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This could simply be old direct thermal labels. Direct thermal labels have a shelf life of about 1 year from the date of manufacture. After that time has lapsed the thermal coating on the labels begins to dissipate and this will cause labels to print light or faded. You can trouble shoot with a roll known to be fresh. You can get one free here to test Labeldomain com .
Your description is not very specific but no printing can be the result of: 1. The darkness is not set high enough 2. The ribbon is loaded backwards 3. You are trying to do direct thermal printing (no ribbon) but the label stock is not direct thermal stock.
Printer calibration is the problem.
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Are you printing a serial or parallel barcode? If you don't know, a serial barcode looks like a ladder as it prints out on the label. A parallel barcode looks like a picket fence. A serial barcode (ladder) prints at 2.5 ips by default. You can't increase the speed. If you're printing a parallel barcode (picket fence) you must hit "enter' once you adjust the speed setting in the printer menu. If you've done that and it still won't increase speed, then the speed is set by the software itself, and overrides any changes you make in the printer menu. The speed adjustment must then be made in the software, not the printer.
Generally the ZM 400 can cope with printing at the lower speeds when printing barcoedes that are the same. You may get pauses if the barcodes are sequential numbers or are all different, then the data to be transfered to the printer cannot cannot keep up with the printer and pauses while it gets more data. We have found that if you can select in your labelling software to print the barcode as a graphic, then it speed up quite a lot. It is a matter of matching your print speed and quality to match your expectations, sometimes you will just have to put up with the pauses.
If you are using windows go to Start, Printers and Faxes. Right click on your printer and select Printer Preferences. Under the Advanced tab there should be an area where you can change the dimensions. You'll want to change the Width and Height to match the dimensions of the label that you are using. These are usually in inches or inches/100. Ex: 1 inch = 100 in/100.
I am using Smartforms with Intermec printer 3400-e and it works in the correct way.
What is the software that you use to build the layout of the label? In my case Loftware.
What is the code to print the Barcodes.
In my case Code 39
recalibrate the label length in the printer(hold feed and power up). from memory bar-one uses the label settings from windows, so go into printers and faxes under control panel and correct the label size