Full-color, high-resolution display
Large QWERTY keyboard for easy typing
Huge selection of customizable options
Can print at high volume
Certain labels require different sized tape
Software wouldn’t download on our computers
We purchased Brother's PT-D600 Labeler so our writer could put it to the test. Keep reading for our full product review.
If you’re looking for an advanced label maker, particularly one intended for the office, the Brother PT-D600 Labeler might be the right gadget for you. Boasting 14 fonts, 11 font styles, 99 frames, and more than 600 symbols, users have an impressive selection of customizable options. Many of the custom templates are specifically designed for business correspondence. Other noteworthy features include fast print speeds and a large QWERTY keyboard for easy typing. With the USB cable provided, you can connect with any PC or Mac for added functionality. We put this label maker to the test for over a week, creating labels for various household items. Read on to hear about our experience.
Setup Process: Easy, but the short cord is disappointing
We had this machine up and running in a couple of minutes. All you need to do is insert the tape cartridge and plug in the AC adapter—both are included with the unit. The user’s guide provides diagrams to help you get started. If you prefer having a portable label maker, this machine will run on six AA batteries, eliminating the need for a cord.
We were disappointed with the short length of the cord, which is only about two feet long. The label maker barely made it from the outlet to our kitchen table. If your workspace isn’t close to an outlet, you will likely have to install batteries or use an extension cord.
Design: Lots of convenient features
With 14 fonts, 11 styles, 99 frames, and more than 600 symbols, the Brother PT-D600 is a versatile machine. The QWERTY keyboard is sizable, making it very easy to type on. There is an automatic cutter built right into the unit, which makes high-volume printing a breeze. You can label print up to a maximum length of 39.37 inches. This label maker’s memory can store up to 99 of your most-used labels, saving you the trouble of having to create the same ones over and over again.
The full-color, high-resolution screen is a step up from lower-end models. It has the ability to detect the color of the tape cassette and provide a fully accurate preview of your label. The large, colorful icons make the home screen easy to navigate.
The Brother PT-D600 seems like it’s more ideal for small businesses and offices. There are entire label collections intended for office signage, communication, and retail business. Custom labels include Authorized Personnel Only, Interoffice Mail, and No Mobile Phones. We would never use many of these labels in our household, although we can see how they would be handy in an office environment.
We noticed squiggly lines running across the screen, and we thought it was a defect at first. To fix the problem, we realized we had to remove the plastic film covering the screen. We didn’t even realize it was there until we read some user reviews that referenced the issue.
Performance: Good, but we couldn’t download the software
There is a learning curve using this machine. It has a plethora of features. The interface seemed a little daunting at first. We recently tested a more basic Brother label maker, and we found that one to be much more intuitive to use. Feeling overwhelmed, we decided to start with something straightforward—a small label for a folder. Under “File” in the Auto-Format menu, we were excited to find a custom template for file folder tabs. Unfortunately, when we tried to print, we received an error message saying, “Wrong Tape Width! Insert .47” tape cassette.”
We have a lot of household paperwork that needs to be organized, and we keep most of it in a filing cabinet. The inability to label file folders with the sample tape provided was disappointing. We received the same error message when we attempted to print custom labels for our various laptop cables. Of course, we could always purchase the appropriate tape for these tasks, but buying more supplies is an additional expense. If you need to switch out cartridges, costs add up quickly.
Because the sample tape is fairly wide, it can print out thicker, more prominent labels. Although the tape doesn’t work for every job, we soon found that it’s great for labeling certain items. While scrolling through the menus and familiarizing ourselves with the interface, we were thrilled to discover we could print vertical labels perfect for binder spines. We labeled all of our three-ring binders and organized them on a shelf in our office. Some label makers can’t print vertically or make labels this large, so the Brother PT-D600 Labeler has a big advantage in this regard. One hitch with the bigger labels: When we removed the paper backing, they curled up on themselves and stuck together. You can straighten them out without damaging the label but have to be very gentle about it.
Some label makers can’t print vertically or make labels this large, so the Brother PT-D600 Labeler has a big advantage in this regard.
This label maker can connect to your PC and Mac for additional functionality. Using the USB provided, we hooked it up to our laptop, which runs on Windows. Despite numerous attempts, the laptop wouldn’t recognize the device. Initially, we thought it was a problem with our laptop and not the label maker—we’ve had similar issues with flash drives in the past. We plugged it into our desktop Mac, and the application appeared in the appropriate folder. Yet each time we tried to download the software, we received an error message saying it could not be installed. No explanation was provided. Both our computers are about 5 years old, but we’ve downloaded plenty of other software without a problem.
Luckily, the computer software isn’t essential. There is plenty you can do on the machine without it. We made a larger label to display the password for our guest Wifi network. (The print on our router is tiny and very hard to read.) We also printed out some address labels to put on our Christmas cards. You can add up to five lines per label, which is very convenient for entering names and address combinations. Since the backing paper is split down the middle, it’s easy to remove, and the smaller labels don’t curl as the larger ones do.
Considering all it can do, the Brother PT-D600 Labeler is reasonably priced at $99. While the PT-D600 excels at certain tasks, such as labeling binder spines and creating address labels, it requires a different sized tape for other jobs, bumping up the cost for consumers. The buying decision all depends on what you intend to label. Lower-end models will print smaller labels—ideal for file folder tabs and gift tags. Higher-end models are designed to print more advanced labels, such as barcodes and postage, for small businesses.
Competition: Plenty of choices depending on your needs
At $35, the Brother P-touch PT-D210 Label Maker is significantly cheaper. It lacks a high-resolution display, and you won’t be able to sync it with your computer, but it still packs plenty of punch. With the 14 fonts, 97 frames, and over 600 symbols, you’ll have plenty of versatility when it comes to label making. The custom templates are better suited for craft projects, gift tags, and household organization versus professional use.
Retailing around $85, the Dymo LabelWriter 450 Turbo delivers advanced technology geared towards small businesses. This lightning-fast machine can print up to 71 labels per minute. The included software allows you to create advanced labels like barcodes and USPS-approved postage for packages and envelopes. It uses thermal printing technology, so it doesn’t require ink or toner, saving you money on office supplies.
Despite some setbacks, we still recommend it.
We loved that the Brother PT-D600 could create big, bold labels for various household items and has the ability to print vertically. Not being able to download the software was a disappointment, but we could make plenty of labels without it. Be sure to research the return policy in case you encounter a problem connecting to your computer.
- Product Name PT-D600 Labeler
- Product Brand Brother
- MPN PTD600
- Price $99.99
- Weight 2.1 lbs.
- Product Dimensions 7.9 x 7.6 x 3.4 in.
- Color Black
- Batteries Required None
- Warranty 2-year limited