Printer ribbons serve numerous devices, such as credit card terminals, receipt printers, cash registers, impact printers and kitchen printers. They are essentially a cloth that comes soaked in either wax-based inks or regular ink. Though they fit various printers, it is essential to identify a compatible ribbon cartridge for your printing device to achieve maximum productivity.
Printer ribbons, just like ink and toner cartridges, come in an array of types to serve different printers and users. They differ in working mechanisms and their advantages. For example, a thermal transfer ribbon comes as a clear plastic roll made of wax, resin or a combination of both. They use heat to produce prints by passing the thermal printhead with the coated side against it. The heat causes the ink to transfer from the coated film onto the paper's surface. Matching the printer ribbon with the right printer allows thermal transfer ribbons to achieve speeds of 300mm per second comfortably. Thermal transfer ribbons are mess-free, fast, quiet and easy to use, due to their sophisticated technology.
Printer ribbons work hand in hand with printers and scanners to produce crisp and clear prints, however, matching the right ribbon cartridge to the printer model goes a long way to maximize efficiency. Different printer ribbons offer an extensive range of colors for all your printing needs. They provide monochromatic (single color) printing or full-color printing options. The most common printer ribbon colors include black, red and purple. Datacard printer ribbons are mainly used with card printers, and come with the color options of yellow, magenta, cyan, black and topcoat. They are also referred to as the YMCKT panel. Other options, such as the YMCKT-KT, come with an additional black and topcoat for dual-side printing. The clear topcoat serves as a finish to increase longevity. Some panels also come with inhibitors (I) and fluorescent (F) coatings.
There are unique printing needs met by printer ribbons. Date printing equipment uses printer ribbons to print production dates on items such as paper and plastic packages used in the pharmaceutical and food industries. In 3D printing, printer ribbons and 3D printer accessories such as printer heads produce bright and high-quality prints on cloth, cardboard and stickers. For some industries like food and pharmaceuticals, the printer ribbon is both bright and waterproof.