The Dymo LabelWriter 4XL and Rollo X1038 are top-selling shipping label printers for different reasons. The 4XL is user-friendly and produces eye-catching business labels. Meanwhile, Rollo is an alternative that lets users maximize their savings on various levels.  

But are these the only qualities to focus on when buying thermal printers? How else do these models compare? And which one is truly worth your investment?

In this article, we take a closer look at the Dymo LabelWriter 4XL and Rollo X1038 and determine which one gives you more bang for your buck.

The Dymo LabelWriter 4XL

The Rollo X1038 and Its Label Holder

What Are the Similarities between the Dymo LabelWriter 4XL and Rollo X1038?

The 4XL and Rollo use direct thermal printing technology to make labels. The heat generated by their print heads changes the color of thermal paper and creates images on it, so they do not need ink, toner or ribbon. Like most other machines of their kind, they print only in monochromatic black, but they do so very efficiently. 

Both devices are dedicated labelers having print widths of about 4”. You can use them to make various kinds of business labels, including barcodes and the wide, standard ones used for shipping. 

Both connect to the computer with a USB cable only. Neither one can print wirelessly unless you make special adjustments to your computer system. Neither device has a battery option, so they are not mobile-ready, either. Being desktop-bound makes the 4XL and Rollo less useful for businesses needing to print labels on the go. However, both thermal printers suffice for the labeling needs of most startups.

The 4XL and Rollo boast of being user-friendly and compatible with most online sites, making them ready to use when you need to print shipping labels and other e-commerce tags. In contrast, most competing brands need app extensions to widen their web compatibility, and installing them can be a hassle for some.

4″ x 6″ Fanfold Labels (500 / Stack)
4″ x 6″ Fanfold Labels (1,000 / Stack)

What Are the Differences between the Dymo LabelWriter 4XL and Rollo X1038?

Now that we have breezed through the areas where the 4XL and Rollo are alike, let’s examine the features that make them different.

1.

OS Compatibility

The 4XL works only with Windows and Mac, whereas Rollo can interface with more operating systems, including Linux and Raspberry Pi.

Why is OS compatibility important?

Windows and Mac are the most widely used operating systems around the globe, so manufacturers typically make their printers compatible with these two. However, a significant number of business owners prefer Linus and other programs because of their price, security, etc. Brands like Rollo cater to these individuals.

On the other hand, Raspberry Pi is a mini-computer that you can program to become a wireless print server for USB-only gadgets. Rollo readily interfaces with it, but Dymo needs additional software to be compatible. 

2.

Basic Functions

The 4XL’s maximum print resolution is 300 dpi, whereas that of Rollo is 203 dpi. A 203-dpi printer suffices for most business labels, including barcodes. However, sharper prints make labels look more professional and, in a way, better for marketing.

In terms of print speed, the 4XL’s maximum is 3.2” per second, while that of Rollo is 6” per second. The tradeoff for the 4XL’s superb print quality is its slow operational speed. However, print speeds should not concern you much unless your labeling volumes exceed 1,000 a day or start to reduce your productivity.

3.

Printer Design and Label Loading

Rollo does not have an internal label holder. That is okay if you have only fanfold labels, which do not require support while feeding into the printer. But if you use label rolls, you will need to improvise supports so the gadget can run them properly.

To solve this problem, Rollo sells an external label holder separately. It is made of a few pieces of plastic and costs $20. It is bigger than the printer itself and hard to position while in use. The labels remain unprotected from dust, dirt and inadvertent movement during printing. Overall, these flaws render Rollo’s minimalistic design pointless. 

Still, one advantage of lacking an internal media holder is that you can load the Rollo printer with large label rolls. It can also accommodate fanfold labels, which are available in big stacks. These features reduce the need to change labels. With fewer label changes and a fast operational speed, Rollo can quicken your labeling tasks significantly. 

On the other hand, the 4XL houses Dymo labels inside its body. It does not need external label supports, so its labels do not take up extra space during printing. When you move the printer somewhere else, like when you’re cleaning your workspace, you do not have to worry about where to position its labels. They go wherever it goes.

However, the 4XL lacks an external feed slot for extra labels and has a smaller body than most of its competitors. It will need more load changes, which can decrease your productivity.

4.

Label Compatibilities 

The 4XL is compatible only with Dymo labels. These thermal stickers have position indicators that enable the printer’s sensors to function smoothly. They are die-cut, customizable and available in various sizes and colors. Dymo printers like the 4XL can create great-looking labels that leave customers with a good impression of one’s business. However, their use can also make Dymo label printing quite expensive.

By comparison, Rollo works with generic labels, which lack the proprietary markings that Dymo labels have. Generic labels are not as pretty as Dymo labels, but they are much cheaper. They are also available in different sizes and colors.

5.

Price

Currently, the Dymo LabelWriter 4XL’s price starts at $210. Rollo’s price starts at $190 without its label holder.

The table below sums up the critical differences between the Dymo LabelWriter 4XL and Rollo X1038.

Points of Comparison
Dymo LabelWriter 4XL
Rollo X1038

Dimensions (inches)

7 x 5.5 x 7.38

7.7 x 3 x 3.3

Weight (lbs.)

1.96

2.2

OS compatibility

Windows and Mac

Windows, Mac, Linux, CentOS and Raspberry Pi

Maximum resolution (dpi)

300

203

Maximum print speed (inches per second)

3.2

6

Battery option

No

No

Internal media holder

Present

Absent

External label feed slot

Absent

N/A

Print colors

Monochromatic black

Monochromatic black

Compatible labels

Dymo and Dymo-compatible labels

Generic labels, including fanfolds

Colored labels

Available

Available

Price starts at

$210

$190

From this discussion, the 4XL may seem to be the better choice. However, Rollo has unique features, e. g. wide OS compatibility and generic label use, which make it more valuable to many startups.

The Dymo LabelWriter 4XL vs. Rollo: Which Shipping Label Printer is Worth Your Dough?

The Dymo LabelWriter 4XL and Rollo X1038 are two of the bestselling shipping label printers in the market today. Both USB-only devices run on direct thermal technology and are compatible with any thermal label type. However, they widely differ in many aspects, particularly their OS requirements, print speeds, label compatibilities and maximum loads.

At first glance, you may find the 4XL to have more advantages than Rollo, but some of the latter’s distinct features make it indispensable for certain user types. As always, when choosing a thermal printer, we recommend finding one that can best satisfy your needs.

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