Your ID card printer uses ribbons to print your card design, and there are many styles of ribbons available. Do you know the difference between color and monochrome, and which one you need?

Color Printer Ribbons

Color ribbons have colored yellow, magenta, cyan, and black panels that are combined to create every color you need in your design. Dye sublimation printer ribbons will also have an overlay panel, while reverse transfer and laminating ribbons use a separate film. If you need to print a card with multiple colors, you’ll want a full color ribbon.

Color printer ribbons will vary by printer model and manufacturer, but the most common formats include:

  • Single-sided full color
  • Dual-sided full color with black on the back
  • Half-panel full color
  • High yield single-sided full color

Find all the compatible color ribbons for your ID card printer with our easy Supply Finder.

Monochrome Printer Ribbons

If you only need to print in a single color with no shading, you’ll want to use a monochrome ribbon. Often used to add text or barcodes, monochrome ribbons can be used to print a “Return to” address on the back of cards, to customize pre-printed cards with the cardholder’s name and information, and more.

Monochrome ribbon colors will vary by printer model and manufacturer, but the most common colors include:

  • Black
  • White
  • Green
  • Red
  • Blue
  • Metallic gold
  • Metallic silver

Find all the compatible monochrome ribbons for your ID card printer with our easy Supply Finder.