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5 Barcode Reader Types and What They Do

5 Barcode Reader Types and What They Do

April 3,2023

A barcode reader can also be called a POS scanner or a price scanner. There are five main types of barcode reader which we explain below but before that let us explain a little more about what a barcode reader is and what it does.

This type of device is used to read and capture information contained in a barcode. The reader itself consists of a scanner and a decoder as well as a means of connecting to a computer, whether this is wired or wireless. The barcode reader captures and translates barcode data which is then sent to a software application that can make sense of it

5 Types of Barcode Reader

There are five main types of barcode readers. These are pen wands, slot scanners, Charge-Couple Device (CCD) scanners, image scanners, and laser scanners. Each of these is detailed below.

Pen Wand

This is the simplest type of barcode reader and the least expensive. It is durable and has no moving parts. It must remain in direct contact with the barcode and also needs to be held at a certain angle in order to pick up the data. A certain speed at which it moves over the barcode is also required.

Slot Scanner

This is a stationary barcode scanner and the item being scanned is pulled by hand through the slot on the barcode reader device. This type of barcode reader is usually used for scanning the barcodes on identification cards and cards that are swiped.

CCD Scanner

This type of barcode reader is typically used in retail sales. It has a better range than the pen wand and has a gun type interface. It has to be held close to the barcode in order to read it. Several readings are usually taken to reduce errors. The disadvantage to using this type of barcode reader is that it can only read barcodes that are the width of it’s face size.

Image Scanner

This type of barcode reader can also be called a camera reader. It features a small camera that is used to capture an image of the barcode. It can read barcodes from further away and has digital imaging processors that read the bar codes. It can be used to read barcodes from as far away as 9 inches.

Laser Scanner

This type of barcode reader can be handheld or stationary. It doesn’t have to be close to the barcodes to read them. This model uses mirrors and lenses to read the barcode and can be used up to 24 inches away and there are long range models that can read barcodes up to 30 feet away. It can also read barcodes no matter what their orientation is. Laser scanners can perform up to 500 scans per second.

For more information on barcode readers and the models available, be sure to visit the barcode scanners page on our website. As always, our AIS experts are on hand to help answer any questions or queries you may have and you can do this via our contact page.


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