60x30mm 1 Up Chromo Label Roll

Direct Thermal vs Thermal Transfer Labels

There are two ways of printing. These methods are used as a thermal print head that applies heat to the surface being marked.

Direct Thermal

Direct thermal labels have a special heat-activated layer on their surface. This is where the print head the black printed image will be formed when the heated print head gets in contact with the labels.


Advantages :

  • It is cost-effective because it doesn’t require any ink or ribbon.
  • We can easily maintain DT.
  • It is ideal for short-term and high-volume label printing.
  • It can save our time because doesn’t require a ribbon.

Disadvantages :

  • It can only print in black
  • Direct thermal label is heat sensitive
  • Excessive light can fade the label.
  • It is low scratch resistance
  • Labels fade within 6 to 12 months.

Thermal transfer

The printer uses a ribbon which is a thin film that is wound on a roll and a special black coating on one side. The coating is typically made up of a wax or resin formulation. Thermal transfer is durable, long-lasting on a wide variety of materials.


  • It prints accurate and clear edges definition.
  • Able to print in multi-colors which is useful for branding and logos
  • High scratch resistance

Disadvantages :

  • Ribbon require additional cost
  • Wrinkled ribbon can lessen the print quality
  • Ribbon change-over require additional time for printing



Both the labels are good in their own ways, it depends on you what type of labels you want to buy for your uses.