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IDP Smart 21s ID Card Printer, Single Sided

£625.00 £499.00 Save 20% (£598.80 inc VAT)
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Options: Printer Only
The IDP Smart 21s ID Card Printer is a single-sided, direct-to-card ID printer, perfect for entry-level users printing up to 500 cards per year. An excellent budget printer, the IDP Smart 21s is a basic hand-fed ID printer that comes with free card software, and a USB connection to get you up and running quickly and easily.
Printer Specifications

Print Technology:

Print Resolution:
300 x 300dpi

Print Speed:
150 Full Colour Cards Per Hour
600 Monochrome Cards Per Hour

Card Capacity:
Manual Input

2 Years

Options: Printer Only
Product information

For peace of mind after your card printer purchase, we give you 30 days of free email support to help you get up and running.

Or you can choose to upgrade to one of our Aftercare Support Packages to receive expert professional support all year round.

Silver Package - £45 per year

  • Email and Telephone Support across printer and software*
  • Access to online support library
  • 10% off printer consumables (cards, ribbons, cleaning kits)

Gold Package - £145 per year

  • Next Day Email and Telephone Support across printer and software*
  • Access to online support library
  • 15% off printer consumables (cards, ribbons, cleaning kits)
  • Remote printer set-up assistance
  • Remote access support for troubleshooting
  • Zero labour costs if your printer needs repairing
  • Loan printer if your printer needs to be returned for a repair.

*Easybadge and CardPresso software only.

Unsure if this is the best ID card printer for you?

Take our Printer Quiz!

Answer four short questions and get recommendations based on your needs.

Alternatively, you can start a chat with us, we're happy to help!

IDP Smart 21s ID Card Printer.

An easy-to-use, lightweight entry-level printer, the IDP Smart 21s is perfect for users looking to print up to 500 cards per year.

A low cost option, the IDP Smart 21s produces high quality printed cards on demand with a 300dpi resolution, making them ideal for small-to-medium sized organisations.

With a hand-fed input, the IDP Smart 21s is compact in size, with a frame size smaller than a sheet of A4 paper, allowing it to squeeze into workplace desktops or customer service counters with ease.

Featuring a two-year warranty, the IDP Smart 21s is a plug and play printer that sets up easily with a USB connection, giving businesses a head start on their printed plastic cards.

Print Technology:

Print Resolution:
300 x 300dpi

Print Speed:
150 Full Colour Cards Per Hour, 600 Monochrome Cards Per Hour

Card Capacity:
Manual Input

Physical Dimensions (LxWxH):
6.6in x 10.2in x 7.0in



2 Years

  • IDP Smart 21s Single Sided ID Card Printer
  • Driver Installation Disk
  • Starter ID Card Software
  • USB Cable

ID Card Printer Common FAQs

Get answers to common questions about ID Card Printers.

I’ve never bought a card printer before, where do I start?

Take our Quiz!

We’ve designed a simple four question quiz to help guide you to a shortlist of printers that fits your requirements. It takes less than a minute to complete.

What's the best ID Card Printer?

This is really a subjective question and depends entirely on what you need the printer to do!

We tend to group our printers into three categories: those for low volume users printing under 1,000 cards a year, medium volume users printing up to 10,000 a year and high performance users looking for 10,000+. We then have a shortlist of printers we recommend depending on what factor is most important to you, whether that’s print quality, the per-card print cost or how portable the printer is.

The easiest way to find the best ID card printer is to talk to one of our team. We’ll ask you some questions to understand how you’ll be using the printer and promise never to upsell you to a more expensive model you don’t need.

Direct-to-Card or Retransfer Printer - what's the difference?

Direct-to-Card Printers (also known as DTC or Dye sublimation printers) print text and images directly onto the surface of the card through heat and pressure. In other words, the printhead comes into direct contact with the card. Most printers on the market are DTC printers and they are significantly more affordable than retransfer printers.

You won’t get full print coverage on a DTC printer, they can only print ‘edge-to-edge’ on a card which means there will be a slim white border around any full colour graphic.

Retransfer Printers are the gold standard and use a different printing method entirely. They use a two-step process. The card design is printed first onto a thin, clear film which is then bonded to the surface of the card using heat. This means the printhead never comes into contact with the card, which is why retransfer cards are recommended for printing access and RFID cards, as the chip won’t be damaged during the printing process.

Retransfer printers also print ‘over the edge’, giving full print coverage. Cards also last longer due to the protective film.

Can I print access control or RFID cards on Direct-to-card printers?

It is possible to print access control or smart cards on direct-to-card printers as long as you avoid printing over the area where the chip is embedded. So, when you are designing your card, do not put any content in this raised area.

The recommended solution is to use a retransfer printer, as the method of printing means that the chip never comes into contact with the printer, so can’t be damaged. It’s also the best way to ensure print quality. However, the price point makes them unaffordable for many.

If you are printing on expensive tech cards, consider printing on adhesive thin labels instead that are then stuck onto the cards.

How do I work out the running cost of a printer?

Take the price of the printer ribbon and divide it by the number of prints to give a per-card print cost. Then add the price of a blank card. E.g. if a 100 print ribbon costs £36 and a pack of 100 blank cards costs £9, this means 100 cards will cost £45 to print, or £0.45 each.

This is a great way of assessing the lifetime cost of the printer and how much it costs to run, rather than just looking at the initial price tag.

Can I print on both sides of the card using a single-sided printer?

Yes, but this will be a manual process.

Simply print on one side of the card as normal, flip it, then reinsert it back into the printer and print on the other side.

What else can I use my printer for other than ID cards?

ID Card printers aren’t just for ID Cards! Here are some other uses:

  • Visitor passes for reception
  • Car park permits/tickets
  • Training certificates
  • Membership cards
  • Staff information cards/reminders
  • Helpline cards
  • Discount cards
  • Delegate badges for events and conferences
  • Product labels for display in your warehouse/shop.
What type of cards can I use in my card printer?

As a general rule of thumb, ID card printers can only print on plastic cards. They can’t print on wood cards, paper or paperboard.

There is one exception – Evolis has manufactured a bespoke paper card that can be used with the Primacy2 printer with a specific ribbon, and only in black and white.

Each printer specification will list the thickness of plastic cards it can handle. Standard cards are the thickness of a regular credit card, but there are thinner cards available, and access control/RFID cards are thicker due to the chip.

What type of ribbon do I need?

This will depend on whether you are printing in a single colour or multiple colours, and whether you need any special features on your cards.

Ribbons are specific to the printer model. Always check if the ribbon is compatible with your particular printer and your particular model. For example don’t assume that all Magicard ribbons will fit your Magicard printer – they won’t.

If you’re printing in a single colour, choose a mono ribbon, this is by far the cheapest way to print your cards – don’t waste money on a full colour ribbon when you’ll only be using one panel.

If you’re printing in full colour, look for a full colour ribbon, usually described as YMCKO. If you have a double-sided printer and want to print on the reverse in black only, look for a YMCKOK.

The technical specs on your printer will list the ribbons that are compatible.