Types of Output Devices in Computer

In Computer, Any device that gives the output or result/information that is called Output Device.
An output device is any peripheral device that receives data from a computer, usually for display, projection. An output device works by receiving a signal from the computer and using that signal to perform a task to display the output. There are two types of output devices as shown in Figure:

output device classification

Soft Copy Output Devices:

Soft copy output devices are those output devices which produce an electronic version of an output.

1. Monitor
2. Speaker
3. Projector

Some features of a Soft copy output include:

1. The output can be viewed only when the computer is switched On.
2. The user can easily edit the soft copy output.
3. Soft copy can’t be used by people who don’t have a computer.
4. Searching data in a soft copy is easy and fast.
5. Electronic distribution of a soft copy is cheaper. It can be done easily and quickly.


The most common output device is the Monitor. The monitor visually relays an image, which is created by the computer’s operating system. So, Monitor also is referred to as a VDT (Video Display Terminal) and VDU (Video Display Unit). The computer user sends manipulations through input devices, which enter the motherboard and processor. A monitor is made up of circuitry, a screen, a power supply, buttons to adjust screen settings, and casing that holds all of these components.


A Speaker is an output device that connects to a computer to generate sound. The signal used to produce the sound that comes from a computer speaker is created by the computer’s sound card. Speaker is used to describing the user who is giving vocal commands to a software program.


A Projector is an output device that can take images generated by a computer and reproduce them by projection onto a screen, wall, or another surface. In most cases, the surface projected onto is large, flat, and lightly coloured.

Hard Copy Output Devices:

Hard copy output devices are those output devices that produce a physical form of output.
1. Printer
2. Plotter

Some features of a Hard Copy output include:

1. A computer isn’t needed to see the output.
2. Editing the hard copy is difficult.
3. Hard copy output can be easily distributed to people who don’t have a computer.
4. Searching data in a hard copy is a tiring and difficult job.
5. Distribution of a hard copy isn’t only costly but also slower.


The Printer is an important accessory of any computer system, especially for a graphics system. The printer is used for documentation, print media, or books, etc.
There are mainly five types of printer:
1. Dot Matrix Printer
2. Line Printer
3. Laser Printer
4. Inkjet Printer
5. Electrostatic Printer


A Plotter is a vector device that can directly reach specific positions on printer paper without raster scan device. A plotter is a computer hardware device much like a printer that is used for printing vector graphics. Instead of toner, plotters use a pen, pencil, marker, or another writing tool to draw multiple, continuous lines onto the paper rather than a series of dots like a traditional printer. It is widely used for Computer-Aided Design (CAD).