A peripheral device that helps a computer system to reproduce input data or instructions is called an output unit of a computer. After a user enters the raw data as input, the processor receives that information and processes the data. Then, the computer system distributes the processed data to the users through various output units. Output devices transform computer data into a human-understandable form. This tutorial is an easy way to learn more basic ideas on the different types of output devices and their utility.

What Are Output Devices?

Output devices are computer hardware capable of presenting desired output to the users. Its initial function is to transform and present that information into a human-understandable layout. Many output devices display the outcomes in various ways such as image, text, soft copy, hard copy, video, audio, etc.

Different Output Devices

Commonly used output devices are listed below, along with a summary of their functions:
  • Monitor
  • Printer
  • Plotter
  • Speaker
  • Projector
  • Video Card
  • GPS
  • Speech Synthesizer


A computer system's prevalent output device is a monitor, usually termed the Visual Display Unit (VDU). It can portray the processed data in many ways, like text, videos, images, audio, and many more. It constructs these images by collecting microscopic dots in a rectangular pattern called the pixels. More numbers of pixels describe the acerbity of an image.

Monitors can be of many types. These are as follows:

  • Cathode-Ray Tube (CRT)
  • Exhibits on a Flat Panel Monitor using a Cathode-Ray Tube (CRT)
  • Plasma Screen Monitor


A printer is that output device of the computer system that helps the user print their document or any file. This document can be of any variety, such as text, image, or combination of both. When a user instructs a computer to print as needed, the processor processes it, and finally, the result is conveyed as a printed document that the user can physically access. Based on the printing style, the printers are of two different types, one is Impact Printers, and the other is Non-impact Printers.


A plotter is a device helping its users; print drawings in high quality, in different forms of colors. It functions similarly to a printer, though it has more evolved functionalities. It is generally in printing large maps, blueprints of ships, buildings, architectural sketches, large-format printing, and assembling pictures, 3D postcards, advertisement signs, diagrams, and various designs of the inner structure of building machines. It creates line drawings on paper, employing multiple colors with automated pens producing graphs, sketches, charts, maps, etc. There are two types of plotters, namely drum plotters and flatbed plotters.


Speakers are there for the computers to authorize sound as an output. Also, speakers comprise a sequence of amplifiers that reverberate at distinct frequencies, furnishing a significant potency to the signal, which is why users can hear a loud sound. They accept the audio input signals from the computer's sound card resulting in sound waves as audio outcomes.


A projector is a device that permits the users to project their output in a large area or a large screen. Users can use it to display the results of a computer and other devices onto a screen. It heightens texts, images, and films employing light and lenses. As a result, it becomes an ideal output device for providing presentations or teaching many audiences.

Video Card

A Video Card is an extension card through which a computer can share graphical data to a video display unit such as a TV, monitor, or projector. It processes photos, videos, and sound with additional functionalities; that the CPU typically executes. Since video cards have an adequate processing ability, Gamers and video RAM uses video cards. The video card permits the computer to fetch video or graphical messages to its user, having improved clearness.


Global Positioning System (GPS) is a satellite-based navigation technology that uses radio signals to locate precise locations. The sender device sends a radio signal to the satellites. Then the satellites compile information about location, time, speed, and other aspects and transmit it to the computer receiver for processing. This processed data can be interpreted to obtain information and, thus, can be included in the collection of data output devices.

Speech Synthesizer

A speech synthesizer is a mechanical device that accepts raw data, analyzes it, and produces audible words. It can be a computer card or a box fastened by a cable or software functioning with the system's sound card.

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