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2023 – Dual Sided Printer Guide


Choosing the best dual sided ID card printer for your organization can be difficult and Easy Badges can help. Many organizations need enough information to be printed on their ID cards to require printing on both sides of the card. Printing a barcode on the backside of the card instead of the front is also a smart choice that allows for the appropriate barcode size and print contrast for an easy card scan. Dual sided ID card printers have a built-in flipper that will automatically flip the ID card over for printing of the back side during the printing process. But with so many dual sided ID card printer models available, from so many manufacturers, how do you know which double sided ID printer is the best fit for your organization? A great place to start is to organize the printers by features such as print quality and the volume of badges that the printer can reliably handle over time.

Entry level Dual Sided ID Card Printers

An entry-level dual sided ID badge printer is great for businesses that need to print up to 200 cards per year on both sides. These types of printers are used to print on access control cards, employee ID badges, student ID cards, and much more. Entry level double sided ID badge printers are a cost-effective solution for a smaller businesses or schools. However, while entry-level printers can create double sided ID cards they may not come with the speed and highest print quality that is offered in an Enterprise level dual sided ID printer.

Enterprise Dual Sided ID Printers

For large businesses that need to print over 2,000 cards a year or require a high level of security and/or superior print quality our Enterprise dual sided ID printer systems are a great option. These types of printers come with features like larger capacity ink and card hoppers, re-transfer printinglamination, custom hologram options, and more. The manufacturer’s warranty will be generally longer as well. However, what really sets apart high-volume professional ID printers is that these types of printers typically offer the highest quality printing (dual sided retransfer), advanced security and laminating capabilities, and have advanced options that allow businesses to conquer even the most complex and sophisticated ID printing jobs.

Dual Sided ID Card Printer Prices

You’re probably wondering what the average price for a dual sided ID badge printer is. The price range can vary based on the class of ID badge printer you need for your business. For instance, you can find entry-level dual sided ID badge printers as low as $1,490 and Enterprise ID badge printers are as high as $9,000.

Do I Need a Dual Sided Card Printer with Lamination?

Not all ID card printers laminate the cards they print. And only some printers that fit into the high-volume, enterprise printer category offer lamination options. ID printers with built-in laminators cost around $1,300 to $2,000 more compared to non-laminating ID badge printers. And many times, you will have an option of single sided or dual sided card lamination. Below, you’ll see the main reasons why ID badges should be laminated:

  • A laminated ID badge is going to last much longer than one that hasn’t been laminated, potentially extending the average life of a card by 4 to 10 years.
  • The option to add additional security features like holographic images when laminating an ID badge is also available, which makes the ID badge even more secure and harder to copy.
  • Laminating a card will further protect it against harmful UV lights that can make it fade over time.
  • Simply handling the card will cause normal wear and tear.

Although laminating ID badges is going to cost more money upfront and per card, reissuing costs will be reduced, resulting in long-term savings.

Magnetic Stripe Card Printing

Single sided printers with magnetic stripe encoders can still encode and read a card with a magnetic stripe on the back. However, if you want to print on both sides of the card, you will need to purchase a dual sided printer with magnetic stripe encoder onboard.

Which ID card printer supplies do I need for a dual sided ID printer?

Ribbons for dual sided ID card printers

ID printers use ribbons of color to print the image. YMCKO stands for Yellow, Magenta, Cyan, Black (K), and an Overlay Panel. If you are printing only black printing on the back side of the card, purchase a YMCKOK ribbon instead. This has an extra black panel so you do not burn through a whole set of colors just to get to the black panel again. If you are printing full color on both sides of the card, the YMCKO is still the correct ribbon. You will get half of the stated yield of the ribbon though.

PVC cards for dual sided printers

The most commonly used blank ID card is the CR8030 PVC. They are already printable on both sides of the card. If using a retransfer printer, you will want to use a composite card to prevent any bending or warping of the card while printing.

ID card laminates for dual sided printers

Some printers have 2 laminate spools to hold 2 laminate rolls at the same time. This is a great advantage to speed up the lamination process, apply multiple types of laminates, and having larger yields before having to swap out laminate roles.

ID card software for dual sided badge printers

Our Easy Badges ID Card Software has an edition for every organization. The entry level version, Easy Badges Beginner, already comes with the ability to print dual sided badges. The Beginner version is already included at no charge with any purchase of a dual sided ID badge printer system. The Beginner version is also capable of printing barcodes. Barcodes read the best when as large as possible, making dual sided badge printers the natural choice in order to print the barcode on the back of the ID card.


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