Various Types of Barcode Scanners

Almost every industry or organization uses barcode technology today regardless of its size. Barcodes may appear to be a straightforward mixture of strips and spaces, but they’re the important thing to vital product information. To decode these barcodes, special devices like scanners are used. Barcode scanners are photosensors which read the barcodes and convert them into a readable text that is displayed and stored on a pc or laptop. This appears to be a extended process but it just takes few milliseconds.

Barcode scanners are one of the most widely used tools today. They’re being found in different industries including manufacturing, warehousing, education, healthcare, data capture systems  and field service. The high utility aspect and the popularity of the scanners have resulted in the introduction of many varieties.

Barcode scanner varieties are distinguished by their form factor and their scanning technologies. The main difference in form factors is the amount of operator manipulation required. You will find wand or pen-style scanners, fixed-mount scanners, and handheld scanners. Handheld scanners vary the most in available scanning technology. You will find laser scanners, CCD scanners, which are also known as linear imagers, 2D scanners, also known as area imagers, and omnidirectional scanners. The scanning technology must be chosen on the basis of the application and requirements.

Wand or pen-style barcode readers should be swiped on the barcode at a consistent rate of speed and at a certain angle. This makes them the smallest amount of efficient scanner to utilize, but they’re the smallest amount of expensive. They’re also small, extremely durable, and not limited by the width of the barcode.

These scanners read barcodes as they are passed in front of the scanner. They’re widely found in work-in-progress applications and for high-speed sorting along conveyor systems. Smaller models are commonly found in laboratory, security identification, and kiosk applications. Many of these have a laser scan engine, so they should be mounted at a certain angle and distance from the barcodes that may pass in front of them. Unlike others, many of these are usually integrated with other equipment and automation systems.

These are also called CCD scanners, CCD LR (long range) scanners, and full array imagers. The scanning technology they employ uses no moving parts, thus making the linear imager scanners stronger than laser scanners, but they do have a shorter reading distance of contact to two feet. Linear imagers are ideal for reading damaged or poorly printed barcodes and for reading barcodes under plastic film or covering.

Laser scanners are the most used scanning technology in the industry. The brightness and sharpness of laser scanners offer greater preciseness and visibility when targeting a barcode, especially in bright light. These are also for sale in several variations to meet up the wants of special applications, such as long range or high density scanning.

Unlike handheld linear scanners that really must be prearranged perpendicular to the barcode, omnidirectional barcode scanners can read a barcode regardless of how it’s orientated. Therefore, they increase the scanning process and reduce user fatigue. Omnidirectional scanners are usually found in retail environments and can be found in on-counter and in-counter models. On-counter models are good for applications with limited counter space, such as convenience stores. In-counter models are ideal in high-volume applications, such as grocery stores.

2D barcode scanners can capture 2D barcodes in addition to 1D, or linear, barcodes. They’re gaining popularity for their versatility and the future-proofing they feature as an investment. These scanners use a mix of digicam technology and software to capture barcodes. They read barcodes omnidirectionally, so the barcodes can be orientated in virtually any direction. Some models can also capture digital images and signatures.