A Close Look at Sato’s CL4NX Super Printer


A Close Look at Sato’s CL4NX Super Printer

We’ve been working with thermal label printers for more than two decades and just when I say barcode printers are about as easy to use as they can ever be  – I end up eating my words.  Take a look at the Sato CL4NX Thermal printer.

The Sato CL4NX thermal label printer can only be described it as the most powerful, versatile label printer I’ve ever encountered (so far). They’re not cheap but the build quality is very reassuring and you can do so much with these printers.

Let’s look at what makes this printer what it is, starting with the ordinary bits.  It prints labels up to 104mm wide (four inches).  It prints at a respectable 250mm per second. Like the Zebra ZT printers, it has a bi-fold side door so it fits into small spaces.

What Makes the Sato CLNX Printer so Special?

Ten interesting features that you’ll find on the Sato CL4NX printer, but the last one is the best.

Watch Videos on Your Printer???

Play Videos on your Sato printer
Play Videos on your Sato printer

1.  Full colour display – to the point where you can play videos on this printer.  If members of staff (or contractors) need to know how to change ribbons or clear a fault, you can play the video on the printer and watch, step-by-step, to see how to do various tasks. This is probably the most striking part of this printer.

The Sato CL4NX Thermal Printer’s Got a Mouth Like a Hippo

Easy access printhead for cleaning
Easy access printhead for cleaning

2.  It’s got the widest opening printhead I think I’ve ever seen on an industrial printer.  Now that might sound quite geeky, but when you need to clean a printhead, ease of access makes the job so much easier. I’ve never seen an industrial printer open up as wide as this.

A Printer that Talks to Your Phone

3.  It uses NFC (near field communications) – you can read or write the printer configurations by simply waving your NFC enabled phone in front of the printer. That’s pretty handy if you’ve got 10 of these printers you want to reconfigure.

The Sato CL4NX’s Simple Sticky Pad

Handy Ribbon Take up spool sticky pad
Sticky pad makes changing thermal ribbons easier

4.  Other small, but very useful features include a small sticky pad on the ribbon take-up spool. Sounds pretty insignificant but unlike with other printers, there’s no need to wrap the ribbon around and around and hope that friction will keep it in place.  With the Sato you simply stick the end of the ribbon to the white pad, give it a turn and it’s ready to start printing. On the subject of ink rolls, there’s no cardboard take up spool that you find with many printers,  so the spent ribbon material simply goes into the recycling bin – no mixed recycling irritations.

No Need to Cut your Printer

The Sato CL4NX Thermal printer's platen roller change
No tools needed to change platen roller

5.  No tool platen roller removal.  This printer comes with a platen roller that can be removed without any tools. When you find an adhesive label gets wrapped around the platen roller,  instead of needing to call out our engineers or damage the roller cutting the label off with a knife, all you do is press a button and you can lift out the platen roller for easy cleaning.

Sato CL NX’s Connections

Lots of connection options with the Sato CL4NX Thermal printer
Lots of connection options

6.  Plenty of connections.  This printer has Bluetooth, USB, serial, parallel and network connections as standard.  Including a USB socket (for a keyboard) on the front of the printer.  The only optional extra you pay for is Wi-Fi.

The Printer that Remembers Where it Left Off

7.  As with most printers it comes with a real time clock so even though the print job has been sent to the printer with time and date set at print time, it updates as printing progresses. Might not sound important but if you’re using a peel and present feature on the printer and the printer is pausing every time it prints, there can be quite a delay before the label is printed.

Longest Lasting Printhead in the Business

8.  Another advantage this printer has over it’s major rivals is a super long life printhead. This printhead is made to last twice as long as the competitions printheads, but with the same price.


The Sato CL4NX Thermal printer's extra large label roll capacity
Extra large label roll capacity

9.  This printer has an optional 10 inch roll holder.  Normal printers take rolls that are eight inches in diameter.  This one can use rolls with a 10 inch outside diameter. That means you get a whole load more labels on your roll and that, in turn, means you don’t have to change rolls so often – giving you less downtime.

The last and perhaps most powerful feature is AEP – Sato’s Application Enabled Printing. This powerful programming language makes full use of the printer’s colour screen, takes advantages of scanners, weigh scales and Bluetooth and USB keyboards to give you a fully stand-alone printer.  With AEP you can have bespoke applications written – customised to your organisation’s processes – and prompt users to enter data, validate the information and print.   In fact it so versatile it’s able to search the web for information.  The application we had on our Sato CL4NX Thermal printer had a barcode scanner read a book’s ISBN barcode then the printer went off to the internet,  look up what the ISBN Book title was – along with a summary of the book – and printed it on label.

In Summary

AEP makes the Sato CL4NX Thermal printer a very versatile printer.  The host of convenient features, such as wide opening printhead and the sticky pad for loading the ink ribbon make this an extremely usable printer.  Sato have given this printer a lot of thought.

Want to see Sato’s CLNX Printer For Yourself?

If you’d like to see more – perhaps get your hands on the Sato CL4NX label printer – visit our contact page and get in touch.  We’d be delighted to talk you through it’s  features and arrange for you to see one.


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