What Are Computer Output Devices?

By Kristen Waters

Output devices pass output from the computer to the user. The most commonly known output device is the monitor, but they also include audio devices, disk drives and microfilm recorders.


The first recorded computer monitor was the IBM 740 CRT. It provided output on a pair of television-like cathode ray tubes.


Monitors provide non-permanent graphical data to the user. They are available in different hardware technologies including LCD, CRT, plasma display and video projectors.

Audio Devices

Audio devices provide sound data to the user, including music, movie audio and voice. They include sound cards, headphones and speakers.


Printers provide permanent graphical data to the user including text and images. Printer types include ink jet, laser and thermal printers.

Disk Drives

Disk drives send output to a storage device such as a burnable CD or DVD. Disk drives provide dual functionality as they also provide input to the computer.

References & Resources