Whether you’re living in a college dorm and you want to keep tabs on all of your belongings or you’re working in an office where your stapler always seems to go inexplicably missing from your desk, having a good label maker can go a long way. This is also useful for when you have multiple seemingly similar items and you want an easy to differentiate between them.
Going well beyond the basic traditional label makers is the Brother QL-570 Professional Label Printer. Instead of working as a standalone product with very little customization, the QL-570 works just like a regular printer that you’d connect to your computer. While it may not be quite as convenient as the handheld equivalent, you get many more features and options with this package.
Inside the box, you get the Brother Label Printer itself, a USB cable, a power cable, the supporting documentation, a cleaning sheet, installation CD, and a pair of starter rolls of thermal paper. The QL-570 doesn’t use any ink, relying instead on this thermal paper. After it prints your label, you can peel off the backing and use the sticker-style label immediately.
Retailing for just over $60, the Brother QL-570 is quite affordable, especially since it comes with two rolls of DK thermal paper. The wider roll is a continuous strip of label paper measuring 58mm across and the narrower roll offers several consecutive address labels.
Measuring 20.8 x 13.5 x 14.2 cm, this Professional Label Printer offers up to 300 x 600 dpi resolution, speeds of up to 68 labels per minute, compatibility for both PC and Mac, and included software to create all sorts of labels. The P-touch Label Creation software is good for making shipping labels, name badges, folder labels, and more.
While the handheld label makers will only output a single line of text in only one font style and size, the Brother QL-570 acts just like a normal inkjet or laser printer. You can print images, albeit only in black and white, as well as all kinds of text.
Setup and configuration is very easy and I really like the design for slotting in the thermal paper. On the right side of the roll, you’ll see a vertical wedge that fits perfectly into a slot in the printer. The left side fits into a series of slots closer to the front of the printer too, so it doesn’t matter if you have the size that spans the width of the printer or you’re using a narrower version.
Looking at the build quality of this printer, you won’t get anything that resembles anything near the top of the line. The plastic can feel quite cheap, but it’s not like you need this device to be particularly rugged. You also have to realize that it’s only a $60 product.
The print quality is a little hit or miss. Since it uses thermal paper, there is no time needed for the ink to dry. There’s no ink. This also makes for a remarkably smooth and clean surface for your labels. Text comes out quite crisp and you can use whatever fonts you’d like. The software allows for integration with Word, Excel, and Outlook as well.
Images can be printed, either on their own or as background images to text, but they do only come in grayscale. I wouldn’t want to use a photo that has too much detail to it, but this kind of functionality is good for basic pictures and company logos.
All in all, I’m quite pleased with the Brother QL-570 Professional Label Printer. The setup process is easy, the footprint is small enough to fit on nearly any desk, and the software is very robust. The auto-cut feature when you print out a label is very handy too. I wish there was a way to use it without a computer though.
OVERALL RATING: 8.0/10