5 Important Tips to Consider When Choosing a Barcode Scanner

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A barcode scanner is a must-have warehouse tool but choosing the right one can be a challenge as it can make a huge difference in the efficiency and productivity of your company.

If you're wondering what's the difference between laser or image-based scanners and how to pick the right one, you've come to the right place.

Below are 5 questions that every business owner must ask themselves when deciding on a barcode scanner. Read on to find out what's the difference between all the types of code readers out there and how to pick the perfect one for your business.

Let's begin.

1. What Type of Barcodes Will You Be Scanning?

Laser-based scanners use mirrors and lights to read codes. They are mostly used for linear barcodes (although some can read 2-D codes). Examples of linear barcodes are UPC codes or EAN13.

Image scanners, on the other hand, rely on cameras to read codes. They're also much better at reading complicated 2-D barcodes or codes on other screens. For example, QR codes or Datamatrix codes are all types of 2-D barcodes

2. Where Will You Be Using the Scanners?

A barcode scanner around a wet environment and dry environment should not be the same. If you need your scanners to work in extreme temperatures, humidity level, or any other type of extreme environment that requires them to be more durable, consider scanners that are made out of higher quality materials.

Laser scanners tend to be made out of glass or plastic so it makes them naturally more durable than image scanners. However, you can also find durable image scanners nowadays. But you'll need to do your research and make sure they can withstand the conditions you need them to be in. 

3. Will the Scanners be in Low Light or Bright Setting?

If you're going to use your scanners in a low light setting such as a warehouse, a laser scanner will be a safer bet. However, there are image scanners now that are getting better at this as well. If you do decide to go with an image scanner, make sure it has the capability to illuminate the codes before scanning them.

4. Will the Scanners Be Stationary or Moving?

Both laser and image scanners have the capabilities to be wireless, however, you should know that laser scanners are generally better at reading barcodes in long distances or in motion.

Image scanners need more time to register an image, thus, they don't perform as well on far or moving products. And remember, all wireless scanners must be charged in order to work.

5. Quality of Barcodes

Last but not least, what's the quality of the barcodes you'll be scanning going to be like. Will they be on products that'll undergo lots of wear and tear such as products that need to be transported over long distances? Or will they be scanning undisturbed products?

Traditionally, laser scanners are not as good at reading faint or poor quality barcodes. Image scanners, however, have the technology to recognise even poor barcodes, which is something very important to consider when choosing your barcode scanner.

The Perfect Barcode Scanner for You

There you have it, our top tips to help you choose a barcode scanner that'll be worth your money and time. We hope you'll use them to help you find the perfect scanner for you.

If you would like even more information on how to run your warehouse and logistics department efficiently, please explore the rest of our blog for more free technology and business resources.