The Complete ID
Printer Buyer's Guide

This guide walks you through all the important considerations you'll need to know when selecting an ID card printer.

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Single-Feed vs Batch Printing

Single-Feed vs Batch Printing

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How many IDs will you print per year?

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When shopping for ID card printers, it is important to know how many cards you will be printing at a time. If you print one or two cards per day, an entry-level single-feed printer may be fine, but if you’re printing 20+ cards per batch you should look into a printer with batch printing.

Single-Feed ID Printers

Single-feed printers are entry level printers designed to print one card at a time. The user manually inserts the card into the card feed slot, the design is printed on the card, and then it is ejected from the same card feed slot. Because this process only prints one card at a time it is ideal for small programs that rarely need to print multiple cards at a time.

It is possible to print dual-sided cards with a single-feed printer but this requires the user to print the first side, flip the card, and then print the second side. Because this process requires more time and effort than a dual-sided printer, it is not recommended for most card programs. You also need to be very careful if you decide to flip the cards, as any dirt or fingerprints on the cards will smudge your images.

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Single-Feed ID Printers Are Best For:

  • Small ID Card Programs
  • One-Off Printing
  • Single-Sided Printing

Batch Printing

Batch printing allows you to print large numbers of cards all at once, saving you time and effort. In order to batch print your printer needs card hoppers to hold both blank cards and printed cards. The size of the card hoppers will vary by printer, with some as small as 30 cards and others as large as 500 cards.

Many ID card printers with hoppers also offer a single feed mode. This allows the user to quickly print a one-off card without needing to use batch functionality.

View All Batch Printers

Batch Printing Is Best For:

  • Medium & Large ID Card Programs
  • Single & Dual-Sided Printing
  • Faster Printing Speeds