Reader Technologies

Reader technologies are the means by which you interface with the access control system. They vary considerably from simple PIN number keypads to swipe cards or high tech biometric readers.

Key and Lock combined with PIN code entry:

One of the most common types of unit is the keypad system. This comprises a user and terminal with a series of numbered push buttons, or a touch-sensitive pad, connected to the lock release mechanism via a control unit inside the entrance.

‘Magstripe’ Readers:

This technology (otherwise known as ‘Swipe Cards’) is widely used and there are many choices. It is known as a ‘contact’ type approach.

Proximity Readers:

The advantages of this technology over magstripe readers lies in the fact that it is contact less, i.e. the card doesn't have to come into physical contact with the reader (average read range for a close proximity reader is up to 100mm). This makes it more vandal resistant as well as reducing the wear and tear considerably.

Smartcard Readers:

Smartcards and readers have the advantage of being able to store additional information that can be used for other services, such as library membership, cashless vending or storing biometric templates. They can be supplied in ‘read only’ or ‘read/write’ formats to suit needs. There are two variants of smartcard readers:

  • Proximity (contact less)
  • Insert (contact chip)

Biometric Readers:

This type of reader allows entry only if the authorised user’s unique human characteristics are recognised, raising the security level significantly. Different types are available, which store the geometric patterns of the user’s retina, hand, face or fingerprint in an electronic memory.