What is Upper Magnetic Stripe card?

There is no doubt that there are various types of cards in people’s wallets today.
There are credit cards to pay for products, identity badges for licenses and access control, and membership cards to build rewards at your favorite stores.
And there is something in common with them all.

It’s a Magnetic stripe!!

However, do you know that some cards require front-side magnetic stripes? 

In this chapter, we’re going to introduce “upper magnetic” card technology which is popular in
“big box” stores and "wholesale" markets;

and thoroughly study the way to use the upper magnetic stripe option with your IDP Card printer.

  What Is an Upper Magnetic card?

There are three typical methods of storing cardholder information on a card: 

"IC (Contact), RF (Contactless) & Magnetic."

Magnetic encoding is the most common way to store cardholder information on a card and is still the least expensive.
In addition, the technology is very common across the retail industry, and encoding and printing a typical preprinted one-color card takes less than 10 seconds.

So, it is often used in this environment.

If you need to personalize a preprinted membership card with a name or barcode and it has an upper magnetic stripe,  you can use a traditional printer, but it will take longer and cost more.

The reason is that a traditional printer with a standard lower magnetic encoder will require the card to be flipped to encode and personalize, meaning you’ll need a dual-sided printer or you will have to manually flip the card.

Alternatively, if you used an IDP Printer with an upper magnetic encoder, the card will be fed with the magnetic stripe up, so the printer can encode the card and print it without flipping.

This will increase speed and lower your costs.


 The most noticeable difference between the upper magnetic card type and" 
the normal  magnetic card is that photo and text are
 "printed on the magnetic  stripe side of the card


  How do I encode an upper magnetic stripe card?

IDP’s SMART-51 series is designed to support the low or upper magnetic stripe encoding, so users can select upper or lower at time of purchase.  
It’s also possible for a technician to upgrade or install an encoder into existing SMART-51 series printers in the field. 
In other words, if the user purchases only an additional upper magnetic option YOU CAN PRINT cardholder INFORMATION (PHOTO & TEXT) on the magnetic stripe side using an existing SMART-51 Card printer.

 Upper Magnetic Tutorial with SMART IDesigner

1.    Prepare the SMART-51 card printer which has an installed upper magnetic stripe option
       * SMART-51 Series is the only unit available with simple field installation of lower or upper magnetic encoders. 

2.   Prepare blank cards with the magnetic stripe
     * ID card printers can’t print the magnetic stripe onto a blank card, so you should purchase blank cards with a magnetic
       stripe included.

3.   Execute Smart IDesigner, IDP’s free bundle software available with card design and encoding.
      * When you input data (characters, numbers, or special symbols) for MS (magnetic) encoding, please follow
        ISO format below. 

 Available character & symbols according to ISO tracks

      •  // ISO Track 1
          " !"#$%&'()*+,-./0123456789:;<=>?@ABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ[¥]^_"

      • // ISO Track 2

      •  // ISO Track 3


For more information about SMART-51 Series & Upper magnetic encoding, contact your worldwide IDP sales representatives.

  • #IDP
  • #SMAT-51
  • #Uppermagnetic
  • #Encoding



SMART IDesigner,New card template

In celebration of the New year, 2022, IDP has released 20 different new card design templates that can be used in various verticals such as universities, public institutions, corporate, and small businesses.
These new card designs are easy to edit logos, text, and pictures using
SMART IDesigner, which is provided at no extra cost when purchasing the SMART Card printer series.



How to add a spot UV & PEARLESCENT panel?

IDP’s end users often ask me how I add or apply a “UV or PEARL” watermark to their custom-designed cards.
This blog is a quick tutorial to help many IDP users easily create and add spot UV and/or Pearlescent elements to their cards using IDP’s SMART IDesigner software and the YMCFKO or YMCPKO ribbons


privacy Policy

Privacy Policy

IDP Co., Ltd. (hereinafter referred to as the “Company”) regards the protection of personal data of customers who use card printing solution and all related services (hereinafter referred to as “Services”) as very important, and the Company complies with applicable laws and regulations such as GDPR, law on protection of personal data.

Article 1 (Items of Personal Data and Method of Collection)

Article 2 (Purpose of Collection and Use of Personal Data)

Article 3 (The Disposal of Special Categories of Personal Data)

The Company shall not collect any sensitive personal data (such as race or ethnic origin, ideology, creed, birthplace, domicile, political propensity and criminal record, health status and sex life) that may be of concern to the customers’ basic human rights violations, but inevitable when the Company must collect the data, the Company must get the customers’ prior consent.

Article 4 (Term of Retaining and Use of Personal Data)

Article 5 (Customer’s Rights and Methods to Execute Customer’s Rights)

Customer has the right, at any time, to access or rectify his/her personal data, and customer may request to erase the data. the Company shall take measures if customer contacts the data protection officer by writing, telephone or e-mail after the identity verification process. If customer requests rectification of an error in personal data, the Company will not use or provide the personal data until the rectification is completed. In addition, if wrongful personal data has already been provided to a third party, the result of rectification will be notified to the third party so that the rectification can be made. The Company treats personal data that has been erased at customer's request as described in “Term of Retaining and Use of Personal Data” and prohibits the data from being accessed or used for other purposes.

If customer exercises ‘right to object’ on data collected for marketing purposes by the Company, the Company immediately ceases processing the personal data. Notwithstanding, the Company may process personal data if the Company can demonstrate that its compelling legitimate interest overrides the interests or the fundamental rights and freedoms of the data subject, or if the processing is for the determination, exercise or defense of legal claims.

Article 6 (Outsourcing of Processing of Personal Data)

Article 7 (Processing of Children’s Personal Data)

The Company does not process personal data of children under 14 (In Europe, children under16). The Company may verify the age at the time of collecting personal data.

Article 8 (Data Protection Officer)

The Company has designated customer center and a data protection officer to protect the personal data and cope with relevant complaint.

1. Republic of Korea
KISA Privacy Center privacy.kisa.or.kr / 118
Supreme Prosecutors’ Office of the Republic of Korea www.spo.go.kr / 1301
Cyber Terror Response Center cyberbureau.police.go.kr / 182
2. Other Countries
Country URL Country URL
EU www.edps.europa.eu/EDPSweb Greece www.dpa.gr
Austria www.dsb.gv.at Hungary www.naih.hu
Belgium www.privacycommission.be Italy www.garanteprivacy.it
Bulgaria www.cpdp.bg Latvia www.dvi.gov.lv
Croatia www.azop.hr Lithuania www.ada.lt
Cyprus www.dataprotection.gov.cy Luxembourg www.cnpd.lu
Czech Rep. www.uoou.cz Malta www.dataprotection.gov.mt
Denmark www.datatilsynet.dk Netherlands www.autoriteipersoonsgegeve ns.nl/nl
Estonia www.aki.ee Poland www.giodo.gov.pl
Finland www.tietosuoja.fi Portugal www.cnpd.pt
France www.cnil.fr Romania www.dataprotection.ro
Germany www.bfdi.bund.de Slovakia www.dataprotection.gov.sk
Ireland www.dataprotection.ie

Article 9 (Modification and Notification of Privacy Policy)

Additions, deletions, modifications to this privacy policy will be notified through the homepage of the websites, etc.


This privacy policy takes effect on May 1, 2020.