The barcode scanners are getting better than ever because you do not have to use the ancient decoder boxes and dangling cables. Now, you have a simple barcode scanner that can be plugged easily. However, it is still a challenge to pick up a right barcode scanner if you do not even a slightest clue about its varieties. Here is a simple guide that helps you to choose the right barcode scanner to suit your purpose.
Type of Barcode Scanner
Before you are going to get a barcode scanner, you must understand about different types of barcode scanners. If you are not sure of which barcode scanner you should get, it depends on the type of barcodes you want to read and how aggressive you need. Basically, there are three types of barcode scanners.
The laser barcode scanner is one of the well-known barcode scanner types because it is commonly used by most people from around the world. It works by emitting a red diode laser to read the reflectance of the black and white spaces in a barcode. While it can only read standard linear (1D) barcodes, it is considered as the most cost-effective option available in the market. Depending on the size of the barcode, the standard laser barcode scanner can read from a few inches to a foot or two away. If you want to scan further, you can opt for laser barcode scanner with extended range as it can read up to 35 feet on large reflective labels.
Similar to laser barcode scanner above, the linear imager barcode scanner can only read 1D barcodes. Instead of reading reflected light from the laser, it actually takes a picture of the barcode. Then, it will analyze the image to extract information from the code. Some linear imager barcode scanner have emerged as the better alternative to the common laser barcode scanner because it does a better job at reading even poorly printed or damaged codes. Furthermore, the linear imager barcode scanner possesses similar read range and cost like the laser counterpart. When you need a more aggressive scanner, the linear imager barcode scanner is definitely a great choice. If you are interested, Honeywell has several models that provide long-range reading.
2D Area Imager
As implied from its name, the 2D area imager barcode scanner is able to read 2D barcode. Like the linear imager, it operates exactly the same way by taking a picture of the barcode and analyzing it. However, the 2D area imager barcode scanner is arguably the most superior of all because it can read any barcode such as 1D, 2D, and stacked. The 2D area imager barcode scanner offers another advantage: the ability to read barcode without having to consider the orientation of the barcode. When you are using the laser and linear imager barcode scanners, you have to line up the indicator horizontally across the barcode.
This is because the 2D area imager barcode scanner can take a more detailed image and is more intelligent. Since you can read the code in any direction, you can enjoy faster reads with less time wasted in aiming. Certain 2D area imager barcode scanners now come with the ability of reading barcodes off any surface such as monitor or phone screen. Thanks to its capabilities and very aggressive reading, it is little surprise that the 2D area imager barcode scanner is going to be more popular than ever.