Your browser does not support JavaScript! This site works best with javascript ( and by best only ).The difference between USB Thermal Printer & System Printer | Label LIVE
Back to Printing FAQs

What is the difference between USB Thermal Printer and System Printer?


USB Thermal Transfer means Label LIVE is communicating directly with your printer without a driver. On the other hand, a System Printer relies on a printer driver being installed.

Label LIVE has the ability of recognizing and communicating with popular label printers without installing a driver.

This makes it easy to simply install Label LIVE, plug in your printer, and print labels. No fuss.

If you've already installed your printer's driver, you will notice that your printer might be listed twice.

Why is my printer showing twice?

On the Label LIVE Home screen (and on the Print tab) you may see your printer listed twice. You have the option of "USB Thermal Printer" and "System Printer."

USB Thermal Printer

If you see your printer listed under "USB Thermal Printer" it means Label LIVE can print without any other software. In fact, if you exclusively use Label LIVE to print (no other apps), you can ignore installing drivers for your printer. You're basically done – ready to print.

We recommend USB Thermal Printer if it's available.

System Printer

If you see your printer listed under "System Printer" it means Label LIVE can generate a PDF and send this to the printer using the driver.

This is great for inkjet, laser, and color label printers. Label LIVE can work with almost any printer if the driver is installed.

There are a few things to watch out for:

  • The default page/paper size must match the dimensions in the Label LIVE's "Label" tab.

  • The printer's DPI should closely match the DPI setting on Label LIVE's "Print" tab. This is most important for thermal label printers at 200 or 300 DPI. See Understanding Printer DPI for more information.

  • If this printer is also listed under USB Thermal Printer, then Label LIVE may try to use the printer at the same time as the system printer driver. Consider disabling one of the duplicate printer sources (below).

Disabling Printers

You can tell Label LIVE to not check for printers from certain sources. In Label LIVE Settings, you can enable/disable the following:

  • USB Thermal Printers

  • System Printers

  • Network Printers

If you know that you will always use Label LIVE's USB Thermal Printers, then you can safely disable the unused options.

Not the answer you were looking for?

Reach out to us today and we'll see what we can do ASAP.

A blog icon

How to make Label LIVE work for you, in detail.

Read the guides

Computer monitor icon
Find Answers

If you have questions... we have answers. Check out our in-depth FAQs.

View the FAQs

QR Code Icon

See the barcodes we support and learn how to use them in your labels.

See more barcodes