• Review of the Zebra GK420d Direct Thermal Printer at PCMagPROS 

    Exceptionally low running costs. Prints fast. Open programming platform for custom applications. Wide selection of label media. Dual simultaneous connectivity through serial and parallel ports.

  • CONS

    Complicated software installation. Ethernet costs extra. Lacks wireless and mobile support.

  • BOTTOM LINE

    The Zebra GK420d, the next step up from a consumer-grade label printer, provides wide-ranging expansion options and a very low cost of operation.

At the lower end of Zebra Technologies’ somewhat extensive stable of label/barcode printers, the Zebra GK420d Direct Thermal Printer ($595) (Check on Amazon at Amazon) is small and relatively low-priced as industrial-strength label printers go. Though the GK420d is big and beefy, compared with the combination consumer-grade/small business professional label makers we’ve reviewed recently, such as the Editors’ Choice Brother QL-820NWB,($174.99 at Amazon) it’s more than capable of printing a wide range of label types from your team’s PCs, as well as some tablets and smartphones. It’s a great choice for mid-volume, industrial-strength labeling in near-limitless settings, from warehouses to medical facilities and beyond.Read the entire review at PCMag



 

Review of Dymo LabelWriter Wireless at PCMagPROS

    • Reasonably fast labels. Good print quality. Strong selection of label types. Cost of consumables is competitively low.

CONS

    • Cutter somewhat clumsy and low-tech. While decent, design and print software could be more modern and intuitive.

BOTTOM LINE

  • The Dymo LabelWriter Wireless churns out labels in numerous shapes, colors, and sizes at a competitive per-label cost.

xThe newest Dymo desktop label printer, the Dymo LabelWriter Wireless ($149.99) ($126.38 at Amazon), is comparable in price and features to Brother’s QL-810W,($129.99 at Amazon) which itself is a step down from our Editors’ Choice, the QL-820NWB.($174.99 at Amazon) The LabelWriter Wireless is much like the Brother QL-810W in that they both have adept label design and print software for PCs and mobile devices, and you can connect to either via Wi-Fi or USB. However, the Brother model is somewhat slicker in a few key ways: It comes with an automatic cutter, as well as support for an optional battery that makes the printer functional where power is unavailable. Even so, the LabelWriter Wireless is a highly capable, networkable label design and print system, making it a decent alternative to the Brother QL-810W as a home-based or small office labeling solution.
Read the entire review at PCMag


  • Editors' ChoicePROS

    Good print quality. Comprehensive, easy-to-use label design and print mobile app. Strong selection of label types in several color schemes, including fabric iron-on labels. Runs on AC or battery power. Good value for the price.

  • CONS

    Cannot use with Windows or Mac PCs. Requires replaceable (rather than rechargeable) batteries.

  • BOTTOM LINE

    With excellent design and comprehensive print software, the reasonably priced Brother P-touch Cube prints several sizes and colors of good-quality plastic (laminated) labels from your iOS or Android mobile device.

Most professional- and consumer-grade label printers (such as our Editors’ Choice Brother QL-820NWB ($174.99 at Amazon) and the Dymo MobileLabeler ($64.99 at Amazon), respectively) let you design and print labels from your computer and/or mobile device, but the Brother P-touch Cube ($59.99) ($46.33 at Amazon) is the first one that we’ve reviewed that cannot be tethered to a PC or a Mac via a USB cable. In other words, its only mode of operation is connecting wirelessly to your iPhone, iPad, or Android mobile device. The good news is that the bundled Brother P-touch Design&Print app is simple to use, allowing you to produce a variety of good-looking plastic labels for your kitchen, garage, bedrooms, office, and schoolroom, making the P-touch Cube an easy top pick as an entry-level label printer for families, small workplaces, and classrooms.
Read the entire review at PCMag


Editors' Choice

  • PROS

    Fast output. Good print quality. Excellent label design, print software, and mobile apps. Prints two-color, black/red labels. Good selection of label types. Good value for the price.

  • CONS

    Per-label media cost is somewhat high. Ability to print in red limited to one label type.

  • BOTTOM LINE

    The prints several sizes of high-quality label types from your PC, Mac, or Android mobile device via USB, making it an excellent value for its relatively low price.

  Like its higher-end QL-810W ($129.99 at Amazon) and QL-820NWB ($174.99 at Amazon) siblings, the Brother QL-800 ($99.99) is a reasonably fast label printer that churns out good-looking labels in several different types and sizes, ranging from small one-line barcodes, to address labels, and everything in between. It can print labels up to about 0.5 inch wide by 1 inch long to 2.4 inches wide by 36 inches long.
Read entire review at PCMag


https://assets.pcmag.com/media/images/551745-brother-ql-810w.jpg?thumb=y&width=1659&height=1500

  • PROS

    Respectable print quality. Prints in black and red. Prints labels fast. Terrific label design. Great print software and robust mobile app. Wide selection of label types.

  • CONS

    Per-label cost is high. Battery costs extra. Ability to print in red limited to one label type. QL-820NWB offers much more for not a lot more money.

  • BOTTOM LINE

    The Brother QL-810W label maker prints a wide variety of high-quality label types from your PC or mobile device, but its higher-end sibling provides significantly more features and versatility for just a little more money.

The Brother QL-810W ($149.99) ($129.99 at Amazon) label printer is a step down from the recent Editors’ Choice QL-820NWB.($174.99 at Amazon) Although these two labelers essentially print the same types of labels at the same speeds over wireless networks or from mobile devices, what you give up feature-wise for the $50 list price difference between them is significant. With the QL-810W, for instance, you forgo a few different types of connectivity options, as well as the ability to use the label maker apart from a computing device. Overall, though, the Q-810W is a versatile and capable option, well worth considering for designing and printing many types of business labels via Wi-Fi, or from your team’s tablets and smartphones.
Read the entire review at PCMag