Before choosing the perfect barcode reader, first you need to understand your barcode application scenario. What type of codes do you need to read? What is the production line speed? And what is your desired solution? Where will the reader be placed? What are the physical limitations, and what type of interface does the reader need?

Read Rate

Read rate is the number of successful barcode reads divided by the number of attempts. Read rates are usually expressed as a percentage, and the closer to 100% the better. Whenever a machine or person handles a barcode on a product, the code is likely to be damaged, such as on a paper box, which often wears or breaks in transit. This problem is not limited to paper barcodes or codes on plastic packaging; even codes etched into metal can be distorted or damaged, so it's important that you make sure you choose a barcode scan that can read defective codes(For example, codes that are printed on cardboard, or have scratches, distortion or low contrast, etc., not just perfect barcodes that have just been printed out).

fixed 2d code scanner

Barcode Reading Environment

Types of bar code readers - fixed, handheld, desktop, mobile

The scanning environment will also determine which type of reader you need. If your application environment requires reading cartons of various sizes traveling at high speed on a conveyor belt, a small fixed mounted reader would be the best choice. A fixed-mounted barcode reader is capable of scanning codes automatically and hands-free from a single mounting position on a production line.

barcode scanner 2d

If the reader is a final inventory check for dock workers loading in materials or shipping out products, then a handheld barcode reader would be ideal. The handheld barcode reader is held in the operator's hand and can be either wired or wireless.

If the reader is a supermarket cashier checking out customers, then desktop barcode scanning and handheld barcodes are probably the most logical choices, and the barcode scanner you use should ideally have quality screen scanning capabilities.

In the case of couriers or technicians working in the field, a mobile barcode reader with built-in code reading capabilities will help to quickly scan packages or check equipment specifications. Mobile barcode readers are also held in the operator's hand and can be customized for specific applications, or they can be mobile data terminals with a tough protective casing that looks like a cell phone.


After a part or product is marked and a code is read, the data is stored or used in a factory or distribution center network. Image-based barcode readers offer a full range of industrial communication protocols, including Ethernet, USB, RS-232, discrete I/O, Ethernet/IP, PROFINET and Modbus TCP/IP. This simplifies integration between the reader and the network, which is critical not only for reading and sending product tracking information, but also in the case of unread or misread Storing archived images is equally important.

fixed 2d code reader

Cost of ownership

Bar code readers for images have the additional capability and flexibility to last longer than laser scanners; image scanners don't cost as much as you might think, thanks to newer technology. Image barcode readers also have the ability to read 2D codes as well as damaged and omni-directional codes, as well as the ability to store images for audit and tracking purposes.

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