Businesses and clubs of every size need to print photo ID
cards for a wide variety of reasons. For businesses or organisations that
require the ability to print 1000s of ID, payment, or membership cards each
year the investment in an ID card printer is clearly worthwhile, but what is
the solution if you want to print 1000 or less cards in the course of the year?
You could outsource the card production but that can be costly and inconvenient
since you lose the ability to print on-demand. A more effective solution is to
consider purchasing a value-priced direct-to-card printer. Two of the best
options are the Smart-31 and the Smart-51 card printers from IDP. Either of
these printers would offer a great solution for business owners who need to
print a limited number of cards but still want to retain the high production
values that will make their company stand out.
Priced as an entry level printer the Smart-31 printer
is capable of producing a
monochrome ID card in as little as 5 seconds with a full-color ID card taking
only 23 seconds. If you need to create your ID cards in batches you will find
the 80-card input hopper and 25-card output hopper invaluable since you can
load the printer, set it going and do something else for a short while.
Useful features offered by the Smart-31 printer include:
- Single and Dual-sided printing
- 300dpi for color prints
- 600 or 1200dpi for monochrome
- Ethernet connectivity
- Rewritable printing
The other ID card printer you should consider is the Smart-51. The Smart-51
is designed with a metal frame and steel ball bearings that will allow
it to withstand regular use in any office environment. The direct-to-card
printing technology offered by the Smart-51 comes with a faster CPU and less
printing noise. It offers users reduced printing times and allows the creation
of 212 single sided full color cards each hour. Each high quality photo ID will
boast superb skin tones thanks to the dye-sublimation employed by the printer.
The Smart-51 is designed to make printing easy with a built-in LCD screen
display which offers helpful user prompts including hologram and ribbon count.
The printer also allows for manual cleaning with the pressing of only two
buttons meaning that regular maintenance can be completed with ease by any
member of your team.
While being similar in nature to the Smart-31 the Smart-51 does offer some
additional optional features including single or dual-sided lamination of ID
cards which is great for creating long-lasting, high security cards. With card
production taking just eight seconds the Smart-51 is the fastest “ready to
print” card laminator that you will find anywhere. Other features unique to the
- WiFi upgrade option
- UV printing
- CR70 Card support
Both the Smart-31 and the Smart-51 printer are supplied with a 3-year advanced
exchange warranty combined with a 2-year unlimited printhead warranty.
Which ID card printer should you choose?
Both the Smart-31
and the Smart-51
offer outstanding ID printing capabilities
allowing you to generate high quality photo ID with crisp, clear images, and
well defined text that helps to ensure the security of your business. If you
want to choose between these two printers then your decision will need to be
taken based not on the quality of the printing but on your operational
Do you need color printing?
If color printing matters to you then you must have the Smart-51. If you are
happy with monochrome printing or will only occasionally need to use color then
the Smart-31 printer will be perfectly adequate for your needs.
How quickly do you need your cards?
Both printers will produce your cards in seconds but if you have a queue of
people waiting for cards, or if you need to create a lot of cards in one day
then a few seconds per card will make all the difference. The Smart-31 can
create a single-sided card in 23 seconds and a dual-sided card in 29 seconds.
The Smart-51 will do the same job in 17 and 22 seconds respectively. It will
also laminate the card in 22 seconds if required.
For many organizations it is the ability to laminate the ID cards that will
make the Smart-51 irresistible, but if you don’t need lamination and can print
your cards over a longer period where time is not so critical then the Smart-31
could be the better choice.
In addition to lamination there is another reason for opting for the Smart-51
over the Smart-31, optional WiFi support. Both printers have an Ethernet
upgrade option, but if you want to work with WiFi then the Smart-51 is the
printer for you.
Whichever printer you finally choose you can be certain it will create perfect
photo ID cards for your company time after time.