Output Devices of Computer | What is an Output Devices, 11 Best Example of Output Devices

Output devices of a Computer

In this write up we will learn different output devices of a computer and how it helps.

What is an Output Devices?

An output device is any hardware equipment to display, project, or physically reproduce the results of data processed by computer.

It converts the electronic information into the format, which can be understood by humans.

Output devices are peripheral hardware devices that are either wired or wireless.

Must Read:- What is an Input Devices of Computer?

What is the difference between input and output device?

The main difference between an input and output device is that the input device transfers data to the computer, whereas the output data receives data from the computer.

For example, the content is fed into the computer through an input device called a keyboard, and one can read it on an output device called a monitor.

Input devices are necessary for the computer to operate, whereas output devices can be optional.

What are the different output devices?

The Output devices can be classified into visual, data, print, and sound devices. The different types of output devices are as follows:-

1.    Monitor

2.    Printer

3.    Headphones

4.    Computer Speakers

5.    Projector

6.    GPS

7.    Sound card

8.    Video card

9.    Braille reader

10.  Speech – Generating device

11.  J plotter

We will discuss each output device in brief:-

Monitor

The monitor is the most common output device. It displays information in a pictorial form or commonly referred to as pixels.

More the number of pixels, the better is the picture clarity and sharpness. It includes a screen, circuitry, and the box, in which the circuit is enclosed. The user can view the processed data on the screen.

There are two types of Monitor screens. They are as follows:-

  • Cathode Ray Tube Monitor (CRT)
  • Flat Panel Screen Monitors

Cathode Ray Tube Monitor (CRT)

Cathode Ray Tube monitors use CRT technology similar to television. This technology uses phosphorescent dots to generate pixels that form displayed images. CRT monitor screens are large and consume more power.

Flat Panel Screen Monitors

These monitors use a thin panel design instead of CRT technology. These screens are much lighter and thinner, which can be carried from one place to another.

This technology uses liquid crystals or plasma to produce output. Light is passed through liquid crystals to form pixels.

The three types of Flat Panel screen monitors are LCD, LED, and plasma. They are as follows:-

  • Liquid Crystal Devices (LCD) monitors or Non-emissive displays
  • Light Emitting Diode (LED) monitors or Emissive displays
  • Plasma monitors

Liquid Crystal Devices (LCD) monitors or Non-emissive displays

It is a flat panel display that uses the light- modulating properties of liquid crystals. It is used in LCD televisions, aircraft cockpit displays, etc.

It is more energy-efficient, as it does not use phosphorous and can be disposed of more safely than the CRT monitors.

Light Emitting Diode (LED) monitors or Emissive displays

 It is an improved version of the LCD monitor. The technology used in both the monitors is the same except the backlighting.

The LED monitors are lighter, thinner, and less expensive. These monitors are more reliable as they have a more broad dimming range.

Plasma monitors

It is a monitor in which each pixel on the screen is illuminated by a tiny bit of charges gas or plasma similar to a tiny neon light. These monitors are thinner than Cathode ray tube monitors and brighter than liquid crystal display monitors.

Printer

A printer is a hardware device that produces a hard copy version of the processed data from the computer.

It is a device that accepts texts and graphic output from the computer and transmits the image data to the printer, usually on a paper.

Printers are the most common output device to print text or photos. Some printers can print only in black and white, but today, almost all the printers can print monochrome and color prints.

The modern-day printers used in homes have high DPI (dots per inch), which generates high-quality images.

The printers are classified into two main types –

  • Impact printers
  • Non Impact printers.

Impact printer

This type of printer prints characters by striking on the ribbon, and then they are pressed on the paper. This type of printer is nowadays not in use as they make too much noise.

The impact printers are of two types –

Character printer

Character printer can print only text, and a single character at a time. The different types of character printers are – chain, band, dot matrix, and daisy wheel printers.

The commonly used printers are dot matrix and daisy wheel. Their speed is up to 300 lines per minute.

Line Printer

Line printers can print line by line. The two types of line printers are drum printer and chain printer. Among these, the drum printer has high speed and can print up to 300 to 2000 lines per minute.

Non-Impact printer

These types of printers are those printers that print without striking on the ribbon. The examples of non-impact printers are laser printer and inkjet printer.

Laser Printers

Laser printers use laser lights to produce dots to form the characters for printing. When a print command is given, a laser beam “draws” the document on a selenium-coated drum using an electrical charge, giving a clean copy of the image on the paper. They have less smearing problems than an inkjet printer, as they don’t use inks.

Inkjet Printers

Inkjet printers are printers that produce the hard copy by spraying the ink onto the paper. Inkjet printers are the most widely used type of printer. There are expensive and inexpensive models available in the market.

Headphones

The headphones or called as earphones are hardware output devices that are either plugged in the computer or can be wireless.

We can listen to audio or watch the video privately without disturbing others. Headphones come in various shapes and sizes. 

Some headphones utilize Styrofoam or soft fabric around the earpiece to provide a comfortable fit.

The most common type of headphones is earbuds, which are small shaped in a specific manner that fits inside the ear.

Computer Speakers

The computer speakers are the most common output devices used with a computer. The speakers receive audio as an input from the computer or a sound card then this input may be either in analog or digital form.

Most computer speakers have internal amplifiers which can increase the volume or the amplitude of the sound based on users requirement. 

External speakers are connected to a computer only if a user requires louder sounds, more bass, or surround sound.

Projector

A projector is an output device that can take images produced by a computer and project them onto a screen or surface.

The older versions of the projectors used to create the image by shinning the light through a small transparent lens while the newer version projectors can project the image directly by using a laser.

The projectors used nowadays are known as video projectors. The projectors can produce still images or moving images.

Projectors are used in classrooms, offices, auditoriums, and also at places of worship, as it enables a group of people to watch videos, presentations, or pictures generated from a single computer.

GPS (Global Positioning System)

Global Positioning System or GPS is a network of satellites to know the exact location of an object on earth. The GPS is composed of a sender and a receiver computer.

The GPS comprises 24 satellites, expanded in space about 12000 miles above the earth’s surface.

The GPS and satellite interact using microwave signals to give information regarding location, vehicle speed, etc. GPS is nowadays used in smartphones, vehicles, and many other tracking devices.

Sound Card

The sound card, also known as an audio adapter is the expansion card or integrated circuit to receive and produce sound.

The sound cards operate with the help of a software application and a device driver.

Microphones are the input device that receives the audio signals, and speakers or headphones are the output devices to send audio data.

The sound card has a dual purpose of converting the input audio data into analog audio that can be played by the speakers, can convert the analog audio from microphones into digital data.

The computer doesn’t need a sound card. It is the either built-in motherboard or comes as an expansion slot.

Video Card

A video card is also an expansion card that is attached to the motherboard. It processes the images and video and enhances their display quality.

Most computers have basic video and graphics capabilities, but a video card is required for getting faster and more detailed graphics.

Braille Reader

A Braille Reader is an electronic device that allows a blind person to read the text displayed on the monitor screen.

The computer sends a text to the Braille Reader, where it translated into Braille format and displayed by raising rounded pins through a flat surface.

Braille readers are available in various sizes like large units of keyboard size for computer and small units for laptops and tablets.

Speech- Generating device

The speech-generating device, also known as voice output communication aids, converts the text to speech.

The SGD speaks out loud the command entered in the form of text by the user. This device is useful for individuals suffering from speech impairments.

J plotter

J plotter or simply plotter is a kind of hardware output device similar to a printer used to draw vector graphics. Plotter generates a digitally represented hardcopy of the design.

A graphics card sends the design to the plotter, and a pen is used to form the design. It is usually used in engineering and basically draws a certain image on a number of straight lines.

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