Best Thermal Shipping Label Printers to Buy in 2022

Best Thermal Shipping Label Printers to Buy in 2022

Thermal printers are great for printing shipping labels, and the best thermal printers produce some of the highest quality printing in their class, especially when it comes to text and graphics. However, it can be hard to know which printer is right for you with so many different options out there! 

This guide compares five different thermal printers, looking at price and performance and special features like Ethernet connectivity and support for AirPrint or Google Cloud Print. After reading this article, you’ll have all the information you need to buy the best thermal printer on the market today!

7 Best Thermal Printers in 2022

1. ROLLO Shipping Label Printer – Best Commercial Grade

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ROLLO Thermal Label Printer is ideal for printing shipping labels, barcode labels, and RFID labels. ROLLO saves time and money while offering features not available in competitive products. 

The printer has a high-speed throughput of up to 150mm/s, comes at an affordable price, and a full feature set including color printing capabilities at 203dpi resolution with support for PDF417/Micro QR Code and 2D/1D QRCode encoding. 

It also provides excellent durability; it’s the perfect solution for Logistics centers or busy shipping departments that need a fast printing system that can withstand heavy-duty use.

This durable tabletop thermal transfer label printer is designed to create professional-quality pressure-sensitive labels on small rolls of label stock at speeds up to 14 inches per second (IPS). 

The device allows you to print your preferred size and application on a direct thermal label. In addition, you can easily install and print from any application, including Microsft Word, Adobe PDF, or an internet browser.  

The brand aims to provide users with a reliable, fast, and affordable label printer for everyone. What’s more? You can print up to 4.16 inches wide, covering FBA labels, 4.1″ x 6.275” shipping labels, bulk mailing labels, barcodes, identification labels, and other format labels. The best part? You don’t have to invest in expensive toner and ink. 

  • Product Dimension

    7.7 x 2.95 x 3.34 inches

  • Item Weight

    2.2 Pounds

  • Sheet Size

    4 x 6 Inches

  • Connectivity Technology

    USB

  • Color

    Black/ Gray

Pros

  • Users can print shipping labels from many sources, including barcode label files (PDF-417, CODABAR, and Interleaved 2 of 5), or create custom labels using an editable template. 
  • In addition, its small footprint allows it to fit easily on most workspaces. 
  • Its ability to connect wirelessly through Ethernet or Bluetooth offers more flexibility
  • It is super compatible and durable. 
  • Need little maintenance
  • Support both roll babels and fanfold  
  • Pretty easy to set up

Cons

  • Nil

Final Verdict 

The ROLLO printer is a commercial-grade shipping label printer that produces high-quality, cost-effective labels. It’s ideal for companies that want to increase productivity and save money on printing costs. Based on its features, performance, and durability, we highly recommend it.

So, if you are looking for a versatile thermal label printer for your business, go for Rollo Shipping Label Printer without hesitation. It will serve your purpose very nicely!

2. DYMO 1755120 Label Writer – Best Shipping Label Printer for Small Business

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If you’re shipping out many labels each day, it’s wise to invest in a label printer like DYMO LabelWriter. This advanced thermal transfer printing technology allows you to print labels that modern scanning devices can read. 

In addition, the easy-to-use device works with most operating systems and supports different types of labels – making it perfect for just about any business. 

We recommend this device for online sellers printing on extra-large 4″ x 6″ shipping labels for FedEx, UPS, and USPS, and for eCommerce sites such as eBay, Amazon, Poshmark Etsy, and more. 

This will serve all your label printing needs, including barcodes, identification labels, mailing babel warehouse, and much more. Plus, you don’t need to opt for expensive ink or toner to get the best prints, which saves money in the long run. 

It comes with 60 professional templates that allow you to customize graphics, texts and manage other inventory by importing data directly from datasheets while producing crystal clear prints due to it 300dpi. 

This model comes ready to work with Microsoft Windows 7 or later and Apple Mac OS X 10.6 or later; additionally, it is compatible with both PCs and Macs. 

The device also has a high resolution of 300dpidpi and offers up to 4 inches per second print speed, which means it will not take long to print out the labels you need. It also uses thermal printing technology that helps avoid smudging, so your labels are always clear and crisp looking.

 

  • Product Dimension

    10.25 x 10 x 10 inches

  • Item Weight

    1.82 Pounds

  • Sheet Size

    4.125 x 5.875 Inches

  • Connectivity Technology

    Wired

  • Color

    Black/ Gray

Pros

  • It is highly customizable. 
  • It allows you to print directly from a popular shipping platform. 
  • Compactible size 
  • It can print thousands of labels on one 6-inch width tape cartridge, which should last you at least three months. 
  • In addition, its high printing speed ensures that even large shipments will get their postage quickly.
  • Plus, its compact size (10.25 x 10 x 10 inches) means you can easily tuck it away when not in use without taking up too much space on your desktop or countertop.
  • Excellent print quality 
  • Easy to install 
  • Easy to use 

Cons

  • Barely integrate with words.

Final Verdict 

A small yet powerful label printer is a great addition to any professional shipping company. This printer comes in a compact design that is easy to set up and use in your office. 

The DYMO LabelWriter 4XL thermal label printer is an excellent choice if you want to purchase a high-performance printer that offers great value for your money. The best part about it is that it comes with a built-in cutter, making it much easier to print shipping labels in bulk and affix them to packages. 

3. Arkscan 2054A Shipping Label Printer – Multi-Functional Label Maker

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Arkscan’s new 2054A offers a variety of thermal printing technology—thermal transfer, direct thermal, and laser—all in one device. In addition, the size (9.45 x 6.54 x 8.31 inches) makes it perfect for shipping and barcode labels where space is a premium. 

It also comes with two-sided printing, so you can print shipping addresses on paper or card stock and then attach them to boxes or envelopes as needed. The best part? This printer only costs $189! 

While that may seem like a lot of money for those who are used to cheap thermal printers under $50, remember: These devices are designed for shipping labels through a high-volume postal system that requires them not just to be functional but also to withstand long periods at high temperatures. 

This means quality thermal label printers will cost more than their cheaper counterparts. And despite its price, most reviewers rave about how easy it is to use and maintain; by all accounts, if you need a reliable shipping label printer for your business needs or want a consumer model for organizing shipments from home, check out Arkscan’s line of thermal label printers! You won’t regret it. 

Plus, if you have problems or don’t feel comfortable installing or maintaining it yourself, several customers report positive experiences with customer service. 

  • Product Dimension

    9.45 x 6.54 x 8.31 inches

  • Item Weight

    3.34 Pounds

  • Sheet Size

    4 x 6 Inches

  • Connectivity Technology

    USB

  • Color

    White

Pros

  • The compact design makes it ideal for tight spaces. 
  • Two-sided printing helps you save even more space when labeling packages. 
  • Ability to print custom barcodes on all shipping labels and forms, including USPS, UPS, DHL, and Canada Post.

Cons

  • This printer is not suited for large businesses with high volumes of shipping labels or complex packaging designs requiring customized labels and forms.
  • The printer can only print in black ink, which may be an issue if your office regularly uses colored labels.

Final verdict 

The Arkscan 2054A label printer is good for small businesses that regularly print shipping labels. It is fast and produces high-quality labels. 

In addition, it uses thermal technology, so it won’t jam and can handle thicker paper stock than most printers. While it doesn’t have many extra features, its price makes up for that and makes it a great value as a general-purpose shipping label printer.

4.  ZEBRA GK420d Direct Thermal Desktop Printer – Best Label Maker Overall

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If you’re after a machine that can print high-quality labels with sharp details, then Zebra’s GK420d will fit your bill perfectly. It has a direct thermal printing feature that ensures information is clearly and legibly printed on all types of packaging materials. 

The two-inch paper tray can store up to 200 sheets and comes with a portable label roll that makes it ideal for shipping in volume. The compact design also means that it doesn’t occupy much space. 

Additionally, maintenance is easy since it automatically cuts labels and sheets and hole punches them for use in pressure-sensitive label applications. Plus, users report outstanding customer service. 

There are helpful user guides available online. However, they get quick responses from tech support when needed. 

The device allows you to seamlessly connect to mobile devices via USB, Serial, and Parallel without additional software installation. Weighing just 5 pounds and setting up is fast and uncomplicated, even for those less versed in using printers.

Printing onto shipping labels has never been easier than ZEBRA’s GK420d Thermal Printer. Featuring a small footprint and exceptionally fast print speeds, these handheld printers can produce shipping labels at a rate of 5 inches per second, making them perfect for companies looking to label boxes at high volume. 

  • Product Dimension

    12.95 x 9.13 x 8.07 inches

  • Item Weight

    5 Pounds

  • Sheet Size

    2x1 Inches

  • Connectivity Technology

    USB

  • Color

    Black

Pros

  • They are built to perform in even the most rigorous environments and deliver high reliability that minimizes maintenance costs over time. 
  • Most thermal transfer printers require some ink cartridge or ribbon replacement before starting up again, but that is not true for many models in ZEBRA’s line of direct thermal desktop printers.
  • Supports FedEx and UP free shipping labels
  • Best customer support 
  • Compactible with windows and Mac
  • Durable and cost-effective

Cons

  • Nil 

Final Verdict 

Our comprehensive review of the ZEBRA GK420d Direct Thermal Desktop Printer found undoubtedly one of the most well-designed and affordable thermal printers. We liked its well-organized interface, innovative features, and high printing speed. In addition, the overall performance is impressive and flawless. 

5 . Brother QL-1110NWB – Wide Format High-Speed Professional Label Maker

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Do you want to print your shipping labels at home? If so, look no further than a thermal printer like Brother QL1110NWB Wide Format. This compact and portable label printer comes with an auto-cutter that can work well on most printers. 

This device works with Windows XP or later and Apple Macintosh OS 10.5 or later. It’s quite lightweight yet sturdy enough to endure years of use without breaking down. In addition, it has a built-in easy labeling software program that allows users to set up their custom settings to personalize their labels easily. 

Aside from its high-performance capability, users are also drawn to it because of its affordable price tag, which will not burn holes in their pockets when buying it compared to other types of thermal printers available on the market today. 

Plus, its convenient wireless connectivity makes it easier than ever to share your printer between multiple computers.

The device delivers 300 dpi resolution and can print up to 69 labels in minutes, saving you time. In addition, it comes with a built-in automatic, heavy-duty cutter designed to handle large printing jobs and provide a crystal clear professional edge when using continuous tapes.

  • Product Dimension

    8.7 x 6.7 x 5.9 inches

  • Item Weight

    ‎3.9 Pounds

  • Sheet Size

    4x6 Inches

  • Connectivity Technology

    Wireless, Bluetooth, USB, Networkable

  • Color

    Black

Pros

  • The print quality of the Brother QL-1110NWB thermal printer is excellent, as expected from a brand like Brother. It offers a crisp, clear text which is a breeze to read at first glance. 
  • It can handle up to 28 different label sizes ranging from 2 by two up to 18 by 24, so regardless of what type or size of label you need printing, it will be able to do it without fail. 
  • It’s energy-efficient; this means that it won’t cost you an arm and a leg just to run.
  • Easy installation 
  • Great quality prints
  • Can print up to 93 labels within minutes

Cons

  • Requires advance settings to setup with Mac
  • However, even though Brother QL1110NWB Wide Format is loaded with features, many people have commented on its lack of an LCD screen. On top of that, some customers have reported receiving defective units from time to time. 

Final Verdict 

The cost is reasonable; it has a small footprint that can fit almost anywhere in your office or warehouse. In addition, it is compact, so you can easily move it around if you need to. 

It offers high-quality printing at an extremely fast speed. If you are looking for an excellent printer with a price that won’t break your bank, then we highly recommend considering our top pick!

6. Phomemo-M110 Label Maker – Best Favorite Printer 

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Thermal printers are best suited for printing out shipping labels, as they come with a built-in feature that allows you to print barcodes and QR codes. In addition, thermal printers are often much more affordable than inkjet printers. Because of their lower cost, they can also be used in low-volume shipping centers without breaking your budget. 

The Phomemo M110 label maker is one of our favorite thermal printers since it offers users a lot of bang for their buck and does an excellent job at ensuring that your products will reach customers quickly and securely. 

The printer prints on large rolls (up to 12 inches) and small rolls (3 inches), so businesses can choose which type of roll works best. In addition, users won’t have to worry about manually aligning any margins before printing; each label comes with pre-printed margins that make sure all labels line up perfectly. 

You can preview how each label will look before printing by using three different font sizes (small, medium, and large). You may also customize fonts while keeping text centered vertically across the page. 

As mentioned above, thermal printers are good options if your business needs to print out a large volume of shipping labels. 

  • Product Dimension

    3.39 x 2.48 x 4.45 inches

  • Item Weight

    1.05 Pounds

  • Sheet Size

    Not Mention

  • Connectivity Technology

    Bluetooth

  • Color

    Orange

Pros

  • The Phomemo M110 label printer is a thermal printer that makes it easy to print shipping labels. 
  • It comes with a power adapter, an Ethernet cable, and software. 
  • It’s compatible with Mac OS X 10.4 or later and Windows XP/Vista/7/8 or higher. One great feature of thermal printers like Phomemo’s M110 is that they can operate without cartridges; load rolls of blank paper into them, and you’re ready to go! 
  • Superfast 
  • Pretty easy to setup 
  • Durable 
  • Quality printer

Cons

  • Not suitable for large size labels 

Final Verdict 

This handy thermal printer prints full-color shipping labels with no software needed, thanks to its built-in 4 MB Flash memory that contains over 450 image templates. 

The printer also supports direct USB and parallel ports or a wired or wireless network connection. You can use it in your office or at home for printing shipping labels, invoices, inventory lists, and more. In addition, it’s fast and affordable – making it an excellent investment.​

7. BEST EASY Shipping Label Printer – Easy to Use Label Printer 

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If you’re looking to print shipping labels with a desktop thermal printer, take a look at BestEasy’s Bluetooth Thermal Label Printer. This device will work right out of the box with FedEx and UPS shipping systems, meaning you can get started printing labels in minutes. 

It also offers PC-free printing (up to 6 inches per second) via USB and supports most operating systems. The best part? You don’t have to buy replacement label rolls; it uses thermal paper instead. 

It’s affordable, easy to set up, fast and reliable. Plus, unlike other options on our list, you can use any thermal paper roll. So, all told, it’s a great choice if your small business is looking for something simple and affordable. 

Setup is quick, too: plug it into your computer using an included USB cable and follow a few prompts to install it. From there, type in how many packages you expect to ship each day or week, how far they travel, and when they ship. 

It comes with a USB Disk and a 100 4×6 Folding Label that gives it an easy start. With additional detailed Driver installation Video tutorial, driver software, user manual. It’s no doubt that this gadget’s durability is second to none, and you stand to save millions of dollars over time.

What’s more? The 203 DPi resolution guarantees high printing quality; this makes it ideal for printing Warehouse Labels, shipping labels barcodes, Id labels, and bulk mailing Labels. 

  • Product Dimension

    12.91 x 9.61 x 8.27 inches

  • Item Weight

    5.64 Pounds

  • Sheet Size

    4x6 inches

  • Connectivity Technology

    USB

  • Color

    Gray

Pros

  • It comes with a wide range of great features and options, including printing labels in both direct and thermal transfer modes. 
  • It’s highly customizable and supports multiple label formats and languages.
  • The included software allows you to work quickly with your thermal shipping labels while adjusting font size to item weight. 
  • It can also print using non-standard label sizes. As a result, you have complete control over what makes it onto your thermal labels.
  • It is easy to use 
  • Good print quality
  • Supports major shipping platforms (Amazon, Etsy, eBay, etc.)

Cons

  • They don’t come standard with pre-printed tags, so you’ll need to buy a roll or two (and pay extra) if that feature is important to you.
  • A minor quibble on our part is that these printers aren’t as durable as their price might indicate, but we still recommend them due to their fantastic performance at such a reasonable cost.

Final Verdict 

This device is fast and prints crisp, clean labels every time. The only problem is that it’s not one of your cheapest choices, but it does pay off if you have thousands of shipping labels to print out at a time. 

It’s simple to set up and easy to use, even if you aren’t a tech-savvy person. We would highly recommend looking into getting one of these label printers as they will make your life so much easier!

Buying Guide – Things to Consider When Buying a Thermal Printer

When buying a thermal printer, you should always make sure it is suited to your needs. To save you some time, here are some things you should look out for in these types of printers: 

Paper Size

Depending on what types of products or packages you will be shipping, determine whether a single-width (like an envelope) or double-width (like a box) thermal printer would be most effective. 

If sending boxes, also consider how many labels you’ll need to print at once—you might not want such a small thermal printer that prints one label at a time; instead, opt for one that can handle multiple pieces of paper at once.

Ink Color/Type

You may have noticed that thermal ink comes in different colors. Therefore, you should buy black thermal ink if printing on dark-colored paper and white if printing on light-colored paper as well. 

The reason for needing two different kinds of ink is simple. When printing on dark-colored rolls of tape, there is no way to differentiate between black text and black space from one another, meaning your images could turn out fuzzy and illegible if printed with darker color shades. 

However, when using white thermal ink on light-colored paper, you could run into other troubles with legibility; sometimes, lines of text will blend when spaced too far apart from each other. 

Therefore, those looking to use monochromatic designs should choose blue or green thermal inks. Be aware, though: Thermal paper by default only comes off clear so if you plan on using color in your designs, keep that fact in mind when selecting your printer’s ink. 

Font Style/Size

Thermal labels come in a large variety of sizes. Keep in mind how big or small your product packaging is and which font styles would best fit inside said packaging if you choose square-sized tags. There’s nothing worse than struggling to read tiny letters that someone had decided would look great on their package design.

Bluetooth Capability

This depends entirely on personal preference, but it never hurts to have options. For example, some thermal printers work over Wi-Fi, others through USB connections, and others through smartphone Bluetooth connection apps. 

Whichever option is more comfortable for you makes up your decision to buy a specific model – make sure you find out ahead of time! 

Vertical/Horizontal Orientation

Make sure you know ahead of time if you will be using a horizontal (landscape) or vertical orientation printer. Square-shaped thermal rollers won’t roll freely under pressure, making them harder to transport, often damaging their ability to print clearly. Go for sideways orientation if possible! 

Mobile Print Functionality

Different mobile devices vary greatly in terms of compatibility with thermal printers, making it important that you find out which operating systems your models can support ahead of time.

Our Editor’s Pick 

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The Zebra GK420d Series 8 label printer is our pick as the best thermal printer for shipping labels. The printer offers more advanced features than other models in its class but is still very affordable—less than $400 for a top-of-the-line model. 

In addition, with so many label types and styles to choose from, you can use these printers to meet almost any shipping need. You can also connect with your PC or Mac via Wi-Fi or Ethernet connection; with built-in Wi-Fi.

Conclusion

Thermal printers are designed to work well with shipping labels. In addition, thermal printing offers several advantages over traditional thermal label printers, including faster print speed and lower cost-per-label. 

The ultimate question is: What Printer should you use? We’ve made a detailed comparison of all our thermal label printers to help answer that question. And any selection from our list will be worth the investment.

About the author

Jemma Clinton is the Editor In Chief at Printer Wire. As a tech enthusiast, she always follows the latest technological trends especially those are related to printers. She is wired to write reviews and guides related to various kinds of printers.

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