Brother VC-500W thermal printer review

A high-resolution color printer that is limited to 2-inch width labels

Brother VC-500W thermal printer on a wooden table
(Image: © Paul Hatton / Digital Camera World)

Digital Camera World Verdict

The Brother VC-500W is one of the best thermal printers around if you need to print color labels. There are no visible dots in the resulting prints thanks to the 313 dpi resolution, and there's a natural level of contrast too. The color replication leaves a little to be desired, though, with photos printed with an unnatural magenta hue. The range of label widths up to 2 inches makes this a versatile printer, although 2 inches does seriously limit the end uses of this printer. The color and maximum label size make this perfect for labeling things around the home or for creating event labels, and there are no issues with compatibility. Support is offered for all major operating systems, including mobile devices.


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    Prints in color

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    Print from mobile

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    You may need wider labels

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    Printing is quite slow

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The Brother VC-500W is a lightweight, small-format label printer that has wireless connectivity. Thanks to its ZINK paper, it is possible to print color with no problems such as smudges and tears. The printer is not particularly quick, with 0.3 inches printed per second. Operating system support spans across Windows, macOS, iOS, and Android.

Thanks to the ZINK paper, it is possible to print color labels with no trouble at all. This paper avoids the pitfalls of traditional color printing with no problems like smudges, tears, or water damage. 

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CompatibilityWindows 2008+, macOS 10.11+, Linux, Android
Connects viaUSB-A
Speed0.3 inch per second
Maximum paper size50mm (2 inches wide)
Mono or colorMono
Dimensions22.1 x 17.02 x 14.99 cm

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Paul Hatton
Freelance tech writer

Paul is a digital expert. In the 20 years since he graduated with a first-class honours degree in Computer Science, Paul has been actively involved in a variety of different tech and creative industries that make him the go-to guy for reviews, opinion pieces, and featured articles. With a particular love of all things visual, including photography, videography, and 3D visualisation Paul is never far from a camera or other piece of tech that gets his creative juices going. You'll also find his writing in other places, including Creative Bloq, Digital Camera World, and 3D World Magazine.