an all-metallic frame structure, PD45S is sturdy and durable. This gives the printer a tough, compact, and sleek appearance, suitable for use in a wide range of settings & applications.
The PD45S comes with a 3.5-inch colour touchscreen with large touch buttons, which makes it very easy to use. The 203dpi version can print at up to 10 inches per second. It starts at around $1,300+GST and comes with a one-year factory warranty.
So, which is best?
Whether you’re looking to print shipping labels for 3-4 hours a day, or sporadically from dusk until dawn, there is a label printer model to meet your needs. If you need something that is affordable and yet comes with all the features you will need, the TSC MB240T is perfect for you. If you are after a trusted and popular printing brand with all the new technology, then Zebra is the best choice. If your budget allows for something that is sleek and packed with usability features, you should lean towards the Honeywell PD45S. As a leading supplier of Zebra, Honeywell and TSC in Perth, PrintDATA is able to match your required solution with labels & ribbon for your specific application. Our goal is to help you match your labelling needs with the right printer. If this review helped you narrow down your printer options, let us know which one you are after so we can find you the best price for your business.