Definition of transistor in US English:



  • 1A semiconductor device with three connections, capable of amplification in addition to rectification.

    • ‘Why do we count the increasing millions of transistors on a chip, instead of counting the chips?’
    • ‘The display pixel electrodes are connected to source electrodes of said thin film transistors in one-to-one correspondence.’
    • ‘The field effect transistor includes a gate over a silicon substrate.’
    • ‘The gate bus lines are connected to gate electrodes of the thin film transistors on each row in one-to-one correspondence.’
    • ‘By the mid-1960's, the microchip was replacing the transistor.’
    • ‘An integrated circuit contains a planar first transistor and a diode.’
    • ‘In 1958 a single silicon transistor sold for about $10.’
    • ‘A field effect transistor utilizes an oxide film to obtain satisfactory performance characteristics and ease of manufacture.’
    • ‘Each pixel in the display is controlled by its own silicon-based transistor.’
    • ‘The trend in microprocessor design has been to use more transistors in each generation.’
    • ‘The microprocessors at the heart of computers employ sets of tiny transistors in silicon chips to represent information.’
    • ‘A gate voltage of output driving MOS transistor is adjusted through a negative feedback circuit.’
    • ‘When I was in grad school, getting 100 transistors on a chip was a big deal.’
    • ‘Applying voltage to the transistor gates frees the charges for readout.’
    • ‘They also dissipate far less heat than today's transistors.’
    • ‘Computer designers, constantly packing more transistors into tiny spaces, are coming up against a physical boundary.’
    • ‘Lower resistance means that transistors switch states faster and that makes chips compute quicker.’
    • ‘For comparison, the gate length of the smallest silicon transistors is about 20 nanometers.’
    • ‘A pull-down transistor has a control electrode and a pair of controlled electrodes.’
    • ‘The top-down approach is typified by the manufacture of transistors on computer chips.’
    • ‘Are there any biochemical equivalents to transistor gates?’
    1. 1.1 A portable radio using circuits containing transistors rather than vacuum tubes.
      • ‘Many of them are sold for a pittance though, some of the jewels are worth tens of thousands of pounds and the farmers get enough for a transistor radio.’
      • ‘Tiny transistor sets with FM facility disappeared with astonishing speed from the shelves of duty paid shops.’
      • ‘We sat there smoking, talking and listening to the tiny transistor radio.’
      • ‘I could hold that mic up to my transistor radio's speaker and record songs onto tape.’
      • ‘The introduction of FM radio broadcasts, the invention of the transistor radio, and the move to colour television increased the consumption of media products in the 1970s.’
      • ‘Anywhere in the crowd it was possible to tune a transistor radio to a translation in the language of your choice.’
      • ‘These include a transistor radio, which was well known as the president's favorite mode of communicating propaganda, and the Soviet hammer and sickle.’
      • ‘The portable transistor radio was on every American beach.’
      • ‘My first memories of listening to the John Peel show was in bed, under the covers, with my little transistor radio tuned to BBC Radio 1 in 1977.’
      • ‘Water sells for a high premium, electricity is a memory, and a transistor radio is the only contact to anyone else outside their temporary shelter.’
      • ‘The shoemaker himself was there as well, listening to his little transistor radio.’
      • ‘More than television, in its infancy a socializing machine that involved the whole family, the transistor radio helped define boomers as a separate (even secessionist) generation.’
      • ‘I have seen it put forward that the people responsible for this ‘no silence at all’ mentality are those who when children walked around with a transistor radio glued to their ears.’
      • ‘The phone has two side speakers rather than one, so songs played through it do sound pretty decent - much like a portable transistor radio.’
      • ‘She kept a small transistor radio tuned to a lite-rock station, the only sound besides the humming of the drink cases.’
      • ‘I'd just been given a transistor radio, and I'd found Radio One.’
      • ‘‘The transistor radio is in my room, Dad,’ Todd added before being asked.’
      • ‘It's a handheld device, vaguely reminiscent of a transistor radio from yesteryear.’
      • ‘He liked to spread out, play his transistor radio (which he kept in a desk drawer), smoke dope, and in general hang loose while he worked.’
      • ‘Among young people there is a great demand for cassette players and transistor radios.’


1940s: from transconductance, on the pattern of words such as varistor.