This guide walks through each step of loading badges into your Zebra printer and calibrating the printer. If you have trouble during setup and configuration, refer to the troubleshooting section at the end of the article. If you need further assistance, please get in touch with us by filling out this form. If you bought your own equipment, simply live chat with us using the bubble at the bottom right corner of this screen.

⚠️ Caution! Be sure to set up and test at least one day before check-in begins, then test each morning of the event to ensure everything still works properly.

Contents

The basics

We support two specific Zebra ZD620 sub-models and all ZD621 models with an LCD touchscreen.

  • ZD620 (ZD62142-T21F00EZ) - Direct thermal and thermal transfer

  • ZD620 (ZD62142-D41F00EZ) - Direct thermal only

  • ZD621 (all LCD touchscreen models)

⚠️ Caution! If you try to use any other printer model, we can't guarantee its compatibility with Webex Events Onsite.

Watch the following video for a walkthrough of the two ZD620 models, or keep reading for written instructions for all printer models. 📖

Loading badges (all Zebra models)

There are two types of badges: fanfold badges, which look like a stack of long, narrow paper, and badge rolls. How you load badges depends on which type of badge you're using. Most badge types have a black bar and a FEED DIRECTION arrow printed on the back. The black bar should always face down, and the arrow should point toward the front of the printer.

⭐️ Keep in mind, you should keep extra badges near each printing station so you can quickly refill printers when they run out. Always calibrate the printer after loading badges!

Fanfold badges

This badge stock looks like a stack of paper, and it isn't usually printed using ribbon. Set the stack of badges directly behind the printer so they feed straight into the back without bending.

  1. Pull the two yellow tabs on either side of the printer toward the front and lift the top of the printer to open it.

  2. Feed the first badge into the slot at the back of the printer and pull it forward.

  3. Use the yellow knob between the yellow media guides to adjust the width of the guides. They should be wide enough to keep the badges centered in the printer. Make sure the badges slide easily between the guides without bending.

    Illustration showing the steps just described.
  4. Bring the first badge over the black roller at the front of the printer. Feed it through the slot so that about an inch hangs out the front of the printer. Make sure the black bar on the back of the badges is facing down and the arrow on the back is pointing toward the front of the printer.

    ⭐️ Keep in mind, not all printers have the slot just mentioned.

    Illustration showing the step just described.
  5. Close the top of the printer tightly. If the screen shows HEAD OPEN, the printer isn't fully closed.

  6. If badge stock was included with your Onsite kit rental shipment, printers have been pre-calibrated and you can skip to the Testing section.
    If badges arrived separately from your Onsite kit, calibrate the printer using the following instructions.

Badge rolls

Badge rolls sit inside the printer, and some types of badges may require a ribbon roll. If the type of badges you ordered require ribbon, the ribbon will likely arrive with the badge rolls.

  1. Pull the two yellow tabs on either side of the printer toward the front and lift the top of the printer to open it.

  2. Pull one of the yellow guides toward the side of the printer to make room for the badge roll. Place the roll in the printer so it's suspended between the guides. The leading edge of the roll should fall to the front of the printer as show in the following illustration.

    Illustration showing the steps just described.
  3. Bring the first badge over the black roller at the front of the printer. Feed it through the slot so that about an inch hangs out the front of the printer.

    ⭐️ Keep in mind, not all printers have the slot just mentioned.

    1. If the badges came with ribbon, follow the instructions on the sticker inside the printer to load the ribbon and the cardboard rewind tube.

  4. Close the top of the printer tightly. If the screen shows HEAD OPEN, the printer isn't fully closed.

  5. If badge stock was included with your Onsite rental kit shipment, printers have been pre-calibrated and you can skip to the Testing section.
    If badges arrived separately from your Onsite kit, calibrate the printer using the following instructions.

Calibrating ZD620 model printers

As you calibrate the printer, use the arrow buttons and the two buttons below the display to navigate the printer's menus. The left button is called the HOME button. The right button starts actions or selects items.

Before you begin calibration, press home, then press the (✔) button to enter SETTINGS. Press the right (▶) button until you see PRINT MODE. Press the up (▲) button to select TEAR OFF, then press the home button twice. This prevents wasted badges while calibrating. When calibration is done, go back to the PRINT MODE setting and set it to CUTTER.

ZD620 manual calibration

  1. Press HOME (lower left button), then the right (▶) arrow to select TOOLS. Press the (✔) button.

  2. Press the right (▶) arrow 4 times until you see MEDIA/RIBBON CAL. Press START (lower right button).

  3. The screen shows LOAD BACKING. Press the pause (II) button.

  4. The screen shows CALIBRATING PLEASE WAIT for a few seconds, then RELOAD ALL CONTINUE appears. Press pause (II) again.

  5. CALIBRATING PLEASE WAIT appears one more time, and badges begin feeding through the printer. When the badges stop feeding through, the pause light above the screen should be on, and no errors should appear.

  6. Press pause (II), and the pause light should turn off.

  7. Open the printer again and pull the badges that were fed through back onto the roll so they're not wasted. After you close the printer again, the pause light will be on. Press the pause button.

Now, change the PRINT MODE selection back to CUTTER as described above.

You're ready to print! Now is a good time to set up your kiosk iPads.

Calibrating ZD621 models (LCD touchscreen)

ZD621 automatic calibration

Tap Wizards > Print, then tap Start Print and follow the instructions on the screen, keeping these things in mind:

  • If badges have a black bar on the back, select 'Mark' as the Media Type. Otherwise, select 'Gap/Notch'.

  • Select 'Tear Off' on the Media Handling step to prevent wasted badges while calibrating.

If automatic calibration fails, follow the instructions below to do a manual calibration. Otherwise, open the printer again and pull back the badges that were fed through so they're not wasted. Close the printer again, and the pause light will be on. Press the pause button, and a single badge will feed out.

Now tap Menu > Print (🖨️) > Image Adjust > Media Handling, and select Cutter.

⭐️ Keep in mind, all Onsite kit rental printers have a cutter. If you bought your own printers and they don't have a cutter, simply leave the Media Handling setting on 'Team Off'.

You're ready to print! Now is a good time to set up your kiosk iPads.

ZD621 manual calibration

Before you begin manual calibration, tap Menu > Print (🖨️) > Image Adjust > Media Handling, and select Tear Off. This prevents wasted badges while calibrating. When calibration is done and you're ready to print badges, go back and select Cutter.

⭐️ Keep in mind, all Onsite kit rental printers have a cutter. If you bought your own printers and they don't have a cutter, simply leave the Media Handling setting on 'Team Off'.

Tap Menu > Print (🖨️) > Sensors > Manual Calibration, then tap Start Calibration. Follow the steps on the screen to continue, keeping this in mind:

  • If you're using fanfold badges that sit in a stack behind the printer, wait until calibration step 6 to load badges.

When you tap 'Calibrate' on step 9, badges begin feeding through the printer. When the badges stop feeding through, the pause light above the screen should be on, and no errors should appear. Press the pause button (II), and the pause light should turn off.

Open the printer again and pull back the badges that were fed through so they're not wasted. Close the printer again, and the pause light will be on. Press the pause button, and a single badge will feed out.

Now change the 'Media Handling' setting back to 'Cutter' as described earlier.

You're ready to print! Now is a good time to set up your kiosk iPads.

Testing

You should always test several badge prints to make sure the printer is correctly loaded and calibrated. Use the Onsite App on one of the kiosk iPads to print a badge and use the troubleshooting steps below to resolve any errors or problems.

Be sure to set up and test at least one day before check-in begins, then test each morning of the event to make sure everything is still works properly.

Troubleshooting

⚠️ Caution! Follow the troubleshooting steps in the order in which they're presented, testing before continuing to a further step. Don't see your problem listed? Click the button below and fill out the form. We'll get back to you as soon as we can.

Calibration failed

  1. Calibrate again! The printer may simply need another look at the badges. 👀

  2. If you're using badges with a hole in the backing, make sure the yellow sensor is positioned so the gaps pass over it. Otherwise, position the yellow sensor in the middle of the printer.

    ⭐️ Keep in mind, if your badges have punch out sections for lanyards, position the sensor to the side of the center punch out for the best results.

  3. Make sure the right media type is selected.

    1. (ZD620) Press HOME, then press the (✔) button to enter SETTINGS. Press the right (▶) button until you see MEDIA TYPE. Use the up (▲) and down (▼) arrow buttons to change the type.
      If your badges have a black bar on the back, select MARK. Otherwise, select GAP/NOTCH.

    2. (ZD621 touchscreen) Tap Menu > Print (🖨️) > Print Quality > Media Type. If your badges have a black bar on the back, select Mark. Otherwise, select Gap/Notch.

  4. Make sure the right sensor type is selected.

    1. (ZD620) Press home, then press the right (▶) button, then the down (▼) button to highlight the SENSORS menu.
      If you're using badges with a hole in the backing, choose TRANSMISSIVE. If you're using any other type, choose REFLECTIVE.

    2. (ZD621 touchscreen) Tap Menu > Print (🖨️) > Sensors > Sensor Type. If you're using badges with a hole in the backing, choose Transmissive. If you're using any other type, choose Reflective.

"MEDIA OUT"

Do a calibration and make sure the yellow media guides fit closely but not tightly against either side of the badges.

"Cutter Error"

This message means the cutter is likely jammed. To fix a cutter jam, follow the video below, or read the steps. Please note that the video shows a ZD620 printer, and the steps apply to the ZD621 as well.

  1. Open the printer by pulling the release levers forward.

  2. Remove the badge stock from the printer and check the slot at the front for any debris that could be obstructing the cutting area.

  3. Reinsert the badge stock, making sure it’s inserted correctly with the black bar on the back of the badges facing down and the FEED DIRECTION arrows pointing toward the front of the printer.

  4. As you insert the badge stock, double-check for debris in the slot at the front of the printer that could obstruct the cutting area, then firmly close the printer.

  5. If the screen shows 'HEAD OPEN', simply open the printer again, and then close it firmly. The error should disappear.

  6. Press the pause button. The cutter will activate, and a badge will feed forward. If the cutter is still jammed, repeat these steps until you see 'PRINTER READY'.

Badges are cut at the wrong place

  1. Do a calibration.

  2. Try adjusting the TEAR OFF/Tear Line Offset setting. This often involves some trial and error.

    1. (ZD620) Press home, then press the right (▶) button to select SETTINGS. Press the select (✔) button, then press the right (▶) button until you see TEAR OFF. This setting defaults to 0. For fanfold badges, we recommend a setting of 65. Press the HOME button twice to save your settings.

    2. (ZD621 touchscreen) Tap Menu > Print (🖨️) > Image Adjust > Tear Line Offset. This setting defaults to 0. Adjust the setting either up or down by increments of +/-10 as needed and test until badges cut in the right place.

Printer feeds out blank badges before printing a badge

This is likely because the media type selection is wrong or the badges are facing the wrong direction. To check the media type:

  • (ZD620) press HOME, then press the (✔) button to enter SETTINGS. Press the right (▶) button until you see MEDIA TYPE. Use the up (▲) and down (▼) arrow buttons to change the type.
    Badges with a black bar on the back should use MARK. Badges with a hole or a gap between badges should use GAP/NOTCH.

  • (ZD621 touchscreen) Tap Menu > Print (🖨️) > Print Quality > Media Type. If your badges have a black bar on the back, select Mark. Otherwise, select Gap/Notch.

If the media type is already set correctly, double-check that you loaded badges in the right orientation. The "FEED DIRECTION" indicator on the back of the badges should face down toward the table, and the arrows should point toward the front of the printer.

Picture of two badges. One is in the correct orientation and the other is upside down.

Print is too light

This means the Darkness setting needs to be adjusted.

  • (ZD620) Press HOME, then press the (✔) button to enter SETTINGS. The first setting is DARKNESS. Press the up (▲) button to increase the darkness. We recommend a darkness setting of 10. Darkness should never be over 20.

  • (ZD621 touchscreen) Tap Menu > Print (🖨️) > Print Quality > Darkness, and use the plus and minus buttons to make adjustments. We recommend a darkness setting of 10. Darkness should never be over 20.

Print is crooked

If the print is crooked on the badge, make sure your badge stock is properly aligned. If you're using roll stock, make sure the yellow guides aren't too tight against the badge. If you're using fanfold stock, carefully align the stack of badges with the printer so they enter the printer as straight as possible.

Print is too close to one edge

If the print is too close to one edge of the badge, you can adjust the position of the print to center it. This often involves some trial and error.

⭐️ Keep in mind, these adjustments are very fine, so it may not seem as if anything changed if you make small adjustments.

  • (ZD620) Press HOME, then press the (✔) button to enter SETTINGS. Press the select (✔) button, then press the right (▶) button until you see either LABEL TOP or LEFT POSITION. Adjust whichever one is necessary by increments of +/-5.

    • LABEL TOP - Increasing top position nudges the print down

    • LEFT POSITION - Increasing left position nudges the print to the left

  • (ZD621 touchscreen) Tap Menu > Print (🖨️) > Image Adjust and select either Horizontal or Vertical Label Offset, depending on which direction the print should go. Adjust whichever one is necessary by increments of +/-5.

    • Vertical - Increasing this value nudges the print down

    • Horizontal - Increasing this value nudges the print to the left

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