Refers to a class of printers that work by banging a head or needle against an ink ribbon to make a mark on the paper. This includes dot-matrix printers, daisy-wheel printers, and line printers. In contrast, laser and ink-jet printers are nonimpact printers. The distinction is important because impact printers tend to be considerably noisier than nonimpact printers but are useful for multipart forms such as invoices.
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