How Does A Retransfer Printer Work?

by ID Card Group 29. January 2018 08:01

Retransfer printers combine unparalleled print speeds with photo-quality images.How Does an Reverse Transfer Printer Work

Retransfer printers print onto a flexible, transparent film that is thermally bonded to the card - offering a high level of fraud protection.

In contrast, traditional dye sublimation card printers use a printhead that prints through a ribbon directly onto the card.

The retransfer printing process produces higher image quality and allows true edge-to-edge printing, even on uneven surfaces such as smart cards. It also eliminates the white border left by even the best dye sublimation printers.

Benefits of Retransfer Printing

  • Higher image quality and print resolution
  • The ability to print on uneven card surfaces such as smart cards
  • True edge-to-edge printing (via over-the-edge printing). Traditional card printers must leave a white border because printing out to the edge would damage the printhead.
  • The ability to print on non-PVC cards. Dye sublimation requires a porous surface available only through PVC cards.
  • More durable and abrasion-resistant cards
  • Fraud protection, since the film is inherently tamper-evident

How Retransfer Printing Technology Works

Retransfer technology works by printing the card in two phases:

  • The card design is printed by dye sublimation on a transparent film
  • The printed film is then fused to the card using a thermal bonding process for flawless results and high level tamper resistance.

As illustrated in the above video and diagram to the right, the built-in flattener applies pressure on the card, which ensures a perfectly flat surface.

Re-Transfer Printers at ID Card Group

Choose from the top retransfer printers in the industry:


Contact our expert sales staff at (877) 868-0012 or for help choosing the best ID Card printer for your needs.

ID Card Group offers a price match guarantee, provides free shipping on orders over $100, and accepts purchase orders.

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