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Zebra ZD421 Desktop Label Printers: Features and Specifications

Zebra ZD421 Models

The ZD421 is the next generation of desktop printers from Zebra. It offers more advanced features, flexibility, reliability, and security than any other printer in its class.

The new ZD421 features a host of upgrades from its predecessor, the Zebra’s popular GK Series, and ZD420 models. Among its upgrades, the ZD421 boasts a new, more intuitive user interface, powerful architecture, and field-upgradeable wireless kit.

The ZD421 features a dual wall frame construction for increased durability and improved printhead protection. With its small footprint, the ZD421 fits perfectly on a desktop or in any other limited space application.

The Zebra ZD421 is perfect for printing labels, tags, and barcodes in low to medium-volume applications.

Zebra ZD421 Printers at Triton

Zebra ZD421T Barcode Printer
In Stock
Zebra ZD421D Desktop Printer 300 DPI
Original price was: $1,455.00.Current price is: $1,300.00. excl. GST
Zebra ZD421T Barcode Printer
Available to Order
Zebra ZD421T Desktop Printer 300 DPI
$1,455.00 excl. GST
Zebra ZD421T Barcode Printer
In Stock
Zebra ZD421T Desktop Printer 203 DPI
$1,180.00 excl. GST


The Zebra ZD421 printers come in four variants. These variants differ in terms of the printing mode they provide.
Here are the four variants of the ZD421 – 

Zebra ZD421C Barcode Printer


This model uses a thermal transfer ribbon cartridge to print labels.

Zebra ZD421D Barcode Printer


This model provides a direct thermal printing mode.

Zebra ZD421T 1000x1000 1


This model provides a thermal transfer printing mode.

Zebra ZD421 HC 1000x1000 1


These models are specifically designed to cater to the needs of the healthcare industry. ZD421-HC is further available in three variants depending on the printing mode you need.


Dual Wall Frame Construction

The ZD421 features a dual wall frame construction. This means that the printer frame has two layers instead of one.
Dual wall frame construction makes the printer stronger and more durable. Additionally, it also protects the printhead in the event of a crash.

Zebra ZD421 Dual Wall Frame Construction


The Zebra ZD421 is an advanced desktop printer with a sleek and modern design. The front panel on the printer has five LED status icons and three user interface buttons.

The five LED status icons are –

  1. Printer Status Indicator/Power Indicator – Primary indicator for overall printer health and operational status.
  2. Pause Indicator – Indicates if the printer is in Pause mode.
  3. Data Indicator – Indicates the status of data transfer activity.
  4. Supplies Indicator – Indicates media status
  5. Network Indicator – Indicates network activity and status.

These LED icons are colour-coded so that you can quickly and easily identify the status of your printer.

The three user interface buttons are –

  1. Pause/Resume Button – Pauses/Resumes print and media movement actions.
  2. Feed (Advance) Button – Advances a label.
  3. Cancel Button – Cancels print jobs.

It is worth noting that healthcare variants (ZD421-HC) feature more advanced design elements such as –

  • They come in healthcare preferred white colour scheme.
  • They are easy to clean and disinfectant-ready, thanks to their sealed button interface.
  • They have UV-resistant casing that supports UV cleaning protocols.
Speed Dial 1000x500 1


The ZD421 is a high-performance desktop label printer built to handle advancing technology. It boasts an innovative architecture that is engineered for faster processing.

In comparison, the Zebra ZD421 is 30% more powerful than the ZD420 Series and 700% more powerful than the GK Series.

Moreover, the printer comes with 512 MB flash memory and 512 MB SDRAM. This helps to boost the printer’s performance even further.

Other than that, the ZD421 also has 64 MB of user-accessible non-volatile memory and 8 MB of user-accessible SDRAM. This allows users to store data and settings on the printer.

The Zebra ZD421 printer is powered by the one-of-a-kind Link-OS printer operating system. Link-OS comes with pre-installed tools, utilities, and programs that contribute to hassle-free printing.

Smart Ribbon Sensor

The Zebra ZD421 is equipped with a smart ribbon sensor. This smart ribbon sensor automatically alerts you when the ribbon needs to be replaced. This helps prevent downtime and ensures that you always have a ribbon ready.

Movable Media Sensor

The ZD421 comes with a moveable media sensor. The movable media sensor is located at the printhead assembly.

This media sensor automatically adjusts to the width of the label and moves with the label as it prints. This virtually allows you to use any media with the printer.

Print DNA Software Suite

One feature that sets the ZD421 apart from other desktop label printers is its Print DNA software suite. The Print DNA software suite consists of various utilities and applications that help resolve printer issues and improve print quality and performance.
The feature of the Print DNA software suite can be divided into five broad categories –


The software suite lets you easily integrate the printer into your existing system. It also enables you to connect printers to cloud-based applications and software securely.


The software suite comes with PrintSecure. This software helps to secure your data and prevent unauthorised access to the printer. It also encrypts data so that it can be safely stored on the printer. Moreover, it auto-updates Wi-Fi and security certificates, ensuring that your printer is always up-to-date.


Print DNA software suite has easy-to-use setup wizards that help you to deploy the printer quickly. Even a first-time user can set up the printer without any hassle.


The software suite lets you easily integrate the printer into your existing system. It also enables you to connect printers to cloud-based applications and software securely.


Print DNA software suite provides you with a range of utilities that help optimise your printer's print quality and performance. It allows support for various print command languages making the Zebra ZD421 a versatile printer.

Energy Star Certified

The Zebra ZD421 is Energy Star certified ( Energy Efficiency Level VI). This means that it meets the energy efficiency guidelines set by the US Environmental Protection Agency or the US Department of Energy.

As a result, the printer uses less power, which helps save money and reduce carbon footprint.

Energy Star Rating
Zebra ZD421 Battery Pack


The Zebra ZD421 is a compact and lightweight printer. Therefore, it can be easily transported from one location to another.

The printer also comes with an optional battery accessory pack. This makes it possible to print labels even in remote locations without access to a power outlet. The battery pack also acts as a backup power source in case of a power outage.

*Battery accessory pack is not supported by the printer’s healthcare version (ZD421-HC).

Portability is a rare feature these days, and it is one of the many reasons why the Zebra ZD421 is a popular choice among users.

SOTI Support

The Zebra ZD421 is compatible with SOTI, a leading mobile device management solution. This allows users to manage and control a fleet of printers from a central location.

SOTI also allows users to remotely monitor the printer, update firmware, and troubleshoot any issues that may arise.

The Zebra ZD421 desktop label printers use BLE (Bluetooth Low Energy 5) to communicate with android and iOS devices.

SOTI Zebra
Direct Thermal vs Thermal Transfer

Printing Modes

The ZD421 supports two printing modes- Direct Thermal and Thermal Transfer.

Direct thermal mode is best suited for printing labels with a short shelf life. This printing mode uses heat-sensitive paper that turns black when exposed to heat. As heat is used to print labels, they may fade over time.

Thermal transfer mode, on the other hand, uses heat to transfer ink from a ribbon onto the label. The ribbon is a wax or resin-based material. This printing mode is best suited for printing labels that need to withstand harsh environments or extreme temperatures.

Keep in mind that different Zebra ZD421 models support different printing modes.

Printing Modes

Zebra ZD421 offers two print resolutions –

  • 203 dpi (8 dots/mm)
  • 300 dpi (12 dots/mm)


The printing speed of the printer varies depending on the print resolution. Here is the printing speed of Zebra ZD421 –

  • At 203 dpi – up to 152 mm/s (6ips)
  • At 300 dpi – up to 102 mm/s (4ips)

Supported Print Media

Zebra ZD421 supports the following print media –

  • Roll-fed or fan-fold
  • Label stock (die cut or continuous, direct thermal or thermal transfer)
  • Tag stock (die cut or continuous, direct thermal or thermal transfer)
  • Continuous receipt paper (direct thermal)
  • Wristband stock (direct thermal or thermal transfer) (Z-Band 4000)

Supported Barcode, Fonts & Graphics

The Zebra ZD421 supports a wide range of barcode symbologies, fonts, and graphics.

The printer supports 2:1 and 3:1 bar code ratios.

The Zebra ZD421 supports the following 1D bar codes –

  • Code 11
  • Code 39
  • Code 93
  • Code 128
  • ISBT-128
  • UPC-A
  • UPC-E
  • EAN-8
  • EAN-13
  • UPC and EAN 2-or 5-digit extensions
  • Plessey
  • Postnet
  • Standard 2-of-5
  • Industrial 2-of-5
  • Interleaved 2-of-5
  • Logmars
  • MSI
  • Codabar
  • Planet Code


The Zebra ZD421 supports the following 2D bar codes –

  • Codablock
  • PDF417
  • Code 49
  • DataMatrix
  • MaxiCode
  • QR Code
  • MicroPDF
  • Aztec


When it comes to font and graphics the Zebra ZD421 does not disappoint. The printer supports the following fonts and graphics –

  • 16 resident expandable ZPL II bitmap fonts
  • two resident scalable ZPL fonts
  • five resident expandable EPL2 fonts
  • native open-type font support,
  • Unicode compliant
  • Supports user-defined fonts and graphics, including custom logos


*Printer units sold in China include SimSun simplified Chinese font.

Print Language Support

ZD421 supports the following print languages –

  • ZPL II
  • EPL 2
  • XML
  • ZBI
  • PDF Direct
ZPL Language
Device Connectivity

Connectivity Options

The ZD421 comes with a wide range of connectivity options. This makes it easy to integrate the printer into any existing network.

The Zebra ZD421 desktop label printers support the following connectivity options –

  • USB host port (2.0)
  • USB device port (2.0)
  • Ethernet port (transmission rate: 10/100 Mbps) (optional)
  • Serial port (RS-232 & DB-9) (optional)
  • Dual wireless radio with 802.11ac certified Wi-Fi (optional)
  • Bluetooth 4.1 (MFi-certified)
  • NFC support


The ZD421 is compatible with the following operating systems –

  • Windows
  • macOS
  • Linux
  • Android
  • IOS

Options and Accessories

There is a wide range of options and accessories available for the Zebra ZD421 desktop label printers.

Some of the most popular options and accessories include –

  • Cutter module
  • Dispenser/Peeler module
  • ZKDU – Zebra keyboard display unit
  • ZD-Series Battery (2750 mAh) for cordless operation
  • Carrying case for printer and battery
  • Mounting adapter plate
  • Media core adapters to accommodate 1.5 in., 2 in., and 3 in. ID core sizes
  • Attached power supply for cord-free installation
Zebra ZD421 Accessories

Media & Ribbon Specification

The Zebra ZD421 comes with three types of media sensors, namely –

  • Full width
  • Moveable reflective/black mark sensor
  • Multi-position transmissive/gap sensor



The media specifications of the printer differ based on the model you choose.

Here is the media specification of the printers –


Thermal transfer models support the following –

Maximum label length

39.0 in. (991 mm)

Minimum label length

0.25 in. (6.4 mm)

Media width

0.585 in. to 4.41 in. (15 mm  to 112 mm)

Maximum outer roll diameter

5.00 in. (127 mm)

Maximum media thickness 

0.0075 in. (0.1905 mm)

Minimum media thickness

0.003 in. (0.08 mm)


Ribbon cartridge models support the following –

Maximum label length

39.0 in. (991 mm)

Minimum label length

0.25 in. (6.4 mm)

Media width

0.585 in. to 4.65 in. (15 mm to 118 mm)

Maximum outer roll diameter

5.00 in. (127 mm)

Maximum media thickness 

0.0075 in. (0.1905 mm)

Minimum media thickness

0.003 in. (0.08 mm)


Direct thermal models support the following –

Maximum label length

39.0 in. (991 mm)

Minimum label length

0.25 in. (6.4 mm)

Media width

0.585 in. to 4.25 in. (15 mm to 108 mm)

Maximum outer roll diameter

5.00 in. (127 mm)

Maximum media thickness 

0.0075 in. (0.1905 mm)

Minimum media thickness

0.003 in. (0.08 mm)


Here are the ribbon specifications of the Zebra ZD421 printers –

Ribbon outside diameter

2.6 in./66 mm (300 m)

1.34 in./34 mm (74 m)

Ribbon standard length

Roll – 984 ft. (300 m); 243 ft. (74 m)

Cartridge – 243 ft. (74 m)

Ribbon ratio

1:4 ribbon to media (300 m)

1:1 ribbon to media (74 m)

Ribbon width

Roll – 1.33 in./33.8 mm – 4.3 in./109.2 mm

Cartridge – 4.3 in./109.2 mm

Ribbon core I.D.

300 meter ribbon 1 in./25.4 mm

74 meter ribbon 0.5 in./12.7 mm

Power Requirements

The Zebra ZD421 operates on an auto-detectable (PFC Compliant) 100-240V AC, 50/60 Hz power supply.

The healthcare models of the printer come with IEC60601-1 certified power supply.

The power cord is included with the printer.

Cable IEC Power Cord 10A/250V C-13 2M

Operating Conditions

The operating conditions of the printer are as follows –


  • Operating Temperature – 40°F to 105°F (4.4°C to 41°C)

  • Storage Temperature – -40°F to 140°F (-40°C to 60°C)

  • Operating Humidity – 10% to 90% non-condensing

  • Storage Humidity – 5% to 95% non-condensing

Operating Temperature 1

Operating Conditions

Zebra ZD421 desktop label printers are light in weight and compact in design.

The dimensions and weight of the printer vary according to the model you choose.

Here are the details –

Zebra ZD421 Thermal Transfer Model (ZD421T)

Dimensions (L x H x W) – 10.5 in. x 8.0 in. x 7.44 in. (267 mm x 202 mm x 189 mm)

Weight – 2.05 kg (4.52 lbs.)

Zebra ZD421 Ribbon Cartridge Model (ZD421C)

Dimensions (L x H x W) – 10.0 in. x 8.0 in. x 7.0 in. (254 mm x 202 mm x 177 mm)

Weight – 2.3 kg (5.0 lbs.)

Zebra ZD421 Direct Thermal Model (ZD421D)

Dimensions (L x H x W) – 8.69 in. x 6.98 in. x 5.93 in. (220.8 mm x 177.5 mm x 150.7 mm)

Weight – 1.35 kg (2.98 lbs.)

Included Items in the Box

The box of Zebra ZD421 desktop label printers includes the following items –

  • Printer unit
  • Ribbon take-up cores (1 in. and 0.5 in.)*
  • 300 m ribbon core adapters for non-Zebra ribbon*
  • AC power supply
  • Power cord(s)
  • USB cable
  • Quick start guide
  • Regulatory guide


* Included with Zebra ZD421 thermal transfer models only.


ZD421 printers come with a standard 2-year warranty from the date of shipment. This warranty covers manufacturing and materials defects.