If you are looking for a color label printer that can produce high-quality labels and barcodes for your business, you may be wondering whether the Afinia L701 or the Epson ColorWorks C6500 is the better option. Both label printers are excellent choices, but they have different strengths and weaknesses starting with their ink types. Here's a quick look at the ink differences in these two printers so you can decide which one is right for your business.
Afinia L701 and Dye Inks
The Afinia L701 uses dye-based inks, which are the inks most commonly used in desktop inkjet-based printers. Dye-based inks tend to produce labels with more vibrant colors and are best for printing photo-quality labels like coffee and tea labels, specialty food labels, beverage labels, wine and beer labels, candle labels, and luxury product labels. In short, if your business needs labels with eye-catching colors, the Afinia L701 and its dye-based inks is a great choice.
However, dye-based inks have a few drawbacks. First, they are not as durable as pigment inks and can fade over time if exposed to sunlight. Thus, they may not be suitable for outdoor use or for labels that will be exposed to harsh conditions.
Epson CW-C6500 and Pigment Inks
The Epson CW-C6500 uses pigment inks, which are more durable than dye-based inks. Pigment inks resist fading, smudges and smears, water, and harsh conditions. To get the most out of pigment inks, it's important to use them on the right type of labels such as matte polypropylene or GHS BS5609 C6500 chemical labels.
The downside of pigment inks is that they don't produce as vibrant of colors as dye-based inks. However, for many business or industrial applications, the more muted colors of pigment inks are sufficient.
Pigment inks are ideal for printing barcodes and text-based labels like those used for inventory, shipping, and product identification. They can also be used for printing durable outdoor labels, water-resistant labels, and chemical-resistant labels.
The gloss version of the Epson CW-C6500 color label printer uses a special pigment ink formula to print product labels on glossy media and is a direct competitor to the L701.
A Note About Print Quality and Speed
Because the two printers are competitors, it's important to understand other major differences between them, which are print quality and print speed. The Afinia L701 prints at 1600 dpi while the Epson CW-C6500 maxes out at just 1200 dpi. This means that the Afinia L701 can produce labels with finer details and sharper images. The Epson CW-C6500 is still a very good label printer, but it's not quite as good as the Afinia L701 in terms of print quality.
The Afinia L701 is also much faster than the Epson CW-C6500, even at its highest quality print setting (which is what most businesses intend to use when printing product labels). When printing an 8"x"4 labels at 1600x1600 dpi, the Afinia L701 prints at 6 inches per second. In contrast, the Epson CW-C6500 color label printer takes 0.20 inches per second to print that same label at its lower 1200 dpi. Printing 1,000 of these labels on the Afinia would take 11.5 minutes. To do the same on the Epson takes a whopping 5.7 hours, and the print quality wouldn't be nearly as good. Check out the video below to see the speed difference.
The bottom line is that the Afinia L701 is the better choice for businesses that need high-quality, photo-realistic labels printed quickly. The Epson CW-C6500 is more suitable for home-based businesses that don't mind sacrificing some print quality and speed for low-volume printing and a lower initial price tag.
Get Free Label Samples
If you're still not sure which label printer is right for your business, we recommend ordering free label samples for both the Afinia L701 and the Epson CW-C6500 using your own design file. This will give you a chance to see how the different inks look and feel, helping you make a more informed decision.