The difference between Direct Thermal (DT) and Thermal Transfer (TT)

Direct Thermal (DT)

The direct thermal technology is based on a heat sensitive label stock and does not require a thermal transfer ribbon. This is highly recommended for applications where the label has a short lifespan, such a shipping and logistics labels.

The drawback is the sensitivity of the material to external factors such as moisture, water, sunlight, chemicals and mechanical factors such as rubbing and scratching.

For applications with shorter lifespan this is the best printing method. 

Thermal Transfer (TT)

This technology is used in application where the demands for a more resistant print is required.
In this case the print is transferred from a thermal transfer ribbon onto the label, instead of having a heat sensitive label stock. If the label will be exposed to external and mechanical factors such as moisture, water, sunlight, heat, chemicals etc, the ribbon is required.

There could also be regulatory demands on the print due to different compliances so make sure you choose the correct combination of consumables.  The choice of label stock and ribbon is set depending on the requirements for the specific application, so please consult a product specialist.

The draw back with this technology is a more expensive solution that besides the ribbon also requires a printer that supports the use the ribbon.


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