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There are a couple of possible solutions. 1/ Resin ribbons are meant to be used on synthetic labels onle ie vinyl or polyester. If you are trying to print on paper labels then you will get a rubbish print. you need to use either a wax ribbon or a wax resin ribbon.
2/ If you are printing onto a synthetic labels and the print is light, try increasing the "print darkness" some times called contrast or heat or printhead setting.. This can be fount in the printer set up in the labels software you are using or in the print drive under "Print Preference"
Check the Ribbon type and adjust the darkness levels accordingly, Wax uses less heat and Resin uses more. Another thing to check is if you are using Direct Thermal Labels as this could cause a clarity problem. Also cleaning the Print head with Isopropyl Alcohol each time you change the ribbon will keep the head in good condition.
Label definition in printer driver may need adjustment. Try calibrating printer, printer on solid green light, hold down feed key & release after light blinks 4 times, (blinks once, twice, three times then 4 times) Download the Zebra setup utility and use it to configure printer.
If you are using Bartender, Make sure to use the Seagull Scientific Zebra Driver. The zebra driver works (but not properly) with bartender. Download the driver from Seagull Scientific site. You can also email bartender tech support, their contact details are available from the help screen on the main bartender design screen. I have always found them to be extremely knowledgeable and helpful.
You should be printing faster with Zebra fonts.
Which driver are you using? Version?
I strongly recommend the Zebra Designer V1.3.08, available at Zebra.com
To isolate the problem, capture the output to a file.
Define a local port as C:\output.txt and set that as the port in driver properties.
Now print your document. The printer commands will be in C:\output.txt.
Send c:\output.txt directly to your printer.
For LPT1, use the DOS copy command to send the file. (Copy C:\output.txt LPT1)
For serial connections, use Hyperterm to send the file.
For network connections, use ftp.
No easy USB method is readily available.
Does this print faster than printing the original document from Word through the driver?
If yes, then update your driver.
If no, debug your communication to the printer (LPT1, serial, network, etc.)
Default the printer so you have a green light.
Print a configuration label so you have the printer's settings.
Check the document you are trying to print.
If your "normal document" is using PCL, it won't print because you aren't speaking the printer's language.
Make sure you are using a Zebra driver and that the label/media settings match your printer. Look at your direct thermal/thermal transfer setting and your media length setting -- especially continuous vs. non-continuous.