This section applies only to printers that have the Thermal Transfer option installed.
Do I need to use ribbon?
The media itself determines if you will need to use ribbon.
  • Thermal Transfer media—Requires ribbon.
  • Direct Thermal media—Does NOT require ribbon.
How can I tell if media is Direct Thermal or Thermal Transfer?
(See direct thermal and thermal transfer for definitions.)
The easiest way to find out is to scratch the surface of the media rapidly with your fingernail. If a black mark appears where you scratched, the media is Direct Thermal, so you do NOT need ribbon.
What kind of ribbon can I use?
This printer can use ONLY ribbon coated on the outside, unless you purchase and install the optional spindle that allows the use of ribbon coated on the inside. Contact your authorized Zebra reseller for ordering information.
How can I tell which side of the ribbon is coated?
Use one of these two methods to determine which side of the ribbon is coated: