• 2D Code Printing

2D Codes Printing

2D codes or 2D barcodes are two-dimensional codes that contain information in both vertical and horizontal directions. 1D codes can contain a series of digits, i.e. a serial number but 2D codes can store around 7000 characters so a lot more information than a one-dimensional standard barcode.

There are 2 main types of 2D codes: Data Matrix codes and Quick Response codes (QR codes):

Data Matrix codes are a set of symbols arranged in a square or rectangular grid, which contains a series of dark and light blocks. Data is encoded both horizontally and vertically and can be read with camera-based products or imagers, not laser scanners. 

QR codes were first developed in Japan as a way of tracking automotive parts. As they can contain a lot of information and can be scanned by smartphones or devices with QR code scanning capabilities. They are used to encode whole URLs and text, geo-location info or any other data.  

Printing 2D Codes

For any application or code used, the information they carry will not be available if the quality of the print is not good. Only high-quality, clearly visible and readable codes serve their purpose. Therefore, when thinking of applying 2D codes to products, it is important to take into consideration:

  • The technology used and if it is adequate to the material/substrate of the products – are you able to create visible code with inkjet technology or do you need a laser?
  • The environment in which the product is manufactured and what impact it has on the code application. Are the conditions hot, cold, wet, and dusty and will that affect code application technology?
  • The longevity and durability of the cod. Do you need a permanent marking solution, i.e. laser, or will your code application be durable with inkjet using suitable inks?

Whatever the application or product, Linx has a technology and printer suitable to your needs.

Applying 2D Codes on Pre-treated Surfaces

Our inkjet printers can print 2D codes on pre treated and painted substrates with the same quality when printing directly on non-treated surfaces. Labour savings are also possible by changing from pre printed labels and stickers to inkjet automation machines.


2D codes are becoming more and more popular and can add value to many industries and products.


Where 2D barcodes can store a lot more information than just product code, such as: product origin, expiry date, nutritional information, traceability information, etc. 


Mostly using 2D codes for traceability and also authentication of the products. This is a particular important issue to address with products more likely to be exposed to counterfeiting. 2D codes can be lasered onto very small metal parts to assist with traceability.


With the often very small size of the packaging, QR and Data Matrix codes are used as they are not taking up a lot of space and still carry a lot of information required to be made available. Serial number, batch code, product description or even a URL link to provide more information can be added using 2D codes.

These are just some examples of using 2D codes. They are also very smart marketing tools used across many industries; when scanned using mobile devices, users can unlock additional content like adverts, recipes, bespoke landing pages and competitions, to name a few. 

2D Code Printers

As with any product information, it is important that 2D codes are printed correctly, with a clearly visible, high-quality code using technology suitable to the application. Most importantly, you need to ensure that the codes can be used by your customers: from each stage of the product, manufacturing cycle to end users. You need to ensure that your codes can be used effectively throughout the supply chain and by consumers. 

At Linx, we can offer you coding and marking equipment to print your 2D codes using both continuous inkjet (CIJ) and laser technologies:

Continuous Ink Jet coders

Linx CIJ printers are designed to be durable and provide the highest standards of coding quality. Using self-cleaning printhead technology, our CIJ printers are reliable and suitable to print on many substrates.

We also offer a wide range of inks that will apply your 2D codes onto various substrates and can withstand harsh production environments whilst offering non-contact, multi-line coding.

  • Reliable printers with long servicing intervals
  • Visible, durable and highest-quality of codes printed
  • Range of inks for specialist marking, e.g. food grade, invisible/UV coding
  • Optional IP protection for harsh environments
  • Suitable to print on any shape, size, texture, porosity, etc

Large Character Printers

Our Large Character Marking (LCM) printers are mostly used to print onto secondary packaging. With the ability to print clear text and graphics onto porous substrates, they are a cost-effective alternative to labels and pre-printed boxes.

  • Ideal for packaging printing
  • High-resolution codes printing even on difficult packaging substrates
  • Print text, logo and graphics up to 75mm high
  • Can print onto vertical substrates

Laser Coders

If you are after permanent code printing on substrates such as glass or metal, laser printers are an ideal solution for you. With no need for consumables, lasers provide a low operating cost product marking solution with permanent 2D codes.

  • Permanent marking capability
  • Designed to use in challenging, high-speed environments 
  • Excellent code quality due to precise laser beam 
  • Versatile with any orientation coding capabilities
  • Ideal for applying 2D codes on various substrates


Linx offers a variety of inks that can be used with our CIJ printers. From non-MEK to food grade and UV inks, you will find the colour and composition best for your application. We offer a variety of inks:

  • general purpose, 
  • special adherence, 
  • contrasting, 
  • food grade 
  • Coloured
  • Security (UV readable)
  • Process specific

Using our inks and solvents to print your barcodes means you have the highest quality adhesion and readability.

Request a Print Sample

See what your code will look like.

To find out more information and to request your samples with no obligation, click the button below.

Contact Us

Want to know what product will best suit your application? Want to know more about 2D codes printing? Talk with an experienced Linx representative today to discuss which printer is right for you!

Call 01480 775 223   or reach out below:

Industrial 2D Code Printing Applications


Inkjet printing on an assortment of cardboard, carton, and paper packaging.


Removable and permanent solutions for coding and marking onto all types of glass.


Solutions specifically designed for printing on a wide variety of plastics such as PVC, nylon , OPP, PP and PE.

Related Industrial 2D Code Printing Applications

Batch Coding

Print clear and durable batch numbers on manufactured goods and packaging

Date Coding

Programmed formats, automatic date forward functions, and custom date and time editors for a full range of date coding capabilities with expiry date printer.

QR Codes

QR Codes can be printed precisely and accurately on an assortment of surfaces and materials.