We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.

Advertiser Disclosure

Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.

How We Make Money

We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently from our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What is an Output Meter?

By Paul Scott
Updated May 17, 2024
Our promise to you
About Mechanics is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At About Mechanics, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

An output meter is a measuring device that gives an indication of the magnitude of work or energy produced by a device in a relevant unit of measurement. Output meters are used to measure many forms of work or energy, including torque, sound, light, power or electrical outputs. Each different type of output meter features external measuring devices and internal mechanisms relevant for the work or energy involved. Some output meters may be small handheld devices, while others are found permanently mounted on vehicle dashboards, panels or installation instrument consoles. Output meters are often essential diagnostic aids in establishing the overall efficiency of many different types of systems.

The output of most machines, appliances or installations that produce work or energy can be measured using an output meter. The measurement generated is useful for establishing whether or not the particular machine or appliance is functioning correctly. Output meter readings are taken in a wide variety of ways and expressed in application-specific units of measurement. The meters themselves vary considerably in size and design.

For instance, the light output meter is most often a small, portable, handheld device used to gauge light output in photography, industrial or security lighting installation and indoor crop growing. The devices typically consist of a photosensitive cell array that gathers light and expresses the output in lumen, lux or candela on a digital or analog readout. Sound or audio output meters may also be portable devices or permanently built into sound systems or recording and sampling desks. These meters measure the intensity of a system's sound output. The unit of measure used with these meters is usually decibel or sound pressure and volume unit (VU), which is a measure of electrical signal strength.

Electrical power supply outputs are measured in watts and typically displayed on watt output meters built into electrical distribution panels. The power output of internal combustion engines and electric motors is expressed in horsepower (HP) or kilowatt (kW). The measurement method for these machines usually involves a resistance roller arrangement that is turned by the motor or the wheels of an automobile with the readout graphically displayed on a panel or console mounted gauge. The torque output of this type of machine is also measured in a similar fashion and expressed in foot pounds or newton meters.

There are many other types of output meter that measure a variety of system outputs, including air and fluid flow, temperature and pressure. All of these devices use different measurement methods, such as temperature probes, pressure sensors or mechanical flow-activated mechanisms. Output meter readings are not only used to check whether or not single devices are functioning properly, but also as an overall system efficiency guide in applications that feature interdependent elements.

About Mechanics is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.

Discussion Comments

About Mechanics, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

About Mechanics, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.