How to Choose a Printer?
Question 1 : How do you prefer to print your card ?
Only for front of the card personalization with a photograph, ID number, bar code or other data. The back of the cards could be pre-printed with a company blurb, logo or other graphic, and may also contain a magnetic stripe, or remain completely blank.
Dual sided printing will allow you to display more data or graphics on your ID cards. Usually, a printed ID cards will feature photographs, ID numbers, bar codes and a standard blurb about an organization such as web address, phone and fax numbers.
Single-color printing is usually done for pre-printed cards or blank cards with a name, ID number, black and white photo or bar code. Its very economical. Variety of single colours are available such as metallic silver, gold and scratch-off. Print time is fast too.
These cards are larger than standard ID or credit card size. All text including graphics or photos can be larger to make identity verification easy.
A combination of printing, embossing and tipping solutions
Question 2 : How long do you expect your card to last ?
In normal card usage condition, standard cards could last a minimum of one year. A clear overlay on card will protect the full colour prints from fading, UV exposure or general wear and tear.
For a longer life span, a more durable printer is needed. Anyhow a card could last up to 2 years or more unless if the card is constantly taken in and out of a wallet, or swiped many times in a day. In that context, scratching, or wear and tear can be seen before the two year period.
For additional durability and long card life, you can apply a clear polyester laminating patch. The laminating patch could offer 20 times more protection against sunlight, water, scratches, and extra security against information tampering.
Question 3 : What is your card printing volume per year ?
Small, affordable, easy to operate desktop card printers are available. They are reliable and can be used for batch printing jobs or updating purposes.
Some printers has card stacking options for large stack of cards. It also comes with high capacity ribbons. This type of printers are able to print for longer period compared to the smaller production type. In the end it provides excellent efficiency due to continuous run with less interruptions.
With this printing volume, you'll want features such as high speed printing, greater ribbon run, extra card hoppers, self-cleaning technology, auto rejection tray for defective cards, auto recovery system to allow automatic restart of pending jobs, and output hoppers allowing re-stacking to sort cards in order of printing. This will enable smooth, uninterrupted print runs.
For even greater volume printing per year, high print speeds, high-volume card hoppers and output stackers and large volume print ribbons are needed. Extra capability of linking several printers together for continuous printing is essential, as this will eliminate the waiting for one printer to finish before sending another job.
Question 4 : What type of card do you require ?
This is a basic card used in a particular environment for one to authenticate another, allowing the individual to see the holder's picture for confirmation. Whether black or white, or in colour, its a basic level of card security with identity information.
This type of card stores personal data information, including access privileges, membership status, history and more. The magnetic stripe data can be updated anytime, so its very ideal for use in loyalty program, staff attendance, time, library access and usage applications, and more.
A keyless card for access control applications. This card comes with greater security feature compared to magnetic stripe whose data is easily decoded and destroyed in strong magnetic fields. Proximity card has built-in internal antenna for this security feature.
A microprocessor chip based card which has embedded circuitry. A latest and high end technology which stores and transfers more than conventional information or data, such as fingerprints, iris scans (eye), signature or more. This security feature will eliminate any unauthorized entry, and can authenticate if the holder of the card is the real person. This card type is extremely tamper resistant.