Industrial vs Commercial PC - Which is Better?

Posted by Kari Grosser on Feb 19, 2018 9:30:00 AM

So you need a PC and can't decide between an industrial or commercial PC. Sure, a commercial PC is less expensive but is it capable of performing consistently in an industrial environment? Industrial PCs provide numerous benefits including durability, expandability/flexibility and a lower overall cost of ownership.


Industrial PC.jpgIndustrial PCs are specially designed to withstand harsh environments. 

Two major design keys that separate industrial PCs from commercial PCs are that they are fanless and wireless.

When you are looking to put a unit into a harsh environment where it could be mounted on a machine, such as a CNC, and where it will be exposed to a lot of vibration or shock the lack of wires or plastic fans help to ensure the strength of the unit. Advantech's industrial PCs are robust and do not need extra enclosure or protection to protect them from factory environment. 

The lack of fans also allows the unit to be completely enclosed. This helps prevent dust from getting into the unit and causing damage.

Furthermore, Advantech's industrial PCs are specifically designed as self-cooling units with heat-sync protection inside. 

The fanless and wireless design matched with the internal heat sync protection allow our industrial computers to do well in extreme environmental temperatures. Units are capable of being placed outside and can be located in numerous environments like oil rigs, autonomous cars and airport hangers successfully. 

Expandability and Flexibility

Many industrial computers are designed with the flexibility to add and remove features, even after the machine has been in use which allows the user to configure and reconfigure the unit as they see fit. Flexibility is key for many factory environments and Advantech's industrial PCs provide the flexibility to be moved around to various applications. 

Most of Advantech's industrial PCs have an easy access screw design that enables them to be easy to open and close allowing cards to be swapped out seamlessly making them easy for techs to work with.

This flexibility allows the life of the unit to be extended past the life of a commercial PC.

Cost of Ownership

Investing in an industrial PC will allow you to have peace of mind. While the initial price is typically above that of a commercial PC, the investment provides a lower cost of ownership. An industrial PC will require less repair as it is built for durability and to be place in harsh environments that a commercial PC simply cannot withstand.


Want to learn more about the differences in industrial and commercial PCs? Check out our Industrial IoT podcast, Chatting with Chuck.

It's clear that industrial PCs are the best choice for a harsh environment. Plus, Advantech's industrial PCs function on a standard platform. The user can choose any application ready platform and has the option between most Windows based platforms and we offer Linux based systems. All units also come standard with PCIO ports, most come equipped with Standard LAN, USB, VGA and HDMI. In terms of how the user interfaces with the unit, it is identical to how they would interface with a commercial PC. 

Check out Advantech's wide selection of Industrial PCs today!

Learn More About Advantech's Embedded Industrial Computers



Topics: Embedded Automation Computers

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