What is a Barcode Verifier?
A barcode verifier is a device that reads or decodes a barcode and then "grades" the quality of the symbology against an established specification. Some barcode verifiers are portable and can be moved around on the production or packaging floor, while others are used at a stationary location. Verifiers are invaluable tools to insure that the barcodes that you are producing are of a required quality level, helping to avoid rejection of your product or carton once it arrives at your customer's site.
Barcode Verifiers come in many different configurations
Some verifiers use gun type lasers or imagers to scan a barcode. These devices do not perform full-ANSI tests because they cannot test for reflectivity and contrast. Sometimes, however, a gun-type verifier will also support a wand input device which does perform full the full ANSI/ISO tests. Gun type devices are easier to use while wands and "mouse" wands may take a little practice. Barcodes printed on non-flat surfaces such as flexible packaging or cylindrical shapes are difficult-to-impossible to test with wand devices. It all depends on what barcodes you must verify and what your customer requires for quality testing.
Why do you need to verify printed barcodes?
Barcode verification is essentially a quality control/risk management procedure. That risk includes substantial fines from retailers, lost shelf space, terminated customer relationships and a damaged reputation. Verification is akin to insurance: you hope you’ll never need it but it's risky to function without it. Barcode verification takes the right equipment and properly trained employees to do it right. Ahearn & Soper will look at the barcodes you are producing and your customers' requirements, then recommend the best barcode verifier solution for you. Plus we can train your staff so they understand how to use the verifier and make adjustments to your barcode print quality.
A barcode scanner is not the same as a barcode verifier
Don’t be fooled into thinking you can substitute a barcode scanner for a barcode verifier because they are not the same thing. Scanners of various makes and models, different scanning technologies, and different ages perform differently. One scanner may read a barcode while another won’t. Only an ISO standard barcode verifier can tell you how a barcode will perform and how much its performance may be deteriorating over the duration of a print run. Is it a good, solid ANSI/ISO "C" grade or is it a low "C" drifting toward a "D"? Only a verifier will give you the "eyes" to see and the time to make a critical adjustments that can save the print run - and possibly the customer.