For the entry-level model, or Basic, this means MSRP of $495, with USB and Serial ports, maximum print width of 4.25 inches, 4 inch/second print speed, and resolution of 203 dpi. As the customer steps up the product family, naturally, features are added to address higher performance, more sophisticated networking, and special media handling. Significantly, no features are taken away in this laddered approach, with thermal transfer printing and 300 dpi offered as options.
"Datamax-O'Neil conducted extensive market research and interviewed partners and end-users around the world, and our efforts paid off with the introduction of the E-Class Mark III," Palacios emphasized. For instance, ease of use has been addressed with popular language emulations, an LCD screen, clear wrap-around window, better accuracy guide technology, and quick loading, non-proprietary, media/ribbon capability. Durable and rugged, the E-Class Mark III reduces daily operational costs by minimizing power consumption with its stationary print head design. Interestingly, it also uses larger, more economical, 300-meter ribbons that lower materials costs. According to Palacios, this switch from 110-meter to 300-meter ribbons will pay for the printer in two years for someone printing 400 labels per day.
"In addition to our traditional thermal printer customers, the E-Class Mark III should strongly appeal to users of laser and ink-jet printers," Palacios explained. "Those printers are prone to constant cleaning and servicing because they are not designed to handle the adhesive applied to labels. Therefore, you can significantly lower maintenance costs, and by printing only the labels you need, there's virtually no waste. These are both important factors to consider, particularly with many of us focusing on ‘green' initiatives."