Top 5 Barcode Printers under $500

zebra printersMost small business owners see their business not only as a source of income, but also as a place where they can pursue their passion. Efficiency must be a high priority in order for a company to be successful, but it also ensures that the business owner is freed up to do what he or she loves. With the economy fluctuating nearly every day, growing your business can leave you with the kind of headache you might experience after a roller coaster ride. But it doesn’t have to be that way, especially if you focus on making smart decisions and investing wisely.

As an inventory manager, you know your warehouse like the back of your hand. However, you probably rely on few tools like barcode printers to improve efficiency and accuracy. To help anyone in search of such a tool, we have looked around the market and found five barcode printers under $500 that are sure to help get the job done and not bust your budget.

Zebra TLP2844 Desktop Barcode Printer -$359

Running a small shop? That’s no problem for the Zebra TLP2844 (pictured top-left) which is friendly for work environments that aren’t high volume but require a device with longevity. Its 4.09-inch print width and 203 dpi print resolution is great for general use like retail product marketing or healthcare specimen labeling. The Zebra TLP2844 barcode printer produces labels using ribbon (thermal transfer) instead of heat (direct thermal), increasing durable material options and longevity of your printed labels. There are also several accessories available to help you customize it to your specific needs like label dispensers and cutters. These Zebra printers have multiple interface options including USB, Ethernet, parallel and RS232. Find out more about these Zebra printers here.

Wasp WPL305 Desktop Barcode Printer – $474.05

A device that can do the job of two printers and speed up operations not only saves a company money but keeps it moving forward. Desktop barcode barcode printersprinters like the Wasp WPL305 can print both direct thermal and thermal transfer jobs. It’s ideal for light to medium duty print jobs like shipping labels, asset tags, location labels, etc.

The Wasp WPL305 barcode printer comes with features like 8 MB operating DRAM, USB and RS232 connectivity, 2 MB of FLASH memory and Parallel, sample ribbon and labels. There are some additional memory and feature upgrades that you can purchase but you’ll be in good hands with its initial offerings. The WPL, ZPL and EPL emulations are standard system compatibility options, and there are available options for peelers and cutters. The Wasp WPL305 comes with a two-year warranty. Find out more about the Wasp WPL305 here.

Brother QL-650 PC Label Printer- $209

barcode printersThe Brother QL-650 barcode printer is a great product because of its flexibility. There are a lot of printers that are either PC or stand-alone based – this one can work in both settings. This can be an advantage when you need to print a label quickly after powering down your computer. It uses the direct thermal printing method and can produce 56 labels a minute at a 300 dpi resolution. It accepts widths up to 2.4 inches and 3 feet in length, giving you several options for applications and labels.

The Brother QL-650 prints 16 different bar codes including Code 39, 1-2/5, UPC-A, ISBN-5, PDF417 and the growing in popularity QR Code. When compared with other barcode printers of its kind, this one is at the top of the list for production quality and speed. You can check out the rest of the QL-650 specs here.

Zebra LP2824 Desktop Barcode Printer - $209.00

zebra printersThe Zebra LP2824 is one of the most economical barcode printers on the market. With a 2.2-inch print width, this direct thermal only printer is perfect for retail shelf labeling, pharmacy medication labeling and other general office, light duty barcode applications. The LP2848 Zebra printer prints at 3.5 inches per second and has models with USB, Serial & Parallel interfaces. It comes standard with a 1-year warranty and Windows print drivers. Find out more about Zebra printers here.

Zebra MZ220 Mobile Receipt Printer - $389

When your employees are on the go, it’s great to have tools that can move with them. That’s why the Zebra MZ220 is perfectzebra printers for a mobile business. You can print receipts on demand and even integrate the Zebra printer with your smart phone using Bluetooth technology. It could probably fit in your pocket like a phone, it’s that convenient. It only weighs ¾ lb and it's not as obtrusive as many standard barcode printers. Zebra printers are known for their reliability and quality so it’s an all-around win for companies who need mobile operations. Find out more here.



Zebra TLP2844

Wasp WPL305

Brother QL-650

Zebra LP2824

Zebra MZ220

Print Width






Print Speed



56 Labels/Minute



Print Type

Thermal Transfer

Thermal Transfer

Direct Thermal

Direct Thermal

Direct Thermal








USB, Ethernet, Parallel

USB, Serial, Parallel

USB, Serial

USB, Serial, Parallel

USB, Irda, Bluetooth, 802.11G


1 Year

2 Year

1 Year

1 Year

1 Year


512kb Flash, 256kb Ram

2MB Flash, 4MB Ram


512kb Flash, 128kb Ram

4MB Flash, 8MB SRAM


Label Dispenser, Cutter

Cutter, Peeler

Cutter, PC & MAC Comp.


Power Adapter, Shoulder Strap, 4 Slot Power Station













About the Author

System ID is a full service provider for cost-effective barcode and RFID-enabled solutions. Focusing on improving efficiency and operation savings for their customers, System ID has turned their expertise into the largest customer base in the industry. They can be found online at or by phone at 888-648-4452.

Related Articles:

Top 5 Barcode Scanners Under $500

Find a POS Reseller

Top 5 Bar Code Printers from Zebra


{jcomments on}