Name Badge Machine – What Works Better, A Laminator Machine Or A Plastic Card Printer?

When you are looking to purchase a name badge machine for the employees of your company or office, you might find yourself in a dilemma: Should you get a laminator machine or a plastic id badge generator? We will look into pros and cons of each machine here. After you’ve finished reading, you will have a better idea which direction to go in with your purchase of a name badge making machine. The two basic buying options for name badge equipment we’ll look into are: Buying a laminator machine and buying a plastic card printer.

Buy a laminator machine

This option is probably more suitable for smaller offices and for limited budgets. The laminator machine is basically a device with two rollers that heat and compress the plastic pouches to seal them up. Prior to laminating, you insert the printed paper ID badge into the pouch and it becomes the laminated ID card. Simple and versatile. As you can see, the advantages of a laminator machine are: simple to set up, simple to use, and versatile as you can use it for other lamination purposes besides name badges.

Depending on how many name badge cards you need and how fast you need them, you will be able to select from different laminator machines. They will differ by the heat-up speed, which will determine how long you need to wait from the time you turn the machine on to the time when the machine is ready for operation. They will also differ by the laminating capacity, that is, how many laminates they can process per minute. Heavy duty laminator machines can operate continuously, while with simpler machines you will have to wait between laminations.

Another great advantage of a laminating machine is the price. They can be had for around $100, depending on their speed and power.

Why buy a plastic card printer?

You can print name badges with a card printer too. As the name suggests, you are printing on plastic here, rather than on paper. There is no need for lamination to achieve the same level of sturdiness and wrinkle resistance. However, the printer must be capable of printing directly on plastic. There are two kinds of plastic card printers: Printers that can print one time only, and rewritable card printers. Let’s look at all your rfid card manufacturer options for a type of a plastic name badge machine:

  • Rewritable plastic card printers: The plastic cards for the rewritable card printers must be made of specially designed material that records and erases the print depending on the temperature.
  • Magnetic strip encoder printers: Plastic card printers also have an option to encode additional information on the magnetic strip on the back of the card, as well as encode a smart card or a touchless smart card that is embedded into the card. This makes plastic cards highly usable for company gift cards, or for employee name badges.
  • Color coded plastic cards for quick visual inspection: Color coding the prints on badges can help security personnel quickly distinguish between different access levels of the badge wearers.
  • Magnetic strip for automatic card detection: When the magnetic strip is encoded and entrances to buildings are equipped with magnetic card readers, the name badges can provide restricted access to buildings and rooms automatically, by simply swiping the card through the magnetic card reader.
  • Touchless smart card encoding plastic card printers: When the modern, touchless smart card technology is employed, there is even no need for swiping the card. The wireless technology used by the touchless smart cards will allow the communication between the card reader and the card over a sufficient distance, and enable access whenever the appropriately encoded smart card is detected at a small distance.

Some of these are the kinds of uses for plastic card printers that could not be accomplished with a name badge laminator. Thus, if you need the features above, the plastic card printers have an obvious advantage over the name badge laminators.

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