Quick answer
"Dispositivo" is a noun which is often translated as "device", and "aparato" is a noun which is also often translated as "device". Learn more about the difference between "dispositivo" and "aparato" below.
dispositivo(
dees
-
poh
-
see
-
tee
-
boh
)
A masculine noun is used with masculine articles and adjectives (e.g. el hombre guapo, el sol amarillo).
1. (piece of equipment)
a. device
Este dispositivo te permite cargar tu móvil sin cables.This device allows you to charge your cellphone without cables.
b. mechanism
El dispositivo de entrada más común de un ordenador es un teclado.The most common computer input mechanism is a keyboard.
2. (forces)
a. presence
Siempre hay un fuerte dispositivo policial en los aeropuertos en los días de fiesta nacionales.There's always a strong police presence in airports on national holidays.
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aparato(
ah
-
pah
-
rah
-
toh
)
A masculine noun is used with masculine articles and adjectives (e.g. el hombre guapo, el sol amarillo).
1. (technical)
a. device
Tengo que llevar este aparato a la tienda porque ya no prende.I have to take this device to the store because it no longer turns on.
b. machine
El aparato viejo de escritorio tiene menos potencia que mi teléfono nuevo.The old desktop machine has less power than my new phone.
c. apparatus
Los bomberos usan un aparato especial para respirar.Firefighters use a special breathing apparatus.
2. (electrical appliance)
a. appliance (in the kitchen)
Nos dieron muchos aparatos para la cocina de regalo de boda.We got many kitchen appliances as wedding gifts.
b. radio (for listening)
Oí por el aparato que va a ser un día asoleado.I heard on the radio that it's going to be a sunny day.
c. set (for viewing)
Hay que arreglar el aparato hoy, porque no me quiero perder el partido.We have to fix the set today, because I don't want to miss the game.
d. television set (for viewing)
Compramos el primer aparato a color en 1975.We bought our first color television set in 1975.
3. (telecommunication)
a. telephone
Octavio, cuelga el aparato si ya terminaste de hablar.Octavio, hang up the telephone if you're finished talking.
4. (sports)
a. apparatus
Se cayó del aparato de gimnasia durante la competencia.She fell from the gymnastics apparatus during the competition.
b. equipment
Los nuevos aparatos del gimnasio llegan mañana.The new gym equipment arrives tomorrow.
5. (aviation)
a. aircraft
La fuerza aérea tiene un aparato que puede volar al doble de la velocidad del sonido.The air force has an aircraft that can fly at twice the speed of sound.
6. (medicine)
a. aid
Gustavo necesita un aparato auditivo para oír.Gustavo needs a hearing aid in order to hear.
b. braces
Regionalism used in the United States
(United States)
Felipe empezó a usar aparatos a los once años para corregirse los dientes.Felipe started wearing braces at eleven to correct his teeth.
c. brace (United Kingdom)
Graciela tiene un aparato con gomas de colores.Graciela has a brace with colored bands.
7. (ostentation)
a. pomp
La cantante llegó con todo el aparato de una princesa.The singer arrived with all the pomp of a princess.
8. (anatomy)
a. system
Un cardiólogo estudia el aparato circulatorio.A cardiologist studies the circulatory system.
9. (politics)
a. machine
Aunque Guillermo no sea el presidente ya, todavía controla el aparato del partido.Even though Guillermo isn't president anymore, he still controls the party machine.
b. machinery
La prensa lo acusó de usar el aparato gubernamental para sus propios fines políticos.The press accussed him of using government machinery for his own political ends.
10. (the genitals)
a. genitalia
Fue al ginecólogo por una consulta sobre su aparato femenino.She went to the gynecologist for a consultation about her female genitalia.
b. equipment
A word or phrase that is commonly used in conversational speech (e.g. skinny, grandma).
(colloquial)
(masculine)
Sube tu cierre, porque se ve tu aparato.Zip your zipper; your equipment is showing.
11. (weather)
a. thunder and lightning
Se espera la llegada de un aparato al atardecer.Thunder and lightning is expected at sundown.
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